Once all the gifts have been opened and the turkey has been stripped to the bone, a little voice in your head reminds you that there are logistical issues that accompany the onslaught of abundance. Alarm bells may sound when you look around and wonder how and where you are going to incorporate all of the gifts into your living space and your life. The post-holiday season is an ideal time to take inventory of your current belongings and take steps to balance the old with the new. Here’s why…
- Christmas may be over, but the merry-making will continue for another week through New Year’s. Company could drop over at any time. Even worse, relatives and friends may be staying over. Make sure there are places for them to sit, sleep and hang their clothes while they are your guests.
- Your credit card bill could arrive any day. Think about selling some excess belongings on Craig’s List or consignment to at least cover the interest from your holiday shopping sprees.
- When you are packing up your decorations and lights you realize there are 3 or 4 Rubbermaid containers-full that never were opened, even though every doorway, mantel, banister, surface and window in your house was decked out to the max. What does that tell you?
- Holiday decorations are typically stored in basements, attics, spare rooms and storage lockers, areas that receive infrequent or any visits during the year. While you are putting this year’s bounty away for another year, why not explore the contents of other long neglected bins and boxes for downsizing potential.
- Your kids may be temporarily distracted in the thrall of playing with brand new toys. Use this as an opportunity to round up toys they have outgrown or discarded, when they are least likely to notice. Pass those on to shelters, daycares and other non-profits.
- If you are planning to take advantage of Boxing Week sales with some of the gift cards you have received, your closet may need some tweaking in preparation. Dive in and decide what no longer fits or works with the rest of your wardrobe to open up hanging or drawer space.
- After several weeks no fertilizer or watering regimen will spare your leggy poinsettias from their death spiral. Time to pitch, along with the tree that is showering needles all over your shag carpet.
- Similar to your decorations, your gift wrap stash may be in need of emergency editing. You don’t have to save every bow and bauble that adorned the presents you received. The same goes for tissue, gift bags and tiny remnants of wrapping paper from old rolls.
- If you received more holiday cards than you sent you will want to recycle them rather than suspend them on string until Easter. You will feel less guilty.
- Scales don’t lie. If the extra five pounds drives you to despair, remove temptation by unloading the extra boxes of candy and baked goods on friends and charities.
Once your post-holiday purging activities are complete, reward yourself with a glass or two of your favorite holiday beverage. Consider a cruise or hot weather resort for next year’s holiday season. No stuff, just fun and relaxation for your and your family.