Holiday Season Wrap-Up
1. Take stock of who you received gifts from while it’s still fresh in your mind.
Everyone loves a thank you note, especially if they went above and beyond normal holiday giving (the uncle who gifted you an iPad), so take the time to send out a short appreciative email if you haven’t thanked the giver in person. On the flip side, if you’ve sent an old friend or a distant relative a little something year after year with nothing in return, now is the perfect time to make note that next year you can just send them a card.
2. Get rid of your tree.
It’s always a little weird and sad to see a Christmas tree finally put to pasture just before tax day. Don’t be one of those people who tries to hold onto the holidays post New Years. Nurse your hangover, eat some eggs and then put the tree on the curb.
3. Pack up and store decorations.
The ornaments, the garland, those twinkling lights on the front of your house–they all need to be packed up and stored away for next season. Trying to do it piecemeal inevitably leads to a holiday wreath languishing on your front door well past Easter, so devote an afternoon to getting it all done at once. If you need suggestions on how to store items read this.
4. Get rid of a few things.
We’ve found it’s best (especially with kids) to operate on a one-to-one system: For every new item you receive, get rid of an old item. Translation—make room for your six new sweaters by ditching (a.k.a., donating) an equal number of old clothes.
5. Upload holiday photos.
Between Thanksgiving and New Years, you’ve likely taken hundreds of photos. Make this the year you actually get them off your phone, onto your computer and (gasp!) emailed to relatives. If you’re really feeling ambitious, have them made into a physical album.
6. Clean out the refrigerator.
The end of the holiday season means leftovers and more leftovers – especially if your family played host. Take a moment to ditch anything that’s gone stale (hello, holiday cookies), toss odds and ends you know you’ll never eat (that three pounds of homemade cranberry sauce) and donate excess canned goods.
7. Make a clean sweep.
This go-round doesn’t need to be on the same scale as a big spring clean, but it’s always nice to get your house back in order, especially if you’ve had guests. Vacuum up the pine needles. Change the sheets in the extra bedroom. Give the kitchen and the bathroom a good scrub.