This February think about getting cozy, gathering with friends, enjoying more time for your hobbies and planning changes both big (like the sale of your home) and small (new paint colors). It may still be cold out there, but there’s plenty to do indoors. Here are 10 ideas to make the most of your month.
1. Plan for a spring or summer home sale. With warmer weather and kids out of school, summer is a popular time to sell or buy a home. If you are considering putting your home on the market this year, it’s a good idea to start planning now. Interview real estate agents, make a list of home projects that need to get done to help your home look its best, and line up work so any major projects will be completed in time.
2. Clean road salt from entrances. Road salt, melting snow, mud and grime can give the floors around entrances a beating this time of year. Clear away the clutter and give your floors a thorough cleaning. Then set up shelving or a tray to store boots near the door, and protect your floors with waterproof mats. Stash a few old towels in a basket near the door to quickly wipe up messes.
3. Clean interior windows. It may be too cold and icy to clean windows outside, but cleaning interior windows can still help boost light — something we could all use a bit more of during the winter.
4. Conserve energy and stay warm. Block drafts coming through cracks around doors with door sweeps or good old-fashioned door snakes. Keep doors shut to rooms you’re not using, and warm up with cozy rugs, throws and duvets.
5. Organize the craft area. If you enjoy crafting as a hobby, you probably find yourself doing more of it in the winter. And more crafting usually means more mess. Get a handle on your craft stash by sorting through your supplies and storing them in labeled bins, baskets and jars.
6. Clean the air. Treat your home to a few new houseplants this month to help boost interior air quality and add life to your home. Even if it’s cold where you live, try cracking open a window or two each day (even if only for a moment) to bring in some fresh air. Clean or replace furnace filters as needed. And if you have allergies or are concerned about the quality of air where you live, look into getting an air purifier as well.
7. Give your bath a spa-inspired makeover. Details can make a big impact in a small space like the bathroom. Bring in fresh white towels, a new shower curtain and liner, and a few organic accents, like potted plants and a wooden stool. Then be sure to make time for a relaxing soak in your refreshed bathroom!
8. Pick up some paint swatches. Fight off winter doldrums by focusing on ways to enhance your home with color. Visit a paint store and scoop up swatches. Play around with potential color combinations by pinning your favorites to a bulletin board. By the time spring rolls around, you’ll be ready to break out the paintbrushes.
9. Invite friends into the kitchen for “freezer cooking.” Make lighter work for all by inviting friends to participate in a day of cooking, with the express purpose of making dinners that can be stored in the freezer. Go in on ingredients and make a really big batch of chili, pans of lasagna or whatever strikes your fancy — just remind guests to bring their own containers to take food home.
10. Treat your home (and yourself) to fresh flowers. With Valentine’s Day this month, the markets are bound to be bursting with blooms — and often at good prices. Why not treat yourself to a weekly bouquet?