Decluttering Tips After the Holidays

Decluttering Tips after the Holidays

While the holidays are supposed to be a time of great joy, they can also be a period where busy moms feel some of the most stress they’ll experience throughout the year. 

There are so many tasks to keep track of during the holidays, with gifts to pick out and wrap and then figuring out meals and decorations. The last thing you’d want is to be bogged down by a cluttered home in the aftermath of holiday celebrations. 

Here are some helpful tips and tricks to decluttering your home after the holidays. Follow them to reduce your stress levels and keep your home a more manageable space for the new year.

1. Choose What Area to Start With

party stuffs scattered in the living room

We get it. You can feel overwhelmed when you see that every room in your home is messy with holiday clutter. Pick one area or room to start. Focusing on the living room or guest bedroom will help you finish one task, which will make the next cleanup chores feel less daunting.

2. Out With the Old, in With the New

Look for broken items and things that are out of style or that you have backups for already, and get rid of them. If they still function and look good, donate all before heading to the dump or recycling center.

boxing stuff to donate

3. Use Boxes

Make use of boxes and label them, such as “give away” or “throw away.” The more boxes you fill up, the less clutter you and your family will have to put up with after the holidays.

4. Clean and Sanitize Items You Plan to Keep

Everything that you put out during holiday meals and parties has been touched by countless guests, from neighbors to friends and visiting relatives. Make sure that you scrub it all before organizing and putting them away. Putting away items that are dirty will just depress you when it’s time to use them again next year.

clean and sanitize counter top

5. Organize Your Stuff

If your stuff is all over the place, it’s hard to see exactly what you own or what’s in short supply. For example, you might think you’ve lost some Christmas tree ornaments, but it turns out they’re in a box underneath a goofy-looking holiday sweater that someone dropped.

6. What Worked and What Didn’t Work

Take note of the things that worked and didn’t work for the past year. For example, do you have some holiday decorations that weren’t a hit with your family and friends? There’s no shame in getting rid of items if they don’t bring you and your loved ones plenty of joy.

a woman thinking

7. Remember to Relax

Give yourself a break if you find that you can’t keep up with your post-holiday decluttering tasks. The whole point of making your home clean and free of clutter is so you can relax and not waste time looking for stuff that invariably gets lost in the mess. 

So follow your schedule exactly as planned, and go easy on yourself. As long as you eat away the clutter at a modest pace, you’ll find your home transformed before you know it!

Tips to Make your Home Look a Lot Like Christmas

Tips to Make your Home Look a Lot Like Christmas

There’s a cold crisp in the air, and you are starting to see signs of the fast-approaching Christmas holiday season all around. When shopping, you notice that businesses are decorating their establishments to help usher in a season of good tidings. 

As we get closer to gathering with loved ones to celebrate the birth of Christ, you can reinforce the festivities by sprucing up your dwelling. With that in mind, here are some tips to help you make your home look a lot like Christmas!

1. Outside Your Home 

While you will be spending much of the holidays indoors, given the weather, it’s important to decorate the exterior with Christmas in mind, as it will put you in the right mood as you arrive home each day from work, errands or school. And making your home look a lot like Christmas on the outside will help you share the joy with all your neighbors and visitors.

Christmas Lantern

Select some festive lanterns and hang them outside. You can get versions that are solar-powered, with LED lights that will last a long time.

These lanterns will, of course, supplement the strings of Christmas lights that you hang on the roof and intertwine around the trees and bushes. You might want to add to the display by installing lawn and roof decorations too, such as inflatable Santa Clause and elves figures.

Christmas elves

And remember to hang a lovely holiday wreath on the home’s front door.

Change out your ordinary welcome mat at the front door with a Christmas-themed mat, to further set the mood before people enter your dwelling.

2. Inside the House

You can never go wrong with setting up your Christmas tree earlier rather than later, no matter what the size you and your family prefer. 

In fact, you can use any type of plant – be creative if you are looking for some vegetation that goes beyond the traditional tree.

Christmas Decorations in the Living room

Make sure to festoon the tree with plenty of lights and some tinsel. Family heirlooms as well as new ornaments will help to round out the beautification of your Christmas tree.

Place candy canes as decorations, to further get into the holiday spirit.

On the table, place a winter-themed bouquet with your local plant life.

Christmas decors

In anticipation of Santa’s visit, you’ll want to hang up some stockings over the chimney, where you can then stuff them with treats such as candies, fruits and little toys.

For even more coziness in the living room, put out some luxurious red or green blankets and pillows. And remember to put holiday-themed pillowcases and sheets in the bedrooms.

3. ‘Tis the Season for You and Your Family to Have a Merry Time Together

Decorating your home now for Christmas will give you and loved ones plenty of time to spend time together and getting everything ready for the upcoming celebrations. 

We hope that these tips will help make you and your family feel merry and bright,  as what this season is about.

Christmas with family

How to Get my House Ready for Thanksgiving

How to Get my House Ready for Thanksgiving

That special day when we pause collectively to give thanks for all that we have is soon upon us. Don’t get caught off-guard by the impending Thanksgiving holiday. This can be quite a busy time of year, so planning ahead now will make it much easier and less stressful when you want your space ready for family and guests to enjoy time together.

Here are things you can do to get your house ready for Thanksgiving that are easy to start doing now, so you won’t be feeling rushed closer to that much-anticipated fourth Thursday of November!

1. Make a List of Who Is Coming

“Who will be my guests?” should be top of mind. This will give you a head count, so you’ll know if you need to put out a second dining table, for example, and how many chairs you’ll be needing to entertain the crowd. 

You’ll also want to stock the guest bathroom with extra towels, soap, toilet tissue and candles, since more people than usual will be using the facilities.

a woman checking on her list

2. Determine What Food to Prepare

When you have a pretty good idea of how many people are coming over, you’ll be ready to plan how much food to purchase for the main event. Of course, there are no worries if you overestimate, since you’ll then have some delicious leftovers to look forward to. 

At this point, you’ll also want to keep in mind what types of food to prepare, which is crucial if you have guests with food allergies.

If a large crowd is coming, check that you have enough dishes and cutlery. When you are in short supply, borrow extras from a neighbor, friend or relative.

foods for thanksgiving

3. Pin Down a Schedule to Clean the House

There’s an old saying that, if you fail to plan, you are planning to fail. So, it’s important that you actually make a schedule so you and your family can get the whole house cleaned up, inside and out, before Thanksgiving arrives.

Put up the details on a calendar or a planner, such as on the kitchen wall, to keep everyone on track. It’s easy for people to forget about their duties when they are busy with end-of-year tasks!

4. Delegate Chores to Your Family Members

You’ll find that the Thanksgiving holiday preparations to transform your house will go much more smoothly (and faster!) when you enlist the entire family. 

A kid washing the dish

Assign chores to each person based on their abilities and interests, such as one child may make decorations while another one is in charge of moving furniture to make space in the living room for additional guests.

5. Have a Wonderful Thanksgiving Celebration

Getting your home squared away in plenty of time before Thanksgiving should go easier when you try the above-mentioned tips. And when your home is ready, you will breathe a sigh of relief that one more item on your holiday to-do list is checked off.

Here’s hoping that this will be a memorable Thanksgiving holiday for you and your loved ones!

Easy Ways to Refresh your Home Office

Easy Ways to Refresh your Home Office

It’s easy to get stuck in a rut when it comes to our home offices. We tend to spend a lot of time in these rooms, so it’s important to make sure they are comfortable and inviting. Here are some simple ways to refresh your home office décor and make your office just feel a little more friendly.

1. Start by Decluttering Your Space

The first step to refreshing your home office is to get rid of any clutter that has built up over time. This can be anything from old magazines and newspapers to empty coffee cups and half-used notebooks. If you have any decorative items that you don’t use or need, consider donating them or storing them away until you have a use for them. Once you have decluttered your space, you will be amazed at how much more open and inviting it feels.

a pile of old magazines

2. Add Some Greenery

Another way to refresh your home office décor is to add some greenery. Plants can help to purify the air and they can also add a splash of color to your space. Plants can also help you relax and soothe your eyes after hours of being in front of your computer monitor.

3. Change Your Lighting

If you often find yourself working late into the night, then it’s important to make sure you have good lighting in your office. This will help to reduce eye strain and it can also make your space feel more inviting. Consider adding a lamp to your desk or investing in some good quality lights.

4. Add Some Artwork

If you’re looking for a way to personalize your space, then consider adding some artwork to your walls. This could be anything from family photos to paintings and prints that you love. Adding artwork is a great way to make your office feel more like your own.

Home office with plants and wall painting

5. Rearrange Your Furniture

Sometimes, all it takes to refresh your home office décor is to rearrange your furniture. This can be as simple as moving your desk to a different wall or swapping out your chairs for something more comfortable. Open up your office a little if it feels stifling.

6. Try Out New Wallpaper or Paint

If you’re feeling really adventurous, you could try out some new wallpaper or paint. This is another way to freshen up your home office without spending more money. Just be sure to choose colors that you find calming and that won’t distract you from your work. There are proven psychologies to colors; green and blue, for instance, are calming, whereas yellow and red may produce anxiety.

These are just a few simple ways to refresh your home office. By making a few small changes, you can make your office feel more motivating and comfortable.

a simple work space with wall decor and table lamp

5 Ways to Instantly Get More Organized in your Home Office

5 Ways to Instantly Get More Organized in your Home Office

If you work at home, you face a double threat when it comes to organizing your office — your work stuff and things from other parts of the home that migrate in. Taking some time to get organized can help you find what you need, when you need it and make your office space one that you can truly enjoy working in. Here are 5 simple and nearly instant ways to reorganize your workspace.

1. Set your mind to declutter regularly.

Make a decluttering routine. If it isn’t something you use regularly, need or absolutely love, it needs to go — or at least leave your office space. Tackle decluttering a drawer or shelf at a time and purge anything that is not directly related to your work. You’ll create more room for the things you do need and a more comfortable work setting, too 

Office supplies organized in a desk drawer

2. Keep a trash bin handy.

Put a small trash bin right next to your primary workspace or desk. Discard junk mail, printouts you no longer need, packaging and more as you work. These items can build up quickly and create a chaotic mess on your desk if you don’t get rid of them. 

3. Go digital.

If you haven’t already, make the switch to digital storage instead of paper printouts. Not only will this dramatically reduce the amount of paper clutter you have, it will also make it easier to find what you need. When you store items in the cloud you can search by keyword to find what you need instantly, you can also collaborate more readily with others. Best of all, your workspace will be far more organized when you get rid of big stacks of printed papers. 

4. Corral cables and cords.

A woman crouching under her desk organizing computer cables

Your laptop, phone, printer and other items all need cords – but if those cords are a tangled snarl they’ll be difficult to use. They’ll also make your office look like a cluttered mess. Cable minders or keepers are inexpensive and hold all your cables together in one tidy strip — you can also use zip ties to get the same effect and keep the cables where they belong. 

5. Optimize your file storage.

If you have important documents you need to use regularly or that are essential for your business, make sure they are readily available. Throwing them all into a folder entitled “documents” with every other item you save will make it messy and tough to retrieve what you need. Instead, make a special folder just for these items and put it in an accessible place — and you’ll be able to instantly retrieve what you need, when you need it. 

A few folders piled containing documents

Each of the above organization steps for your home office takes just a few moments to do but has an immediate impact on the way your space looks and functions. Tackle one step a day and you’ll have a more organized and comfortable office space in a week, without spending hours cleaning. Once you’ve finished you’ll have a space that is far more enjoyable to use and more useful to your work. 

Easy Steps to Organize your Home Office

Easy steps to organize your home office

Organizing your home office doesn’t have to be difficult. With a little effort and the right system, you can easily make some organizational changes that will help you find everything and get more done. Here are some of the best ways to get your home office into shape.

1. Create a Filing System

If you’re the type of person who prefers paper documents instead of digital options, a filing system is essential for good organization. That doesn’t mean you can’t use a digital file system, of course. But if you have a lot of paper around, it’s even more vital that you create a system that lets you find things quickly.

paper folder for mortgage documents

2. Consider Color-Coded Options

Color-coding your files and important documents can help you see at a glance where everything is. If financial records are green, for example, and bills are red, you’ll easily be able to locate the folder you need and find the right documents fast. That lowers frustration, and raises peace of mind.

3. Make Use of Containers

There are always items in a home office that don’t really have a place to go. These are usually small items, and ones that have odd shapes. If you need a place to store those items, using containers can make it much easier to keep everything organized and looking neat and orderly. You’ll also be able to grab what you need efficiently, which is important when you’re working.

4. Keep Frequently Used Items Handy

Items you use often shouldn’t be put away where you can’t get to them quickly. That just takes more time out of your day, and makes it more frustrating for you to work in your home office. You can use containers, trays, or other organizational options to keep those frequently used items right where you can reach them.

5. Use the Space On Your Walls

Your walls aren’t just for artwork, or the latest soothing paint color. You can also use them to help organize your home office more easily. By putting up a mail station, small baskets, floating shelves, or other storage and organization options, you’re better able to see what you need and still have it neat and clean. Using wall space is a great opportunity to reduce clutter.

floating shelves with folder organizers and basket

6. Divide Personal and Business Documents

Your personal and business documents are probably both in your home office. That makes sense, but doesn’t mean they should be mixed together. Keeping a separate file drawer for personal items is one of the ways to keep them separate. You can also have a separate filing cabinet or other storage option, so you aren’t mixing the two areas of your life.

7. Clean and Declutter as You Go

clean working desk at home

As you move through your home office to organize it, cleaning and decluttering at the same time means you won’t have to go back through it and clean or declutter afterward. By doing it all at the same time, your home office will be a great space to enjoy working in, and everything in it will be something you need and want to keep.