Things you can do to prepare for Christmas RIGHT NOW!!

Things you can do to prepare for Christmas RIGHT NOW!!

Christmas is now a little over a month away and while some of us think nothing of starting our Christmas decorating and planning, others feel as though we’ve just set out our fall decor.

For those of us who want to enjoy Christmas with less stress, here are a few ways to plan ahead for a more enjoyable Christmas season.

1. Inventory your Christmas decorations

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Take out all your Christmas decorations and sort them in three piles: use/keep, broken, and donate. If you’re like me, you buy a few things each year, and your Christmas decor can get out of hand. Go through your things and purge them before you decorate, so you won’t have to worry about it later.

2. Decide whom you’re shopping for and map out your Christmas budget

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Of course, the easiest way to manage Christmas gift shopping is to start early and plan a budget and stick to it. I like to write out a list with the name of each person I’m shopping for and a gift idea and suggested price. I don’t always stick with the gift idea, but I do usually stay within budget.

3. Plan tablescapes and menus ahead of time

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Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

It may sound crazy to plan ahead how you’re going to set your table, but planning your table decor and securing all needed items ahead of time will make things much easier. Planning out menu items will also help you to stick to your budget and your shopping list as well.

4. Take your Christmas card photo and order cards now

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Take your photo now so you can get the Christmas cards ordered in plenty of time. Once your cards are ordered, you can address them a few at a time before dropping them in the mail, or for a little extra money, pay someone else to address them. It will be much less stressful!

What do you do to ensure a less stressful holiday season?

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Dollar Store Crafts: Place Mat Pillows

Dollar Store Crafts: Place Mat Pillows

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I have wanted some pretty seasonal pillows, but I don’t always love the price. I was at Dollar Tree when I spotted these pretty placemats.

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They were thin, as far as placemats go, but they were really pretty. Since they were at the Dollar Tree, I went ahead and bought four of them, with the intent of making two pillows from them.

I then took them home and pinned them together where I wanted to sew them. I then turned them inside out and sewed the edges together.

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And after I sewed the edges, I simply turned them right-side out and stuffed them with quilt batting.

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I then sewed the open end together.

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I absolutely love how these turned out! I am now looking for some napkins or tea towels that coordinate with these placemats so I can make some pillows from them!

What Dollar Store Upcycle have you completed lately?

Veteran’s Day

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Today is not just a day off work. It’s not a three day weekend, or an excuse to have cookouts and tailgate. Today is for celebrating our military personnel, both past and present.

Celebrate with parties, cookouts, or fireworks if you must, but remember that today is about the selfless sacrifices of many people on our behalf, for our benefit. As you spend time celebrating and being thankful for our military ladies and gentlemen today, remember to pay it forward and do something unexpectedly kind for someone else today.

Happy Veteran’s Day, all.

 

 

 

Happy Birthday, America!

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Here at Organized and Simplified, we’re wishing you a happy, safe, and fun July 4th. Happy birthday, America. You’re looking pretty good for 242 years old.

We will see you back on Friday. Have a wonderful Independence Day holiday.

 

 

 

Why We Celebrate Valentine’s Day

Why We Celebrate Valentine’s Day

Last year, Americans spent about 19.7 billion on cards, flowers and candies for Valentine’s Day. This year, it is believed that Americans will spend on average $138 per person on the holiday.

But why do we celebrate Valentine’s Day each year? And who is St. Valentine? History.com says this:

The Catholic Church recognizes three different St. Valentines. One story involves Emperor Claudius III of Rome, who decided single men made better soldiers. As a result, he outlawed marriage. St. Valentine found the marriage ban to be unfair, so he defied the Emperor and married the soldiers in secret. When his actions were discovered, he was put to death.

Other stories suggest St. Valentine may have been killed for helping imprisoned Christians escape their harsh conditions. Yet another story says an imprisoned Valentine sent the first Valentine himself to his jailer’s daughter. He even signed it, “From your Valentine,” an expression we still use today.

While Valentines Day has pagan roots, the holiday became associated with love in the Middle Ages. The earliest written Valentines were thought to be from around 1400. The oldest known valentine in existence is from 1415, and was written by Charles, Duke of Orleans to his wife who was imprisoned in the Tower of London.

Today, we celebrate Valentine’s Day with festivals, parades, gifts, and spending time with our loved ones.

How will you celebrate Valentine’s Day this year?