Having an organized home can be directly related to stress level, especially when it’s you that is hosting the holiday gatherings.
Starting early is key and will give you time to methodically go through your home. This will allow you to concentrate on the priority areas that will be functional for you and comforting for your guests. You just might create the possibility of allowing yourself the opportunity to relax and enjoy the festivities as well.
Here is a list of areas to declutter to lessen the stress of the upcoming holidays:
The kitchen is the heart of the home for good reason. There is just something about the simple caring act of making food and serving it to bring nourishment to those we love. Cooking a big Thanksgiving dinner takes extra time and space. Wouldn’t it be easier with a clear, organized space to work in?
Cabinets & Drawers
Usually, countertops tend to become cluttered because cabinets are overstuffed with many unused items that are no longer used or gadgets that are no longer needed. That big lobster pot used once a year? Relocate to another area for more space. Did you buy new pots and pans? Get rid of the old rusty ones. Go through each cabinet and pare down and donate what you don’t use anymore.
This will create space to clear your…
Are your countertops so cluttered that you have one square foot to do everything? Start by removing old school papers, home paperwork and mail that has piled up and relocate elsewhere (after visiting the recycle bin!). Also remove excess décor that doesn’t serve a purpose, or you no longer love.
Put away items that you only use occasionally. You might use the toaster a few times a week, but it takes less than 10 seconds to put it away and will free-up valuable counterspace.
Can you remove the ugly, dust-collecting knife block to create more space? What about the utensil crock that you have had forever, but now just holds too many cooking utensils that you don’t really use?
People are always surprised by how much expired food is taking up valuable space in their pantry. You know what I’m talking about … the cans of pumpkin and cranberry from last year’s Thanksgiving feast.
Taking stock of what you currently have and clearing out your pantry to make room will not only save you space, but it will save you money. Why buy duplicates of items you already have on hand? If you have food that is not expired, but you know your family will not eat, donate it to a local food bank.
The best time to clean a fridge is right before a big shop – when it’s the emptiest. Clean the shelves and take inventory of what’s needed. Check expiration dates too! It’s amazing how the salad dressing hides in the back for so long. That way, you will have plenty of space for Thanksgiving ingredients and leftovers!
The formal dining room usually becomes a storage dumping ground for storage or a homework spot. It’s a good idea to clear it out to make it comfortable for dinner guests!
Go ahead and declutter table linens and serving pieces too. A simple white platter can be used year-round, versus one with a giant turkey on it that might not be so festive for Memorial Day. Take this opportunity to polish the silver and wash your crystal glasses early so that is checked off your to do list as well.
Make sure there is room for your guests to relax and visit! Start by decluttering old paperwork off end tables and books you have read that are now ready to be passed along. Remove piles that may have formed in the corners.
Just like your dining room, your guest room may have become an easy, out of the way storage spot. If you’re anticipating some overnight guests, go ahead and wash the bedding. Be sure to layout fresh fluffy towels, and even add a little sign with WIFI info and TV instructions.
Adding a fan for noise, hand lotion and an extra blanket is always a nice touch for your guests. Be sure to have some free space and hangers available in the closet so your guests have somewhere to store their things. Some empty drawers in the dresser so your guests don’t have to live out of a suitcase is always thoughtful as well.
COVID-19 changed the holidays for a lot of people. While it was disappointing to not be able to see loved ones, others found it beneficial to slow down and enjoy the holidays versus running around trying to please everyone and feeling stressed-out and overwhelmed (especially for Moms!). Take time to decide what is best for you and your family and have open discussions on plans for the holidays. It’s okay to change traditions if they are no longer serving your family’s needs!
If you are under a time crunch, now is not the time to worry about the attic or your kid’s messy closet. Focus on the priority areas first.
Less Stuff. More Life.
If you’re having a hard time getting started because the thought of organizing your entire home seems so overwhelming, just set a timer for 20 minutes and GO! When the timer beeps, keep going and do it again or take a break.
If in doubt, I’m always here to help, with an extra set of hands or encouraging words and helpful tips! Book a FREE discovery call.
Cheers to less stress and more joy in your life this holiday season!