My #1 priority this year will be getting a menu together. I know that since we are in the city, we will be spending time eating out, but for holiday dinner, it is on me! We decided we would try to bring the beauty of my parents house here, so we are going to go hunting for the turkey that we will serve at Christmas dinner. We will also get a ham for that dinner as well. I have put it as my husbands job to hunt the turkey, clean it and get it ready for the meal! We will have sides and desserts, but the fresh wild turkey is a priority! We are also hoping to add some venison to the meal, but my husband has to kill the deer first, so I have decided that if he gets one, it will be a surprise meat, maybe for Christmas Eve!!
#2 on the list is sleeping arrangements. My parents made it easier on me by insisting that they will stay in a hotel, but I have to rearrange my kids so my sister and her fiance can have their own room with privacy. So I have decided to get some pop up tents for the kids to use. They will set them up in my sons room and make the holiday break a camp out in his room! I will have to move some items around in my daughters room so we can also fit a kennel for my sisters little dog that will be joining them. Not huge, but the thing is, I only have kids bedding for my daughters bed, so I will need to go out and get new bedding for my sister and her fiance to use.
#3 Since we will be staying here for the holidays, my daughters dad and I have decided to split the vacation up in a more fair way, instead of one person gets one week and Christmas then the other gets her for the rest of the holiday. I usually take her to my parents every year, but this year we will do a couple of days here then a couple of days at his house. Then for Christmas I think we are going to split the day, so she can enjoy Christmas at both houses! We have not come up with exactly how we will do it, but it is on my list and we will get it done!
#4 Animals!! In my family we all have dogs, that are all included in the celebrations. I know my sister will be bringing her dog, and my parents have not decided if they will be bringing their dog. We have two boxers and two cats, so this could be a very interesting fiasco! My sisters dog is somewhat anti-social and my parents dog is very sweet, but very spoiled. If they bring their dog, then she will probably stay with us so she can play in our back yard. Not sure how, but I will make these dogs and cats get along and be nice to one another!!
#5 Shopping!! My sister and her fiance love to shop. That was part of the reason why they wanted to come here since we only live a few blocks from the mall. But they will be using our cars so they can save and not have to get a rental. I am going to make a schedule of what we have to do during the time they are here so they know when they can use it and when they will have to bring it back!!
#6 More shopping!! My kids have a ever growing list of what they want, since everyone will be coming here, we are going to do most of the shopping once everyone else is here. My mom usually drives to Tucson or El Paso to do her shopping but since we have a mall and many shopping centers, she will hold off until she gets here. This should be fun, but very exhausting!! Christmas at my parents is usually huge so yes, we will shop till we literally drop!!!!
#7 Figuring out who will get what for the kids. Usually my mom and I team up online and hit sales together then have everything shipped out to my parents house. We give my sister a couple of items for the kids then the rest my mom and I split up. Well this year we will do most of the shopping when everyone gets here, on top of the shopping for everyone else!
#8 The tree!! We have a tree that the kids decorate and we put up, but there is not a whole lot of room for the tree and all of the presents we will have here this year! So I am working on finding the perfect spot for the tree. A spot that will fit the tree and all of the presents, and a place where everyone can sit around. Our living room would be ideal, but the way it is arranged now, that is just not going to work. If we set up the way we usually do, there will not be any breathing room!!
#9 Family portrait! This will be the first time we will be able to get a family portrait done with my parents and sister!! So I am going to take advantage of this! There are several places here where I can get pictures done and have them the next day, so I am determined to get everyone together and get a holiday portrait taken!! Oh and the place we will be going to, we can add the dogs in the portrait!!!!
#10 We do a family photo every year with just my husband and I and the kids, then we get cards made so we can send them out. So, in the next few weeks I will be taking my kids to get our pics taken, then set up some holiday greeting cards. I love the selection of unique Christmas Cards they have over at Storkie.com. I think I will be going to their site this year once we have our photos and get some cards set up so we can send them out just in time for the Holidays!!
This season is already becoming a task for me and we still have a couple of months before Christmas. On top of all of the planning at my house, I have an amazing Holiday Gift Guide that I am working on for my readers, to help with their own Holiday list!!