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There's so much that can be decluttered in December, so here's just a few tips:


1. Burnt out lights.  Things happen while in storage.  If you take out last year's lights and find broken bulbs that aren't working even with replacements, it's time to get rid of that strand.  It'll only drive you crazy, like every time John tries to put up outdoor lights at my parents' house.

2. Broken ornaments.  Hopefully you got rid of these at the end of last season but if you didn't, or if they got broken in storage, and you're not able to fix it, it's time to declutter them.

3. Decor you never use.  I try not to collect this in the first place but it can be hard.  People often give you things that they don't want to keep but also don't want to just trash.  Parents are very guilty of this, thinking that you want some of the things they put up during your childhood.  If you really don't and never use it, just get rid of it.

4. Wrapping paper scraps.  If you use wrapping paper rolls for gift wrapping and end up with the tiny scrap strips that just won't ever fit anything, recycle them.  I know you have good intentions for putting it to use, but be honest.  If that's not going to happen, declutter them.

5. Extra dishes and serving ware.  There's only so many people you're willing to host in your home at once and if you regularly do this, you already know how much you need.  If you don't regularly host, stop holding on to all the extras in case of 'one day.'  If, one day, John and I need to host Christmas dinner, we have so many people we can borrow things from.  We could even go buy a set of dishes for a few dollars at a thrift store if we needed to.  I don't need to dedicate my storage space to so many extra dishes for 'one day'

6. Costumes and holiday outfits.  You can only wear so much and honestly, you might not even want to.  If ugly sweaters aren't your thing, wear whatever you want and feel free to declutter all the themed clothing you've collected and never worn.  The same applies to pieces you wear only for Christmas mass or holiday photos.  You really don't need them.

7. Stuff with glitter on it.  I love glitter too, trust me.  I have plenty of stuff with glitter on it, but only glitter that stays.  Anything that the glitter flakes off of all over the place has got to go, I'm not spending my month vacuuming up glitter every day.  If it likewise drives you nuts, let it go.

8. Gifts you've never used.  Got something last Christmas that you literally have not touched all year?  Hello, white elephant gift.  Enjoy your new home, one that's anywhere but here.

9. Mental clutter.  The way to do this is to get it out of your head and on to paper, that's what helps me the most.  If I find myself overwhelmed with a mental to do list that I keep circling around and around, it's time to write it down.  I brain dump everything on to a piece of paper and then organize my thoughts from there into a to do list.  Or a not to do list, I end up crossing a lot of things off.  Like:

10. Activities on your to do list that stress you out.  There's simply not enough time to do all the things and even if you try to cram it all in, it stops being fun very quickly.  If something on the list is causing more stress than joy, it's okay to skip it.

11. Donations.  Do you have a donation box sitting by the door, waiting for you to transport it to the charity shop?  Make the effort to get it done soon, so the shop has time to place the items out for sale.  You could make someone's Christmas, who is looking for that exact item you have just sitting there but can't afford it at full price.

What do you declutter in December?