Make a FUN and FUNCTIONAL holiday planner to keep track of all the little details you need to remember this holiday season! No forgetting events or overbuying or wishing you had a place to write down that meaningful quote!
I don’t know about you, but if I do not write things down, lists and ideas have a tendency to fly away and never be heard from again. I try to flex my memory recall muscles, but juggling all the fullness of motherhood, running a business, being social, and so on, often leaves my mind a little tired.
So, writing things down it is.
On the everyday, I LOVE bullet journaling, and usually have a stack that I keep all together in my traveler’s journal. But during the holidays, I like to have something special–a planner that is extra festive, extra special, extra intentional.
I also MUST have a place to write down the gifts on my list this year and all the little things I pick up for stockings in the next few weeks. Just this week I was at the store trying to remember what I had already purchased and wishing I had my holiday planner with me.
The first time I made a holiday planner was with my friend Courtney’s help while we were in MOPS together. I still have that planner. Which is actually another reason why I love making these Christmas planners– they are a record of all the little details I am likely to forget.
The food. The gifts. The outings. The projects. It’s all there, kept waiting to be reminisced and remembered.
These days, I use my holiday planner to keep track of more than I did back then. I still use it for gifts and events, but I also have pages to keep track of work to-dos, Christmas curriculum plans, and some more of the little details that now make up our lives with older (and more) kids. (I’ll share a peek at my table of contents for this year’s holiday planner, as well as some ideas for other pages in your planner below).
Keep reading to see:
- how to make your own DIY Christmas Journal
- sample pages to print
- more great holiday ideas
DIY Christmas Journal
Making a Christmas journal is easy and you really do not need many supplies. (You can watch a short video of me making this year’s planner on my Instagram page too! Check out my holiday highlight there for even more ideas.)
WHAT YOU NEED ::
- a small journal (I like these)
- modge podge to coat the cover
- cardstock, holiday scrapbook paper, wrapping paper, art prints, or even festive coloring pages are great for covering your planner.
FUN (UNNECESSARY) EXTRAS ::
- craft scissors and a paper cutter for better cutting
- washi tape, holiday stickers, and craft pens
I am a HUGE fan of keeping things simple, so in the past when I realized that I did not have holiday scrapbook paper on hand when I wanted to make my Christmas journal, I chose making what I had (wrapping paper) work instead of going out to the store. I was able to get it done quickly and did not have to spend anything extra.
This year, I again used what was on hand and used a linocut print that my oldest son had made for our holiday market last year. That, plus a sharpie and some glittery washi tape made a fun and festive planner. (Bonus, my son is happy to see his art used for something important).
Step 1: Make It Pretty
- Cut out your paper so that it is about an inch bigger than your notebook on all sides.
- Use a foam brush to coat the cover of the notebook with a thin layer of mod podge. Adhere the paper to the notebook and gently smooth the paper down so there are no bumps or bubbles.
- Make a short cut into the overhanging paper at the spine of the book so that you can fold up the paper around the edges. Adhere with mod podge.
- Cut out strips and circles and make the cover of your Christmas planner. You can be as creative as you’d like! (This is where fun scissors and punches come in handy!) I used a combination of wrapping paper and colored cardstock.
- Label your planner– don’t forget the year! You’ll want that on your notebook in years to come.
- Go over the cover of your Christmas journal with another thin coat of mod podge when you finish the design.
Step 2: Make It Functional
- Skipping the first page, number all the pages in the bottom right corner.
- On a scrap piece of paper, make a list of whatever you want your planner to include. (I use this same strategy for my everyday bullet journals too). Once you know what you want in your planner, you can put them in an order that makes sense to you on the first page of your book. Assign page numbers now, or do this as you go.
- Add the tabs to your journal by cutting a small square of cardstock, and folding it in half. Label the tab and use a stapler, mini hot glue gun, or clear tape to attach the tabs to the correct pages. In a small notebook like mine, you can leave 3-4 pages in each section, which is plenty for me. Optional: paint a thin coat of mod podge over the front of the tab.
- Your tabs can be custom, or you can copy mine.
- Add small envelopes for receipts and other important paper scraps.
- Use an elastic, ribbon, or (what I did this year) a hair tie to create a way to keep your planner closed
Step 3: Fill It In
This is the most fun part! Make your lists, plan out your month, brainstorm holiday menu plans and must-try recipes. Use your favorite colored pens (these are mine) and enjoy your new planner.
The most important thing to remember, with a holiday planner or bullet journal or any other organization method, is to make it your own. Don’t try to copy exactly what someone else does, but try different things and figure out what works best for personality and family needs.
PRINTABLES TO INCLUDE ::
- December Bucket List
- Connected Christmas planning pages (this is the Christmas curriculum we use in our homeschool during December, get 10% off with code THISPILGRIMLIFE10))
- An Advent reading plan
- Winter Dinner Ideas
BONUS IDEA :: I wrap each person’s gifts with different wrapping paper, and tape a small piece of their specific paper next to their name so I don’t forget!
If you make your own holiday planner, I’d love to see it! Share on social and tag me @thispilgrimlife! Keep scrolling to check out some more fun holiday projects, recipes, and gift ideas. Happy holidays, friends!
More holiday posts to check out ::
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Jeanette Trull says
My Niece, Mandy Ballard has a great blog also. Biblical Homemaking. You might want to check it out if you don’t know about it. Really enjoy yours. I am a widow. My husband was a pastor for 33 years. Recently sold my home and moved to Altus, Ok to be near my daughter, who is also a pastor’s wife.
Good Morning! I stumbled upon this looking for Christmas things. I saw you mention your niece’s blog, but when I search for it, it says the blig has been removed. Any update on this? Thank you!
I think you might be confused. I do not have a niece with a blog.
Larissa Alcorn says
The comment above mentions the blog I was referring to. I clicked reply and I assumed the commenter would receive the reply. My apologies. I just thought maybe it moved to a new webpage.