I know it is still october (but barely), and as crazy as it is, having little kids makes time (the days + moments) go by in warp speed. so, while you may be thinking: IT’S OCTOBER! I am thinking: IT’LL BE CHRISTMAS IN A HOT SECOND! both are true. this is my simple guide on how to take the headache out of the holidays before december hits.
have you ever heard benjamin franklin’s quote: “by failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail”. it may be a stretch to say it applies to holiday planning, but it does. allow me to explain! I adore the holiday season, and having little ones has made it even better. I want to live in + enjoy every single moment, so I made a promise to myself to plan a bit before december rolls around to avoid the dreaded holiday stress.
how + what do I plan?
there are only TWO items on my “no headache for the holidays” list. they are:
- plan our twenty-five days of christmas
- tackle our holiday cards
our twenty-five days of christmas is all of our favorite holiday activities, traditions + events planned out so we do something festive (ish) every single day. because we’re busy + it’s easy to say “we’ll do that tomorrow” until the holidays are over. see more about our twenty-five days of christmas list here. (I’ll be sharing ours in november). now for the other item ..
let’s talk holiday cards.
would you believe we booked our family photos for our holiday cards on october 1st?
it hasn’t always been this planned out. our first year as parents, I nearly forgot to get holiday photos taken. it wouldn’t have been a big deal, but we hadn’t gotten ANY family photographs in our 6 months of being a family of 3 and.. it was our baby’s first christmas! that’s terrible. I couldn’t let that happen again. a lot goes into those cards before they find their way to your mailbox.
here are six things to cross off your list:
1. research + book a photographer / it’s an investment to get professional photographs taken – both in time + money. we’re lucky to have so many talented photographers in our area. I recommend taking your time + doing your research. we found a local photographer we absolutely adore (laura wills photography) and as long as she’s willing, she’ll photograph our family. we do a 15-minute mini session, which may not seem like enough time to capture a holiday-card-worthy photo, but surprisingly is. book your family photos in november (if you can, before thanksgiving).
2. gather inspiration / once our photo session is booked, I start gathering inspiration. I tend to go for a pretty subtle holiday look, so we can print the photographs and keep them in frames all year long. this may be a blue year for us. the husband + littles have the most beautiful blue eyes. dark blue attire to bring out their eyes, against white walls + fresh winter greenery – can’t you just picture it?
3. pick a deadline to mail / on our twenty-five days of christmas list, one day is reserved for stuffing envelopes + mailing our holiday cards (with a glass of wine or hot cocoa in hand). so, it is my job to make sure they’re printed and ready to go out by that day. (adulthood hack: give yourself a deadline).
4. select a design + family photograph / at basic invites, there are countless happy holiday cards to choose from. so many designs, colors + options to customize the cards to your liking. for example: writing a little letter about your family’s year and having it printed on the back of your cards. want to know what they’ll look like in real life? they have custom samples! it’s nearly impossible to pick a favorite photograph from our holiday sessions, so I select our card design first and then pick the photo that works best with that design.
5. update that address list / the husband + I built an excel document way back in 2014, when we were getting ready to send out our wedding invites. we’ve updated it each year since. I recommend building an address list of close friends + family members. update it as people move or annually, near the holidays. it certainly comes in handy when we mail our holiday cards.
6. order your holiday cards / we like to place our order before thanksgiving. that’s the holiday season kick-off around here. when planning your mailing deadline, anticipate 7-12 days for printing + shipping from your order date.
〉 this is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of basic invite. all opinions are 100% mine 〈