Christmas is less than two months away, and oh do I have my sights on another great handmade holiday. This year, the focus isn’t on quantity, as it has been in the past. Instead, I’m putting self-care as top priority. I will not run ragged to produce handmade gifts; I fully recognize my family and friends appreciate a good mood far more than they’ll ever love yet another wonky handknit.

To meet this, I have to get my stuff organized.


To get started, I create a Google doc spreadsheet. (The template, if you’re interested in playing along.) This document will help follow both a financial and time budget. I can give one hour per day for the next 7 weeks toward projects. That’s a chunk of time, most of which will be spent late at night in my little upstairs office, listening to tunes and working at my sewing machine. Or watching British television shows on Netflix, knitting like mad.

Additionally, I create a timeline. I love sending holiday cards, creating my own package tags, decorating the house, baking for neighbors, etc. If I place these into a calendar, I know what the next 8 weeks look like by task. Everything doesn’t hit me at once and I can actually enjoy the holidays rather than feeling overwhelmed.


To see this handmade holiday vision come to life, the tentative schedule:

Week 1:

  • Complete gift list spreadsheet, including budget
  • Buy necessary crafting/art supplies
  • Start any extensive knitting projects
  • Schedule photo for Christmas card

Week 2:

  • Update Christmas spreadsheet
  • Knit
  • Take Christmas photo, order cards
  • Print holiday address labels
  • Review gifts to be sent to friends abroad, and schedule early post dates

Week 3:

  • Update Christmas spreadsheet
  • Knit
  • Address Christmas cards
  • Purchase Christmas stamps
  • Mail after Thanksgiving
  • Coordinate holiday travel with family

Week 4:

  • Update Christmas spreadsheet
  • Knit
  • Decorate house
  • Create baking list for neighbors
  • Buy baking supplies

Week 5:

  • Update Christmas spreadsheet
  • Knit
  • Begin sewing projects
  • Stamp gift tags
  • Wrap gifts as completed
  • Mail international gifts

Week 6:

  • Update Christmas spreadsheet
  • Knit
  • Find holiday dress(es)
  • Coordinate holiday party list with date
  • Prepare party hostess gifts, tags
  • Mail gifts that can’t be hand delivered

Week 7:

  • Update Christmas spreadsheet
  • Deliver gifts to neighbors
  • Complete any remaining projects

Week 8:

  • Create list to send thank you cards after the New Year
  • Rock a great holiday dress
  • Drink egg nog with friends; immediately remember you don’t like egg nog
  • Drink Christmas margaritas with friends
  • Go to church. Thank your lucky stars. Hug your friends and family.
If you are making gifts for friends or family this year, I’d love to hear your ideas!
Happy planning, y’all.