Repeat after me: "This year, I won't be wrapping gifts at midnight on Christmas Eve!"
If there's a single most-underestimated holiday chore, it's gift wrapping. Supplies lie scattered throughout the house, while space and privacy are hard to come by. Translation: late-night Christmas Eve wrapping sessions.
Not this year! We're going to lick the wrapping problem at the outset, by setting up a wrap and mail activity center. With workspace, tools and supplies at hand, it’s easy to wrap as you go—and enjoy the task, without grump, grumble or hurry.
Chill breezes blow, signaling that it's time to prepare the house for the coming of winter. Fall cleaning ahead!
Take time now to tackle seasonal cleaning chores around the house. An Autumn session of deep-cleaning carries the family into the holiday season from a clean house; exterior decorating goes more smoothly if fall yard-clean up chores are completed early.
Try this Fall Cleaning chore checklist from sister site Organized Home to guide fall cleaning:
It's not just "visions of sugarplums" that dance through our heads when we think of the holiday season. Many of us also succumb to Holiday House Fever: an intense desire to begin major home decor projects in the weeks before Christmas.
Anybody who's ever decorated a Christmas tree before a half-painted wall knows the risk: our dreams overpower our time, energies and resources.
Result: damp carpets, naked windows, wet paint and lots of stress.
Today, we'll bring sanity to the question of holiday home spruce-ups. The Holiday Home Spruce-Up exercise in realistic planning will anchor our dreams and help us identify realistic, doable goals.
Brisk weather is on the way; time to clear out the coat closets!
Whether it's making space for family cold-weather gear or preparing for seasonal visitors, now's the time to clear out the coat closet. Does your outerwear storage space work for you?
Not that a designated "closet" is always the right solution! Many families prefer to keep coats, umbrellas, gloves and galoshes in open storage areas. Hang coats on pegs, tuck boots under a low bench, and consider an over-the-door shoe rack to corral little mittens, hats and scarves.
Check closet space from a guest's perspective, too. Are extra hangers available--and appropriate for heavy outer garments? Is there enough room to add a bulky parka without crushing a woman's wool coat?
When it's time to buy organizers, shop yard sales for the best bargains. Most garage sales offer a selection of organizing products at cut-rate prices. Perhaps the item didn't fit, came from an older house, or was an imprudent purchase. Take it home and put it to work for you ... for cheap!