Friday, December 6, 2019

10 Ways to Organize in December

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The holidays come with a lot of stuff, but it doesn't have to be totally disorganized.  Here are a few ways you can stay on top of things:


1. Get an ornament box.  I really don't like storing ornaments back in the box they came in, it takes up so much space.  But you can't just throw them into bags or regular boxes either because it's too easy for things to break that way.  I highly recommend ornament boxes because they're protected and come with built in dividers to keep ornaments safe.  So much easier to have everything in one box.

2. Create a gift wrap storage solution There are a lot of ways to do this, depending on how much product you have.  But creating a dedicated system and space for this can save a lot of headache.  There are flat ones that can store under the bed or in the attic with the rest of the decor, but there are also upright tubes that can go in the corner of a closet or even hang in the closet if you want to keep the supplies close at hand throughout the year.

3. Maintain running gift lists and wish lists.  Life is easier when you can tell someone (who insists on gifts) exactly what you want for Christmas and vice versa.  I recommend keeping a running list throughout December that you can use all next year as well.  When you think of something you want, add it to the list.  When you hear someone else mention something they want but aren't willing to buy for themselves, add that to your list too.  You'll have tons of ideas by this time next year.

4. Find a light storage method.  Stop chucking strands of lights into boxes at the end of the season.  It's a good way to break lights, yes, but it's also a particularly soul sucking task to have to untangle every damn strand when you take them out next year.  Get a reel or a hanger or a piece of cardboard and wrap them before storing.  Future you will thank you.

5. Create a Christmas planner If you have a lot of moving parts to your Christmas and happen to enjoy it that way, consider creating a dedicated planner for Christmas so you can stay organized and get all the things done that you holiday loving heart wants to do.

6. Corral guest items together.  If you plan on having people over at some point this season, now is the perfect time to corral all guest items together.  Make sure all guest blankets and towels are in the guest room and find any lingering travel size products you have to make a little basket for any overnighters.  Also, make sure there's extra toilet paper and it's easy to find.

7. Create a spending tracker.  There's nothing like getting hit with a surprisingly high credit card bill in January.  It's also not fun if you really thought you planned for gifts this year but spent way more than you thought.  That might be because you didn't budget and plan for all the extras - cookies for school, Santa pictures, ribbon, tip money, extra gas for driving around to see lights.  Those things really start to add up and if you only made a budget for gifts, you could be overspending.  Create and use a spending tracking this month and include any spending on these Christmas related extras that have nothing to do with gifts, so you can be better prepared for next year by knowing how much you truly spend.

8. Wrap gifts as they arrive.  I know some people love dedicated wrapping days but if that kind of tall order stresses you out, then just wrap gifts and label them as they arrive to your home.  I find it much less overwhelming to do a couple gifts at a time, but I know John's dad finds it soothing to spend two hours doing it on Christmas Eve.  Whatever works for you, but if that last minute wrapping marathon sounds stressful to you, try it my way.

9. Take stock of everything you have after the holiday and make a shopping list.  The best time to buy Christmas related supplies is after Christmas.  As you run out of things this year or before you pack anything away, make a note of what you need to get for next year, like a new tree skirt, lights, or wrapping paper.  Buy these items at a major discount on December 26 and into the new year.

10. Begin setting up a 2020 planner.  I love setting up my planner for the new year starting now rather than on January 1, because then I can hit January already prepared and ready to go with my fresh ideas, fresh goals, and fresh planner pages.  It's super motivating.

How do you keep your holidays organized?

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