3 Steps to take now for Christmas...Next Year!

1. Pack and Purge
*Evaluate all your Christmas items and d├ęcor. If some are looking to old and you know you're not going to use it again as part of next year's festivities and decorations, it's time to give or throw it away. Cut the cord!

*Get bins to pack all your Christmas items and label each bin.

*Pack smart with out door items in one bin, indoor in another, gift wrapping in another and so on. Print these Christmas Bin labels to get you started. Write down your contents and securely tape the label to the outside of your bin.

*Packing ideas:


2. Be Purposeful and Purchase now
*Make a list of what needs to be replaced for next year. If you can, hit the after Christmas sales and stock up. I always buy Christmas cards, bows, and wrapping paper after Christmas.

*Make your Christmas card list now, while you can see the ones you have. Get your calendar out and set a date to send cards out next December.

*Think about where you spent your time and money this year for Christmas. There are endless parties, plays, and Christmas "events" that take up precious time. Decide what's necessary and important enough to keep. Mark them in your calendar now so you don't get overwhelmed next year.

*The same goes for your Christmas budget. Who's on your Christmas list? How much did you spend for each person? Make a Christmas budget and don't forget to add the small things- Christmas tree, gas, Black Friday, Christmas food (dinner, baking, party goods) etc.. to your budget. Take a look at my Christmas Budget printable that I'm making available Saturday morning.

3. Put Away
*You have to save! Once you put your budget together, even if it's in the ball park, divide that amount by 10 and save for the next 10 months. For example, lets say my Christmas budget is $1000 for next year. When I divide that amount by 10, I know I need to save $100 each month in order to be ready by November.

*Another way to save- Buy gift cards with each paycheck. I know I will always purchase items at certain stores during the holidays (like Target and my local grocery chain), so I can buy gift cards throughout the year to be better prepared for the holidays.

Be sure to come back on Saturday to print out your Christmas Printables. You'll get a budget planner, gift list, labels and much more!