During Thanksgiving week, there are several things I do that make the end of the year so much easier:
- Order my holiday cards
- Order stamps to mail my holiday cards
- Review my holiday address list
- Finish up my charitable contributions
Thanksgiving weekend has always seemed like an endless stretch of free time for me because for many years I was performing in a show or had directed a show that played in the first half of November. I also spent 25 years working in Corporate America, and a four-day weekend was a true rarity. (Now that I’m self-employed, I often work several of the days of Thanksgiving weekend, but it still hasn’t lost its specialness for me.)
If you send out photo cards, Thanksgiving weekend is a great time to review all the photos taken throughout the year and select the favorites. Having the whole family around and available to look over the photo card options helps to speed along the decision-making process.
Whether you include photos or not, getting your custom-printed cards ordered in November will get them back to you in record time. And the prices are usually cheaper if you order before December 1.
If you are going to be hand-signing store-bought cards instead of having them custom-printed, you definitely want to get an early start on that. Hopefully you bought your cards on Dec. 26 last year when they went on sale. If not, buy them this weekend while all of the styles are still available. And start signing!
I enjoy getting on the US Postal Service website and browsing the new stamps. There are always so many cute designs. I always order a little extra so that I have stamps to last me well into the new year. Ordering your stamps right after ordering your cards will ensure that you won’t have a holdup in sending the cards out.
Holiday Address List
After ordering my holiday cards and stamps, I review last year’s address list to see what changes need to be made. Unfortunately, there are always a few names that need to be removed because people have passed away. But there are also new friends to be added. And I always have a few friends who have relocated. Updating the list early gives me the time to email or text them and ask them for their new addresses.
I have several clients who wait until the end of the year to make their charitable contributions. Sometimes they simply run out of time before making all the contributions they had intended.
I used to make all my contributions over Thanksgiving weekend to ensure that the acknowledgement letter from each charity had this year’s date on it. In more recent years, I’ve spread out my contributions throughout the year so that I don’t have to do so many at once. Thanksgiving weekend is my final review to make sure I’ve attended to everyone on my list.
What are some of the things that you always wish you had started earlier? Start an end-of-year checklist now that you can pull out in future years on Thanksgiving weekend. Your future self will thank you!