|This is not my real Christmas notebook; just a mini one I am using for illustration purposes.|
I've shared some of my planning with you before, but here's what I've been doing recently.
I like to take a fresh sheet of Christmas-themed computer paper (always on clearance, at least at Walmart, this time of year) and list down everything that we gave for Christmas gifts. Of course, I had already made a list, but some things changed with the actual gift-giving: I couldn't find a particular gift, I changed my mind, etc. etc. I started the list in January 2014 and by the time Christmas came around, my list had been scribbled on, crossed out, and so on. So that there will be no confusion next year and I don't give someone a duplicate book or whatever, I make a nice, neat list. Then I tuck it in the "Christmas Past" section at the back of my notebook.
Then I take a fresh piece of lined notebook paper and start a new list for the coming Christmas. Some things stay the same, pretty much. For instance, we always give my mother-in-law a tub of bran muffin batter, a jar of hot chocolate mix (both homemade) and a bag or box of clementines. So that is already on 2015's Christmas list next to her name. The only difference is that she asked, for the coming year, that I make only a half batch of the bran muffin batter. She can't bake them fast enough with only herself to eat them. So of course I have noted that down.
Some gifts, like a science center membership for one family, a gift card for another, etc. will be the same again next year, so I make sure to write those down.
I have already purchased a couple of items for next Christmas, so I'll make note of that.
Another thing I like to do is to look over my crafting time lines and add in new projects I want to start and note whether I need to buy materials for them. This year, I only have a couple of handcrafted projects in mind so far.
I also like to note any new recipes we tried and how we liked them. And I make a note of any new decorations we added, where we put them, etc.
I actually have two Christmas notebooks: this big one, with its wealth of planning forms, gift ideas, and so on; and a smaller one which contains memories and family recipes. I'll maybe share a bit more about that one tomorrow.
It's a great feeling to start with next year's Christmas planning. Why not brew yourself a cup of holiday tea and get started? You'll be glad you did.