Winter Cleanup: Digital To-Do List to Start the Year Fresh

We’re less than a week into the New Year, which means most of us haven’t yet given up on our resolutions. It’s the perfect time of year to pack things up and get organized for the winter months. Nothing really makes us feel more refreshed than a thorough home cleaning after the holiday season, but few of us remember to do the same with our devices. Computers, smartphones, and tablets can get pretty cluttered throughout the year. Given how much we use our devices on a daily basis, that clutter can cause some major headaches. Start the year off right and finish off your winter cleanup with a few reminders on this 2017 digital to-do list.

Winter Cleanup: Digital To-Do List for 2017


Purge Your Inbox

Even those of us with the most organized email accounts get cluttered from time to time. Allowing it to build up is only going to stress us out, so it’s important once every few months to delete anything we don’t need, update our folders and sort all of our old messages. Not only will it make finding information a lot easier on our email platforms, it will free up a ton of space and give us a chance to unsubscribe to annoying emails.

Contact List Cleanup

Our email accounts can get pretty cluttered, but even though we may go a few months without cleaning up our inboxes, eventually we get the job done. The same can’t always be said for our contact lists. Wherever you keep your contact lists, whether it’s in your email account, on your laptop, in your cell phone or synced up across all your devices, it’s a healthy idea to go through and delete all that information you don’t need.

Delete Unused Apps

With so many free apps available across all our devices, it’s pretty easy to build up a collection we just don’t use. If you haven’t checked how much space all your apps are taking up or how much data they’re eating up with unchecked notifications, you’ll be amazed at how many apps you downloaded during the year that you don’t need, happy with how much space you’ve cleared out and pleased to decrease your overall data use.


Winter Cleanup: Digital To-Do List for 2017

Change Passwords

Regularly changing your passwords is a crucial step that helps protect all that sensitive information you’ve built into your devices over the years. But if you’re going to change passwords on websites you frequently use, you’ll want to spend some time developing strong passwords. If you just go through the motions, you’ll likely be swapping out strong passwords for weaker ones, which is the opposite of what you intended to do.

Backup Files

We all know how important it is to back up files from our devices. But transferring information to an external hard drive has more benefits than making sure you don’t lose precious documents, images or videos. It also frees up a lot of space on all your devices. Many of us are hesitant to delete files, which leads to us keeping too much on our devices. If unsure, backup the files–it will give you more time to decide, and free up space.

5 Tips to Make Moving Easy

We’re in the middle of the busiest time of year for moving. However, no matter what time of year it is, moving is a hassle. Her are 5 tips to make moving easy.

Moving1. First Night Bag Pack an overnight bag or small box with all your essentials. This “first night” bag ensures you will not have to search for a change of clothes, medication, and toiletries before you lie down for some rest after a hectic moving day. It also is a good place for a small flashlight, as well as electronics like laptops and cellphones that can easily become misplaced or even stolen. Every member of the family—including pets–should have their own first night bag. Children’s bags should include any stuffed animals they sleep with and storybooks in case they need help calming down to sleep. Pack a few toys, an extra leash, treats, and a few servings of food in your pet’s bag.

2. Easy Access For every room, have a clear box filled with the things you will need first so you can find them quickly. It is a handy way to ensure you know where toilet tissue is for the bath, basic cookware and utensils are for the kitchen, and phone chargers are for the bedrooms. Remember to also have an additional clear box with trash bags, paper towels, box cutters, and other things you will need as you unpack.Moving

3. Purge Moving is a wonderful opportunity to get rid of things you do not want or need anymore. Decide what to do with unwanted items early to get them out of the way. It can take time to sell items online or at your own yard sale. If you want to use auction or sales websites, begin the sales or start advertising items about six weeks before your move. Not only will this prevent procrastination, what you get from the sales will also help pay for the move! For items you want to donate, arrange for a charity to pick them up a week or two before you move. Go on the Salvation Army or Goodwill websites to find the nearest locations.

4. Get It Sorted Sort through pantry items and household papers before packing them. There is no reason to take an expired can of pears to your new home. Pitch it now. Also, paper can take up a lot of space, and boxes full of it are heavy. Shred and throw out old junk mail and outdated paperwork. As for the papers you need to keep, photograph it or make digital scans, then save those files on a memory stick or cloud service. You will have readily available copies in case the originals get lost or damaged.

Moving5. Prepare the Basics  If you can, visit your new home before the move and get the kitchen and bathroom ready to use. These will be the first rooms your family will want to use, and you will want them in working order. Hopefully, the previous owner gave the house a complete cleaning, but take along some basic supplies just in case. Stock up the bathroom with toilet paper, towels, and a new shower curtain and liner.

There probably is no way to have a completely stress-free move. But with a little preparation, it is possible to make it simple so you can start enjoying your new home without a headache.