Wednesday, December 15, 2010

The Wednesday Discussion: Are You a Holiday Planner or Pantster

"I stopped believing in Santa Clause when I was six. Mother took me to a department store to see him and he asked for my autograph." Shirley Temple

My kids don't believe in Santa Clause anymore either, but they still want to bake cookies for him! And that's one more activity to plan. Speaking of which, are you a planner or a pantster when it comes to the holidays? 

When I write, I don't like to fly completely by the seat of my pants.  I prepare skeleton outline and then go where my characters lead me. No detailed outline or spreadsheet for me--I think my head would explode if I tried to that.  So I fall somewhere in between.

Same with holiday planning; I wouldn't dare try to do everything just days before Christmas (although I usually do wrap presents on  Christmas Eve). I finally mailed my Christmas cards today, and I only have three more gifts to buy.  I'll do my baking this weekend. So hopefully, by Christmas morning, everything I need to do will already be done!

I envy all the organized among us who buy their presents right after Thanksgiving and have their cards mailed by December 1. 

From what I've observed, having the ability to organize is genetic. My husband (whose parents are extraordinarily organized) is a very ordered person--I am not.  My dad has piles on his desk, and for some reason, so do I. And I know exactly what's in my piles and where to find what I need. 

I don't like clutter, but beware of my closet. If you go in, you may not come out! I'm also a procrastinator--that drives Mr. McKenzie nuts!  But some how we manage to complement each other.  I suppose the old saying is true: opposites attract.

Time to put the writing aside and catch up on some more Christmas--dare I say the word--details!

Are you a holiday planner or pantster?  Thanks for stopping by!


Carol Riggs said...

Just like when writing a novel, I'm a planner/plotter! But I don't go whole-hog for Christmas or the holidays, so things are pretty low key. Especially now that my kids are outta the nest and elsewhere. The tree's up, most of the presents are bought--just the Christmas ham dinner to go. Easy peasy. ;o) But like writing a novel, I can be flexible and spontaneous, too!

The Happy Whisk said...

Hi Maria: I love that your kids still want to make cookies for Santa. That is fantastic.

Kimber Leszczuk. said...

Hi Maria! When I write and when it comes to my house and my vacations I am a total planner and am probably borderline if not totally OCD. BUT when it comes to the holidays I am a total panster. How is that for being inconsistent? Ha ha ha.

Old Kitty said...

I think I fall in between. I know I need to get things done - like post cards before the post office deadlines, bake the christmas cake, start getting my pressies sorted. Then I totally become disorganised and am realising I forgot certain people to send cards to, I need to get my prescriptions sorted before the doc surgery shuts and suddenly my to do list grows and I'm running out of time!

I think it's great your kids still bake cookies for Santa too! Take care

William Kendall said...

Let's see here... I shop for Christmas on December 24th, so does that answer the question?

Joanna St. James said...

What you just described as piles on your desk - I refer to as organized chaos. I do all my planning in my head for a long time b4 I finally take one day to shop like crazy.

K M Kelly said...

Christmas - totally disorganised! Writing - I'm learning to plan as we speak - maybe I can make this new found skill spill over into my everyday life? :-)

Maria McKenzie said...

@Carol: It's a lot easier when the kids are out of the nest. But I'm sure when they were there, you were very organized:)!

@Happy Whisk: I just wish we could bake something as pretty as your creations!

@Kimber: I think my husband is boderline OCD! You can't be totally OCD since you're a holiday pantster:).

@Old Kitty: You sound just like me!

@William: Hmm...can't get more pantster than that:)!

@Joanna: Thank you! Organized chaos--I've been trying to tell my husband what those piles are! I do a lot of planning in my head, too:).

@Kate: Good luck! I've found I can be organized, but it takes a lot of effort. It just doesn't come to me naturally:).