7 Things You Can Do Now to Be Prepared for the Holidays

Prepare for the HolidaysThe holidays are almost here, which means it’s time for festive music, fun winter activities and of course, holiday planning. But while the holidays are certainly a time for celebration, the cooking , gift buying and party planning can tend to overwhelm even the savviest of shoppers.

In this blog post, we’re offering tips to help you prepare for the holidays early so you can relax and enjoy your time spent with family and friends:

Make a gift list
Pull out your notebook and get started jotting down the people you’ll need to buy gifts for along with any gift ideas you already have. Don’t wait until the day before you need your gifts wrapped to start your planning. Get started on your gift list today.

Set a budget
Start thinking about how much you can realistically spend on gifts, food, wrapping supplies and party decorations. By setting a budget now, you’ll be better able to set aside the money you’ll need from each paycheck to pay for the holiday season.

Sell items you no longer use
Go through your old clothes and household items and pull out items you no longer use. There are plenty of resale shops and secondhand stores that might be willing to purchase them. You can get rid of your clutter in time for the holidays and end up with some extra cash in your pocket. It’s a win-win!

Shop clearance racks
Many people think it is a good idea to wait until the last minute to catch a deal, but waiting until the holidays approach puts unnecessary stress on you and your wallet. Start shopping around now to find the right gifts at the right price. In a few weeks, you’ll be glad you did. 

Plan ahead to create photo album calendars
The end of December is the perfect time for a new calendar, and photo album calendars are great gifts for friends, family members and loved ones. All you’ll need is 12-24 pictures to give these holiday gifts a personal touch, and you can order as many copies as you want! 

Look online for freebies
Shop around online for deals and promotions, or hit up giveaway sites like heyitsfree.net and freecycle.org to find great holiday freebies. You may have to travel or work a little harder for these items, but some deals may be worth it.

Stock up on snacks before guests drop in
Pick up a few necessary pantry items (and a few bags of Riceworks ) each time you visit the grocery store, so you can spread out your holiday food budget over time. Nuts, spices and herbs can definitely add up, and could be sold out as the holidays approach. By picking up one or two items each time you go to the store, you’ll have a nice little stash by the time the holidays arrive!

This year, you don’t get caught feeling stressed about the holidays. Start preparing now, with a little help from Riceworks.

Published: Tuesday, December 1, 2015