Wednesday, June 20, 2007

My Christmas Notebook, Part 5

Here's the last "official" section in my Christmas notebook:

The last section in my Christmas notebook is labeled Christmas Past. Here is where I file things from past Christmases.

I have lists of what we gave people for Christmas, going back to Christmas 2001, which is when I started trying to be more organized about the holiday. It's been a real help to me to save these lists, because I find I will often have the same gift idea for the same person and would otherwise not be able to remember whether I actually gave them that gift or not. I can look back at my lists and know for sure.

These lists also include what we gave to people whose names we drew in our Sunday School gift exchange.

I even include on these lists a notation as to what food gifts I shared with our neighbors each year, and if any of those were particular favorites with the recipients.

Also in this "Christmas Past" section are lists detailing any entertaining we did, starting with Thanksgiving dinner and going through cookie exchanges, open houses, Christmas Eve, Christmas dinner, etc. etc. It is really helpful to look back and see what we served, or, in the case of Thanksgiving, who brought what, etc. For the big occasions, I also keep a list of what serving dishes I will need.

Organized Christmas has a printable Christmas Debriefing form which is very helpful. Each year after Christmas, take a quick look back at what worked, what didn't, and how you can improve in your planning for the coming year. I keep my debriefing forms in the Christmas Past section too, very appropriately.

Technically this ends my Christmas notebook, but I have a few items stuffed into the front and back pockets of the notebook which I'll share another time.

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