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Thursday, July 21, 2016

Let the Season Begin!

While I was babysitting The Granddaughter I did very little watching anything but her and what she loves to watch most (Tumble Leaf and Finding Nemo, which she calls orangan fish) When I got home I thought it was a good time to catch up on what was going on in the world so I sat in the den, remote in hand. Last night as I was clicking through the guide and noticed QVC was having their annual Christmas in July sale.  I will admit to stopping there for a second, just to see what new and marvelous crap they are trying to unload on the public.  I mean nothing sounds better when the heat index is 104 than Christmas junk, right? But it did make me start thinking about this upcoming Christmas and how fast time seems to fly for me. Later last night I was cleaning out a cabinet in the breakfast room hutch when I found my wonderful Christmas organizer.  Since I acquire gifts all year long, I thought it might be a good time to start jotting down my Christmas 2016 plan.

About 8 years ago I bought 20 of those black and white composition books at Walmart's "Back to School" clearance sale for 15 cents each.  At the time I had no idea what I was going to do with them, so most of them sat unused for a couple of years. Then one year I decided I needed a Christmas organizer but I didn't want to buy one and had a eureka moment.  I had several sheets of scrapbook paper that I was doing nothing with, glue tape, duct tape, and leftover ribbon so I began a little craft project that has lasted through 6 Christmases.


This is the outside of my book.  I am one of those function over form type of people so it is not as cute as it could be, but I did want it to look slightly Christmasy, (Just so I would be able to tell at a glance which book it was. ) I also wanted to have a pocket inside for any receipts of things that might need to be returned, plus a closure of some type.  Since I had ribbon on hand I allowed the universe to make my decision for me.  I made a rough cut slightly larger than the exteriors of the book and used glue tape to adhere the paper to the book. (lots of glue tape). I trimmed it to size with tiny uber-sharp scissors, then taped the ribbon to the inside covers of the notebook.  The inside interior covers were then glued on top of the ribbon, trimmed to fit,  and an envelope size piece of cardstock was glued on 3 sides to create a pocket for the interior front and back. Red duck tape was used to bind the front and back sheets together  and my planner was born.

Inside I suppose I could have made tabs but I didn't care to go to that much trouble so I just have strips of card stock that serve as tabs but are more like very short bookmarks.  It has 5 sections: decorations, gifts, card list, events, and foods (includes needed seasonal food prep items, as well as a master plan for  baking, treats, and party meal menus along with tablescapes and linens) I save only the pages from the past year so I don't duplicate presents, decorating schemes, menus, etc.  This cut and paste planner saves me a lot of time and energy, is easy to carry, and I am never at the mercy of power or an internet connection to make any additions to my plan.
I also keep one page, the very back page to list mail order items (to tic off ) when they arrive at the house .






















I fully understand how nerdy this makes me, but I have known I was a nerd most of my life so I might as well live my life in the open and share my nerdiness with the entire world.

As a matter of total nerd exposure I also have one called house matters that is covered in a funky black print with a silver sharpie drawing of a hammer.  It has ongoing lists of all projects and home to-do's and is simply divided into 3 sections, Inside, Outside and Yellow Pages, which has names and numbers of every service person I use for the house and yard. (electrician, bug man, tree service, plumber, etc.)

The other book is covered in suitcase card stock and is our travel book.  I keep all our airline, hotel, AAA, car rental, etc numbers listed as well as  trip itinerary, flight times, numbers, reservation confirmation numbers, restaurant numbers and any other incidentals I might need when trip planning.

Now if you will excuse me, I am going to begin my gift list for this year.  I have about 20 presents that I need to list and possibly even wrap.  Like I said__major nerd!

23 comments:

  1. I am soooo impressed with your organisation.
    Christmas was a trial to my mother. Indeed most of the 'big' celebrations were a trial. They more or less came together at the last moment. And that has carried through into my own life. I don't view the celebrations as a trial, but I have no real experience of a co-ordinated event. So I muddle along.

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    1. I am scatterbrained by nature so I have found if I keep lists I fare much better

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  2. I keep separate books for separate lists, too. However, I have not decorated the fronts. Actually, I have some composition books that do have decorated fronts.

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    1. I really only decorate them to keep them separate. My super cheap composition books are just the standard black and white models.

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  3. Isn't it interesting that the cover of composition books has stayed the same over the years? I love what you did with yours. And may I say that your handwriting is exquisite!

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    1. Interesting or just plain lazy on my part? Yeah, I think it's the latter!

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    2. Oh no, I meant the black and white design on comp books. It's always been the same for as long as I can remember.

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    3. I was at Walmart today and saw the composition books. Now they have them in the traditional black and white, but I also saw orange, yellow, red and purple. I was just a few years too early!

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  4. I do thIs on computer but love the notebook. Of course in my house I'd misplace. Daughters girl scout group made a lot of money at a craft fair making and selling this style. The leader did the same bought tons on clearance, used wrapping paper remnants, and sold for like $3 a notebook.

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    1. What a great idea for a craft fair!
      I tried keeping everything on the computer but decided I need a notebook that I can stick in my bag. That way whenever I am out I can jot down ideas or sketch a picture of some decoration I would like to copy.

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  5. I am impressed with your book and organization. We have various mostly new notebooks leftover from the kid's school that we use for various things, but not are decorated or that organized. Maybe when I want a fun project, I'll follow your suit. Just a note about the composition books--if you tear the pages all of the way out, the corresponding page in the back will fall out too as they are sewn together. You probably already know that, but I learned the hard way.

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    1. Mine are only decorated so I can tell them apart at a glance. I have to keep lists all the time, By nature I am very scatterbrained and tend to look at life in very broad terms. Without a list I would never get any specifics done.
      I tend to learn things the hard way too. Now I just cut the pages to the margins.

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  6. I am the queen of starting notebooks and then letting them go. I do have a couple that I've managed to stick with for a while, but nothing so organized as this. But I do write all the lists, so maybe dedicated books are the way to go.

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    1. I need them as a crutch to keep my scatterbrain headed in some sort of direction. I probably should have one for everything I do, but that would take more time than I am willing to give. I am easily distracted and would drift from one notebook to the other and get nothing at all done.

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  7. I'm impressed! Get going Christmas maker!

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  8. You had me at mimosas! I'm not as organized as you but I always print out my menus so that I don't forget to buy anything. It really helps.

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    1. It seems that minosas are a traditional drink every Christmas morning here. I actually have my menu listed with every single ingredient needed then I cross reference it with a list of what I have and list of needed things. If I don;t write it down it gets lost in space and I never remember it.

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  9. I love all things nerdy!! I have a Christmas list and I bought quite a few things the beginning of the year and then I stopped. I've not accumulated the kind of money that I needed to continue to shop. The "free" money that I normally gather has dried up. Sigh.
    Maybe I should just have you make my gifts since you are so crafty.

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    1. I have made a bunch of Christmas gifts already this year and am about to really step up the production. I like to give everyone many presents and the only way I can do it is to make a lot of them.
      Money is getting a little tighter here too, especially since tuition is due in one month! Crap!

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  10. I agree with someone further up - your handwriting is lovely! Mine is terrible. Anna

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    1. In the second grade I had a teacher who would whack your hand with a pencil if you made incorrect lettering. I guess I have a long memory of pain?

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  11. I like this idea. I may try it myself but I am nowhere near as crafty

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