Time for Turkey – and De-cluttering: Dining Room Prep from a Boston Professional Organizer

Organizing dining room for holidays

Ding-dong. Grandma is at the door. With her pumpkin pie and high expectations. Okay, so perhaps we have a bit of time before the turkey makes its return, but not much. There are about three weeks until T-day. It’s time to get your dining room in order.

If you are like most of my clients, the dining room is a dumping ground for laundry, unopened mail, completed school projects, and anything else that needs to be pushed aside from the rest of the first floor rooms. It’s more of a disaster zone than a dining room. The good news is with a small chunk of time from your day – and a few tips from a professional organizer (yours truly) – you can return your feasting room to normal and have it ready for a tasty Thanksgiving dinner.

  • Carve out one hour from your day – Half the battle is taking the time to get this done. Put it on the calendar, and prepare to execute (all while knowing that it’s for the greater good of delicious food). DO NOT LEAVE THE ROOM DURING THAT HOUR, and even better, set a timer. Have your coffee nearby, put some music on, and sink your teeth in.
  • Prepare an organization path – It’s important to avoid jumping from one section of the room to the other. This is not efficient and you ultimately feel unaccomplished. Start in one corner as you enter the room and work your way around the room.
  • Create dedicated piles for items that need to be put away – A pile for each kid’s room, a pile of laundry, shoes for the mud room, etc. Remember, we’re making piles so you can put away when your hour expires.
  • Resist the Urge to Clean – Yes, this seems counterintuitive, but the goal is to focus on de-cluttering, and you can clean once the room is ready for a polish.

When the timer rings at the end of the hour, take the time to take the dedicated piles to the correct room. When you do this, your dining room will be clear and ready for the fun part – cleaning, and then seasonal and oh-so festive décor!

This “de-clutter hour” is highly effective, and you should schedule these for different rooms 1 or 2 times each week. You’ll be amazed at how much you can de-clutter each week!

Photo: Modern Vintage Coastal


Leave a Reply