Prepping for Christmas goes way beyond shopping for gifts. Of course, the presents are nice—but an entire month of festivities is what really makes the season so merry. Once December rolls around, it’s time to kick your shopping, decorating, and baking efforts into high gear. Get yourself in the spirit by lighting a woodsy or seasonally scented candle. The scent of the season wafting through your home is sure to inspire your creativity as you finalize those Christmas party ideas (there is, in fact, a scientific reason why the holidays smell so good). Then, pop in one of your favorite holidays movies and pick out some festive Christmas crafts to create. Don’t forget to spend some time finalizing your holiday menu a week or two ahead of the event—there are plenty of make-ahead recipes that will help you relax and enjoy the party just as much as your guests are. And, don’t worry, we have plenty of gift ideas, too, so you can cross that off your to-do list, as well.

The Wedding Gift I Give All My Friends

With all the post-holiday sales going on right now, it’s the best time of the year to stock up.

Pop-Up Gift Wrap That Will Bring Your Presents to Life

This 3D technique provides some serious wow factor for both kids and adults. Take some scenic or graphic wrapping paper and use the details on it to create some cool pop-up shapes.

7 Fun Christmas Movies to Stream on Netflix

These films will get the entire family in the holiday spirit.

43 Easy Christmas Breakfast Casseroles to Make Ahead or the Morning of

These are the easiest Christmas breakfast casseroles—including overnight recipes and crockpot recipes you can make Christmas morning.

The One Place You Should Be Putting a Wreath (But Probably Haven’t Thought Of)

When you’re decorating your home for the holidays, be sure to place wreaths where they’ll really wow. Here’s one spot you probably haven’t considered.

How to Put Ribbon on a Christmas Tree

If you want to deck out your tree with decorative ribbon, get inspired by these gorgeous Instagram-worthy designs.