We try very hard to make the holidays a time of celebration and fun with family, but it's an open secret that these are actually some of the most stressful days out of the year, next to tax time. Some of this stress can be traced to the management of space and things (the rest? People, time and money)...The clutter comes from all directions: out of storage come the gift wrapping supplies, and the tree and all of its trimmings. There are the gifts waiting by the door to go out, and, not least of all, gifts coming in. We take a few precautions to manage the material upheaval.
Tell the people who ask what we want for Christmas once, in an email, in advance (if "nothing" is the answer, we let them know).
Purge collections of commonly gifted things, like books, DVDs, CDs and sweaters before Christmas.
If we have a tree, add sweeping up the needles to the nightly routine.
What would you add to this list?