Thursday, November 18, 2010

Christmas Gift Organization Ideas

Hello Again!

With Black Friday and the official kick off to Christmas shopping just around the corner, I wanted to share some ideas on how I stay organized with all of the gift ideas, gifts, and receipts.

Organizing Gift Ideas:
I've spent so many years stressing out because I have no idea what to get people for the holidays or birthdays or special occasions. Is it just me, or do you have that problem too?  To help prevent unneeded stress, (Christmas shopping can be stressful enough!) I started an idea file.  This file is a collection of ideas from magazines or online. 

For the magazine 'finds', I tear out the page and place in a file accordion that's in our kitchen. There is a sleeve for each of the boys and the hubs.  Everyone else is lumped in one slot, but I'll attach a sticky note of who I'm thinking would enjoy the present.  You could easily designate the whole file accordion to just Christmas ideas if you have a lot of folks on your shopping list.

For online shopping, I will either print out the page and/or copy the link to my favorites.  And you guessed it, in my favorites, I've got it organized as well for each person in my family.  My kids are 3 and 2 months so I don't have to worry about them snooping, but I'll have to either protect the files or determined another method.  Lucky for me I've got a few years to find an alternative! :)

Then when it's time for that special occasion or Christmas, I go through the ideas and watch for sales.  Sometimes I'll be ahead of the game enough (like this year) where I've got most of the Christmas shopping completed well ahead of the Christmas rush. I'd like to think it's in part due to this 'idea file'. :)

Organizing Gifts:
Once you've purchased those gifts you've been scoping out all year, you'll need a way to organize so you can find just the present you're looking for as you run out the door.  I have several baskets in our guest bedroom where I store all of those gifts: 
      -- Basket A: my parents,brother, and sister.
      -- Basket B: my husband's side of the family
      -- Basket C: my dad's side of the family
      -- Basket D: my mom's side of the family
      -- Basket E: the kids
      -- Basket F: everyone else

(I separated out basket C and D because we always have Christmas for my mom's side the weekend after Thanksgiving, so it's easy to just grab the basket as we pack up instead of digging through the rest.)

The basket method is also great because once you've wrapped all of the presents you can put them back in the basket. Then you just grab the entire basket as you walk out the door...organized and efficient!

Organizing Receipts:
In conjunction with the gifts already purchased, I create a new file folder that is housed in the kitchen (our infamous 'drop zone') and when I get home from shopping, I put all of the receipts in there.  You could take it one step further and have a separate file folder for each 'basket', but I rarely have to access them so lumping them all together works for me.

I don't think any of my ideas are groundbreaking, but I wanted to share just in case you're already feeling a little frazzled.  There is now a little order in Christmas gift-giving.


Anonymous said...

how awesome! good job with the shopping! ometimes, i will wrap each group's gift in different paper. then all the gifts go under the tree, when its time to pack up and leave for the christmas gathering, its easy to see the gifts that go, by color/paper.

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