14 Dec 2017

Making room for the holidays

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With the arrival of our loved ones and the holiday cheer they will bring to our home; we start to prepare for their arrival and the avalanche of new stuff coming our way. We often forget in our holiday daze to make room for the new items that will be coming to our home, because the idea of getting rid of our possessions fills us with a sense of guilt and fear. As we start to think of the process, it may also feel tedious to start sorting thru old holiday decor and last year’s gifts; however, I guarantee you that the results will be worth the trouble.

Just like with any other project, setting a plan is the key to success. If you want to gain time and don’t know where to start, I suggest that you set a plan. It’s easy to give up when you think of the enormity of the project. Tackling the simple and small spaces first will help you feel motivated and see the improvement faster. As you move quickly from room to room, it’s important to be prepared with a put here solution; label a set of boxes with Trash; Donate; “Not Here”; Gifts and Repair/Keep.

  • Trash – Identify everything unusable and dispose of it.
    Start with the broken holiday decor, non-working Christmas lights, ripped and stained clothes, old personal products, old broken toys and outdated magazines.
  • Donate – The holidays are a great time to let the spirit of giving run free; remember those holiday items that take so much space, as we keep adding to the pile every year? Try to get those donations out earlier in the season. Lots of organizations will gladly receive your donations. Get creative and donate to a place dear to your heart. Make sure to set this box close to the door to be taken with you, so the items don’t migrate back in to your home.
  • “Not Here” – this is the “miscellaneous stuff” box. During the process, you’ll find things and wonder how they ended up there; DO NOT stop to put them where they belong; that’s one of the reasons we feel we’ve spent the whole day in our closet and it looks exactly the same. Put these things where they belong when you are done working here.
  • Gifts – Sometimes we gather items in our home with the hopes of giving them a new place or use. We all know a relative or a friend that collects specific things, like porcelain frogs, a special china or dish patterns, etc. Consider if they would appreciate those items and contemplate the idea of gifting them.
  • Repair/Keep – Somethings are still useful but in desperate need of a minor repair. Place those items in this box and don’t let them derail you. Keep a list of which things will need to be mended or those that will turn into a more significant project. Consult the internet for creative ideas to re-purpose them. Let this be one of your new year’s resolutions. Plan accordingly and give those precious things a second life.

This season’s goal should be to make room for the love and joy of the holidays to fill every corner. Don’t let the “joy of the holidays” turn into ” the too much from the holidays” for which you have no more room. Whatever methods of decluttering you choose, remember that a clean slate and warm atmosphere will help any house feel ready for the treasures and memories that come with the new season.

About the Author

works mostly behind the scenes at Conquer the Clutter, supporting Maria's efforts to make the world a neater place to live.

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