Make the most of your year and life by planning ahead. Sometimes we say we’ll make plans, but we never do….for various reasons. Ensure you schedule vacations, special holiday memories, and more by going through the important events in your life month by month.
All you need is a yearly calendar. You can either purchase one or use free templates found almost anywhere. I use these free monthly calendars to plan out all my important events.
You can start by going to your school district’s website to get all holiday and important school dates for your students. Early out, winter break, etc… should be listed for the entire year. Next, go through your work schedule or your hubby’s, and mark off training days and possible travel dates. Next, note birthdays, anniversaries, or any thing else. Here’s an easy reminder of important events/holidays for each month.
You have a general idea of what each month should look like. Other events and dates will fill in quickly, and you’ll be able to adjust your schedule to what works best for you as new things start popping up. I usually mark weekly events in a different color, and the fun things I’d like to have happen in others.
Maybe you’ve always wanted to participate in your summer block party, or actually visit the Grand Canyon. Now’s the time to plan. Nothing is set in stone of course, but as you mark off holidays and other important events, you’ll see how busy your life already is. For me, I never truly planned ahead. I just rolled with the punches of what the next week would bring our family. I knew birthdays were coming up, major holidays would fill our time, but I never actually planned how I wanted all that to look like.
I can now plan for decorating, saving for vacations, picking opportune times to travel, and book flights because I am much more organized and aware. I go through what has to happen each week, and make a wish-list of what I want to happen. This is where I plan fun outings, picnics, or community events I want to attend. It takes some time, but I do this for each month.
Now, I’m able to see my life months in advance, and truly make the most of every day. Kids grow up so fast, and if I don’t schedule that special trip to California or make those yummy fall cookies with them I’ve been craving and wanting to, I just sort of….don’t do it, and the days just blend together with nothingness. I need to see my life before me, and this is the perfect way to take advantage of each and every day. Weekends now are planned with activities appropriate for each season and time in our lives. My previous post, 20 Days to a Better You also gives more tips to being more efficient and organized if you’re a lot like me.
Another thing you can do once you’ve marked off as many important dates and events you can remember, is create a Pinterest board for each season, or even each month if you really wanted. When it comes to fall, I have so many activities and recipes I want to try. This also helps me plan more comforting meals perfect for the cooler weather and family get-togethers.
By planning out my year in advance I’m also more aware of when and how much I need to save for family vacations, dance recitals, sports fees, and more. I start earlier now saving up for vacations, souvenirs, and other things that just wouldn’t cross my mind until we’re actually standing in the gift shop, or we’re starving and we have to eat at expensive parks and other restaurants.
Another thing you can do as a family is decide where and what you’d like to do each year. Depending on your budget, plan one or two major trips. Even if grand vacations aren’t in the budget, decide to visit national parks, or participate in community events you missed out on last year. I go to our community calendar and make sure she we hit the fair, farmer’s markets, concerts, and other local events. It seems these events always happen around the same time of year, so even if you’re off a few days, at least you know it’s planned for the month.
Now is the time to actually schedule those special dinners with friends, host Thanksgiving, and more. Prep yourself by envisioning and planning your months in advance.
Hopefully this will help you take more control of each and every day and become more organized and efficient. I know it has helped me a ton to truly focus on the time I’ve been given here. My kids are able to see the events we’re going to and are just as excited and thrilled as I am to be a closer family. Instead of wondering what to do each weekend, I have more ideas and possible activities for us to do together, instead of wasting time twiddling our thumbs or winging it like in the past. You don’t have to have your entire year planned day to day, but it greatly helps to see your life and the events you look forward to, greeting you each month.
Let me know if this has helped you at all plan ahead and take advantage of your time. Thanks for stopping by and have a truly great and blessed day!