As the holidays approach, many of us will host small gatherings this year. But small get-togethers can still come with big messes. To prep for holiday company, Castle Keepers is always here for you, but for those in-between times, our friends at Hampers & Hiccups have provided some excellent advice on taming the clutter than comes with the holidays.

Christmas clutter doesn’t just mean wrapping paper and dirty dishes. Between now and the end of the year is an excellent time to purge clothes that your kids have outgrown, things you don’t wear and to tackle that toy box to rid the playroom of toys that are no longer favorites. As long as the items are clean and in good shape, you can donate them. Keep in mind that this year, thanks to COVID< many charities are only taking new donations, but organizations like Goodwill will always take these items off your hands.

Be thoughtful in your gifting, especially for your family. Think about the space they have, what their interests are, and what they would really use and enjoy. The last thing any of us need is one more knickknack to dust, so gifting experiences (like tickets) or consumables are always thoughtful.

Hampers & Hiccups authors Amy and Katelynn recommend streamlining your cleaning routine during the holidays so that you’re able to be more efficient during the busy season.  Not sure how to do this? Check out their post on Starting a Cleaning Routine. They also offer these helpful tips:

  • Have a family chat about working together to keep the house tidy and mess-free. Everyone should pitch in a little so that all family members can enjoy the holiday.
  • Designate special tasks to each family member if need be.
  • Gather scissors, screwdrivers, batteries, garbage bags ahead of time for the Christmas morning mess. By having everything ready you’ll be prepared, allowing you more couch minutes before you have to make breakfast or jet off to the next party.
  • Keep up on dishes. Clean up the supper dishes quickly to provide you more time with your family and guests. Start the dishwasher before bed and unload it in the morning so dirty dishes can go straight in during the day.

With a little preparation and a little help from the family, you can significantly reduce the holiday havoc and Christmas clutter that runs rampant in lots of homes this time of year. We’re wishing you peace, joy, health, and a stress-free holiday season!