Written for Daily Hive by Christina Dennis of The DIY Mommy
The holidays are a time to make memories with friends and family, but they can also lead to constant chaos and clutter filling our homes. The inevitable mess that comes with hosting holiday gatherings, along with the addition of new toys and gifts, might leave your home feeling extra-cluttered. And getting back on track can be daunting.
To overcome the stress of post-holiday cleaning and help get organized for the New Year, here’s a checklist to get your house back on track.
It’s tempting to rush to pack away seasonal decorations when the holidays wind down, but if you take the time to put your decorations away carefully, it will make next year’s decorating process simpler – and more fun. Ensure your delicate, breakable ornaments are protected and stored in clearly labelled storage boxes to make finding everything next year easier. If you have old or broken decorations, donate or discard them. Repurpose wrapping paper tubes to store Christmas lights, wrapping the lights around them to keep from getting tangled.
Don’t let extra food after Christmas parties go to waste. Prepare and freeze leftovers to use for meals in the New Year – for instance, cut leftover turkey into bite-sized pieces for soups or sandwiches. Make a meal plan to use up leftovers with slow-cooker recipes.
After the season of giving, you may find yourself with an influx of new items in your home and limited space to keep them. Keep your home clutter-free by determining a storage spot for new gifts. Donate any old books, clothes or toys, passing along one or two items for each gift received.
Kick off 2017 with a fresh start and do a deep clean of your home. Start in the kitchen with highly-used spots during the holidays: cabinet doors, backsplash, fridge and stove. Give any guest rooms a good clean after guests depart and scrub your bathrooms, especially the main-floor powder room that might have received a lot of use. Clean your main living areas – and treat any remaining stains that might have occurred during holiday parties.
Start the New Year off with peace of mind knowing your home is protected and safe for your family. Test your smoke detectors and replace batteries if required – and at the same time, inspect your fire extinguisher and ensure it’s easily accessible. Review your home insurance policy to make sure your home and belongings are protected and find out if there are any discounts or savings on the plan that is right for you. For example with Esurance, an online insurance option for Albertans, there are discounts available so you can save for more organizing and decorating essentials for your home.
Avoid the post-holiday hangover by checking off the list as you have time to get your home into top shape. While you don’t have to tick off everything on this checklist at once, use this as a guide to start fresh for the New Year.