Imagery by Hana Dallimore Photography

And so it begins…! December is here and I cannot even put into words how excited I am for Christmas this year. For me, I think this year has gone by so much more quickly than any other in my life and to be honest I cannot quite believe that Christmas is already here. Last year I was quite ill over Christmas, so that is definitely making me feel happier this year as it is going to be an amazing time having two Christmases in one. I am hoping for a very low key time this year, just my grandparents, Nelson and I at home devouring lots of food and enjoying some lovely gifts. Just the way this time of year should be spent. Christmas for me is all about having a rest and quality time with family, so that is exactly on how I intent to spend mine. With this in mind I am also hoping to be seriously organised this year with everything from presents to decorations, the food shop and even what I am going to wear! I want to do everything possible to make sure it is stress free, which ultimately will just make it a lot easier to actually enjoy the festivities.

For too many years I have left everything to the last minute and it has really ruined what should be a magical lead up to the big day. The main thing I want to get organised is my gifts, as not having those can be a real challenge towards Christmas day. I do not want to be shopping with the crowds on Christmas eve!

I think it isn’t until you have a home that you realise how stressful Christmas can be, particularly for someone like me who loves it and wants it all to be perfect. Each year that I have been in the flat I have really put a lot of thought into decorations, trying to have a different theme each year. Obviously, along with lots of work and effort there is also a big cost that comes at this time of year which can be very stressful. I wanted to put a little post together dedicated to easing your stress levels this season, helping you with your budget and most importantly making sure you have the most amazing year yet.

Getting those gifts organised…

For the first year ever, I think I have managed to get 99% of my gifts bought before December even hit, as well as a fair chunk wrapped. I cannot put into words how good this makes me feel, and I am definitely enjoying the festive season a lot more! The best thing I did, mid-November, was create a spreadsheet of everyone I had to buy for and a tick list. Having this in front of me really encouraged me to get buying and be really organised. There really is nothing worse than landing up buying all your gifts in one go when everyone else is in the shops, and with online delivery, you need to get in there early to make sure it is delivered in time. Amazon has been one of my best friends this season, as well as Not On The High Street.com. Don’t be afraid to just ask people what they want, as it will save you a lot of time and stressing over whether they like their gift.

Decorating your home this Christmas…

So I go a little overboard when it comes to decorating the flat, just because I am a big kid when it comes to Christmas. I want it to look like a grotto, and it has to make me excited whenever I am at home. The first year I was in the flat I went for a very traditional red and gold theme, then last year for contrast I chose ‘frosty white’. I loved both, so this year I am going to try and incorporate the white with a bit of tradition. The fake snow is going to be making another appearance, as well as lots more fairly lights, foliage around the flat and the addition of copper to my white tree. Luckily, I still have a lot of the decorations from last year, so I haven’t had to buy a lot, however it is becoming incredibly easier to decorate your home on a smaller budget. Some of my favourite places for more reasonable decorations include Wilko’s, Sainsburys and Amazon.

A little every day…

My best piece of advice this year is to do something each day. Throughout the last two weeks of November, I made sure I was working on my gift list each day, and I was wrapping two or three a night. It has made me so much more excited for the Christmas, as pretty much everything it also done!

Keep your diary organised…

December itself can be crazy. I mean, personally I have had the busiest year of my life this year. I decided to go back through my 2018 diary and I just couldn’t believe how much I have done this year. But for most of us, December is always the worst. I mean, for me, I have been out every evening for the last three nights and we are still only on the 2nd of the month. There is no escaping the busy calendar at this time of year unless you say no to everything, but really that isn’t the Christmas spirit! So the only way to keep on top of it and manage your stress levels is to keep your all-important diary organised. Even if you don’t use a diary during the rest of the month, starting to use it just at this time of year will keep you sane. This way you have full control of what you are doing and you can make much better decisions about what to say yes and no to based on what is already in the diary.

Enjoy every moment…

Ultimately, Christmas is a time to be enjoyed. There is always going to be a lot to organise, and it can be stressful when there is so much pressure, however there comes a point when we really just have to let it go. We never remember the lead up or getting everything ready in detail; but what we do remember is the time spent with loved ones, the food and just each special moment during the day. My best memories of Christmas are always having breakfast with my grandparents whilst wearing my festive PJs, collapsing on the sofa after devouring my favourite meal of the year, and watching the Downton Abbey Christmas special with a Baileys as the day comes to an end. These are the things I remember fondly from my past, and they are the things I plan on remembering with every Christmas to come.

 

Shop this post:

 

Coat – Zara

Trainers – New Look

Jeans – Zara

Bag – Gucci

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I have not been paid to feature any brands, and all views and opinions are my own.

 

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