Was your Christmas 2017 as hectic and chaotic as every other year? Promised yourself that 2018 will be different? Well, if you best get started now then because those 11 months will soon fly by. Just like every year previous.
The thought of starting those preparations this early may feel crazy. But planting the seeds now will let Christmas 2018 blossom into the best one of your life. Besides, the occasional thought about the most wonderful time of the year will keep you in positive spirit all year long.
It doesn’t take huge amounts of effort, and the small gestures often make the biggest impact. Here’s all you need to know.
#1. Clear Some Space
The recently finished period has probably seen your household accumulate a lot of new products. Therefore, it makes sense that some of the old products need to make way. Decluttering a room only takes a few hours, and can completely transform the space. Meanwhile, you can sell some of those unwanted goods and use the proceeds to make further home improvements.
Creating extra space throughout the home will be highly beneficial when the festive season arrives. In truth, though, you’ll reap the rewards long before that.
#2. Grow Some Food
Whatever anyone says, homegrown fruit and vegetables always taste better. There’s a whole year ahead, and getting into this hobby could be one of the greatest things you do. You’ll probably start by planting seasonal foods that will be ready for the summer. Even if you get this step wrong, it serves as great practice for when you begin planting the festive produce.
Those foods will be rich in taste and nutritional content, ensuring the festive dinner is better than ever. Moreover, you know it’ll suit everyone – we’ll talk more about that later.
#3. Take Advantage Of Cheap Goods
It will be months before the demand for festive goods reaches fever pitch, and retailers know this. Many of them will be selling unwanted goods at heavily discounted prices as they need the space for other stock. From Christmas shirts to decorations, now is the time to act. The bargains you gain today will feel even greater when you see the prices of this year’s ranges.
In some cases, you may even be able to source presents on the cheap. Once again, reducing the financial blow is sure to leave you smiling come December 25th.
#4. Sign Up For Cashback Rewards
Even when you get ahead of the game, the festive season is sure to be an expensive period. In addition to the food, presents, and decorations, you’ll need to face increased energy rates. Signing up for various cashback incentives and loyalty point schemes today will put you in a great position once the winter arrives. Given that many of those plans are free to use, you’d be a fool to miss out.
Besides, getting into the habit of using those schemes is likely to encourage upgrades in other consumer activities too.
#5. Put Some Money Away
On a similar note, you should use this opportunity to start saving money for the expensive months ahead. Storing change in a jar until the winter season arrives can work wonders. Alternatively, Bitcoin has shown that investments have the ability to cushion the financial blow. In some circumstances, those rewards may improve your entire financial situation.
Either way, knowing that some money is tied away is great. If nothing else, it’s a safety net if something unexpected happens during the year.
#6. Think Entertainment
Most people think Christmas is all about the presents and food. However, spending time and creating magical memories with the people you love should be the priority. As such, ensuring that the home is built for entertainment is key. Simple jobs like mounting the TV to the wall can make a big difference. Likewise, ensuring that music systems and conservatories are in good health is key.
Adding a few simple entertainment facilities won’t just enhance your Christmas. In truth, it’ll take general family happiness around the home to another level.
#7. Book Time Off Of Work
Once the summer has been and gone, the fight for time off over the festive period is sure to reach fever pitch. If you want to avoid the disappointment of having to work around that magical fortnight, now is the time to start asking your boss. Or if you’re self-employed, build a strategy so that you can take it off. After all, failure to prepare is preparation to fail.
Some people are in the fortunate position of working for a company that closes down over the festive period. If that’s you, well played!
#8. Think About Dietary Requirements
It’s little early to start buying the foods, even if you plan to freeze them. However, the world is changing, and it’s becoming increasingly common for people to have allergies. Likewise, you may find that friends or relatives have turned to veganism. Accommodating for them isn’t always easy, so conducting research now will help you stay on top of things.
There are plenty of recipes on the internet and in books. Get a few ideas over the coming months, and you’ll have no problems once the big day arrives.
#9. Know How Many People You’ll Have
A lot can change between now and December, but having a rough idea of who will be attending this year’s festivities can be crucial. It can influence everything from choosing extendable tables to air mattresses during the year. Once again, these costs can become a major problem if you leave it too late. Now is the perfect time to get ahead of the game, especially when those items can be used now.
You may have to alter the plans slightly if someone falls pregnant or meets a new partner. But accommodating one extra person is a lot easier than under-preparing throughout the year.
#10. Plan To Help Others
Aside from being a time of great enjoyment for the family, the festive period is one where we should give back to the community. Knowing that you’ve done your bit is sure to brighten your spirits, and you can complete various tasks throughout the year. Those ideas aren’t limited to humans, rescuing a dog that was abandoned after last Christmas can make your entire 2018 better. Including Christmas.
Whatever you do, those charitable acts of kindness bring your household closer together and make you thankful in the process. Given that this is the entire point of Christmas, what more could any family want?