Sunday, December 25, 2011

Simplify the Season: Ho ho ho, Put away, here we go!

Just when you thought our series had ended, you find out there’s still more to this Simplifying the Season Adventure!  We have reached the end of Christmas day, my friends. Or what I like to call… dun dun dun… The Aftermath.

Whew! Christmas is OVER!

Why do we so often feel like this on Dec 26? We’ve just had a joyous celebration. Everything we planned and worked for is complete. Hopefully there were no major incidents/catastrophes and everyone even got what they wanted!

But then… We look around…

Wrapping. Boxes. Gift Bags. Tissue Paper. Dishes! Need I go on?


New STUFF that needs to find a spot SOMEWHERE in your home.

SO MANY New Year’s resolutions are made to De-clutter! It’s no wonder that January is National GET ORGANIZED MONTH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Sit back. Relax. Enjoy the twinkle lights a few more days. Breathe deeply and remember the real reason we just celebrated has nothing to do with the clutter at your feet. Let’s just think up a plan:

Step 1 – Make sure there are no gift cards/checks/cash/etc in the gift wrap. You don’t want to lose anything of value. PUT THOSE GIFT CARDS AND CHECKS IN A SPECIAL PLACE.  And make a note to yourself in your planner WHERE you put all of those wonderful items.

Step 2 – Discard/Recycle all old gift wrap and packing materials. If you are a re-user, fine – put it ALL away NOW. If you don’t have room with your gift wrap to put it all away, choose the nicest and give the rest to your distant relative to re-use. (I’m just teasing!) What I’m saying is, if your gift wrap stash is already full, you don’t NEED to keep EVERYTHING from this Christmas too. Remember, this is about Simplifying! You can even shred the wrap into strips to use as packing material.

Step 3 – Separate gifts into “whose” piles or “room” piles. (This is a good time to use your empty laundry baskets for sorting.)  If you have children you will want to do the piles for each person, most likely. Otherwise you will have piles for rooms of the house where the new gifts will go to live… kitchen, family room, play room, bed room, bathroom, garage…. donate… return….

Step 4 – When you move these gifts from their piles to their more permanent homes, keep in mind the “one in one out” rule! For every new item that is coming in an old item has to go.  Look at existing space. Decide what things you were just gifted that may replace an older item. Decide what things are in the playroom that need to go to make room for newer gifts. Decide what books you can pass on to make more room on your bookshelf. Are you getting the picture?

Step 5 – Donate the old. Cherish the new. Return the unwanted. Remember that many returns expire quickly. If someone was an early shopper and gifted you with an unwanted item, you will need to act fast! I say this with love and sincerity in my heart. Certain people will buy me clothing as gifts… and ALWAYS in the wrong size. While I am flattered that someone thinks I may wear a size Small… ha ha ha… Let’s just say that isn’t going to happen! Act quickly on returns.

Enjoy this week!  Relish is the last days of the beautiful twinkling lights and the knowledge that a baby was born to die for you.  Peace on earth.  Good will toward men. 

Start to think about your New Year’s Resolutions.  New Year’s Day is just a week away!!  I’ll share my thoughts on resolutions with you next time.

If you are in the Jacksonville/St. Johns area and would like your home better organized (or you want some help Simplifying YOUR Season), and would like the assistance of a professional organizer, e-mail  You can also find me on Facebook by clicking HERE or by searching for Organize With Julie.  Stalk me on twitter @juliebavi.

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