Setting up a holiday planner has never been easier, especially when you don’t take on the worry of creating every section of the planner. I don’t know about you but I’m usually so busy that I barely have time to get holiday shopping done. That’s why this year I’m finally breaking out my OG Happy Planner Christmas extension pack from 2018.
While I would love to have my whole planner more coordinated to my cover, right now this is what works best for me. I did make both a fall and Christmas tab using scrapbook paper I had on hand. So let’s just dive right into my Christmas planner setup in a Happy Planner.
Even if you decide to use a Happy Planner Christmas extension pack, you can still fully customize each section. Not only did I jazz up each page from the extension pack, I added in extra decorated sheets. I’ll list each of the extra pages I created in their respective sections below.
The first tab in this holiday planner setup is the Autumn or Thanksgiving tab. Almost all of the stickers I used throughout this whole setup are Happy Planner stickers. Let’s go over what I plan to keep and track in this section.
Planning for Thanksgiving is not a section within the Happy Planner extension packs. But, I created my own tab because I like to keep my gratitude journal page, fall bucket list and Thanksgiving dinner plans separate from any Christmas planning.
This year, I plan to add to this section a place to record traditions (both old and new), as well as, any ideas on holiday decorating. This also helps me to know how to plan and budget for this year or the following year.
Next we get into the Christmas Planner portion of this setup. This is a tab I created using scrapbook paper and some stickers.
Christmas Meal Planner
My family has always had two Christmas celebrations. We’d do the big family gathering on Christmas Eve and then our immediate family on Christmas. Over the years, the big Christmas Eve gathering faded away with the older generations passing away. But, I keep that tradition alive by doing both holidays in our home.
A big portion of these two days is focused around food and meal planning. So, I’ve broken out the holiday menu planning pages from Happy Planner to cover both Christmas Eve as well as Christmas Day. There are holiday recipe papers in this section as well. But, I tend not to use them. If I don’t use them, I will pull them out and put them into my Happy Planner Recipe planner. That way, I can easily insert them into the Christmas Planner if needed.
Christmas Budget Planner
For this section I’m using the Christmas “party planner” tab as a holiday budget planner section instead. I’ve taken a full month from the Happy Planner budget extension pack and set it up for December. Over the years as our family has become smaller and smaller, Christmas is celebrated mostly within our nuclear family. So no big parties. But there’s still a need for properly budgeting for presents and everything else.
It may seem like an odd place to do this, but in this section I also like to budget and plan for any Christmas decorations. Every few years or so, I like to switch up the holiday decor. The one tree that will always be traditional is our family room tree. It holds so many memories with decorations we’ve chosen as a family and all the angel ornaments my mother had given me.
There’s also the tree in my home office and craft room. For the past few years, My Home Office Blush Pink Flocked Christmas Tree has always made my craft room feel so much a part of the holiday. But, I’m getting the itch to change things up a bit. Maybe not this year. But to do that, I’ll need to keep track of our budget and then work it into the Christmas budget for the following year.
Christmas Cookie Planner
While I do have a Happy Planner recipe book that houses all my favorite recipes, when it comes to holiday time I like to pull out and keep all my cookie planning in one place. So while the Happy Planner tab is for “cookie exchange”, I’ll be using it for cookie planning.
One tradition in our home is each person gets to pick the holiday cookie they want. Then I build my cookie planning around that. So this is a great section to track what special cookie each of us want for this year.
Christmas Cards and Gifts
Each year I like to keep track of who we’ve sent Christmas cards to, as well as who we’ve received a card from. If there’s one thing I really love most of all at Christmas time, it’s finding all the Christmas cards in the mailbox. It’s like Christmas day, every day! With such busy lives, it’s also hard to remember who we’ve sent a card to, 12-months later, so this section of the planner is quite functional and I love it.
This is also the area where I plan out my Christmas card ideas. I’ll keep in this section some plain or dot grid Happy Planner filler paper for just that reason. If time permits, I always try to create my own Christmas cards, such as the Handmade DIY Christmas Cards Stamped Snowman we sent out one year. This year I have an idea for a card, but we’ll have to see if I’ve got time to set them up. More to come on that later.
Christmas Gift Planner
This is actually a sub-section within the cards and gifts tab, as is stocking stuffer ideas. I’m thinking of creating a separate tab for this section, since it’s pretty important and then I can easily find it too. For this section, I print out and keep my Happy Planner Holiday Shopping List insert right in the front. That way, I can track gift details on the Happy Planner paper and then transfer to my shopping list what I’ll need to buy.
I’ll also keep track of ideas for any handmade gifts we plan to give out. Again, time permitting, I also like to give something handmade, like this DIY Kid’s Fingerprint Christmas Light Ornament. They were such a big hit with the grandparents! Which leads me into holiday memories.
You hear it all the time, hindsight is 20/20 -and oh how very true that is. This year, both my family and my in-laws will be celebrating the holidays without our moms. Last year, we lost both my mother (December) and my mother-in-law (November). It was devastating to both our families.
This is where the hindsight comes in. I’ve thought a lot about all the holidays and memories with my mom and how she will never be at any again. That’s a hard pill to swallow, especially during the holidays. It doesn’t matter when you lose a loved one -it’s extra difficult at the holidays without their physical presence.
But with all the losses we experienced in 2020, there is also a lot to celebrated and grateful for this year. So, this section of my Christmas Happy Planner will be especially important for me to keep up on.
The last section of the Happy Planner Christmas extension pack always has a notes tab. It’s the perfect place to keep extra holiday paper; snap-in envelopes to keep your receipts or gift receipts; even pictures that you plan to use later to record your memories. Also in the extension pack are stickers, which I’ve put on snap-in tabs so they are easily accessible when I need them.
Christmas Planner Supplies
There were some elements that are no longer available from the Happy Planner, so I’ve linked below the newer versions or their equivalents.
- Grinch Planner Cover -DannysPlannerCuties on Etsy (mention my name in the comments)
- Happy Planner Christmas Holiday Extension Pack (holly)
- Happy Planner Classic Metal Discs, Gold
- Happy Planner Page Protectors
- Budget Extension Pack from Happy Planner
- Expense Tracker Sheets from Happy Planner
- Classic Happy Planner Filler Graph Paper
- Santa gold key -Hobby Lobby
- We R Memory Keepers Tab Punch
- Happy Planner Stickers, Christmas Noel
- Mini Happy Planner Stickers, Christmas Joy
- Classic Happy Planner Stickers, Christmas Joy
This Christmas planner isn’t fully completed just yet, there are just a few more elements I want to get into it. But, it is my hope to be able to do a video flip through of it when it’s 100% completed. More to come on that.
Update to Christmas Planner
- Check out these 4 Happy Planner Christmas planner pages to enhance your holiday planning.
If you are inspired to create a Christmas holiday planner don’t forget to share by tagging me on Instagram and using #btdinspired, I’d love to see your work (and I just might repost your photo)!
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