Preparing for the Holiday Season

We are a few weeks into fall, and the holidays are just around the corner. The holiday season will not be back to “normal” this year, as covid-19 continues to wreck havoc with schedules and supply chains.  It’s always a good idea to start early and have a plan.  This year, planning ahead is more important than ever.  Here’s some steps to help you have a blessed holiday season.
1) Savor time spent with family.  Many of us will feel a bit more comfortable traveling this fall and having guests in our homes than we did last year.  Make up for lost time.  Invite family and friends for simple meals, fellowship, and games.  Spend less energy planning the “perfect” event and more time enjoying being together with those you care about most.
2) Focus on the real reason for the holidays.  Take time to reflect on how God has blessed your family during the past year.  Even in challenging times, we are a blessed nation.  Thank God for the blessings He has bestowed on you and for the gift of His Son, whose birth brought hope to a darkened world.
3)  Avoid revenge spending.   Many people have put their spending into high gear this year to make up for fewer opportunities to indulge in 2020.  Economists have dubbed this phenomenon “revenge spending.”  This is not a good idea.  Spending more will not make your holidays merrier, and it might eat into savings accumulated last year.
4) Budget.  In the next few months, you will be shopping for food, candy, gifts, and decorations for fall, Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas.  Plan now for spending, in accordance with your budgets.
5) Set aside time.  Plan to take a few days off from work or set aside some Saturdays to begin shopping, planning menus, and start decorating.
6) Delegate.  Share duties with your spouse, children, and family and friends with whom you will celebrate.  They may come up with great, new traditions to include in your celebrations for many years to come, and you will save a lot of time.
7) Plan ahead and be flexible.  The past year and half have taught us that we don’t know what the future holds from day to day.  Covid-19 has presented us with new challenges and obstacles.  Celebrations had to altered last year and that may be true again. 
8) Start early.  Covid-19 has played havoc with the supply chain.  We experienced shortages last year, and we will again this year.  Transportation of goods is taking longer.  If there are items that are “must-haves” on your list, order early and be prepared to accept substitutes.

Photo by Kristina Paukshtite on Pexels.com

This is reprinted from my new quarterly blog which focuses on helping you manage your money in ways that reduce stress and honor God. Click here to subscribe to my quarterly newsletter: http://eepurl.com/hG1VjT

I would love to hear about how you plan to celebrate the holidays this year. What will you differently to make this year special for your loved one?

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