Thursday, December 15, 2011

Holiday Organization

As a member of the BlogHer Life Well Lived Panel, I was selected to answer the following question:

The holidays make me so anxious! How can I stay organized this year?

Honestly, my initial reaction was: They obviously have never seen my house.

But then I thought about  it. Really thought about it. And it hit me.

Holy management, Batman,  I am organized.

After all, it's not necessarily about organizing stuff., items, things.

I mean, it seems like for me, managing the holidays boils down to managing two things:

Time and Money

Actually, now that I think about it, managing the rest of the year kinda boils down to those two things too, doesn't it?

So, for me, the best way to stay organized during the crazy rush of activities & wallet-emptying gift-giving during the holiday season is to find ways to effectively manage time and money.

To organize our time, FireMan & I use GoogleCalendar. There are several other group calendars available to use as well, and I've always been a fan of good ole' Franklin Covey planners, but with FireMan being away from the house so much, we needed something we could both access at pretty much any time.

Enter GoogleCalendar.

And as far as organizing money goes, ya'll know we've been taking Financial Peace University, and one of their teachings is the home budget. We not only created a budget, we actually stick to it. To help us do this we schedule weekly budget meetings for ourselves (via GoogleCalendar, ha!) and have a weekly checkup on where we are financially.

This is the first year we ever set an actual budget for Christmas, and I cannot tell you how much it alleviates your anxiety to realize that you're coming in under budget for the holidays.

No more guessing, no more wondering if you can afford that extra present. We're under budget. And we've gotten pretty much everything we were planning on getting, with a few exceptions, none of which should get us anywhere near the edge of our budget.

Do we have bins for Christmas decorations? Sure. Do we have family traditions to keep up with? Sort of.
But for me nothing has helped ease the stress of this holiday season as having my time & money organized with the calendar & budget we put in place earlier this year. Maintaining both of those items just creates a sense of order amid all the holiday chaos.

So what about you guys?
How do you use organization to ward-off holiday anxiety?

Should you comment here? Sure, I love comments!

Should you answer in the comment section of the Life Well Lived Blog Post? Of course! Especially since while you're there you can enter to win the $250 sweepstakes. And couldn't we all use some extra $$ to ease our money management woes?

Happy Holidays!

1 comment:

Melissa said...

Yeah, my only real Holiday anxiety is the money part.
Every year I swear I'm going to start a Christmas Fund, putting some money away every pay period starting in January, so I won't have to worry about where all the extra expense is going to come from come December.

But there's this strange thing that happens with seems like anytime we ever get any money put back, something will tear up or go wrong, and fixing it will cost what we have saved. Craziest thing.

I guess I gave up even trying to save. Although, that has not stopped things from tearing up or breaking down.

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