As we begin to settle in for the winter months ahead, we can take the opportunity to tackle a few simple organizing tasks around the home to keep our surroundings in order amid the flurry of holiday activities.
First, as you start breaking out the winter apparel, take a moment to see if there is anything you might like to donate or throw out. If you find an item in good condition that you honestly have not worn or used in two years or more, consider donating the item to someone who may be able to use it. While you are assessing your winter wardrobe, you can also determine if any items you are keeping need mending, washing or dry cleaning. Of course, you can do this for the summer clothes you are putting away too and save yourself a bit of time in the Spring.
Are your winter boots and shoes ready for the season ahead? If heels or soles need repairing, bring them to the repair shop now so they are ready when you need them. You can also take the time to clean, polish or waterproof your boots, or have your repair shop do this. Set up a boot rack or heavy duty floor covering in your entryway to keep wet boots from making a mess indoors.
Are your family’s hats, gloves and scarves all ready for the season? Start by discarding any orphaned gloves that have lost their mates. Again, consider donating any items that have not been used in the past two or more winter seasons. Designate a location in your home’s mudroom or entryway for these accessories. You can use cubbies or color-coded bins for each family member so that everyone will always know where to find their gloves and hats as they venture out into the cold.
Don’t forget to keep all your paperwork in order too during the winter season. Before long, you will be dealing with holiday bills and tax filings. Keep things organized now so you are not scrambling for receipts and documents during tax season. Use separate file boxes or bins to keep papers in the right place. With designated receptacles set up for all your papers, you can immediately file any paperwork you need to retain.
Of course, do make sure you are ready for anything the season may bring. Know where your emergency equipment and supplies are. Have your snow shovels and de-icers accessible. And make sure you have an emergency kit prepared in case of power outages.
The kit should include a flashlight and batteries, a battery powered radio, first aid kit, nonperishable food, water, and supplies for your pets.
And, finally, the gift giving season will soon be upon us, so you may want to de-clutter your home as much as possible to make room for any new items that may need to find space in your home. De-clutter the kitchen of any pots, pans, dishes or equipment in disrepair or no longer in use and donate items in good condition. Collect books and DVDs you don’t wish to keep and bring them to your local library or school. Clean out the linen closet and donate old towels or sheets to your local animal shelter.
Supporting charitable organizations through gifts and donations is a great way to observe the spirit of the season. And keeping your home de-cluttered and organized helps create a peaceful and tranquil environment for you and your family. Now, that’s worth celebrating!