Now that all your Christmas celebrations are out of the way it’s time to look forward to next year. If there’s wrapping paper everywhere, empty bottles haunting your kitchen and gravy all over your best tablecloth then don’t worry, now is the perfect time to get things back on track and to go into 2017 with a clean and clutter-free home. Let’s start as we mean to go on!
Follow my advice on how to get ready for the new year with some simple steps you can take to get things around the house in order. (And don’t forget, an intense cleaning session can work wonders for burning off those Christmas-calories!)
Recycling for the win
At this time of year you’re probably left with copious amounts of wrapping paper and boxes from presents and bottles, tins and cardboard sleeves from party food and drink. A trip to the local recycling bins can be a lifesaver. Do a quick whip around the house and collect together all the recyclables – getting these out the way early will make a huge difference to your post Christmas clean up. If you have some little helpers hanging around then make it into a game and give them their own type of recycling to find.
Wash, dry & store
This can be a big one, so try and get it done as early as possible. Put a load or two of washing on to get all your table linen and teatowels clean. If you have special outfits that you wore over the Christmas period then put those on to wash. Once everything is clean and dry have a mammoth ironing and folding session in front of the TV. You’ll be thanking yourself next year when you can get everything out of storage and it’s ready to go. Make sure to label any boxes that you use for storage so that you know exactly where to look for particular items. The same goes for any special tableware, plates and cutlery that you might have used.
Take down the decorations
Now this one depends on how superstitious you are! According to tradition, taking your decorations down before or after the twelfth night (night of Jan 5th) is considered to be unlucky. But if you’re going to be hosting a New Year’s party then you might want to decorate differently, free up some space for your guests or just make sure that the antique ornament that’s been in your family for generations is safe and sound back in the loft! Remember to think ahead to next year when you’re packing your decorations away, keep them safe and organised by separating them into their own packaging and making sure that any string lights have been wrapped up so that they don’t tangle.
One in one out
If you’ve ended up with 2 or 3 of the same gift or have been given something that you already have then don’t hold onto them unnecessarily. I like to work on a one-in-one-out policy so that I can stay clutter free. Decide which you’re going to keep or whether you can replace the one you already have and donate the others to charity. This way they can bring joy to somebody else and raise some money for a good cause.
If you want to go even further with your festive declutter then you could commit to filling a box or charity bag with items that you no longer want or need. We get so many new items at Christmas that it can have a big impact on any decluttering efforts you may have made throughout the year.
Time for a change?
So you’ve cleaned and tidied everything away and hopefully done some extra de-cluttering in the process. Great! Now is the perfect time to make that change you’ve been wondering about. It could be something as small as moving a piece of furniture or hanging a picture over the fireplace or it could be redecorating a whole room (put those DIY store vouchers you got to good use!). Either way, why not try it? It could spark off the new start you need in 2017!
Here’s to a clean and clutter free new year!