Creating a Christmas Binder

Is it just me, or do you find that throughout the month of December you have 100 post-it notes with 'to-do' lists, gift ideas, and things you could possibly make, floating around the house? The more blogs and magazines I read, the more ideas I get from Pinterest, and the more DIY projects I want to create, the sooner I realise I am taking on too much. As part of my 'Getting Ready for Christmas' series, today I'm sharing the binder I've put together that is [hopefully!] going to help me stay on track throughout this busy Christmas period.

I decided I needed to corral all of my ideas and bits and pieces in one place so I didn't lose anything (or my mind!). I picked up this very simple and inexpensive display book from Officeworks.  (Side-note: they also had a gorgeous new range of manilla folders that I shared on Instagram, so if you're wanting to set up a paper organisation system, this is a great place to start).

UPDATE: Get your FREE Christmas planner by clicking on the button below!

Here's a little look at what I have inside my Christmas binder! (I found all of the printables here and here at the fabulous IHeartOrganizing, unless otherwise stated).

First up is my 'Holiday To Do List'... which seems to be expanding at a rapid rate! The list includes the usual suspects like shopping, sending cards, decorating the tree, party-related organisation etc. It also includes notes for things I'm planning to DIY this year, such as the Advent Calendar, cards, wrapping and baked treats for friends and family.

Next up is my 'Christmas Shopping List', with categories for who, what, where, price, purchased and packaged (from Dimplicty).  It has been great in letting me see exactly what I've accomplished so far... and how much more shopping I still have to do! 

Right behind this section is a pocket for receipts so they are all in the one place and won't be misplaced.

Because I am hand-making quite a few things this year, both to save money and to add a more personal touch, I needed a way to keep track of all my project bits and pieces. The 'DIY Ideas' section is perfect for this! There is so much inspiration around, but I decided I needed to select just a few projects (which are also part of the kids' Advent Calendar activities). A list of projects with the links to these, along with some of the materials, are housed within these pockets. This includes tags to be decorated and attached to presents, twine, a selection of paint chips to use for decorating cards and wrapping paper, snowflake templates, and ideas for house decorations.

The next section is for 'Recipes', as I will be making a dessert for our family Christmas celebration, as well as baking some sweet treats for friends and family. I got the recipe ideas from current and past 'Home Beautiful' magazines. How good does that caramel nut ice-cream cake look?!

The last section is for 'Party Planning'. We throw an annual Christmas party at our house with about 30 close friends and their children - fingers crossed there's no rain this year!! I keep track of things like the guest list, event to-do's and the menu. I also take notes here for extra things like cleaning and decorating, 'house jobs' we want to complete, and on-the-day jobs.

I also use a calendar to help me plan all of this, and to keep track of work, appointments and functions throughout December. This was in the Christmas binder, but I needed it in a more central location, so it now lives on the fridge next to the monthly meal planner.

monthly calendar

BONUS: get your free Christmas planner, full of helpful checklists, by clicking on the link below!

Now I want to hear from you...

How do you keep yourself organised throughout the Christmas period? Do you have lots of lists floating around, or do you like to keep all your ideas in the one place?