Christmas Hampers, Planning

TV Christmas Hampers

Should I order one of those Christmas Hamper deals I see advertised in magazines and on TV?

Are you one of those people who always seems to be short of cash at Christmas? Then maybe you would benefit from signing up with one of those companies which provide food hampers (and drink and gift hampers).  The companies involved offer a range of products on a lay-by type arrangement, where a person pays a set amount every week and receives a specific type of hamper in early December.


  • If you are on a pension or a low income and are not great at saving, this is a nice way of ensuring that you are well stocked at Christmas without having to worry about a large one off outlay.
  • The items are delivered to your door.
  • You can get meat, frozen vegetables, sweets, alcohol and even presents.
  • You know exactly what you are getting and can plan your Christmas meals around what you have.
  • It is always nice to receive a large parcel (of stuff you want) in the mail.  It is like getting a present.


  • It is actually a lot cheaper to buy all the items yourself.
  • You may get a number of items you don’t particularly want, or may not know how to prepare.
  • You are committed to buying the hamper when you sign up (Not sure on individual company refund policies – but you would be well advised to read the fine print before signing up).
  • Not for those who like personally selecting the items for Christmas

Download this fact sheet here: Lay-by Xmas Hampers

Planning, Storage

Things to do: Make an inventory of your Xmas Decorations

I promise myself that I will do this every year when I pack down the Christmas decorations, and so far I never have. So come late November when I am trying to work out what I need to buy/replace/make I have to pull everything out and sift through the boxes.

Make yourself a simple list (you can even do a paper one if you wish). Mine is broken down by category – e.g. decorations by colour, number, material (fabric, glass etc.), shape and size, placemats by colour, shape and number. Believe me it is useful when you are trying to work out if you have place settings for 15 people

Christmas, Planning, Storage, Things to do in January

Things to do in January

January is about packing up Christmas

  • Carefully pack away decorations and the tree
  • Work out what cards you may want to keep and which will be recycled
  • Check all wrapping and boxes and keep what you can to use next time
  • Make a list of who sent you cards and presents to ensure that they are included on your list for next Christmas
  • Buy Christmas cards and paper – now on sale and usually at half price (Scottish heritage issue).
  • Discard any old, unwanted or broken decorations,ornaments, trees etc.
  • Serviceable unwanted decorations may be suitable for donations to charities.
  • Check all remaining left overs and throw out anything which has not been appropriately wrapped and stored or placed in the freezer.
  • Check that all items in the freezer are dated and labeled