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14 fantastic products to help you have your Dream Christmas

Let's add some fun and calm back into the holidays this year!  What activities are you most excited about doing?  Let's add those in shall we :D

Last week I talked about wanting to get ahead of the crazy rush that usually comes along with getting ready for the holidays, all the while keeping yourself inspired as well as organised.  This, week, I want to talk about how to make your holidays a lot more fun! 

Pull out your Dream Christmas printable from last week and go over your priorities.  What do YOU really want to do this holiday season?  If you missed the free printable, you can grab it HERE or if you'd like more versatility check my etsy shop, I have a variety of sizes and room for hole punching, stitching or stapling (on the left or the middle).  


I am SURE that there are some crafting projects on your Dream Christmas list.  amiright? ;)

Well, I've got a treat for you! 

I'm participating in the Scrapbook Bundles Creative Christmas again this year, there are some fantastic products again this year for you to play with!

CC2015 Blog Hop Banner

Sign up here to be notified when the cart is open!

There are 14 products, including printables, classes, cutfiles, templates, calendars and more!  It's going to be so great!  You need to make sure that you are signed up for the email notification list, not only because you'll get a fab tutorial to make some quick and easy holiday gifts, but also the cart will be open early for email subbies!  You'll be able to purchase the bundle on Thanksgiving instead of having to wait until Black Friday.

Sign up HERE!!

Before the bundle goes on sale, we are giving away a bundle to to one lucky commenter!  All you need to do is leave a comment below to enter!  One commenter will be chosen from amongst the comments on all the blogs in the hop so make sure you visit each of the blogs to increase your chances, but hurry because the giveaway ends tonight at midnight and the winner announced tomorrow :D

There are 13 different blogs to visit, so grab a snack and click around and get ready to be inspired by all the products you can win!

Here's the hop list!

So have fun checking out all the posts for more examples of how you can use the products in the bundle.  Don't forget to comment on each one!

Today, I had fun with Ashley Calder's cutfiles from the bundle along with some of my printables that I turned in to stickers. I made one of my take-along books (you can get a free tutorial and make your own if you sign up in th box in my side bar or at the bottom of this post).


I'm going to use this Take along book to prepare for Alice's class, 'Scrapbooking Christmas... in January', which is included in the bundle.  I'm going to keep the book in my planner, to have it close by so that I can follow Alice's prompts through out December and have a place to keep all my memories, stories, notes and memorabilia in one place so that it will be ready and waiting for me when its time to Scrapbook Christmas... in January.


These are the printables that I hand painted for the bundle, I made them into stickers to use in my take along, but you can use them in any size that you need.


Practically perfect Christmas

It's coming!

The most wonderful time of the year :D

But, is it?

Or does this sound more accurate?
It's a season of hour long wrapping sessions, endless to-do's to get everything ready, rushing to yet another Christmas/Holiday/Winter performance and dropping into your seat with an exhausted sigh after dropping your child backstage, 5 minutes late and getting one of 'those' looks from her teacher as you try to comb her hair with your fingers and rub the traces of spaghetti sauce off her face with your thumb.  Then, there is more wrapping, last minute bake-a-thon's at 11pm and half assed gift purchases to replace that perfect, well thought out, meaningful handknit cardigan in your sister's favourite colour, that you only got 2/3 finished.


Christmas CAN be soooo Magical!

But it can be CRAP too... your to-do list can make you feel overloaded, stressed and just plain burned out by the time the holidays even get here, and instead of participating in all the festivities and having fun all you end up doing is hiding under the covers, watching Elf and eating all the chocolate that was supposed to be for aunt Martha!

Let me help you have a peaceful Christmas this year, so you can have the time to sit in the tree light with a good novel, some Christmas carols and a nip of Bailey's.  There are only two ways we can do this.  One, plan on not doing anything this Christmas.  Which, yes, it may be peaceful, but it'll still be crap.  Or you could do number two, plan on having a lovely Christmas this year.  


I have a free printable for you, a free planner tutorial and a process to help you get ahead of yourself this year.  So you can actually enjoy your Christmas.

Print off the free printables, then fill them out.  Follow my process below and plan out your action steps to make Christmas magical.

if you would like a more versatile version, with different sizes and space on the left (or in the middle) for holes or stapling then I do have them in my etsy shop: Practically Perfect Christmas Planner

Practically Perfect Christmas Process


Sit down with a cup of your favourite holiday beverage (why not have that Bailey's now!) and write down every thing that you can think of that would make Christmas absolutely PERFECT! Include things like how you want your house decorated, the trips you want to take and the maid that will do the packing and wrapping for you. DREAM big. Don't hold back, write it all down, even the impossible magical reindeer ride.  What activities, baking, crafting would you love to do this year? We aren't limiting ourselves here, we are dreaming.  So if you've dreamed it, ever, write it down.  We'll narrow things down later.


Okay, now is the time to be realistic and apply that reality filter. Really be honest with yourself.  What CAN happen this year?  Take into consideration the ages of your family members, the number of family members involved (extended included), budget, time restraints, etc

BUT, the most important part is to add your PRIORITIES into the filter.  If you really want to do something this year, but it really doesn't look do-able, how can you make this happen?  What else can you delete from that 'have-to' list to make room for your special wish?

For me, my non-negociable is making my own Chrismtas cards. It takes an enormous amount of time and energy but I love challenging myself to out do last year's card. But most importantly the repetitive assembly line forces me to slow down and enjoy the processs. I listen to Christmas carols and often times I'm thinking of my mom while I work.   She loved the whole Christmas season, her birthday was in December and she was usually listening to her carols in the kitchen before Halloween. It makes me want to try and enjoy the season the way that she did.  To make room for my card making, I usually bump my december daily to the new year.  I write down all the stories, collect the memorabilia in a cute folder, but I don't actually scrapbook it until January and during layout-a-day in February.

Really put your thinking cap on to see how you can alter your dream Christmas so that it can become reality.  Okay, so maybe a maid to do the wrapping is not at all in the stars, but you could give an older child a few dollars to do it, or the neighbour teenager who is looking for some extra cash to buy gifts for her friends.  We aren't looking for perfection, practically perfect will do just nicely :D


Break down the things that are left ALL the way to their simplest action step and put each of those on your to do list.  It's a lot less overwhelming to see one individual step of project at a time than the whole project itself.  So don't write 'make Christmas cards' write out all the steps; buy supplies, cut papers, do the stamping, stuff envies etc etc

This may seem like a longer more exhausting list, but i'll make it easier on you as you set out to do these tasks and you'll know when you can check these items off.  Or cross them off, I'm a cross-offer, do you check or cross off? ;)


 Now, take some time to schedule each of the these tasks into your daily plan.  Whether that be a specific hour in your planner or just added to day in your calendar or to a day's to-do list.  Working backwards from your deadlines helps to know where to start the frst task for each project.  

Don't skip this step, because it'll not only keep you on track, but also let you know if you can realistically fit it all in or if you need to go back to step 1 and reassess what is realistic and what is possible and maybe delete or move things to the new year.

Here's to a happy, relaxing holiday season!!


COMING SOON! In November, a whole class devoted to making your Christmas practically perfect is coming to Big Picture Classes with yours truly :) 

To be the first to hear, sign up in the cute tag below and I'll send you all the deets as soon as they are available!

How tall is your stack?

You have gotten to know me on this blog, but now it's time for me to get to know you a little better. And what could be more fun than to do it with a happy little quiz.  I know that you may not be both a scrapbooker and a planner girl so feel free to only answer the questions that pertain to you, and even only the ones that you really feel like answering.  But, I would love to see some (or all!) of your answers in the comments below.  

I've included my answers so that you can get to know me even better too!

Here we go! 

1.  Check all that apply: mother, daughter, sister, wife, lover, friend, cousin, niece, hey-I'm-a-dude-we-can-be-papercrafters-too!
All, except that last one ;)

2.  Are you a planner girl, scrapbooker or Both?

3.   What's your OOTD right now?  No Cheating!!  Pyjamas are welcome ;)
A powder blue, cable knit turtleneck sweater that clever conceals my 6 child muffin top with black and white check slim pants (from Boden of course) with black boots.

Okay, so I totally cheated!! When I wrote the first draft of this blog post I was still in my gym clothes, mixed matched Boden pilate pants and a Roots hoodie with bright red maple leaves all over it ;)

4.  What is your favourite paper crafting product right now?
Jen Hadfield's emphemera

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5.  Do you prefer to read traditional paper books or on something like a kindle.
PAPER! Audio books are a huge favourite of mine too.  I'm listening to Big Magic now and reading the Virgin's Lover and Hands Free Life in paperback.

  Screen Shot 2015-11-05 at 22.32.43Screen Shot 2015-11-05 at 22.32.43Screen Shot 2015-11-05 at 22.32.43

6.  What kind of planner do you use?
Commit30 plus homemade inserts in a Cakedori for planning and Heidi Swapp's for memory 'planning'.

7. Who is your 'Person'? *
If you aren't a Grey's Anatomy fan, this is that person you write in the emergency contact box when you fill out forms.  The person you trust with your life.

Mine would be that French hottie of a husband of mine ;)

8. Email, FB messanger or texts?

9. What's your favourite 'granny' craft? Knitting, crochet, quilting or something else?

10. R2D2 or BB8
R2D2 will always have my heart ;)

11. Last person you emailed, FB messangered or texted ;)
My kids' hockey coach, who I also consider a good friend.

12. What pinned recipes have you actually tried?
Guinness Chocolate cake, it's my go to cake recipe :D Made it just last night.

13. What projects (can be non-paper pojects) are you making for Christmas?  ...or not!
I'm making a tee-shirt for my brand new nephew, Mariano, to match the ones his cousins all got last year. Each family got their own colour and the child's cousin rank was on the back.  Little Mariano is number 25.


14. Are you outdoorsy or insdoorsy?
OMG INdoorsy!!!

15. Is your BFF online the same person as you BFF offline?
No, most of my online friends aren't local and my local friends are mostly not crafty... except Helen ;)

16. List your last 3 etsy purchases.
Planner Stickers from Little Blue Garden

My cakedori from Cake Paperie
On the Softer Side scrapbooking class from Soaphouse mama

17. List 3 things on your Christmas wish list.
R2 Tea 2 teapot

Big Bang Theory lego
Boden clothes

18. 5 people you love to watch on Periscope
Stacy Julian

April Bowles Olin
Kerri Pouliot
Jenny Penton
Hilary Rushford

19. How tall is your To-Be-Put-Away scrapbook layout stack?
3 and a half inches!

20. How many planners do you have?  How many planners do you use? Is it a huge stack?
2 and 2 (see number 6)

Now it is your turn!! I would love for you to post (on your favourtie social media platform) your answer to either question number 19 or number 20. with the hashtag #hootstack.  Include a photo of your stack if you'd like and even the link back to this post

Cannot wait to hear your answers!