With all the joys that the season has to offer, watching your friends and family’s faces light up when they open up a gift from you has to be one of the greatest.
If only everything leading up to that moment could be as merry.
Let’s be real:
Between coming up with gift ideas, creating a budget, shopping, and hoping it all arrives on time, giving gifts can be stressful.
Luckily, all it takes is a little extra planning to be incredibly organized when tackling your list this holiday season. And coffee. All the coffee.
Give yourself the gift of peace of mind with these seven clever tips courtesy of MakeSpace, the most convenient alternative to self-storage units in Manhattan (and the rest of NYC), Chicago, Los Angeles, and the greater Washington, DC area.
1. Determine who to buy for
Decide how many people you’ll be giving gifts to so you can avoid a never-ending list or accidentally leaving someone out.
Write down any family members, close friends, and colleagues or acquaintances you’d like to buy something for this year.
After you’ve got this list set, stick to it. If someone unexpectedly gives you a gift, a genuine thank you note is cool. You are not required to purchase them something in return.
2. Shop all year
Holiday shopping doesn’t only have to occur during the holiday season. Avoid overspending and overstressing by keeping an eye out for gifts year-round.
See something in April that you think your older brother would like?
Buy it then and keep it in a good hiding spot.
Come December, you will have avoided crowded malls and hectic stores. You’ll have time to add any finishing touches and actually enjoy the season rather than stress about how many shopping days you have left.
3. Track the gifts
https://news.softwarevilla.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/Santas-Bag.png (Software Villa)
Your gift list is not getting away from you this year. Track your budget, gift ideas, what you bought, how much you spent, and if it's wrapped yet.
Organized Living recommends keeping all the information in a spreadsheet. This way, you’ll know how many more gifts you still need to buy and for whom. Plus, you can save the info for next year so that you don’t give duplicate presents.
Of course, there’s an app for that, too. With Santa’s Bag, you can plan gifts for each of your recipients, then set and track a budget for them and the whole season.
4. Consider a group gift exchange
https://www.rd.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/10_christmas_tradiotions_steal_gift_exchange_mediaphotos-1024x683.jpg (Reader’s Digest)
Has your gifting list gotten out of control over the years?
Pare it down significantly:
See if your family and friends are interested in a group gift exchange.
Whether you choose names out of a hat, assign recipients, or let people choose who they’d like to purchase a gift for, a group gift exchange is a fun way to switch things up. Plus, with less time spent shopping for multiple people, you’ll get to slow down and appreciate your time with them instead.
5. Simplify the selection
If you’re planning to give small gifts to teachers, the mailman, and your favorite barista, make life easy and give them all the same thing.
Bake a huge batch of cookies. Craft DIY ornaments. Buy small gifts in bulk, and hand them out to all of the people who make your life better. Giving the same gift to them all will show your gratitude without having to buy a different item for each person.
6. Update your holiday card list
It’s hard to keep track of the whereabouts of everyone on your holiday card list.
Your friend from college moved twice in the past three years.
Your boyfriend’s fun uncle travels for a living.
Your sister just began her three-year neurology residency in Chicago.
You’re not sure whose address belongs to who or if any of them are accurate.
This year, when holiday cards arrive, take a minute to update your address book. Keep each envelope long enough to jot down the return address and any other important information.
Once that’s done, recycle the envelopes (you don’t need the excess clutter). And now you’re ready for another year of mailing birthday cards and engagement gifts!
7. Set up a gift wrapping station
A designated gift wrapping station will keep all of your ribbons, tags, boxes, and bags stored and organized until you’re ready to tie bows.
Storage cubbies, like the Like-It Modular Drawers from The Container Store, will keep your decorative accessories in one easy-access spot. One cubby can hold tags, one can hold ribbons, another can hold gift bags, and one more can keep tissue paper neatly folded.
We also recommend hanging gift wrap organizers over a door to maximize space while eliminating clutter on the floor.
Never again will a slightly-too-small piece of wrapping paper go to waste simply because there was no place to store it. Once the perfect little gift comes around and needs to be wrapped, you’ll know where to go.
Fah who foraze, dah who doraze; this year, you won’t be fazed by a long list of loved ones to give gifts to. Get yourself a red coat and eat a few extra cookies with milk: these organization tips will give the man in the red suit a run for his Bitcoin.