Texas Living

Countdown to the Holiday Season Checklist

By Haley Shapley 11.25.15

Are you ready for the holiday season? Use this 30-day planning guide to stay on track.

Nov. 26: Eat lots of turkey and be thankful you still have 29 days until Christmas! (Click here for some Texas-inspired recipes.)

Nov. 27: Skip the Black Friday madness, and spend time with family instead. If there’s a deal you really want, make it a group outing. And ask everyone for their wish lists today.

Nov. 28: Survey your holiday decorations to see if there’s anything that needs to be added or replaced.

Nov. 29: If you’re buying a live Christmas tree at a farm, tag it today.

Nov. 30: It’s Cyber Monday — take advantage of online deals.

Dec. 1: Advent calendar season begins. Open day one.

Dec. 2: Pick up your holiday cards and make a list of who gets one this year. Compile mailing addresses.

Dec. 3: Address your holiday cards.

Dec. 4: Hang your Christmas lights if you haven’t already. (We’ve got tips for putting them up like a pro.)

Dec. 5: Deck the halls! Bring out the seasonal decor.

Dec. 6: Buy a live wreath to hang.

Dec. 7: Mail your holiday cards.

Dec. 8: Is your car mall-proof? Make sure it’s prepared before you do your major holiday shopping.

Dec. 9: What’s cookin’? Now’s a good time to plan your holiday dinner menu and see if there’s anything you need to special order, like a ham.

Dec. 10: Mail gifts to anyone you won’t see in person this year.

Dec. 11: Get your crafting on and make some mason jar gifts — they’re pretty and practical.

Dec. 12: Trim the tree.

Dec. 13: Planning to go out of town? Do what you can to prevent break-ins.

Dec. 14: Double-check your gift list and make sure you haven’t forgotten anyone.

Dec. 15: Are you ready to capture some memories? Make sure your camera battery is charged or you have space on your phone for plenty of photos.

Dec. 16: Decorate a gingerbread house.

Dec. 17: Set aside “me” time. Take time to exercise, meditate, read, or whatever relieves stress for you.

Dec. 18: Consider starting a new tradition — put a Texas twist on the festivities with these inventive ideas.

Dec. 19: Go caroling.

Dec. 20: Make a clean sweep before you have company over.

Dec. 21: Stock up at the grocery store. The less you’re buying closer to Christmas, the better.

Dec. 22: Make a couple of batches of holiday cookies and share them with the neighbors.

Dec. 23: Cook what you can before the big meal — you want to spend Christmas Eve and Christmas Day with your family and not in the kitchen.

Dec. 24: Wrap any gifts that still need the paper-and-bow treatment.

Dec. 25: It’s time to celebrate! Merry Christmas!

Whew! You did it! Now start on next year’s celebration with our 12-month checklist.