I was driving home from work one evening in early October and I drove passed the first Christmas tree of the year. Too early I though. So this prompted my blog title, is it ever too early to prep for Christmas ?
A few weeks ago I started doing some canvas paintings, painting is my favourite hobby and I decided to work on a painting as a Christmas gift for someone. When painting I can spend hours on something even if it’s rather small, so I just thought it would be something fun to do. Back in September/October I started attending a 6 week pottery class at The Gate. We made various objects with clay (which are due to be glazed and fired soon.. so I can share pics!) such as mugs, a tea light house, a figure and more. Attending the class made me want to venture into a new type of art at home, so I took a trip down to Hobbycraft and bought myself some air dry clay.
I decided it would me nice to create something for myself, but in the end it turned into a Christmas decoration. I then thought it might be a great idea to keep making variations of Christmas decks, then paint and varnish them and maybe give them as gifts this christmas. So this continued and my creative, crafty ideas were in full flow. After various trips to Hobbycraft and The Range I now find myself with a bigger craft collection full of glue sticks, glitter, paint and miscellaneous bits and bobs everywhere, weird wire things, masses of ribbon, many chunks of clay and personalised stamps which read Handmade by Amy, I’ll have you know!
So here’s the thing… I started my Christmas craft-ness in October, and YES I agree that does seem a tad early, but in terms of physically making gifts to a high standard I think that’s fine? It takes a while to get something looking what I’d deem as finished. It does mean however, that I’ve genuinely got into the Christmas spirit even earlier this year. BUT, I wouldn’t be caught putting up a tree and lights until December 1st! So what does count as too early?
So the Christmas adverts are already making an appearance and I’ve heard a few Michael Bible Christmas cd’s being played in shops this week, so does this mean it’s okay to go FULL Christmas from the beginning of November?
I used to be the type of Christmas shopper who would only plan for Christmas in November, I like to be organised and there’s no way I could leave it all until Christmas Eve like a lot of people do! Last year in early 2018 I decided that 1. To spread the cost and 2. To pick the perfect presents, if I saw anything throughout the year that really ‘fit’ a person or was so perfect for someone that I had to buy it… then I would. I started a present box and filled it throughout the year, so that being said we’re now in the beginning of November and I’ve got a fair few presents for various people already – in fact I’m nearly done! With pay day having just been and gone I’ve been ticking off the items of my family and friend’s wish lists. I prefer to be organised and this definitely helps. In fact, a top tip for getting prepared for Christmas early is to definitely write lists and keep track of your presents, people and prices! I’ve found an app called Manage Christmas (and even though everything shows in dollars I ignore that part. It let you track who you’re buying for, what you’ve bought and how much you’ve spent.
The annual Gals Christmas weekend
Every year me and two of my favourite gals have ‘Christmas weekend’. It’s one weekend every year that we put in our diaries where we celebrate Christmas early, eat lots of chocolate, go out out and exchange amazing Christmas gifts. It’s always a special weekend for us seeing as we don’t get to spend as much time together as we’d like due to our schedules etc … but when the Gal’s Christmas weekend comes around the corner we do it big and we do it in style.
Usually we end up holding our Christmas weekend in November, so it is quite early to celebrate the festive season but that’s usually when the countdown to Christmas will begin for me. It’s a tradition now! We’ve now made it an annual thing to visit Whitehall garden centre every year on our Christmas weekend, and it’s a lovely place with an ice rink, gift shop and an extravagant, Christmas explosion of a multitude of colour coded rooms all dedicated to Christmas decorations you can buy. It’s a wonderful Christmas paradise (and luckily is open all year round) we love visiting, especially on our Christmas weekend and I’d highly recommend everybody visit this place pre and post Christmas!
Back in the day
Gone are the days when I would wander to the shop with my Dad to pick up 6,000 copies of the Argos catalogue. I used to collect one to look through, one to make a Christmas collage list and one for the living room. (Okay, so 3) but I used to love making my Christmas list for Santa. Mum and Dad used to encourage me to do it. It was something fun and creative, and I guess it gave them time to plan too! I’ll never forget the story that I’ve heard many times, me and my family friend Will (our parents were best friends and we were born one month apart) grew up together loving lots of the same things and interests. One year, in the height of the Toy Story craze, we both had put a Buzz Lightyear doll on our Christmas lists, but several years later my Mum revealed to me the horror she faced when getting her hands on the popular character. Both of our Mums searched high and low to find the most popular toy of the year for weeks and weeks, and finally a few days before Christmas my trusty super Mum found two special silver editions in a shop in town. So for Christmas that year we both had matching, special, silver, Intergalactic Buzz Lightyear toys, and we thought they were so, so cool.. and shiny. And this proves to me that if something is hard to find, you need to make sure you’re organised (like my Mum) to get your hands on things!
So there clearly is method in the not so crazy madness of preparing for the festive season early, and it works if you plan ahead. Just don’t forget where you hid the wrapping paper you bought in the sales last year (Janet!).
Personally, I’m torn! I think it’s best to prepare at anytime for the festive celebration, pick a time that suits you. Christmas films are on Netflix all year round and there’s nothing wrong with a mince pie in March. I’m going to post a blog next about getting organised AND creating your own decorations .. but in terms of decorating and putting up your tree I’d say the 1st December is a good enough for me. I’m a keen Christmas lover .. but not that keen. I’ve even seen lights on the exterior of houses not so far from where I live and that to me feels a little early.. but you know what they say once Halloween is out the way then it’s all about Christmas!
What are your thoughts on celebrating Christmas early? Let me know below!