Holiday Event Madness Free Timeline Template

 Holidays and Timelines.

You may be asking yourself how on earth you are going to keep everything together for the holidays. Church events, school events, community events, family events, and now you need to memorize all the rules too. Who is requiring masks, can I bring the kids, do I need a sitter, who is ordering dinner, do we need to bring a dessert. My God it feels like you might as well just not go anywhere. Wait, we did that for like 8 months and it sucked. We want to be around our people but also don't want to be stressed to the max. So what is the secret?...... You guessed it. Get a timeline ready!!

(Make sure to copy the template so you don't edit it for everyone.)

Here is my timeline. I have a big family. My husband and I have blended families too. So that means bio mom, grandparents on both sides, aunts and uncles, and nieces, and cousins all have to know what is happening. You forget one person and you pay for it. "I guess I wasn't invited."

"Ok, who forgot to tell your mom the plan?"

So to avoid a blow-up and fight of whose responsibility it was to tell who I kill it with a timeline. 

This lets everyone know what is happening, who is invited, and where. I use SignUpGenius for anything that involves meal planning. This lets me know who is bringing what so there is nothing left out or doubled up.

I text this in a group message so I have proof that it was sent and received by everyone. I have had situations where someone was ready to lose it over how they didn't know about a family trip. I looked up the group message, time, date and location, link to cabins, and all were included. Butt saved.

You may think it looks obnoxious to plan that meticulous but I PROMISE you will have less chaos and fights. It's the chaos and fights that take 3x the amount of energy than just being transparent. 

Be honest. If you intended on something being a small intimate event such as "hey we are going on a trip and it is just immediate family" it is so much better to communicate that upfront than them seeing pictures later and going "what the hell?!"

My sister is good at finding community events, I am good and making final decisions and my husband is excellent at execution, everyone else just rolls with it. We have a rhythm that has taken trial and error but plans are good guidelines. Planning can not protect you from the unexpected but it can keep you on some kind of track. Sometimes people make last-minute decisions like hey we decided to bring bob last minute, we are taking 2 cars instead of 1, we are leaving early to get dinner first. The rule is if you change the plan you're on your own, I am not hunting you down to find out where you are, you know our plan, it hasn't changed, you can catch up. The end. Most will argue you have to be flexible but the truth is most need to be respectful of others' time as well. Stick to your plan AS LONG as it is ethical. What do I mean? Well if a car breaks down or someone is bleeding you stop. Catch my drift? Be consistent but also ethically realistic.

-Izzy Gentrry


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