Winter is here! For some, you might already be experiencing the solder temperatures associated with this season. For others (like us) it may feel more like winter tomorrow rather than today. But regardless of whether how much it may, or may not, feel like winter outside, it's time for another list of tasks to get done around the house. Keep reading to find out more about some of the tasks we recommend adding to your to-do list this season.
Winterize Outdoor Plumbing
Below freezing temperatures do not mix well with outdoor plumbing. If you haven’t winterized your outdoor plumbing fixtures then this is the time to do it. Methods vary depending on the type of fixtures you have (hose hookup, sink, etc), so either jump online to research specifics for your equipment or put in a call to a professional who can do it for you instead. It is money well spent to avoid costlier damages.
Mix Up Your Décor
When it comes to home décor, how often do you switch things up? For many people we bet the answer to that is not all that often, save of course for putting up holiday decorations throughout the year. Switching up home décor can help make your home feel fresh without having to make many changes. To avoid making too many new purchases try swapping current items between rooms. Tackle this task during your post-holiday clean up, that way your home won’t feel so bare after putting all the holiday décor away. The project pictured to the left was completed and photographed several years ago. Last year it was featured in Country Sampler's Prairie Style magazine with new photos. Between the time of the two photoshoots the homeowners made a few changes to the decor including swapping some pieces out completely and changing the location of others. Take a look at the magazine's photos here.
General Winter Maintenance Tasks
As with every season, there are a handful of general maintenance tasks around the house that are ideal to get done this time of year. It might seem redundant since we also recommended this in the fall, but clean out your gutters again once the trees are done losing all their leaves to prep for the wetter spring months. Visually inspect trees for dead or broken branches and get them removed before any bad winter weather hits. Inside the house clean out the duct lines behind the dryer and inspect the washer hoses for signs of deterioration. Finally, ensure that your fire extinguishers are up to date on their inspections. And if you don’t have at least one extinguisher in your home add it to your shopping list.
Enjoy Some Downtime
The start of the winter season can often be a very busy time. Between preparing for and celebrating holidays, hosting guests, kids home from school for a few weeks, perhaps a vacation, and anything else you have planned, it can be easy to get caught up with little time to just take a deep breath. Set aside some time for yourself to just refresh and relax in whatever way works best for you. This could mean finding a quiet corner where you can read a book, catching up on a television show or watching your favorite movie, or even closing the blinds in your bedroom one weekend morning so that you can sleep in.
Clean/Organize Your Kitchen
Save this task until after the holidays are over! The last thing you want while prepping a big meal is to have to remember the new place you stored that one spoon you desperately need. But once things have calmed down, plan time to restore some order to your kitchen and hopefully make your life easier. Go through all the drawers and cabinets to get a good handle on just what you have stored away. Be on the lookout for things that may have gotten lost behind other items, items that you don’t use anymore or that you own double, and group and for ways to better store things that will make them easier for you to find or use in the future. And if you find that some extra clean up and reorganization just isn’t enough, then that leads us to our next task…
Plan Kitchen Remodels
The winter holiday season tends to be a time when the kitchen gets pushed to its max. This greater amount of use in one of the most essential rooms in the house can make it easier to see what ways it is up to par and in what ways it falls short. Instead of spending another year trying to work within the limitations of your kitchen, take the time to figure out which changes would make the most impact and start planning a remodel. Once the holiday season is over start contacting contractors to get the project put into motion so that there will be enough time to get everything finished before the 2018 holiday season comes along.