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Navigating the Chaos: How to Stay Organized At Home Through the Holidays

Updated: Dec 15, 2023



Hey there, post-Thanksgiving crew!


As we say goodbye to the turkey coma, we are now welcoming the December mayhem (you know, the month that's the busiest time of the year). This time of year always seems rushed and stressful. But I don’t think it has to be that way. I believe the holiday season is the one time of the year when we should slow down and reflect on what is most important. And the best way to ensure that happens is to stay organized during the holiday season.


So, buckle up because, in this blog post, we're going to chat about some practical strategies to help you ride the December wave without feeling like you're getting lost in the festivities. Embracing these tips will ensure that you kick off this month on an organized note to allow you to not miss any special moments that come from celebrating all month long.


Let's do this!


 

Creating a Holiday Budget


Finances often become a significant source of stress during the holiday season. With expenses piling up from gift purchases, constant baking, hosting guests, potential travel expenses, and the planning of meals for many, it's easy to feel overwhelmed. It's crucial to kick off the holiday preparations by establishing a budget now, especially considering the rising costs due to inflation.


Taking the time to create a budget before the holiday rush sets in can significantly alleviate stress throughout the entire season. And if you've read any of my prior blog posts, you know my thoughts on unnecessary gift purchases...they ultimately cause more clutter in our homes. So that is why I am so adamant about giving gift experiences that create long-lasting memories. For more on this, make sure to check out my blog "Let's Talk Clutter Free Gift Giving."


Once you've compiled your list of holiday purchases, set a specific budget for each item. Don't procrastinate on this— the sooner you create and commit to your budget, the smoother and more enjoyable your holiday season will be.


 

Get The Calendar Out!


Next up, let's map out the game plan for a stress-free holiday season! The secret sauce? A top-notch, organized calendar. Create a comprehensive calendar that has all the details about the special events, parties, and gatherings you're either hosting or headed to.


Here is a pro tip: Make your phone your holiday HQ! Utilize your notes app to jot down gift lists, meal plans, guest lists, and more, and use your reminder app on your phone to set "reminders" so you don't forget anything.


To make this task a breeze, here's a checklist to add those crucial holiday happenings all over your calendar:

  • Family gatherings

  • Holiday parties

  • Class parties

  • Work parties

  • School concerts, dance recitals, and performances

  • Local festivals and events

  • Photos with Santa

  • Family pictures

  • Dates when guests will be rolling into town

  • Travel days

  • Baking days

  • Shopping days

  • No-school days (hello, winter break)

  • Days off of work or your work schedule

By adding these gems to your calendar, you're not just organizing; you're creating a well-coordinated and enjoyable season for you and your festive crew.


 

Deck The Halls With Less!


This time of year brings guests coming in from out of town, big family dinners, and baking madness. But don't let the chaos take over. Take some time to declutter! From simplifying your decor to going through your children's toys and giving your kitchen a good edit, these tips are a sure way to save you time and give you a calm and warm atmosphere. And with this crazy month, we can all benefit from having a little more calm added into our lives.

  1. Simplify Your Decor: Clear away items you don't adore or that clutter your flat surfaces. Go for fewer, more minimal displays. Not only does this streamline your space, but it also makes post-holiday cleanup a breeze. Take note of stored decor you're not using and consider donating these items to someone who could put them to good use. Here's another pro tip: set storage limits to curb any urges for post-holiday shopping sprees.

  2. Toy Purge: The pre-holiday season is the perfect moment for a toy decluttering session. Involve your kids in the process and encourage them to let go of toys to make room for new ones. It's an excellent opportunity to teach your children about the joy of giving to those in need and making space for new experiences.

  3. Kitchen Edit: Whether you're gearing up to host or simply preparing for future holiday meals, a kitchen declutter is essential. Go through your pantry and throw away any food that is past its expiration date. This will give you more room for all your holiday cooking and baking items. It also provides you with a chance to inventory what you have and stock up on items you'll need for the holiday season. No one wants to make a mad dash to the store to fight the crowds for vanilla extract.

  4. Linen Refresh: As you anticipate the arrival of holiday guests staying in your home, consider adding a linen refresh to your calendar. Take a moment to review the condition of your sheets, towels, and tablecloths in the linen closet. Discard any worn-out or stained linens or tablecloths you no longer use. Additionally, take this opportunity to give back to the community by donating your gently used linens to a local pet community care facility. Many shelters and rescue centers welcome donations of clean linens to provide warmth and comfort to animals in need. What a great way to give back this holiday season!

 

Take In The Moments!



Alright, you've got the budget all sorted, the calendar filled in, and your house is now decluttered and organized—great work! Now, this is the most important part! It's time to kick back and take in those holiday vibes with your loved ones.


Here's a friendly reminder: one of the biggest keys to a stress-free holiday is to remember what truly matters. Christmas isn't about having picture-perfect decorations or breaking the bank on presents; it's about family traditions, shared moments with your family and friends, indulging in one too many cookies, and celebrating this holiday in a way that brings you genuine joy!


So, make sure to try and slow down, take in the moments, and have a holiday season filled with the most amazing and meaningful memories! Enjoy what makes this season truly special.


Cheers!


 


Thanks for following along on our journey as we declutter and organize!


XOXO-


Janelle


& The A Meaningful Space Team












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