Make the Christmas Season Memorable

It’s so easy to get wrapped up in the hustle and bustle of Christmas. That’s why I think it’s a good idea to make gift buying as easy as possible, plan ahead when it comes to sending Christmas cards, and be deliberate about the Christmas season.

One of the ways we can enjoy December is to be deliberate about making the Christmas season memorable.

Your task for today is to look at your calendar and schedule specific time to make memories with your family. Don’t let all of those events and activities sneak up on you!

Do you want to drive around and look at the lights? Pack and OCC box? Make cookies with your kids? Deliver coats to the homeless shelter? Have friends over to watch a Christmas classic movie?

Get it on the calendar!

cover_b-300x253

One of the things I’ve wanted to do with my kids the past few years is go through Truth in the Tinsel: An advent experience for little hands. My kids are finally both at the age that I think it would be fun…and beneficial. So, I’ve looked though the ebook, ordered supplies, and scheduled time on the calendar to make some memories with my boys. I can’t wait!
Work on your December calendar today…then let me know when you’re finished. I’d love to know what you are most looking forward to this Christmas!

Your assignment for today:

  • Continue working on habit #10.
  • Schedule your Christmas activities.
  • Add this task to your personal cleaning schedule so it doesn’t sneak up on you again!

Check in when you’re finished in the Spring Cleaning 365 accountability group, in the comment section here, or on Facebook. I can’t wait to hear from you!

Read full story · Comments { 2 }

Get Prepared to Send Christmas Cards

I’ve been horrible about sending Christmas Cards the past few years. I blame it on being consumed with babies and toddlers the past 5 years…and moving twice. But I can’t use that excuse forever. This year I want to be prepared!!

As we speed through our holiday-prep, let’s take a few minutes today to get prepared to send Christmas Cards.

Get Prepared to Send Christmas Cards

1. Get your list together.

  • Create a single document to keep your addresses together.
  • Request addresses from friends and family if you don’t have them. (To save time, send them a Google Drive Form to fill out. It will automatically import their info into an excel doc.)

2. Find Christmas cards.

  • Do you need to take a family picture to include? If so, schedule a time on the calendar.
  • Search for a photo deal. You can often get a huge discount on your photo cards if you look for deals. I’ll make sure to alert you to any I find. 
  • If you like traditional cards, make it easy on yourself and order online :)

3. Schedule a time to sign and address your Christmas cards.

  • Maybe make it a family event! Hot chocolate, Christmas music, crackling fire…sounds like a party to me!

I know it may seem early to think about this, but there are only 8 weeks until Christmas. CRAZY! It’s time to get to work!

Your assignment for today:

  • Continue working on habit #10.
  • Get prepared to sign and send Christmas cards.
  • Add this task to your personal cleaning schedule so it doesn’t sneak up on you again!

Check in when you’re finished in the Spring Cleaning 365 accountability group, in the comment section here, or on Facebook. I can’t wait to hear from you!

 

Read full story · Comments { 0 }

Make it EASY to shop for Christmas

Well, you asked for it…so you’re going to get it! The overwhelming response to my question earlier this week was that you wanted to clean your home top-to-bottom before the busy holiday season. So that’s what we’re going to do. We’re going to get our homes “Holiday Ready” beginning November 1.

Since the second most requested project was Holiday Prep, we’re going to do a speed prep the next three days. So hold tight and hang on!

Gift Giving Made Easy

Prepare your Christmas Gift List

Thanksgiving is less than 4 weeks away. That means family members are going to ask you for your Christmas List very, very soon. At least that’s how it works in my family.

Since we do NOT want to clutter our homes with more “stuff” to clean and organize, we might as well be prepared – be deliberate – about gifts this year. You can always request that family members don’t give gifts. But I know that doesn’t always work. That’s why I think it’s a good idea to keep an ongoing list of needs or wants throughout the year.

As I think of things that could be useful to daily living, I like to put them on an Amazon Wish List. My husband has one. My kids have one.

It’s glorious for a few reasons:

  1. Placing items on a wish lists curbs want-itis. It slows down your personal buying process because you want to have a diverse list to give others. It also helps determine what could be impulse purchases because you might find yourself deleting items from the list months later.
  2. It’s EASY. One click of a button will add an item to your wish list. You can even add links to items not found on Amazon.
  3. You can share all your wants/needs with family with one simple link. They’ll like it because they can easily choose items based on their budget and they can all be shipped right to their door!
  4. Once an item from your wish list is purchased, everyone with access will be notified. That means no duplicates which means no standing in the return line the day after Christmas!

In case you aren’t familiar with Amazon Wish Lists, here’s how to set one up.

1. Go to Amazon.com.

2. Click “Wish List” in the top right hand corner.

Amazon wish list 1

3. Click “Create a Wish List.”

amazon wish list 2

4. Rename your wish list. Preferably something obvious like “Your Name Wish List” to make it easy for your family.

amazon wish list 3

5. Repeat steps 3-4 if you want to create another wish list for your kids, spouse, etc.

6. Repeat steps 3-4 to create a “to buy” wish list.

  • This makes it EASY to keep track of what you’re buying your own family.
  • It makes it EASY to stay within budget.
  • AND you will most likely get free shipping since buying multiple items at the same time will most likely be over the $25 dollar free shipping limit.

However, you could always sign up for a free trial of Amazon Prime to get free shipping for 30 days.

7. Fill your wish list with USEFUL items and be ready to share with family as soon as they ask!! Just click, “Share with friends” and send a link.

amazon wish list 5

 

I know many of you already use Amazon but I am amazed at how many people I talk to that don’t use it. You may already have a process that you love when sending Christmas Lists and Buying Gifts. But, if not, using the Wish List feature on Amazon makes the gift-giving season simple!

Your task for today is to set up a wish list…or at least make a list of items that would be helpful to you and not clutter up your home. Then share this post with your entire family so THEY can make it easy for YOU to buy gifts this year!! :)

Your assignment for today:

  • Continue working on habit #10.
  • Set up an Amazon wish list!

Check in when you’re finished in the Spring Cleaning 365 accountability group, in the comment section here, or on Facebook. I can’t wait to hear from you!

 

 

Read full story · Comments { 2 }

Oil Door Hinges

squeaky door hinge

So…this is something I would never do unless someone prompted me. But every once in a while I need to oil the door hinges in my house to get the squeaks out.

I don’t really notice the noise in the middle of the day. But at night…they are sooo loud! It never fails that when I’m trying to be quite, I crash, drop, or squeak just about everything I touch!

If you can relate, grab a can of WD-40 and take a little time today to oil the squeaky door hinges in your home. While you’re at it, oil those loud rocking chairs, drawers, etc.

Easy enough, right!

Your assignment for today:

  • Continue working on habit #10.
  • Oil door hinges.
  • Add this task to your personal cleaning schedule so it doesn’t sneak up on you again!

Check in when you’re finished in the Spring Cleaning 365 accountability group, in the comment section here, or on Facebook. I can’t wait to hear from you!

Read full story · Comments { 0 }

Clean Throw Pillows & Blankets

wash throw pillows

When is the last time you cleaned your throw pillows and blankets? Since they’re usually just hanging out in the corner of the room, they can often be overlooked.

But in case you haven’t noticed, it’s getting colder outside. That means we’ll be curled up on the couch soon enough!

Take some time today to clean the throw pillows and blankets scattered throughout your home. Then check in for some accountability and virtual high-fives!!

Your assignment for today:

  • Continue working on habit #10.
  • Clean blankets and throw pillows.
  • Add this task to your personal cleaning schedule so it doesn’t sneak up on you again!

Check in when you’re finished in the Spring Cleaning 365 accountability group, in the comment section here, or on Facebook. I can’t wait to hear from you!

Read full story · Comments { 0 }

Time to change the batteries in the smoke alarm and carbon monoxide detector?

When is the last time you changed your batteries in your smoke alarm or carbon monoxide detector? Do you know?

smoke alarm

There are several triggers we can use to remember when to change the batteries:

  • Change the batteries when the time changes for Daylight Savings Time (even though it’s not exactly 6 months between the times we “Spring Forward” or “Fall Back”).
  • Use the change in seasons like Spring and Fall to remember to change the twice a year.
  • Change them once a year on an important day (your birthday, New Years Day, etc.)

Whichever way you choose, make it consistent…and then put it as a repeating event on your cleaning schedule or calendar!

If you haven’t changed the batteries in your smoke alarm and carbon monoxide detector in a while, stock up on batteries and then change them out. It just might save your life!

Your assignment for today:

  • Continue working on habit #10.
  • Replace those batteries!
  • Add this task to your personal cleaning schedule. It’s an important one!!

Check in when you’re finished in the Spring Cleaning 365 accountability group, in the comment section here, or on Facebook. I can’t wait to hear from you!

Affiliate links included.

Read full story · Comments { 0 }

Replace Your HVAC/Furnace Filter

I bet you replace your HVAC or furnace filter every month. Or every three months if you use the heavy-duty, pleated furnace filters. If so, you are on top of it!

Furnace filter needed replacing... just a little...

But on the slim chance that you’ve let this little task slide for a while, take a few minutes today to replace your HVAC/furnace filter. Stop by the store and pick one up. Or…if you’re lazy (uh…I mean efficient!) like me, then just stock up for the year by ordering furnace filters for the year on Amazon. Your unit will thank you :)

Your assignment for today:

  • Continue working on habit #10.
  • Replace your air filter(s)!
  • Add this task to your personal cleaning schedule. This is a chore that definitely shouldn’t be skipped!

Check in when you’re finished in the Spring Cleaning 365 accountability group, in the comment section here, or on Facebook. I can’t wait to hear from you!

photo credit

Read full story · Comments { 0 }

Prepare Your Coat Closet for Fall

We’re finished with our Fall outdoor chores…at least for now! So how about moving back inside today? Let’s get our coat closet ready for the cold Fall and Winter season!

coat closet

Prepare Your Coat Closet for Fall

In my home, we use our coat closet to store backpacks, a few shoes, and a couple of toys. That means we’re in our coat closet all the time. But I’m sure some of you haven’t even cracked the door since Spring.

Today, let’s open that door and take a peek. (For those of you without a traditional coat closet, you can apply these same principles to whatever area of the home you store coats.)

First, clean out the coat closet:

  • Remove anything that doesn’t belong. In my case, that would be the kids’ toys!
  • Try on coats and jackets. If they don’t fit, sell or donate.
  • Sweep or vacuum the floor, door, shelves, and walls if needed.

Then, organize the coat closet:

  • Organize scarves and gloves.
  • Replace coats and jackets that fit.
  • Determine if you need anything new (gloves, jackets, raincoats, umbrellas, etc.) and write it down so you don’t forget.

Finally, enjoy the rest of your day!

Your assignment for today:

  • Continue working on habit #10.
  • Clean and organize your coat closet.
  • Add this task to your personal cleaning schedule so it doesn’t sneak up on you again!

Check in when you’re finished in the Spring Cleaning 365 accountability group, in the comment section here, or on Facebook. I can’t wait to hear from you!

Read full story · Comments { 0 }

Plan Your Week

Since the last book I mentioned was about being crazy busy, I thought I’d slow down on the book recommendations. You know, make things…uh, less busy!

top 3 to do

Nevertheless, if you haven’t jumped on the reading train yet (or need something new to read), here’s a recap of the books I’ve recommended so far:

If you’re a reader, I can’t recommend these books enough! Try reading in iBooks or the Kindle to stay clutter-free.
You can read eBooks on most devices using the FREE Kindle Reading App!

Now on to our daily task…

Write down every single thing that you need to accomplish this week. Then schedule those things (but make sure they’re the RIGHT things) on your calendar. That way you’ll know WHEN you will accomplish those things on your to-do list.

It will be 5-15 minutes well spent!

Your assignment for today:

Check in when you’re finished in the Spring Cleaning 365 accountability group, in the comment section here, or on Facebook. I can’t wait to hear from you!

Affiliate links included.

Read full story · Comments { 0 }

Play in the Leaves!

rake leaves

Do you have leaves falling all over your yard?

I do!

ALL over.

But I really don’t mind. I think those yellow, orange, and brown leaves are absolutely beautiful.

Even though fallen leaves make it really feel like Autumn, Landscaping experts say they should still be picked up periodically. At least if we want to keep our yard in decent shape.

So that’s what we’re going to do today…rake those leaves!

  • Set a timer.
  • Grab a rake or blower.
  • Work to remove as many leaves from our yard as possible in 5-15 minutes.

Don’t worry if you don’t remove all of the leaves because more will most definitely fall from the trees by the end of the day. No need to stress, right? They are just leaves. And it’s just grass :)

Grab your kids if you have them and have some fun! They can play. They can help. But most importantly, they can make some fun Fall memories with you!!

Your assignment for today:

  • Continue working on habit #10.
  • Play in the leaves!
  • Add this task to your personal cleaning schedule if it needs to be done regularly.

Check in when you’re finished in the Spring Cleaning 365 accountability group, in the comment section here, or on Facebook. I can’t wait to hear from you!

 

Read full story · Comments { 1 }