6 Creative Ways To Help Manage Post-Holiday Clutter

by Colleen Dilthey Thomas
Originally Published: 
Post-holiday clutter made by the kids during Christmas

I love Christmas. And yes, a lot of that is because of the presents. It isn’t the receiving part; it is the giving to my kids. Christmas morning is my favorite. My four children come bounding down the stairs with their eyes open wide ready to rip into packages. I still have two believers at home, so that makes it even more fun. There is a touch of magic in the air. But as much as I love the moment, the aftermath makes me want to rip my hair out.

The wrapping paper, the bows, that godforsaken plastic toy crap that holds them into the packages that takes a chainsaw to get off. That is what I hate — so, so much. It gives me anxiety looking at my living room while they go about their business enjoying their loot. I know that I should just let it go, but I can’t. I get crabby, which is such a disservice to my kids. But what do I do?

There are lots of ways that you can manage the chaos of Christmas morning. And the holidays in general. I know that they are a lot of people out there who are just like me. It may be Christmas morning, or their kitchen after a mega cookie-making extravaganza. And let’s not forget the decorations that we love to put up while listening to carols and taking a whiff of our evergreen candle. Those sons of guns are the source of dread for many of us. Just the thought of lugging the Rubbermaid tubs from the basement is enough to make me want to skip town for a couple of weeks to recover. Something has got to give.

There are so many tips out there on how to declutter after the holidays. Here are a few favorites.

Get One, Get Rid Of Two

This is a great idea from Organized Home. If you are bringing something into the house, take two things out. Think about all of the toys you have lying around your house that your kids never use. There are lots of things you can do with them. Sell them and make a little cash to recoup some of what you are spending this year. Give them to an organization that collects for underprivileged children. Donate them to a school or daycare. There are plenty of people who would love to take them off of your hands.

Got Lots Of Leftover Boxes? Fill Them Up

Another genius idea from Organized Home. Has the Amazon delivery person been at your house on the daily the last few weeks? You have got boxes upon boxes that will be ready for the recycling bin in the next few days. Grab those suckers and fill them up! Again, you have plenty of things in your home that can be donated and would be so appreciated. Give a little joy this holiday season.

Clean It Up Along The Way

Don’t leave a mess and let it overwhelm you. It may not be the prettiest part of Christmas morning, but there is no shame in having a trash bag ready for the ripped up paper and bows. Keep up with it and take the trash out when it is full. That will help to manage the chaos a bit better.

Take A Look At The Decos and Decide What You Really Need

Yes, they are lovely, but do you need ALL of those Christmas decorations? No, probably not. Keep the things that are sentimental and that make your heart warm and fuzzy and get rid of the rest. Do you really need all of those knick-knacks that are just collecting dust during the holidays and extra space in the attic during the off-season? You know you are going to buy new stuff next year too. Make room and get rid of stuff now.

Make A Garage Sale Pile

This is a good one. Not everyone wants to — or can afford to — just donate everything. There is no shame in making a little extra money with a garage sale. Organizing Moms says that if you know that you are going to have one in the coming months, start to get yourself organized now. You will feel so much better when you go to get ready if parts of your wares are already organized and ready to go.

In addition to these creative solutions, it is important to remember the basics to help you from becoming overwhelmed. Don’t do too much, and ask for help. If your kids and your partner are contributing to the holiday clutter, then they need to be helping cleaning it up. It’s that simple.

Enjoy the holidays with your family. But don’t make it a chore. A little bit at a time will make a big impact in the long run.

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