The cold weather is finally upon us here in Central New York, the leaves are falling, and pumpkin spice is inescapable. You are probably transitioning your wardrobe to prepare for winter: putting away the sandals and shorts while digging out boots and coats. This is an excellent time to transition your home to the next season as well. Make sure your space is comfy-cozy before the snow flies with these five essential tips: 1. Don't just pack away summer stuff, declutter it - As you put away summer clothes, patio furniture, and outdoor toys, take a few minutes to consider how much each item was used. If the whole season went by without anyone needing it, put it in the donation box. Think how much more streamlined you will be come next summer! 2. Address the entry - The change in weather means a lot more outerwear for every member of the family. Add storage in your entry for coats, shoes, hats, and gloves to minimize spillover into the house. Put down an absorbant floor mat or boot tray for wet, snowy shoes. Many of us have company during the holiday season so create a welcoming and comfortable entrance for your guests to use. 3. Rearrange kitchen tools - Our cooking habits change with the temperature outdoors. Cold weather means salads and smoothies take a backseat to soups and oven-roasted dinners. Think about the appliances, pots and pans, and gadgets that will be getting the most use this winter and move them to the prime real estate on your counters and in cabinets. You'll be much more likely to use that crockpot if you can access it easily. 4. Tackle seasonal cleaning projects - Take this time before the craziness of the holidays to wash windows, wipe down baseboards, and vacuum under large pieces of furniture. You'll feel more comfortable hunkering down for the winter knowing the house is clean. 5. Take care of routine maintenance - Use the change in season as a reminder to swap out batteries in smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, replace furnace and vacuum cleaner filters, repair cracks and leaks in door and window seals, and flip or turn mattresses.
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