The holiday season is here … and people are stressed! We had fewer days to prepare post-Thanksgiving, and most people seem to have “not gotten any shopping done…OMG.” So, how do we move away from all this stress and panic and back to a season of enjoying family and friends? Technology to the rescue! There are tons of apps and websites out there to make your holiday life a little less hectic and a bit more organized. Here are a few:
- Trello – Trello is an organization website with an amazing app that allows you to create different lists, which are then populated with “cards.” These lists and cards can be anything you want—from chores to shopping lists. The cards can have labels (that you create), a general description, checklists, links, comments, and more. If you dig a little deeper into using Trello, you can find several helpful customization tools and templates. Trello has a robust free product, but there is a premium paid version as well. To learn more, take the Lynda.com Essential Training for Trello.
- Google Sheets – Google has many useful services, but for the holidays, Google Sheets is where I turn. I shop for a ton of people each year, and I need somewhere to keep track of all that besides a tote full of Amazon boxes and gift receipts. That’s where Google Sheets comes in. Each year, I create a spreadsheet with separate sheets for each person/event I am buying for. From there, I can keep track of what I’ve purchased, how much I’ve spent, and whether it’s arrived or not. If you aren’t a big holiday shopper, you could use Google Sheets to help you keep track of decorations (by room, perhaps), create a budget, or maybe create a cooking timeline.
- IFTTT – For our more tech-savvy holiday stressers, If This, Then That (IFTTT) can be a life saver. You can automate things in your daily life and eliminate some repetitious tasks. If you are a frequent social media poster on a time crunch, you could create a task that tells the app/website: “If I post to Twitter with this specific hashtag, then also post the same content to Facebook.” The same can be done for things like alarms or creating new cards on Trello. There are thousands of options to choose from, but you can also create your own!
- Library Resources – Don’t forget! MCPL has tons of excellent resources to help you get organized for the holiday season!
- Lynda.com – If the chaos is stressing you out, consider one of Lynda.com’s several courses on getting organized with videos full of organization tips.
- Universal Class – Universal Class offers self-paced courses on many topics—from using a computer to making soap. Consider checking out the Clearing Clutter 101 program for some organization skill-building or maybe the Microsoft® Excel program to learn how to build your own amazing budgeting spreadsheets!
- Books/eBooks/eAudiobooks – MCPL proudly offers books, eBooks, and eAudiobooks on topics of all shapes and sizes. If organization is what you are looking for, maybe try a Marie Kondo book or The Complete Book of Home Organization. If it’s budgeting you need help with, perhaps Budgeting 101.
With so many great options out there to help make your life a little easier this holiday season, we hope you are able to find a few that will work for you and help you enjoy all the fun and joy of the season.
Consumer Tech Specialist