Creating room in your home for new gifts and toys through home organization after Christmas.
Organizing Your Home After Christmas
Christmas is a wonderful season of giving. Everything seems to have a special sparkle and glow about it. Our hearts are more giving, our spirits are higher, but after the holiday we often find our homes feeling stuffed and overwhelming.
Now, you can try and tackle some decluttering beforehand to make room for new gifts and Boxing Day Sale purchases. Or you can give yourself some grace and take on the home organization after the Christmas holiday. You already have enough stress on your plate. Whichever you decide to do, here are some ideas I want to share with you on how you can organize your home after the holidays.
This one seems to be the biggest issue for families. You already felt like your children had enough toys before Christmas, but now that their wishlists have been fulfilled, you feel like the toy box (or playroom) will explode at the seams.
The best way to combat this would be to donate some toys before Christmas. If you can get your children on board with donating some of their older toys, now that will be Christmas magic. But there’s no shame in going through them yourselves if you know it will be a losing battle. It’s not worth your mental health. Be sure to do it by keeping their favourites in mind though, and not your own personal preferences. But if you’re up for the challenge of pre-Christmas sorting, here’s some pre-Christmas toy sorting strategies.
Prep your children beforehand by talking about how some children aren’t as lucky as they are to get toys for Christmas. It helps to point out toys they don’t play with anymore that are still hanging around and how another child would love to have a toy like that. It gets your children thinking about what they do like to play with.
The next kicker is pointing out donation bins in malls and stores to your kids so they see there is a need for their beloved old toys. Let them see that others have donated their toys too. Now’s a great time to mention that it feels good to give to others and plan to have them sort through their toys at home.
While you’re trying to guide your kids towards donating their toys, you want them to feel like they are doing it freely and have good associations with it. This will help with future cleaning and decluttering sessions too. A positive feeling and experience will make the process easier next time too.
Even if you don’t have a donation bin, by having them sort through their toys and weed out the ones they don’t like anymore, they’re making room for new toys and opportunities of play. Keep reminding them if they start to struggle with letting go, that there needs to be room for new toys before they arrive.
Try selling the old toys on second-hand websites and pages or drop off at second-hand stores. If you make some extra money off of them, show your kids what their old and discarded toys value were. They may be so excited about having made money that they’ll go through their toys a second time! It gets them started thinking about the value of their belongings and the exchange of money too.
Remove Older Versions
Did you receive upgraded items for Christmas? That could be everything from pots, vacuums, slippers to technology etc. Please don’t hang on to the old item. You won’t go back to it (unless it’s a phone. I recommend keeping the last model you used in case yours gets lost or broken).
There is a really good reason why you received an upgrade for Christmas. Usually, it’s because you need it and wouldn’t have gone out to get one for yourself unless forced to. So don’t do the gifter a disservice by hanging onto the old version and letting it add to the clutter in your home.
If it’s an electronic with data, find out where you can get the data destroyed before recycling it. If it’s an appliance that still has life left, take it to a second-hand store. But if it’s broken or close to breaking down, toss it out. You don’t want harm to come to anyone else who may purchase it second hand without knowing its “quirks”.
If your closet is bursting at the seam, it’s time to go over it with a critical eye. Before you add in any gifted Christmas clothing, look over your existing clothes and see what can be removed. Look for easy to toss items first with stains, holes, tears, fading, and stretching. Aim to swap out at least one old item for every new piece going into your closet.
Don’t forget to examine your underwear and socks too. When you get new ones, make sure to toss out your holey ones first. You don’t want to keep grabbing the same ragged pair when you have fresh ones that work so much better.
If you discover that you can remove some pieces that are still in good to great shape, try donating them, giving them to a second-hand store, or selling them on a second-hand website.
Okay, be honest with yourself. Did you put up all of your Christmas decorations or did some stay packed up?
Why did they stay packed up?
When was the last time you used them?
Do you truly need to hang on to it?
Now, there are some reasons to hang on to items, sentimental value is one. But don’t let it control you. If you truly don’t like an item, don’t hold on to it simply because it was a gift from your great aunt six years ago. Those aren’t positive associations.
Now is the time to sort through and toss the decorations that aren’t useful for you anymore. Whether that’s because you don’t have room for it all, something is broken, your taste in style has changed, whatever. Don’t hang on to decorations that you aren’t using, and someone else could be. If you’ve got Christmas decorations from a previous color scheme that you no longer use, donate them. You won’t be going back to it. But if it’s broken, please dispose of it.
So before you pack away the holiday decorations you did set out, sort through and decided what to do with the ones that didn’t make the cut.
It’s usually easier to keep letting things slide, especially during a season as busy as Christmas. And after everything’s done, you want to put your feet up and relax. But the new/old items will pile up and in the meantime, you feel uncomfortable in your home. Which is not relaxing, and the idea is to avoid that.
Having a plan to make room for new Christmas gifts will quickly clear some clutter and give yourself some breathing room. You’ll thank yourself after you’ve taken the time for some post-Christmas home organizing.
Related: Organizing Kids Stuff
Great list! We have implemented one-in-one-out when it comes to kids toys. This at least keeps the total number or toys constant. And also limiting the number of gifts the grandparents are allowed to buy. We also try to only keep thing that we have used in the passes year, so if it’s sat in a box or unused it gets donated to keep space clean. It’s amazing how much junk can accumulate so quickly!
Sara-Lynn Houk says
I love the one-in-one-out rule! That is great to have and I’m sure it really helps to cut down on toy clutter. The rule of 1 yr unused is also a great idea, and I might adopt this myself. Our stuff really does accumulate quicker than we realize. Decluttering is a process and not a once and done. Thank you for your comment and insight Katherine!