No matter how you celebrate the holidays, chances are November and December will be hectic two months. For that reason, it may seem counterintuitive to start the Christmas season by getting organized. Isn’t that something you do when there is less going on in your life?
However, if you start the season by being organize, it will make everything go more smoothly, give you a clear sense of control and cut down on the usual holiday stress. Here are 6 tips on how to do just that.
1. Start with the closets
During the holidays you will need closet space to hold new clothes, hide gifts, and store items to make room for festive decorations. Before you unpack Christmas decor, dig through your closets and toss or donate any items you don’t need. A good rule of thumb is that if you haven’t used it in a year, it is time to let it go.
2. Take an inventory of decor and supplies
Before you even think of starting to decorate, sort through all of your decorations and supplies to get a clear idea of what you have and what you will need. Create a plan for how you will decorate and avoid buying duplicates of items you already have.
3. Simplify decorations
We all want our homes to look amazing and welcoming during this season, but when it comes to your yuletide decor, less can definitely be more. Decorate in order to create a festive atmosphere and highlight your favorite pieces, but make sure it doesn’t just look like Christmas threw up on your house.
4. Organize your schedule
Holiday meals are about people and memories, not stress and guilt. Too often we can be overwhelmed by commitments with parents, friends, in-laws, and more. Organize your holiday schedule by what works for you and your family even if that means breaking with tradition. For instance, maybe the traditional Christmas dinner with your parents needs to be changed to a Christmas breakfast or even moved to a different day. Also, if you are hosting, remember it doesn’t have to be a five course meal. Simplify the menu and highlight one special holiday dish or drink.
5. Consolidate gift buying
Make a list of everyone you need to get gifts for before you go shopping. Do not window shop for gifts instead decide beforehand what you need to look for. Also, group similar gifts together. For instance, if you need to get gifts for co-workers, get them all gift cards (you can personalize this by getting gift card based on shopping or eating preferences) or if you are buying for several children between the ages of 4 and 8 get them all legos. Planning your buying this way will make things a lot easier.
6. Store Christmas gifts out of the way
A Christmas tree with gifts pouring out of the bottom is a beautiful sight, but it is generally a good idea to place only a few gifts under the tree until you are much closer to Christmas day. This will protect presents from damage and unwelcome snooping. If possible, store them in a location that you can lock such as a shed or storage unit.
Bonus Tip: Undecorate like a pro
After the holidays are over, pack decorations with ease by sorting them out by type and placing them in clear plastic bins so that you can easily take inventory of what you have next year. For more post-holiday packing tips read our blog Tips for packing effectively.
If you are finding yourself in need of more space or a staging area of holiday crafts and gift wrapping, read our blog Why use self-storage for the holiday season.