A hand made Christmas does not happen overnight and even though it sounds early and you hate the way retailers start hanging all the trappings, start making a list of possible presents you would like to achieve this year along with any decorating activities and baking. This way you will be able to time plan it.
I only mention this now because there are some things that really do need quite a few weeks to cure.
You really need to make soap now as it needs 6-8 weeks to cure and harden.
There are plenty of tutorials and there is even mention on this blog too (type "soap" in the search box to the side)
Soap is always appreciated by male and female alike and if you make a very basic soap later I'll remind you about crocheting a string bag and turning it into a great gift for gardeners.
If you are planning to give Christmas cakes, those can be made now too and it's a good time to get yours under way as well, that way you can be "feeding" it weekly with a drizzle of scotch or brandy etc for a lovely moist flavoursome cake.
Trouble is you have to resist cutting them!
And the only reason I suggest doing your lemon peel now is because it is plentiful and in peak season. The peel not only comes in handy for your Christmas baking but it makes wonderful gifts in little bags with a ribbon or pretty little jars. You've heard me go on a couple of times about lemon peel before so I'll leave you to check out that post too.
One last thing that I am preparing now for Christmas is home made vanilla essence. I have bought some vanilla beans in bulk at just 0.50 each and a bottle of vodka. I am going soak/macerate the beans in the alcohol and then decant into little bottle and label for gifts this year. As this will take some weeks it's a good time to get this started this month.
You can check out a post here