Or how to use Trello to maintain your title as “The Cool Relative”
This is your year. This is finally the year that you start shopping before December 22. This is the year you don’t overpay for expedited shipping. This is also the year that you don’t meander around the “As Seen On TV” section of menswear, contemplating whether your dad would actually use an electric wine bottle opener. This is your year because this year you’re going to be a holiday gift power player, equipped with a tool many other frantic shoppers might not have in their toolbelt. This is the year you holiday shop with the help of Trello.
Trello is the equivalent of taking your best friend shopping, if your best friend is an extremely organized, auto-synced mobile app that keeps track of everyone on your holiday list. On second thought, just book your friends for a post-shopping happy hour and take Trello with you instead.
Just like the holidays, the most important part of this Trello board is the people that make it all worth it. That, and if you don’t get your niece the latest Elsa accessory you are in danger of losing your status as the Cool Aunt/Uncle. The basic board structure can include the lists “People,” “Ideas,” “Ordered,” “Bought In Store/Delivered,” and “Wrapped.” Distribute your cards through these categories as they move through the process.
Start by making a card for each person that you want to give a gift. Any person for whom you already have a gift in mind, move their card to the “Ideas” list. Add the gift idea to either the title or the back of the card.
Next you need to channel your inner Santa and start thinking of some gifts. If you’ve learned anything from Santa, you know that this process is most effective with the use of a list. Oh, and thanks to the Trello for mobile app, you can even check it twice. Add links, pictures, or just jot down notes on each person’s card, then easily reference your ideas while you’re out shopping.
Pro tip: Did you know you can take a photo straight from a card? This is awesome if you spot a gift idea but want to run it by someone else before buying:
The image you take is automatically uploaded to the card:
There’s always a few people on your list that you need to collaborate on, whether you haven’t met them yet (your in-laws), they’re picky (your in-laws), or you just want to impress them (your in-laws). Add other people on cards so they can give their input, or maybe, if you’re lucky, they’ve agreed to go in on a gift with you together.
Once you have acquired all of this year’s equivalents of the Tickle Me Elmo, move the cards from “Ideas” to “Bought/Ordered.” For items you ordered online, think about attaching the shipping link as a reference, instead of digging through your email each time for that darn tracking number. Also add a due date to the card with the estimated arrival time. That way if it doesn’t come on time you can harass the already beleaguered mail service people. Just kidding: you used Trello to plan ahead so efficiently that all your packages will arrive way in advance (you’re welcome, FedEx).
Wrapping presents is often the icing on top of a stressful, holiday season cake. If you’re not careful, you might start wrapping presents and then forget who got what, or what is where. No more. Once wrapped, move the cards to the “Wrapped” list. This move is purely for your sanity. If you desire even more transparency, use the picture-to-card tip above to take a picture of the wrapped present so you can remember later, when you finally bother to pick up more labels.
These are just a few ways to use Trello to reduce some of your holiday season stress. The truth is, there’s nothing to be done about parking spaces at the mall, but once you find one it’s all smooth sailing with Trello.
We created a sample board with the shopping list workflow described above for you to copy: Copy me!