12 Ways To Reuse All Of Your Christmas Clutter

12 Ways To Reuse All Of Your Christmas Clutter

Be festive, environmentally conscious, and politically active all at once!

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If you're like most people, you probably did nothing useful in the week in-between Christmas and New Year's. That means your leftovers are rotting, your decorations are still up, and there's probably wrapping paper shoved underneath your couch. This year it's time to stop putting it off. Here are twelve ways you can repurpose all your Christmas-season junk.

1. Save your boxes and bags

If you save the gift bags others gave you your gifts in, you don't have to worry about spending more money next year just to wrap gifts.

2. Freeze leftovers 

It's too late at this point for Christmas leftovers (please throw those away), but if you made lots of food for your New Year's Eve party and have leftovers, freezing them will make them last longer and save you money.

3. Get creative with old wrapping paper

If your torn wrapping paper can't be recycled, try using it in crafts instead of buying new paper. Decoupage, origami, you name it!

4. Make crumbs 

Just crunch up all those old cookies and use it for a crumb crust for something else.

5. Make snowflakes with all the gift receipts 

If you haven't returned all your Christmas gifts and still have those receipts sitting around, make some use of them! Receipts are the worst kind of paper, since they can't be recycled or burned, but you're creative, right? Use them to make mini paper snowflakes. Those aren't limited to the holiday season alone.

6. Make cutting-edge hair ties with leftover ribbons

Ribbons are also difficult to reuse. But your house is probably so dirty you can't find anything, including your hair ties, so keep that festive spirit going and incorporate ribbon into your daily look.

7. Lead a scientific breakthrough 

Instead of taking down all those Christmas lights you spent way too long stringing on the outside of your house, launch an investigation into why the bulbs always burn out after one year.

8. Unwanted nutcrackers can become effigies 

You probably need to de-clutter and pare down your holiday decorations. But you also need to take a stand for political activism. You can merge the two by using unwanted nutcrackers or other humanoid figures to serve as effigies for political figures you dislike. Nothing like a little ceremonial effigy-burning to ring in the new year!

9. Use your tree as a Scylla before your doorway 

If you're one of the few left that haven't switched over to artificial trees, by now your Christmas tree has likely become a prickly nightmare. And with your bounty of Christmas gifts, now would be one of the worst times to get robbed. So, simply set up your tree in whatever secret location would most effectively deter intruders, like an ancient sailor-eating monster of old.

11. Make disciplinary tools out of branches

If you aren't thrilled about keeping your whole Christmas tree inside your house but still want to re-purpose it for violent methods, cut off a branch or two and switch your kids with it when they're acting up. Kids do get so crazy this time of year.

11. Use that Bible as a bookend

You probably still have your Bible sitting somewhere inconvenient from when you brought it out for the Christmas Eve candlelight service. And you're probably not going to open it again until Easter, so you may as well put it out of the way, perhaps using it to prop up other books you never actually read.

12. Discover the power of re-branding 

Ultimately, every leftover holiday treat, trash, and decoration comes down to how you view it. You don't have to worry about cleaning up anything if you only change your point of view! Throw some paper hearts on your Christmas tree. Bam, Valentine's Day tree. Anything can happen if you let it.

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Dear Seasonal Depression, I'm Ready For The Day When You're Out Of My Life

I don't want to lie in my bed for hours when my hobbies and friends are waiting for me.

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Dear Seasonal Depression,

As the weather got colder I realized you made your return. The same time every year you begin to shut me down until spring peaks months later. And once that one semi-nice day that randomly appears in winter, you know, the one day where it's 55 degrees and sunny, I realize just how good the outside and fresh sunlight feels. That one fresh day in the middle of all this cold and snow reminds me that spring is coming soon and with it, your demise. So Seasonal Depression, so unbelievably ready for the end of winter and the end of you.

I'm ready for the days where I don't lie in bed for hours and hours on my days off and struggling to get up on time on the days that I work. I'm tired of staring at my phone screen for hours in my bed rather than doing anything productive at all, even for my own needs like eating breakfast or finally getting up to go to the bathroom. I'm thrilled for the days where a nap is just an hour because I'm a little tired, not three or four just to make the day go by quicker.

I'm ready for the days where I don't feel sluggish, the days where my energy is just so damn low, the days where I'm just exhausted all the time. I'm tired of just making it through the day, feeling agitated during all the times where I don't feel sad. And I'm equally tired of my lack of concentration lately since my mind wonders a lot more because of you.

I'm ready for the days where I can start sleeping well again. You see, Seasonal Depression, since you've arrived I've had just as much trouble falling asleep as I do getting up in the morning. My nights are spent being restless and overthinking pretty much every little thing since you've joined me.

I'm ready for the days where I can shed all the weight I put on because of you. You know, with the overeating and the stress eating, and the not being hungry for meals but for snacks late at night. I'm ready to walk the reservoirs, run on treadmills, bike the mountains, express the need to release all this energy I haven't had since you settled in with the cold.

I'm ready for the days where my love and interest in my hobbies can shine instead of sitting in the back of my head in the forms of hopeful ideas. I'm tired of never wanting to do the things I loved and I'm so ready to jump onto projects that I have been sitting on.

You see, Seasonal Depression, I'm really tired of you pulling me down. I don't want these feelings of emptiness and sadness, I don't want to lay in my bed for hours when my hobbies and friends are waiting for me, and I certainly don't want these thoughts that being dead would be better than this. I'm done with you soon. Once winter ends, you'll slowly fade away and I'll be able to smile just a little more every single day.

That is.... until you come back next year...

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From The Girl Who Has Always Been The Odd One Out

All I wanted was to be friends and all they wanted was to push me away.

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Hi, I constantly surround myself with women in my life and somehow it always backfires.

So as a little girl I would constantly want to have friends and I would always be the nice girl that always tried to love everyone. Starting in elementary school I remember constantly being told that I cant play with the other girls and was always ran away from.

Being a young human I was very confused why girls never wanted to be my friend, all I ever did was tried to be nice and friendly to them. I even recall one time doing really stupid stuff on the playground for them to like me but it didn't work. I assumed I was always destined to be the odd one out with a good group of girlfriends.

This occurred when I was in dance too, I always tried making friends with everyone on the team but I was always constantly pushed away or thought of as weird because I was too nice. All I wanted was to be friends and all they wanted was to push me away and be rude, making fun of me for things I couldn't control like how skinny I was or my personality.

Going into middle school I remember being terrified of going because I was going from elementary school to middle school with no friends. I became friends with a few but slowly lost them over time because I realized they weren't good people and I didn't want to surround myself with that sort of negativity. This, of course, left me feeling lost and confused as to why I was being so kind and going out of my way to impress and make these girls like me.

There were a few months in the 7th grade that I was alone and had no friends at all, still sitting with my old friends that constantly bullied me and made me feel like shit. I didn't know what to do so I just endured the bullying from these girls that didn't understand me instead of being alone.

In all of my classes I would talk to all of the girls and try to be friends with them but I was pushed aside because they already had their friend group and I wasn't supposed to be part of it. Soon my luck turned around and I reconnected with one of my friends from elementary school and she introduced me to her friends. Those friends, though small are still together to this day 10 years later.

When I went to college I knew that I was going to experience the same thing that I experienced when I was going into middle school and high school. So, I had the brilliant idea to join a sorority because that was smart of me. I thought that since I liked doing community service and I wanted to make new friends that I would join…

The first few days were good, I felt included but very quickly I was again pushed to the side because everyone had now created their friend groups and I tried so hard to become friends with everyone. I had a very few amount of friends within my sorority and I felt like they were only there because they felt sorry for me. Now, I am no longer in the sorority or at the college I originally attended and no longer speak with anyone from there.

I just never fully understood why being a girl in this day and age was so hard for me when all I ever did was be the best person and true self I could be. I was never fake and never tried to be someone I wasn't just so I would be able to fit in. Now, I have my very few friends and I have realized that's all you really need sometimes.

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