Realistic Holiday Checklist

OMG!  It’s almost Thanksgiving-Christmas-New Years and I’m totally unprepared!  All the checklists I’ve read in various women’s magazines have the assumption that I’m already somewhat organized.  Not so.  Here is my….

Elf busted!  Keeping it real

Elf busted!

Realistic Holiday Checklist

HouseholdHalloween candy

  • Take down Halloween decorations from 2 1/2 weeks ago.  (Don’t judge me.)
  • Wait until husband is out with friends and kids are watching TV to purge closets (otherwise they will all tell me they “need” whatever it is I’m pitching.)
  • Most lists say to “deep clean” things like bathrooms and kitchens.  By “deep clean” do they mean, “hire a cleaning service to do that”?  I think that’s what they mean.  Or, the more budget conscious translation is, “who cares about deep cleaning?”


  • Look up clean eating Thanksgiving recipes online.  I won’t use any of them, but it will make me feel better for trying.
  • Calculate precise number of cheat meals I can get away with this holiday season before my pants get too tight and my personal trainer makes a comment about my ass.  Oh wait!  My trainer’s making me do weekly progress pictures.  DAMN YOU, MEL, AND YOUR JEDI KNIGHT PERSONAL TRAINING TRICKS!
  • Go to grocery store after taking progress pics.  It will limit the expenditures.


(You may skip this section if you are under 35 or a man.)

Go with the Princess Leia hair?

Go with the Princess Leia hair?

  • Get Botox, or have hairdresser cut bangs, so people will say, “You’re 39?  No way!”
  • Dye hair a color that will look good for the next 7 weeks.  Once kids are home there is no chance to get in again.
  • Figure out a hairstyle that will look decent with winter hat and coat.  Some people look so sophisticated and put together.  I look like static cling head.  What do you think?  Princess Leia buns?


  • Do I have any good reason to buy a new outfit from the premium outlet mall?  If not, create online invitation to fancy party so I can buy new dress and then tell husband the party got cancelled because their dog got sick.  Brilliant!
  • Are any of my heels a) in fashion, b) not totally hammered?  I feel a shopping trip coming on…
  • FUN Checklist item!!  Buy Christmas outfits for the kids.  I realize my children will only allow me to dress them for maybe another year or two, so I’m making the most of this!  And taking TONS of pictures to a) create warm and fuzzy memories for myself, and b) have blackmail photos when my kids become teenagers.

    Traugott Family Christmas - 2009

    Traugott Family Christmas – 2009


  • The kids are home for one (1) week at Thanksgiving and three (3) weeks at Christmas.  Purchase Advil.
  • Real Simple actually had a fantastic idea:  Have your kids address the envelopes on all Christmas cards (so they can practice handwriting) and update the contacts in your smart phone.
  • Select neutral locations for playdates so other moms don’t say, “What’s up with Lisa’s house?  Doesn’t she deep clean for the holidays?”


  • Make a list of everyone to buy for (husband, kids, teachers, etc.) and assign budget number.  Laugh at the budget I created (and surpassed on the first shopping trip) when I get the credit card bill in January.

Hope that nifty little checklist helps!  What are you doing to get ready for the holidays?

Lisa ;) (c) 2013 Lisa Traugott.  All rights reserved.  No portion of this blog, including any text, photographs, and artwork, may be reproduced or copied without written permission.

5 responses to “Realistic Holiday Checklist

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