Christmas is coming

Is anyone out there organized to the point that you are starting to get ready for Christmas? I would like to hear about your plans or actions that you may be taking. I know from past experience that it pays to do a little at a time, such as laying in supplies for both Christmas and Thanksgiving.

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The organic approach

I'm the last minute kind of shopper for birthdays, etc., but for Christmas my first "find" usually kicks off the season and gets me aware that, like death and taxes, Christmas is coming.
(The difference is that I love Christmas:))
Last weekend I found a shirt that my son will love and so the ball is already rolling for this year!

Getting Started

Good Job Julazul ! I believe that anything a person does before the big rush helps. I know that Christmas cut-out cookies are supposed to be good for 3 months in the freezer if they are carefully wrapped first. That means waiting a little longer before starting them. I actually have a rather large stack of 3x5s that I made up years ago with one task per card of Christmas work to be done in a timely non-rushed manner. Good luck with the rest of your shopping !

The GTD Principles Help Me In This Situation

Hello Circac,

I have numerous capture tools (iTouch, Blackberry, wallet pen and papers, notepad, etc.) that allows me to record any idea that pops into my head for later processing. Once I make note of something I will put it in a trusted place such as my inbox and review these items for clarification, and then organization into my system. The key here is that I empty my inbox once a week.

An example of how this works would look something like this: I hear my wife venting on the phone to her friend about a something. I get an "AHA!" moment about an item I could buy her (for Christmas) that can make her life a bit easier. I immediately, or as soon as possible, record that idea. I then put that scrap of paper into my inbox, then during my weekly review (or before) I will decide what the next action is to bring that item closer to completion. In this case, I would add the item: "R&D early morning pilates courses close to her school" to my home computer list.

In this situarion, it is essential to capture the idea when you have it. You can even put it on a "Someday / Maybe" list to let it stew or incubate before clarifying and organizing.

I hope this helps.

For your reference, the link below is for my self-made planner sheets which defines the hard edges of my system.



Yep. It's been in the planner since Dec. 26th

I printed a few of the pages from this template and have used it to track things we pick up throughout the year.

I've found that if we stay organized, we can pick up nice things for a whole lot less.

There's nothing wrong with picking up the right things on day-after-holiday clearance, is there?


Thanks for your post Shannon. I really like the idea of gathering potential present information as you did. It also sounds like you do great work with the GTD system ! I am working on that also.

And to Kevl. I say there is NOTHING wrong with picking things up on clearance during the post holiday sales. I do that every year without fail. This sometimes goes well into January I have noticed. That is not to say that I don't get made fun of mercilessly for doing this, but about this time of year, my close buddies always want to know how many gifts I have ready. Very interesting indeed.


I didn't even know these existed! It really is like Christmas.

I'm horrible about Christmas planning, but mainly because I really don't have the means to do what I want for my family and friends, so I don't give it the attention I'd like to. I usually end up making candied pecans for everybody and giving them one gift off their list (my mother makes us do lists).

But this template is perfect. This will really help me out this year.

Thanks a ton!

Sadly overorganised for Christmas

Hi Circac,

I'm way too organised for Christmas and every Christmas. The cards and wrapping for this Christmas I bought in last year's Boxing Day (26 Dec) sales along with a few extra decorations.

Each year I buy small gifts as I see them and, checking my list, I've already got 6 gifts for this Christmas.

We don't have Thanksgiving here in Australia nor do we celebrate Halloween. So, aside Melbourne Cup Day in November, there isn't anything large to organise between Easter and Christmas. Christmas is in Summer here and my family's quite relaxed about it, so our Christmas meal will probably be cold chicken or a BBQ, salads and a icecream pudding. The traditional foods are all too heavy for a 100 degree farenheit day.

I suspect I'm missing out on the fun of doing this all last minute,