Two simple things to do after Christmas– your future self will thank you

Here we are in that odd week between Christmas and New Year’s, when we find ourselves tired/happy/reflective, out of our normal routine, but also trying to do something useful if at all possible. Here are two useful things that I’ve learned to do in the week after Christmas. They don’t take much effort, but as the years go by I am more and more thankful that I’ve gotten into the habit of doing these simple things. So, I thought I’d share!

1.) File away the family Christmas card or letter into an album. Mine is a simple binder that now contains our Christmas letters and/or cards, going back every year, all the way to 2006. I use plastic page protectors in the binder to hold the extra cards and letters, labeled for each year. It’s an easy way to gradually collect memories and thereby create a treasured family heirloom.

2.) Make notes on the Christmas we just celebrated. I started an Evernote file in 2015, which has been so useful to me these past five years. It’s hard to remember year by year, as the holidays roll around again, what did I cook last year? How much wrapping paper is left up in the attic? Do our strings of lights need to be replaced because they won’t come on half the time? How many photo cards did I order last year? What did I do this year that I’d like to do differently next year? What gifts did we make for extended family and friends? Did I neglect some aspect of Christmas baking and the family loudly complained about it? Now’s the time to make all the notes, while it’s all fresh in my mind! 

Throughout the year, I can easily add notes as needed, so when Christmas comes around again, it’s all right there. Like this: “Bought an artificial tree from a yard sale summer of 2020. Stored in attic.” As I start to prep for Christmas in the fall of the year, I can go back to those notes and refresh my mind about all the various aspects from the previous year(s).

(Here’s a funny note I made in 2015: “Baby Jesus is missing from the nativity.” Later in the year I added: “Found in June. Stored in jewelry box.” I remember finding Baby Jesus in June of that year, in the bottom of a crate of toys in the basement. So if yours has gone missing, carried away by little hands, don’t give up hope! 😂)

Blessings to you as you contemplate the year gone by and look forward to the fresh start that January always brings. ♥︎

4 thoughts on “Two simple things to do after Christmas– your future self will thank you

  1. Hi Jenny: This is a good idea and I have done something similar when I have b een very poor. It is fun to clip anything from the junk mail that may come in handy for my art work. This makes a very special scrap book that I use all year long. It also takes up little space. Journaling is a good idea,too. You probably know all about these things, but thought you might know you are “chip off the old block”. Love, Grammy

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  2. Great ideas to share. I have files on my computer in excel that I do this in as well. I have done this for weddings, family reunions, etc. It really is amazing how much one forgets in a year’s time. Good idea to note where you put things in storage! I also have a file that is called “Christmas List” that I add to all year long. This is for adding the gifts I purchase throughout the year, what it is and who it is for. This was especially important when all the kids were at home, so throughout the year I could see who was sadly lacking in gifts (teenage boys are hard to buy for!), so that panic didn’t set in on December 1st. Always enjoy your blog and your beautiful pictures! xoxoxo Mom

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