Is It Too Early?

According to the handy dandy Christmas Countdown Clock, there are 71 days left until Christmas.proc hurry

Now, whether that’s “ONLY 71 days left, holy cow how will I get everything done?!” or if that’s “Chill, there’s still 71 days, what’s the rush?” is always up for debate.

If you’re a crafter, 71 days might be worth freaking about.  Most of the stores have had holiday craft supplies in stock since August, some are starting to sell out as Christmas decorations nudge Halloween crafts off the shelves.  I started thinking about card making supplies about a month ago, trying to decide on a design for this years cards.  My tried and true method is to either immediately fall in love with a design and start prepping in September, then get busy and forget about it until November, then freak and rush to finish, barely getting cards in the mail.  Or in alternate years I can’t come up with anything, think I’ll just buy cards instead, then forget and don’t send anything.  I’m really bad that way.giftwrap

If you do a big blowout at at the holidays, this countdown might be kinda exciting.  On par with ‘how many sleeps until we leave for Disneyland’ or some other fun outing.  My late mother-in-law always gave us ornaments with our gifts.  She would start searching out the perfect ones early in the year as a part of her kicking off the holidays tradition.  I tend to start my gift giving list this time of year, trying to pin the family down to what they really want so I can have all of my shopping finished by Thanksgiving.  I have friends, on the other hand, who rely on overnight delivery and free gift wrapping and do all of their shopping the week of Christmas or others who simply give gift cards and ignore the idea of making a list.

So with all of that in mind, given how I procrastinate, 71 days isn’t really much time.  Barely more than two months.  I should be panicking a little, and making lists of the lists I have to make, right?  punkin

On the other hand…

I hate thinking about Christmas before Halloween.  Halloween rocks, and it’s way too important to rush past.  Even though my kids don’t trick or treat any longer, they still dress up and I have fun decorating the house and contemplating the joys that Halloween brings.  And its really difficult to do that if there are Christmas decorations already crowding my space.  Although come to think about it, how fun of a trick would that be to have a house fully ‘Christmased Out’ for Halloween.  Maybe give out candy canes and chocolate Santas?  thanksgiving

Thanksgiving I’m not quite as attached to.  I like it, but lets face it, thats a lot of time in the kitchen. And even if someone else does the dishes, I’m still worn out when it’s over.  I think its all the talk about Black Friday shopping that goes on around the table.  Since as I mentioned, I aim to be finished with all of my shopping by Thanksgiving, I never go out to face the crowds.  But even if I hadn’t bought a single gift, I’d probably still hide at home because, lets face it, those shoppers get scary.  I know this because I’m related to some of them.  I do usually begin decorating the house for Christmas the weekend after Thanksgiving.  For me, thats when it really starts.

But that doesn’t mean it’s not too early to start thinking about Christmas now, does it?  Maybe jotting down a few gift ideas, updating that ole card exchange list?

What do you think?  Are you already in the holiday spirit or do you want to close your eyes and cover your ears until December, so as not to have to face it too soon? Do you have a tradition of how you get into the holiday mood?

Posted in

Comments

23 Comments

  • flchen1 says:

    ROFL! WAY too early, at least for procrastinators like me, Tawny!! Definitely not in the holiday spirit yet (although I could be convinced to enjoy some holiday stories 😉 ) I’m not even ready for Halloween yet, and that’s THIS month 😉 Good reminder to check the card list–maybe I can get the kids to help put it into a spreadsheet so we can print labels this year instead of addressing them all by hand!! 😉

    Oh, and loved your Christmas story, Christmas with a SEAL! Just the thing for some holiday spirit 😉

    • Tawny Weber says:

      LOL Fedora!!! I like to all myself a well-organized procrastinator. I always WANT to be done early, and even get all the preparation ready thinking will be. But, well, yanno.

      GREAT point about Christmas stories (and thank you so much 😀 I’m thrilled that you liked Christmas with a SEAL!!!) I always think I don’t want to dive into those until December, but December always seems too busy to take time to curl up and read. So maybe this is the perfect time to start 😀

      Oooh, great idea about a spreadsheet and printing labels for the cards. That does take SO long, and my handwriting is messy (no delete key). Labels would be much tidier 😀

  • Jane says:

    Hello Tawny,
    One of my friends buys gifts year round so that he has the shopping done by the time Christmas rolls around. I try to keep a lookout on good deals and sales for gifts, but I’m definitely not ready for the holidays yet. After Halloween is when I start thinking about Thanksgiving and work out the details as to where the dinner will be and who will do the cooking.

    • Tawny Weber says:

      Hi Jane 🙂

      I’m always in awe of people like your friend who shop year round. My family is really bad about getting whatever they want when they want it, so if I got them the perfect gift in, say, July, they’d have likely bought it for themselves by Christmas LOL.

      I had a neighbor once who started her shopping in January. She’d hit the after-holiday sales and get tons of stuff for the next year, then just keep adding to her stash every month.

      Thats cool that you don’t worry about the Thanksgiving details until after Halloween. For years I hosted Thanksgiving so I always knew where it’d be, but lately my brother has. But we miss our own Thanksgiving so this year we’ll probably be staying home for a very small dinner.

  • Mary Preston says:

    My tradition would not be for everyone. I spring clean. I love to know that the house is ready for the holidays.

    I shop all year. I actually have a present cupboard.

  • Tawny, the shops here had decorations out for Christmas in September! It gets earlier every year.

    I’m hopeless with sending cards. I have this strange aversion to mailing things. I just can’t explain it. So I send the electronic advent calendars. If I remember.

    As for gifts, I find the earlier I start, the longer it takes because if I buy a gift early, I always find more and more things for that person and never anything for the people I haven’t bought for yet. It takes soooo long and I get shopping fatigue. Hate the crowds, trying to park, blah blah. I’m actually glad that Halloween isn’t big here and we don’t have Thanksgiving. I’m amazed you have energy left for Christmas over there!

    Sometimes you have to stop and take stock and remember what Christmas is really about, don’t you?

    • Tawny Weber says:

      Madame, at this point I wouldn’t be surprised to see holiday decorations out in July! It really does get earlier and earlier–and that doesn’t feel like a good thing.

      LOL as someone who gets your advent calendar, I’m sorta grateful for your dislike of mailing things. Because I really do love it.

      Oh man, I hear you on the shopping, too!!! I make a vow to never set foot in a mall or major shopping area after Thanksgiving. Usually I can keep that vow, too.

      Wonderful point about remembering what it’s really all about. I think that often gets lost in the craziness, which is sad 🙁

  • Helen says:

    Tawny

    I am way not ready for Christmas yet LOL for me in November I start making Christmas Cakes that I give as gifts and that is when I start to look for gifts for my grandkids I get my kids gift cards these days but I do enjoy lookig for things for the grands although the last two years I have bought all their gifts on line because I am so not a shopper. This year though we are going on a cruise to New Zealand and sail on Nov 21 so I am going to try and get the grandkids pressies from there we will see and I must get the Chrissy card list organized I like to post them by Dec 1st but I won’t be back from the cruise till 4th Dec but I will get there 🙂

    Have Fun
    Helen

    • Tawny Weber says:

      You sound so organized, Helen 😀

      That’s awesome -and woot, what a fun trip the cruise sounds to be!!! I hope you have a great time.

      Your cakes always sound divine. Your family must love the holidays for the cakes, alone 🙂

  • Amy Conley says:

    71 days? SERIOUSLY? I absolutely LOVE decorating for Christmas AND Halloween! What a great idea, and it really does work. Wait til I tell my daughter she’ll ‘have to start her Christmas decorations the day after Halloween’ she can decorate for Halloween by using Christmas decorations. She’s going to be dancing for joy!
    I like to be done by Halloween, but lately that hasn’t happened. I good to go if I get everything BY Christmas the older I get,it seems. I have begun asking the grandkids what’s on their lists, and I do have a few things ready for them.
    What really stinks, and makes things soooo much harder are all the birthdays; grand #2’s bday is November 24th, a month and a day before Christmas, grandson #1’s birthday is January 26th, a month and a day after Christmas, my daughter’s bday is Jan 1st, a week after Christmas, my bday is January 2nd, a week and a day after Christmas, and my step-dad’s is Jan 23, less than a month after Christmas. Shew, I’m wornout just listing this, never mind shopping for it! I promise all GIFTS, not gift cards will be purchased by the first weekend in Dec.
    If my mil lasts that long, I will not decorate my house, just hers.Please don’t anyone take this rudely, or mean spirited, she is dying, day by day of cancer, she has already surpassed the timeline the Dr gave us, which is good. Hopefully my husband will get one unexpected Christmas with his mother. At least he has warning. The last Christmas I spent with my mother was 3 years ago, but never in a million years expected it to be our last one together. We would have done things differently.

    • Tawny Weber says:

      Amy, I’m sending you really big hugs and hopes that your Christmas wish comes true!!!

      As for the crazy calendar, Oh, man, I feel ya! We have three December birthdays in the immediate family which definitely adds to the stress and shopping complications.

      I tell my kids they have to have their lists to me by mid-October, but sometimes that doesn’t happen 🙂 But lists definitely help.

  • Mozette says:

    Weeelllll, I’m making my Christmas pressies, so I have to get into that special spirit early.

    So far, I’ve got 3 plants potted up and almost ready for the celophane… they’re large leaf jades and are looking great!

    Then, I’m going to do a collection of baskets for the family – all themed – with coat hangers, pencils, pegs, magnets and my ‘original’ Crafty Pegs… as well as a family picture frame for my brother and his family – but they don’t know that yet. Nobody does. So, I’m keeping that one under wraps. I’m not even going to upload it onto Facebook.

    That’s how secret that last present is going to be…

    I might even get in and bake a Christmas Cake this year – a cranberry and blueberry one! – just for the occasion for the family! 😀

    • Tawny Weber says:

      Oh wow, Mozette!!!

      Your holiday plans sound delightful!! I love your basket ideas and the plants sound gorgeous.

      LOL on the super secret gift. Those are the best, aren’t they? I think the secret part is almost as fun as the gift itself.

  • Hellion says:

    I’m normally a ‘celebrate the holiday that’s actually coming next’ kind of girl; and I typically LOVE Halloween, but the last couple years I haven’t been into it, this year especially and I think it’s all the family members dying. (My dad died last month.) I just want to sorta skip the holiday that deals with ghosts and death and go straight to what I’m thankful for and giving to family and friends…

    • Tawny Weber says:

      Oh, sweetie, big hugs!!! I’m sorry. I know the holidays bring such intense feelings and often amplify whatever we’re already facing.

      Thankfully, Halloween is an easier one to skip over, isn’t it? Unless there are little ones around, the day can just move on past the calendar.

  • Sally Schmidt says:

    I usually start a general plan in late summer but then it gets pushed aside and Christmas just sneaks up on me. I, too, love Halloween and usually watch nothing but scary (old classic) movies for the month of October and don’t want Christmas in the way of that or to see decorations in the stores yet (which means I have to close my eyes, right?). Thanksgiving doesn’t really require any planning except that endless cooking, but having all my shopping done and cards ready to go by then never seems to happen.

    When my kids were younger we used to ease into the spirit through the month of December. Started using the Christmas dishes and linens on the first of the month and add a bit at a time until putting the outdoor lights up mid-month and the tree a week before Christmas. It gave us a nice holiday feeling without the panic.

    • Tawny Weber says:

      LOL Sally, your planning plans sound very similar to mine. I LOVE LOVE LOVE the October movie marathon! What a fun idea. We do that in December with Christmas movies, letting those be our ‘build up’ to the holiday.

      I really like your idea of easing into the decorating, too. Thats so much simpler than one day normal house, the next day North Pole 🙂 It sounds like you have a great handle on the holidays, even if they don’t always come together when you plan *g*

  • Shannon says:

    I’ve been enthusiastic for holidays and have suffered through them. Death, divorce, and depression from the short days sometimes crowd out the joy, the lights, and the love.

    My Dad died on 1 November, so Halloween is about trick or treat, but All Soul’s Day is a time for reflection.

    After that I get into Christmas mode, because I have to ship presents, usually by 10 December. At this point, I’m pinging my brothers for my nieces and nephews current taste. It’ s amazing when they’re in their teens how much they change. One year it’s Target and sporting goods; the next year it’s high fashion at Nordstroms.

    Strangely enough Thanksgiving (and 4th of July) are my favorite holidays. I think it’s the food. I don’t cook fancy very often, so I love pulling out the pots and pans, and crafting something memorable. (Well, something that you remember AFTER the naps from eating too much.)

    • Tawny Weber says:

      Oh, Shannon, I hear ya!! I’m always hopeful that the holidays will have some spark of magic, even in the roughest years. I hope your find some magic, too.

      What a wonderful time to remember your father. We often have a special meal on Oct 31st and share stories and memories of our love ones who’ve passed over. Sometimes it’s the little things that make it easier.

      Wow on the shopping changes! I’m waiting for that with my niece. So far, we’re still pretty much living at Toys R Us but I’m sure that’ll shift soon 🙂

      LOL I love the food!! I was just talking to my daughter about that, since fall weather seems to turn our minds (and tummies) to all thoughts of food, creative recipes and such. Isn’t that a great sight, those bodies all curled up for naps after eating your delicious meal 😀

  • Becke says:

    Tawny,
    It’s way too early for Christmas. That said, we just got our adoptive family so we will shop for them and drop off the wrapped gifts soon.

    Other than that, I’m happy for the cool weather–if it ever gets here!

    We didn’t even put up the tree last year- Bah, humbug because we visited my daughter for Christmas. No muss, no fuss.
    b

    • Tawny Weber says:

      ROFL Becke. So… it’s way too early but you’ve already completed one major shopping trip and will be wrapping soon? You put me to shame *g*

      Oh yeah, I am so ready for a weather change. I want rain, though. Rain rain rain.

      LOL on your bah, humbugging 😉 But, really, why put up a tree if you won’t be there to enjoy it? When we travel at the holidays we don’t either. I will admit we do put up a few decorations though, just to get the mood set.

  • The thing about working in the seventh level of Hell (aka Walmart) is by the time Christmas actually gets here all we want is for it to be OVER !! And I really hate that. I’ve always loved Christmas. I have collections of Christmas tree ornaments divided into themes. I love to shop for just the right thing for members of my family. My Mom always has all of her shopping done by Thanksgiving. It’s annoying! LOL

    We are in the throes of Halloween cupcake season at Wally World. We’ll slide into Thanksgiving mode a week before Halloween is over and there are already Christmas trees and decorations for sale in the garden center!

    Working in retail makes you HATE the holidays! I combat that with romance Christmas anthologies and novels. I love the anthologies because I can usually read one story or sometimes two during my breaks and lunch. They keep me from becoming a complete Scrooge!

    And this year I have the scary prospect of my publishing debut coming out in a Regency Christmas anthology. EEEEEEEK!! The novella is with the formatter right now. Don’t have an exact date yet, but we will be having a release party on Facebook! And yes, I am TERRIFIED !!

    Maybe terror is the cure for the BAH ! HUMBUGS! of retail. I will probably have to work Black Friday. In a small, Alabama town. SHUDDER !! Last year there was a fight over bedsheets! Bedsheets? Good grief!