Holiday Planner - FREE DOWNLOAD 2016


What's inside:

In this planner you will find a schedule of when to do things to best make your life easier during this holiday season, broken down for week-to-week planning. I've left space for you to add your own notes or tasks for each week (in my personal one, I have my brother and mothers' birthdays, as they all happen during this time, too). This will take you through preparing for Halloween through New Year's Eve.

Next, you will find a section to jot down gift ideas as you have them in the coming months. I have a section for co-workers, friends, "emergency" gifts – gifts you can have on hand, like candles or baked goods, for those times when someone gives you something and you don't have anything for them – and "Kringle" gifts, which is what we call "Secret Santa", if that's something you do. There is also a full page dedicated to family gift ideas.

I have a section called "Likes & Sizes" that I use for my family gift ideas. It's helpful to keep track of clothing sizes and general likes, even for Mr. LL and myself, in case a family member asks me what size of something Mr. LL wears so they can buy him a gift.

Then, you will find a place to keep track of all the people, and their addresses, that you want to send Yule greetings to this year. There's also a little gift check box to these pages, to help you remember who is getting a gift mailed along with their card.

I pride myself on being a thoughtful gift giver (not always timely, but I do put a lot of thought into my gift choices), but I also recognize the need to be thrifty with my gift budget. I work in a decent sized office, and sometimes, I get gifts that aren't quite me. They go into my "Gift Closet" (or box, or bag, or whatever) so I can regift them later. Sometimes, the items in my Gift Closet aren't re-gifts at all, but items I bought or received in bulk that I thought would make great little additions to bigger gifts (back in my beauty box subscription days, there were quite a few travel sized, high end beauty products that went into my GC, keeping in mind the expiration dates on them, of course).

If you are like me, you have an unhealthy addiction to holiday wrapping paraphernalia. In order to keep myself from buying a bunch of wrapping that I don't need, I have a gift wrapping inventory in my planner. It tells me if I need to get tissue paper, ribbons, tape, etc. or if I have plenty of everything, so I should save my pennies.

Baked goods has been my go-to gift for co-workers for years now. It's hard to go wrong with a batch of delicious cookies or home-made candies. That's why there is a page in the planner dedicated to planning out my baking. I try not to buy all my ingredients at once, and totally blow my grocery budget, so I take note of the recipes I'll be making and see what I can get on sale and will keep till I'm ready to bake.

I'm also a big advocate for DIYing gifts. I'll make jewelry, art work, and even my own wrapping materials sometimes, so having a page to keep track of all the projects I want to get done is a huge help.

Every year, I try my best to get as many of my gifts from local shops as possible, butsometimes you just have to order online. So, in the Holiday Planner, you will find a page that will help you keep track of all these orders and when you can expect to receive them in the mail (to keep sneaky husbands from peeking ¬.¬).

And finally, if you are of the old school variety – or maybe it's a Southern thing – and like to send out Thank You cards to friends and family who sent/gave you presents, there is a page in here to help you stay on top of that task, too.


Clean dream


I personally think that if you create a space you love, you'll clean it more. I know that's true for our living room. We found furniture we love, decorated with art we love and it is definitely the room that gets the most attention when it comes to cleaning. With this theory in hand, I think if we were to redo our bathroom, maybe it too would become some place that gets more love. I mean, it's decent enough – like I wouldn't be embarrassed for guests to use the toilet when they come over. But if we had over night guests who wanted to take a shower, I'd be mortified. So, I put together a few things that I think would help make my bathroom a "dream" bathroom.


(1) My overall color scheme for what I'd put into my bathroom is very simple, black and white because our bathroom is mauve. Yes, mauve. So I love this designedly simply shower curtain from Urban Outfitters. (2-affiliate) This jewelry holder would look so cool in my bathroom and would probably get filled with change from my husband's pockets. (3) I think that if Mr. LL and I had nice robes (right now I have one robe that I don't really like to wear anymore), it would help us love the bathroom - not sure of the logic behind this connection, but I want a new robe. (4) Having a nice candle to take a bath to, or to just have for realistic reasons in the bathroom is a must have, and I am a fan of vanilla scents, like this Lavender Vanilla candle. (5) We really need a laundry bin of some sort in the bathroom and this one is stylish enough to keep out and in view if need be. (6) I love this bath mat and want it in my bathroom. Like now.

Pokemon Go Book Tag!

No one tagged me, but I saw Kayly's post (over at her blog My Open Sketchbook, which you should totally go check out) and wanted to do this one. So, a big thanks to Read at Midnight for creating this tag and all the graphics!

What started it all for me was reading C. S. Lewis' The Chronicles of Narnia series before bed with my mom. If we ever have kids, that's definitely a series I will read to them. 

Game of Thrones. I tried to read the series after the first season of the show, but just couldn't do it. I still love the show, but can't seem to bring myself to read the books. 

The Selection series by Kiera Cass really relies on that YA trope of "average yet actually beautiful girl must chose between two amazing handsome guys," but I still enjoy the series. Or at least what I've read of it so far.

I will never read any of The Lord of the Rings. They are just too much for me, and I'm not afraid to admit it. 

My go to classic is Jane Eyre even if as I got older the story started to bother the feminist in me.  However, in the past few years I have made it a personal mission to read all of the Oz Books by L. Frank Baum.

Yeah, do not read Emily Carroll's graphic novel Through The Woods before bed. O.o But any other time of day, yes, you should totally read this book.

Diana Bishop + Matthew Clairemont 4eva! (From Deborah Harkness' All Souls Trilogy

Any of the Sookie Stackhouse books. Actually, I'd say almost any book by Charlaine Harris.

I will read anything and every thing set in the world of Gail Carriger's Parasol Protectorate. And luckily for me, there are a total of three series in this world! :D

I'm going to be honest and let you know that before this challenge I did not have an answer for this one. I did some digging on GoodReads, however, to find a debut novel coming out this year that I would read and this is what I came up with: The Nest (kinda appropriate, heh) by Cynthia D'Aprix Sweeney.

As I mentioned before in this post, I love the worlds Gail Carriger creates, so I'll pretty much read anything she writes.

Honestly, I feel like all of Sarah J. Maas' current series are overhyped, but I'm still looking forward to each book that comes out in them!

Hey, Jasper Fforde, are we ever going to get 7 Things To Do Before You Die in Talgarth, the second book in the Shades of Grey series? 

I don't know if this answers this question correctly, but there are two books that I've read that stand out as books I didn't expect much from and they became two of my favorite books that I recommend everyone read. When I say I didn't expect much, I mean that I figured they'd be well written and a good read, I just didn't expect to love them as much as I do. I'm sure they had high praise before I read them, but I don't pay attention to those lists or things like that, I just read the blurbs and if I like it I read the book. Or, in the case of both of these books, they are picked for me to read from my book club.

The first is The Bees by Laline Paull and the other one is The Girl With All The Gifts by M. R. Carey. If you haven't read either of these, you are really missing out.

Bringing it back, full circle, with this one because I would love to own a collector's edition of The Chronicles of Narnia. I have a box set of the series, but I'd love something "fancier".

Ok! So, I tag...anyone who wants to do this! Heh. I really enjoyed it.