5 Tricks to Get Organized Before the Holidays

Get Organized For The Holidays

Can you believe it’s October already?

I always look at October as the beginning of the end of the year, because so much happens from October thru December. We have Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas or Hanukkah, and New Year in quick succession. There are parties to attend, gifts to buy, and costumes to create, and it all happens in three short months! It’s important we stay organized so we can really enjoy this time of year.

I know that many of your kids just went back to school. It can be so hectic between back to school, homework, and activities, you may not have had time to catch your breath. Now the holidays are fast approaching, and the panic mode is starting to set in! For me, this time of year gets even busier as almost all my family birthdays happen from September–January.

I’ve decided to put together some organizational strategies to help parents stay on track, and help everyone get ready for the holidays. Try these five tricks to get organized now, and stay organized through the end of the year:

1. Purge what you can now.Take time to purge as many spaces as you can. Get a big trash bag and go through each room and closet. Get rid of anything you haven’t used in a year or more. Discard any old schoolwork, and, of course, any actual garbage that the kids are hiding under their beds. Soon you’ll have birthdays, holiday parties, and holiday gifts filling up every nook and cranny, so get rid of all you can now.
2. Create a series of lists to get yourself organized. Consider everything you have to do in the next three months, and make a to-do list for each activity. Make a list for all the parties you have coming up, and all the activities the kids are signed up for. You could even make a list of all the spaces you want to have organized before the end of the year. Keep your lists together, and keep them updated. There are some great apps to help. Try Paperless or Wonderlist free in the app store.
Make To Do Lists To Get Organized
3. Organize all the gear for your children’s activities. Consider investing in some lockers, or even simple hooks. The kids can hang their soccer gear on one hook, and the swimming stuff on another. Make a label for each hook, include the activity name, and the day of the week it’s used. This will ensure you aren’t rushing around trying to find things at the last minute, or showing up to piano with the soccer because you got the day mixed up.
4. Create a system for the kids’ schoolwork. After having a kindergartener last year I experienced first hand what you have all been telling me: “kids bring home soooo many papers everyday!” This year I set up one “In box” for ALL my kids’ papers. Here is the routine: I first throw out as much as I can as it comes in, and the papers I’m unsure of I throw in the “in-box” (it’s 9” x 11” x 3” tall). Once it’s full, I go through it and keep only a handful of papers that are truly worth keeping. This helps eliminate piles of papers everywhere and helps you to eliminate papers on a regular basis. Check out my post Schoolwork, Schoolwork, and More Schoolwork for ways to keep your children’s schoolwork.
Check back on your goals for the year. Have you reached them all?

What’s left to do? Can you cross a few more items off before the end of the year? It’s not too late to tackle the projects you’ve been putting off. If you’ve been procrastinating cleaning out the attic start today. Just go through one box, or put one piece of furniture on Craigslist, or better yet, donate it to your local charity store. Once you’ve started, you’ll have the momentum you need to cross it off your to-do list!

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