Article by Wendy McCance
For me, the holiday season is the winter version of spring cleaning. Why? Pulling holiday decorations out of storage means moving other items that have been stored away just to get to the desired decorations. Many times, what has been stored away is something that has been long forgotten. Long forgotten + never used = Toss it out (when I can emotionally let go of whatever the item is).
I use the same rule for each room of the house. During the holidays, as decorations go up, papers get tossed, old cooking ingredients like spices are thrown away and the refrigerator is scanned for outdated bottles and jars.
The holidays are a time when family and friends tend to visit more frequently. When hosting guests, there’s less stress when everything is in order and you can relax. Ragged towels are disposed of as are worn out sheets. Chipped dishes are also tossed. Any item which has accumulated dust from lack of use goes into the trash as well.
I try to incorporate the additional cleanup into my daily and weekly chores instead of making a separate effort to focus just on the old, outdated and never used items. I find that I notice what needs to be let go of more often when I am doing the weekly task of cleaning drawers and dusting shelves.
Looking to do your own cleanup for the holidays? Check out the list below for a little inspiration to get you started.
What items should you finally toss in the trash?
1. Chipped dishes
2. Dust collecting knick-knacks that don’t give you a sentimental feeling and have no practical value.
3. Anything with holes; shirts, socks, sheets and towels.
4. Any item that is missing part of a pair. A pair of socks or a pair of earrings.
5. Papers that don’t need to be held onto.
6. Magazines that have been read or will never be glanced at.
7. Toys the kids have long outgrown.
8. Any broken item that you know you’ll never fix.
9. Cleaning products that are so old they are no longer effective.
10. Old nail polish.
11. Pens and markers that are all dried up.
12. Shoes that don’t fit properly.
13. Clothing that’s too small, stretched out or out of style.
14. Kitchen utensils you never use.
15. Non microwavable plates and bowls that you never use because you can’t put them in the microwave.
16. Bent or broken hangers.
17. Food that has been sitting in the pantry well beyond its expiration date.
18. Broken jewelry that has no value.
19. Gift bags, ribbon and wrapping paper you keep meaning to use but haven’t in over a year.
20. Holiday decorations you no longer use.
To contact Wendy McCance about a writing or social media assignment, interview or speaking engagement, please email her at: firstname.lastname@example.org
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