How to Organize Christmas Presents for Delivery | Giftie Etcetera: How to Organize Christmas Presents for Delivery

Monday, December 22, 2014

How to Organize Christmas Presents for Delivery

Over the course of December 23rd through 25th, I have several different sets of Christmas gifts to give out. 

I don't know how Santa does it! There are so many gifts all going to different destinations.

I have to have a plan.

organizing for Christmas; Christmas Tree; Christmas Presents

For example, I'll visit some friends with gifts, go to a bonfire party with my mom's family on Christmas Eve with gifts for the kids' picked name gift exchange and for my godchild, and exchange with my sisters and their kids after lunch at my parents' house on Christmas Day.

Right now, all of the gifts are wrapped and piled haphazardly under the tree. But on December 23rd, we will separate the gifts into piles and get them ready for delivery.

I'm pretty sure the elves must have a great system in place. So I made a call to the North Pole, and asked for some ideas.

I learned that there are several ways to make this process easier.

Gift Wrap Based on Destination

PRO: If you wrap all gifts headed to mom's house in blue, all the gifts headed to Aunt Charlotte's house in red, and all the gifts that stay home in green, you not only can sort them quickly or have the kids sort them, but you will look as if you carefully coordinated your wrapping paper, even if you secretly used whatever was on clearance last year on the day after Christmas.

CON: You have to keep track of the paper and destination as you wrap. Also, you might run out of one color or style of paper and ruin the plan.

Code on Bottom of Gifts

PRO: If you write a code for each destination (M = Mom and C = Charlotte), you can still sort gifts pretty easily, but not worry so much about running out of a particular paper.

I use numbers, like 23, 24, and 25, that correspond to the date of delivery.

CON: People will ask you what the code means. That's fine if you are a blogger ("don't you read my blog, Grandma?!?"), but might be awkward elsewhere.

TIP: Christmas stickers or different color gift tags are a more subtle way to achieve the same goal.

Code the Gift List

PRO: The code on the list of gifts itself is secret and only you know that the gift to Marge goes out on Christmas Eve.

CON: It takes a lot longer to sort gifts by name and destination only using a list.

TIP: Even though it's an inefficient method by itself, coding the gift list with a simple number for the date that the gift leaves the house and an initial for the house it is headed to helps when wrapping in distinct paper and coding on the bottom of the gifts.

Make Separate Gift Lists

PRO: The gifts can be sorted one trip out of the house at a time.

CON: Just like with a coded gift list, it gets confusing if this is the only method that you use.

Containerize the Gifts

PRO: If the gifts are stored together based on destination, it is quick to get out of the house.

CON: The containers take up space and may not fit under the tree.

TIP: For large numbers of gifts, use laundry baskets to transport them.

My best advice? 

Use several of these tips at once!

I code my original gift list, divide it into smaller lists for each day of delivery, write codes underneath gifts, and use containers to separate out the deliveries.

If you are looking for gift ideas, feel free to check out one of these great gift guides:

Gifts for Men

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Bree said...

I use a combination of these methods. My shopping list is sorted by date of delivery - so teachers and school friends, bus driver, etc. then a section for the 3 parties we exchange at, by date. Their list lives in Google Docs - it's shared with my husband. He started it as an excel,sheet when I was very ill during my second pregnancy, and it worked so well.

And then we sort presents by destination, in big boxes.

Once everything is ready, we wrap the weekend before Christmas, by destination. I make sure we have 10 unique rolls of paper every year. Double-sided wrap helps with this! Wrapped presents go back in the big box, and then get carted to the appropriate event.

And we bring back our received presents in the same box.

For wrapping options, I stock up during post-Christmas clearance. Each event gets a fresh roll. Any partial rolls from last year get used for teacher presents, etc.

I'm running low after a major stock up 3 years ago - I prefer the more expensive designs, and recycled wrapping paper, so I generally have lots to choose from each year.

Anna said...

I tend to make lists based on location, then try to put them together as they are bought and wrapped. I haven't thought of the color coding. That's a good idea. :)

Jodi said...

I am totally going to try the different wrapping paper for different houses! And each kiddo will get there own paper too. Great ideas:)

Teresa B said...

Very useful, thank you for sharing!
If you have time, I would love for you to share this post over at the
Holidays Celebration link party that is live right now! (

Jennifer@MyFlagstaffHome said...

What a great system! Thanks for sharing at My Flagstaff Home!


Jan said...

I love finding great organizing systems that much smarter people than me have figured out! thanks for sharing over at Country Fair Blog Party! I have this post saved for re reading again!
Jan @ Tip Garden

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