If you're like me, you cannot believe September has already arrived. If you ARE me, you're wondering why temperatures are still soaring well above the three digit mark while, in other parts of the country, people are beginning to pull their jackets out and see the first signs of Fall. But that's okay. Just a few more weeks and we'll begin to feel a difference. Although, jackets are still a long way off!
While I'm in a state of shock over the brevity of the first four months of the year, I am even more aware of the fact that Christmas is a mere four months aways, 113 days to be exact. Those days will go much faster than we would like. But, if we stay on track, we will have nothing to worry about. So let's get started!
Buy extra baking supplies- flour, sugar, and butter will be necessary in so many holiday goodies (which we'll start preparing next week). Make sure you have enough to get started. If you're local, Fry's has butter on sale this week 2/$5. But, I have found that Costco still has the best deal. 4 lbs of butter for $8. Remember, butter freezes beautifully so don't hesitate to buy a bunch and stick it in your freezer for later! Also, don't forget the less prominent, but oh so important ingredients- baking soda, baking powder, salt. Check your spices too! Be sure you have any nutmeg, ginger, cinnamon, or anything else you might need for those family favorites (cloves, in my case. I always forget the cloves). If you have them, check their dates. Chances are you don't use them frequently and they could be several years old. It might be time to toss them.
Make one freezer meal- it'll be baked ziti at our house because it's a family favorite and easy to throw together. Truth be told, I'm making it this week because I found Italian sausage on sale yesterday and decided to take advantage. :)
Develop ideas for gifts/decor- think about that spot in your house that always seems bare and decide about what you might like to see there. I've heard rumors that craft stores are already filling their shelves with holiday decor, which honestly seems a bit premature, but it sure is helpful for us! When thinking about possible gifts. Be creative! You have time to create something special or search for the best deal. Think outside the box! I was roaming around a craft store the other day and realized just how many things they had that my children would love, not to mention adorable home decor items for friends and family. Why not shop there and take advantage of their weekly 40% off coupons?
Order your Christmas cards- I know this sounds a bit premature, but it will be one less thing you have to think about. Too much trouble to schedule a holiday family picture? Don't. Consider pulling one from your summer vacation and having it printed onto a card. One of the best cards we received last year was a collage photo. It was a 4x6 collage of pictures from our friend's entire year in a glance. They simply slipped it into a standard card and it was probably a fraction of the cost of having a holiday card printed.