Lights are stored, the tree is down, and holiday decor rests in boxes in the storage area, waiting for next year.
Then you turn the corner and spot an overlooked Santa, shining on top of the piano.
In the refrigerator, the holiday butter dish hides the last remnants of a stick of butter. Holiday linens, napkins and kitchen towels pop up in the laundry area this week, next week and the week after.
Christmas is a time of cheer ... and clutter! You'll find Christmas clutter lining each box and storage bin as you pull out holiday decorations.
An ornament box spills over with hanging hooks and zip ties. The tiny red-tipped light bulbs you need to make light strands blink. Special tools and assembly sheets for your "nevergreen" artificial tree. The dandy gun-shaped light tester, complete with instructions and replacement bulbs. Left to their own devices, they scatter around the house, never to be found when you need them--but popping up to haunt you right into the new year.
How to bring order to Christmas clutter? An under-tree storage box.
For many families, Christmas comes not once a year, but lingers on for months! Credit card bills arrive shortly after season’s end, not to be paid off until the following summer. Nearly two-thirds of American families don't know the true cost of their own Christmas celebration--and if they did, they'd be shocked. That much ... for a single day?
Fight the seasonal spending spree with the financial tool of choice: a Christmas budget. Try these ideas to create--and keep!--a holiday budget to save money on Christmas.
What do you really want for Christmas? Our ideas may differ in the details, but most of us want much the same thing: a seasonal celebration focused on faith, family and friends.
We want the excitement of the season without the disruption that too often comes with it. We want to draw closer to those around us, not to be thrust apart by hectic schedules. We want to enjoy as well as to prepare, and to keep the Christmas season in a manner that is joyous and spiritually centered.
Problem is, it’s easy to get caught up in the seasonal whirlwind! Tradition, the media, family expectations and the economy lean on our decision-making, each with a different agenda. Unconscious forces can distort our celebration for reasons that have nothing to do with what we truly want from the holiday.
Sleepy in the shower, it's easy to mistake the shampoo for the conditioner, and vice versa. Tired of squinting at the bottles in the steam? Wrap a rubber band around the shampoo bottle to find it by feel, every time.