Just HOW is it 1 December already? Eek! So we thought we'd offer a gentle reminder that while some things can wait (wrapping pressies – can wait until Christmas Eve, right?) there are other bits and bobs that need to be done pronto.


So get these jobs sorted now to avoid a panic at the eleventh hour...

1. Write a letter to Santa

Royal Mail provides a really cute service where your little one can post a letter to Father Christmas and get a reply back. But make sure you write the letter well ahead of time – the closing date for getting letters to Santa is 6 December. Of course, he's VERY busy so to avoid disappointment the earlier you write the better.

2. Buy the must-have toys

If it's Lego, Frozen, or anything Star Wars (take a look at this year's top toys just so you know), then Don't Don't Don't leave it till the last minute unless you actually WANT to see real tears on Christmas Day. Lego's already let people know they might not meet demand: you have been warned.

3. Order anything monogrammed/personalised

Everyone loves a personal gift, right? Whether it's getting Granny a sweater with a photo of her grandkids on or a mug for Aunty Sue with the photos from that HILARIOUS family holiday in Malta, get your orders in soon.

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Same for anything with a name on, or anything you're planning to make yourself be it knitted, painted or something in a jar (and good effort, by the way).

4. Post cards to family abroad

Somehow, even though we know it's coming, this one can take us by surprise every year – but remember that if you're posting cards or gifts abroad you need to check the cut-off dates which vary depending on where you're sending them. You can get a full run-down of dates on the Royal Mail website.

5. Order your Elf on the Shelf

These little guys are becoming more and more popular so if you want to start doing it this year with your kids (some people do it for a month before but you could do it for the 12 days of Christmas) - get it ordered and on its way pronto!

6. Decide where Christmas is happening

Are you staying at yours? Going to see family? Whatever you're thinking of doing for Christmas, decide where you'll be early on.

If it's at home you'll want to make sure you've got a kitchen full of Christmas yumminess.

If you're going away you might be able to skip on getting a turkey, but you'll need to know how you're getting there and back. Will you need to book flights or train or coach tickets? Get it all sorted in advance and it will be cheaper too.

7. Visit Santa

It's not a BIT too soon to be thinking about grottos. Santa trips gets chocka later in December so you might even want to make a trip this weekend. Check your local shopping centres/department stores now to see how busy they are.

If you want to go really fancy and do a London trip to Harrods – you'll have to wait until next year: all their Santa visits got booked up by the end of JUNE. Yep, you read that right...

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Tara BreathnachContent Editor and Social Media Producer

Tara is mum to 1 daughter, Bodhi Rae, and has worked as Content Editor and Social Media Producer at MadeForMums since 2015