Can you all believe it’s almost 2020? It took me awhile to really register that a completely new decade is coming. It makes it all feel so much bigger and more important, and makes me want to get started on organizing for the new year.
I look forward to every new year since it allows for a fresh start, full of hope and plans and goals. This year, I’m doubling down on that and actually writing things down and making a plan for how I want my year to go, and how I’m going to achieve my goals. So if you’re looking for inspiration, here is how I’m getting organized for the new year.
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1. Buy a Planner, and Start Writing
I used to be a 100% technology girl when it came to tracking my life and calendar. I still use the calendar app on my laptop and phone since they sync easily and I’m constantly using one or the other, but I have heavily shifted over to using paper to track all of our day-to-day activities. I’ve found that the actual act of writing down to-dos, or important dates, helps me remember them; more so than if I’ve just typed them into an app on my phone. So find a good planner that works for you, and start writing. (My current favorite is the Day Designer.)
Wondering where to start? Try listing out birthdays for family and friends, then pick a day in January to stop by your local greeting card store or Target and grab cards for the most important dates. Also write out holidays, days off from work, any due dates for recurring bills, and the months when you’re due for visits to the doctor or dentist. Set a reminder for yourself to schedule those appointments.
2. Set Up and/or Review Your Subscribe & Save
As a busy mom, Amazon’s Subscribe & Save service is a lifesaver. If you have little ones in diapers, set it up to deliver those monthly so you never have to think about it. We also use Subscribe & Save for baby wipes, cleaning supplies, vitamins — the list goes on and on. I like to do a review of what’s on our list at the beginning of the year, and modify as necessary.
3. Set Aside a Few Dates for Self Care
Ok moms, this is especially for you. Let’s all make a vow to try to avoid feeling burnt out and putting ourselves last for the entire year. It’s ok to take some time for yourself!
Take some time to map out any special activities you would like to do, and figure out how you can make them happen. Make a rough schedule for a spa day (or, let’s be honest, most of us would be happy with just an hour!), your hair appointments, and at least one girls’ night out. Text your girlfriends to set it up, or at the very least, get the idea planted and the discussion going!
4. Clean Out Your Closet (and Your Kids’ Closets Too!)
I joined the Marie Kondo train for a bit earlier this year and did a major purge of my wardrobe, but the new year is also a great time to do a review of your clothing, so I plan to do another overhaul in January.
Some quick steps to help you get started with closet organization:
- Turn all of your hangers around in the closet. As you wear items, turn the hangers back around. At the end of the month, take a look at what you haven’t worn and decide whether to keep it, donate it, or throw it out. Be ruthless and try not to keep things that you don’t love.
- Organize your closet by item type, using closet dividers if you like. (I have these; similar Amazon Prime option here.) Take a look at what you have in each category and donate what you don’t wear. Afterwards, make a list of items that you need, and wait for sales to stock up. I love using the Nordstrom Anniversary sale as an opportunity to restock basics, closet staples, and to add a few trendier pieces.
- For your kids, put any clothes that no longer fit in a donation pile. If you have sentimental items you don’t want to give away or throw out, buy a small plastic bin to store those pieces.
5. Go Through Your Medicine Cabinet
I’m always kind of shocked by how much expired medicine we have hanging around, and how many items we have multiples of.
Go through your medicine cabinet and check the expiration dates. Throw out anything that has expired (though note that a number of medicines may still be safe to use in a pinch, and are just less potent). Make a list of which meds you need to replace, or add them to your Amazon cart as you go through your cabinet.
Don’t forget to go through your kids’ medicine as well, and restock anything you’re low on to ensure you don’t run out at just the wrong time. Some items we like to keep on hand: children’s versions of tylenol, motrin, and benadryl, a natural cough medicine (I like this one from Hyland’s), bandaids, saline solution and a Nose Frida to help stuffy noses, and a good quality ear thermometer.
6. Take a Minute to Reflect on the Previous Year
This is one step that I’m really looking forward to doing this year. Take a step back — whether with your journal, planner, or just a piece of paper — and think about the past year. Write down what worked, what didn’t, what made you happy, and what you would like to change. Next, write down your goals for the next year, and jot down some ideas for how you can achieve them. Bonus points for making them SMART goals!
What are you doing to prep for the new year?