Saturday, September 4, 2010

112 Days to Tame Christmas Clutter

What do cleaning up the clutter and Christmas shopping have in common?

Lots! Well, at least these five things.

1. Clean out the overflow of toys and clothes before Christmas. Make room for the new or new-to-you toys and clothes that will be under the tree on Christmas morning. It's likely that your kids will get a lot for Christmas, possibly more than they need. I know mine will. Between myself, my husband and our extended families, it's overload. Be sure to make room in the months before the holiday. Have a garage sale, donate to Goodwill or the Salvation Army, pass clothes and toys on to younger friends and relatives or participate in a fall consignment sale.

2. Earn money for Christmas shopping by selling your extra stuff! I just padded my Christmas shopping fund by selling the changing table and a small dresser on Craig's List. I'm also participating in a consignment sale this month. I'm going to be selling outgrown toddler clothing, cloth diapers, some toys and a few other odds and ends.

3. Think about why you have too much clutter before you Christmas shop. I admit that I buy my kids too much stuff at Christmastime. I need to work on that. I get caught up in the excitement and I'm sure I try to make up for my childhood Christmases. I think that's pretty common for kids who grew up poor. This year, I vow to buy less and focus more on family and enjoying our time together. The truth is, we may not have had a lot of gifts when we were kids, but Christmas was very special and fun just the same. I have a lot of fond Christmas memories of my siblings and I decorating the Christmas tree, eating dinner at my grandmother's house and playing games like Scrabble with my Aunt Gail, Aunt Laura, Uncle Neal and my mom.

4. Are you contributing to someone else's clutter? Buying presents for friends and family is fun, but are you buying thoughtful, useful gifts? Or do the presents tend to be things that become clutter? Knick-knacks, clothing and many other things can turn into clutter as soon as the gift wrap is ripped off. Gift giving is fun, but try to give consumables that you know the gift receiver will use.

5. Tame Christmas Decoration Overload. It can be hard to resist those cute little holiday decorations, especially when they are on sale. Decorating for the holidays is fun, but it can also be a source of clutter. If you've got boxes of unused decorations, this is the time to sort through them and donate or sell what you don't use. Before you add to the collection, take stock of what your decorating needs are.

Don't forget that there's only three more days to enter the give away! Click on the link and leave a comment on the give away blog post to be officially entered.


  1. Good idea. Think I will put some Christmas stuff in fall yard sale. Barb, have you blogged about yard sales here?

  2. I have blogged about yard sales. You can copy and paste the web address below into your browser. I don't know how to create a link in a comment - lol! That's something I need to learn.

  3. Oh - good luck with your fall sale!

  4. wow...I just found your blog..what a good idea...15 minutes a day...hmmm. Seeing as how my house is always a wreck and I have piles of "stuff" everywhere this may work for me...I'll def be back reading here..
    come visit my blog if you'd like to see all my junk...haha

  5. Thanks, Holly! Don't forget to enter the give away for Peter Walsh's book. The drawing is tomorrow. Just leave a comment on the post titled "A Give Away, A Give Away".