The holidays have come and gone and as much as we enjoy celebrating the season with family and friends, we look forward to getting back to a normal routine after the merriment has commenced. Getting yourself and your family back into a routine is one thing, but getting your house back together after the holidays can be a daunting task. Clean up after the holidays with these five easy tips.
#1: Take Down the Christmas Tree Carefully
If you put up a Christmas tree, take it down with as much precision as you did when you initially put it up.
- Carefully remove ornaments and pack them away with the utmost care, don’t just toss them into a box or storage bin.
- If you still have used wrapping paper or tissue paper leftover from gifts, use it to wrap up any delicate Christmas ornaments.
- Repurpose empty wrapping paper rolls to loop lights around for easy access next year.
- Use the Christmas tree skirt as extra padding for ornate ornaments or other delicate decorations.
- If you and your family put up a real Christmas tree, remember to schedule a curbside pick-up or drop it off at your nearest Christmas tree recycling center.
#2: Collect Christmas Cards
Clean up after the holidays by going through all of the Christmas cards you received and make a list of who sent them to you so you have a starting point for next year’s Christmas cards. If there are certain cards you particularly like, cut out the images, loop string through them and repurpose them for holiday gift tags next year. Be sure to recycle the cards you don’t want instead of tossing them in the trash. It’s an easy way to be green!
#3: Return or Exchange Any Unwanted Gifts
It’s the thought that counts, but that sentiment doesn’t mean you have to keep every gift you receive during the holiday season. Hanging on to items will just add clutter and may make your New Year’s resolution to stay organized difficult (link to New Year’s organizational blog). Plan out some time to make returns or exchanges for items you want or need around the house. If you prefer to avoid the stores after the holidays all together, donate any unwanted gifts to organizations you support instead.
#4: Clean Carpet and Furniture for Stains
The longer stains set, the more difficult they are to remove. If you spot any stains on furniture, make a mixture of warm water and mild dishwashing liquid then apply it to the stain repeatedly. Blot with a paper towel and keep applying the liquid mixture until the stain is removed. Once the stain is gone, rinse the stain with clean water then let dry.
#5: Clean Guest Bedroom and Bathroom
Wash the guest bedroom bed sheets, change the guest bathroom towels, dust any dressers, desks or end tables, fluff decorative pillows, mop the floors and vacuum any carpeted areas. If guests forgot to pack items that were accidentally left behind, make sure to coordinate a time so you can meet up with them or put together a small package to send to them with their forgotten items.
The holidays only come around once a year, so remember to enjoy the season and all that it brings, but make a plan of attack once your holiday guests leave so you can clean up after the holidays.