Photo: Pixabay

Let’s face it, you are super busy with life, children, jobs, family. Life is pretty hectic as it is. The last thing you need this fall is extra stress because your furnace suddenly stops working or because tree branches damaged your roof. What you do want is calm. You’d like time to spend with your family. It would be nice to entertain your friends and family in your home this winter.  It would also be nice to have gorgeous photos of your family and cute holiday cards printed and ready to go before Thanksgiving. Yea, not going to happen you say?

This mythical holiday bliss is possible! You just need to get started now…

Get Ready for the Holidays

  • Schedule family photos. Now. Photographers are booking up.
  • Arrange holiday travel plans. Buy your plane tickets and reserve your hotel and rental car.
  • Update your address list for holiday greeting cards. Order holiday greeting cards.
  • Begin a gift list. To keep track of what you have already purchased and what you still need try a list app such as Wunderlist or Todoist. These apps allow you to share gift lists with relatives.
  • Consider “experience gifts” or gifts that do not create clutter. Downsize toys before the new ones arrive at Christmas.

Get Ready for Winter Sports

  • Inventory winter clothes such as gloves, ski jackets, helmets and pants and make note of what you will need to purchase for winter.
  • Inventory ski/snowboarding equipment and see what needs to be replaced. Sell or donate old equipment.
  • If you plan to ski this season, but don’t own gear, arrange gear rental for the season.
  • If you buy season passes, take advantage of early purchase discounts.
  • Downsize and put away summer sports equipment. If you have a boat this is the time to get it winterized.

Get your Home Ready for Winter

  • Change smoke detector and carbon monoxide detector batteries.
  • If you own a generator, start it up and make sure you have fuel on hand.
  • Schedule car maintenance. Replace windshield wipers.
  • Schedule a chimney sweep to maintain your wood burning fireplace.
  • Drain water spigots and cover them for the winter to prevent pipes bursting.
  • Clean or replace furnace filters and schedule furnace/water heater maintenance.
  • Cover or put away deck and patio furniture.
  • Clean your grill and (if you don’t grill year-round) store it grill in your shed or garage.
  • Schedule gutter and window cleaning.
  • Schedule a tree service to remove any overhanging tree branches that could damage your home in a storm.

Take Care of YOU

It’s okay to say NO. As the season gets busier, resist the temptation to take on additional projects and commitments. If sending out printed holiday cards is too burdensome, consider an online greeting card service. Take some time to take care of yourself. Book a facial or massage for early December. Self-care reduces stress!