Everything for the past few weeks, if not months, has been talking about Christmas and the preparations for it. However, once Christmas is over, day to day life starts to creep back in – and it’s now time for sorting things out after Christmas in preparation for the New Year.
It won’t be long before school starts, it’s back to work, and the decorations come down….
But it needn’t be a hassle, or get you down – instead – think about it as a fresh start and use these top tips to help start the New Year as you mean to go on and get ahead of the game!
Tip #1 – Write your thank you cards asap.
It can be really tempting to leave thank you cards until a week or so after Christmas, but every day after Christmas that goes by means you are less and less inclined to sit and write them all.
It becomes a task that goes to the bottom of the list, and you easily run the risk of not getting round to it until it feels too late – and not saying thank you to everyone who has thought of you and taken time to buy and send you a present would feel awful…
You also will have less time once you go back to work/school – so it’s worth tackling right away while everything is still fresh in your memory.
My advice is to get them done as part of Christmas – and get them posted out before New Year. That way it’s done and dusted, you can feel happier that you have thanked everyone properly, and you can draw a line under Christmas.
Tip #2 – Sort through your presents and make space for them
Getting new presents is a fantastic part of Christmas – but it’s not so fantastic when you don’t have space for them.
Chances are that your space was tight before the big day – so it will be even tighter now…
Hopefully before Christmas you will have gotten your children to sort through their toys and given away a few that they don’t use anymore to charity. This should make a little bit of room (especially as childrens toys can be very bulky).
If not, consider having a sort through now, while you are still off work/school – and get the family involved (it could become a post Christmas tradition!)
If storage is an issue – then use a one in one out policy on things to keep everything to a manageable amount.
If you have had toiletries for Christmas – then use up what you already have before you start on new stuff, as it’s too tempting to open the fresh new packages now – but you will be left with more of a mess at the end of the day.
Lastly – get decluttering by removing any excess packaging on presents as this can take up lots of unnecessary room in cupboards.
Making room for the new means a fresh start, which is a great way to start the new year.
Tip #3 – Re-gift?
If you didn’t like a present you got, then consider re-gifting it to someone else (or you could also give to a charity shop).
This sounds harsh, but often it’s the giving of a present that’s important to the giver, and as long as you were gracious and thanked them, then there really is no reason why you can’t do with it what you want.
After all – the present may not work for you, but it may work for someone else much better.
Word of caution here – just remember to add a label to say who you got it from so you don’t give it back….
Related: Why Every Home Needs A Present Box
Tip #4 – Take the decorations down.
The decorations have to come down by the 6th January as tradition states (the 12th night) – but most people like to take them down before the new year and before they are back at school/work – as this can feel like a fresh start and a clean slate around the house.
When taking down the decorations it’s easy to just dump them quickly into a box and stuff them in the garage or loft – but take your time packing them away and labelling them so that you will find it a pleasure to unwrap them when next year comes around, and the fragile ornaments stay in one piece.
Use egg boxes to hold baubles, wrap strings of lights around cardboard pieces, and put any soft toys or decorations into a plastic box that’s airtight, possibly also wrapped in bubble wrap to stay safe.
TIP – Our local area has a charity pick up for real Christmas trees. They arrange to grab them from your driveway on a certain date so you don’t have to – and all you do is give them a donation. Maybe there’s something similar in your area that’s worth looking at for your Christmas tree this year as it can be hard to get rid of this waste if you don’t have a real fire to cut it up as logs for.
If there are any lights or decorations not working/broken then make a note of what needs replacing and consider getting in the sales when things are a lot cheaper – or leave until you start buying for Christmas again next year (the Christmas planner has space to write these types of things in)
Keep them all together and they will be perfect for next year.
Related: What To Do With Old Greetings Cards
Tip #5 – Take some time to unwind before the new year starts.
Above all – Christmas can be stressful – so leave a few hours or ideally a day before you go back to work/school for you all to relax and unwind a little.
Use the time to go through your presents and enjoy them properly, watch a film together, or simply just relax at home in your PJs.
Whatever you do, make sure you minimise the stress as much as possible – you will then feel ready to take on the world in the new year!
Tip #6 – Go to the sales
If you specifically need something, and it will be selling at a reduction in the sales, then it makes financial sense to get it during this time.
Make a list of what you need and stick to the list to stop any crazy purchases, and only buy what you can afford to buy – but this can be a lovely day if you do it right!
TIP – The post-Christmas sales are a great time to stock up on Christmas cards, wrapping paper etc… for next year as it’s sold off at low prices once the big day has been and gone. You can keep track of what you’ve already got in stock for next year in your Christmas Planner – and get REALLY ahead!
What do you do when sorting things out after Christmas
… and when getting ready for the new year?
Get prepared for next year by thinking of what will be needed and planning ahead, relax before you go back to work/school, and appreciate the gifts you have been given – and you will be sorted after Christmas before you know it!