Last night I came home from vacation. Like any other traveler, I had a couple bags, some snacks and plain old stuff coming back home with me. Here's how it all was put back into place by this afternoon:
1) Start with the food. It was a road trip, so snacks and drinks and leftovers walked right into the kitchen. Food immediately gets put away so it won't spoil. Any dirty containers were put into the dishwasher or sink (if they needed to be hand washed). Bags put away or trashed (maybe I overloaded a couple bags and the handles broke!).
Everything else I tackled in the morning because I was beat!
2) Next, my suitcase that had only clothes in it. I took everything out of every last pocket and crevice of my suitcase and sorted into two piles: Clean and dirty. Dirty went into the hamper, of course. The clean I then divvied into two piles: Season and Out of Season. The seasonable items were simply put back from where I pulled them - shelves or hanging in the closet. The out of season items were separated because I needed assistance putting them away. My out of season items are high up in containers, so when I had the time, I pulled a chair into the bedroom and tucked these items back into their proper containers. Clothes done.
3) My everything else bag. As I emptied all the pockets and parts of this bag, I sorted into piles by which room the item were going to be put away in. Vitamins to the kitchen pile; my travel sized beauty products to the bathroom; my computer to my desk, and so on. When the bag was emptied, I stowed it away. I grabbed a pile at a time to deliver to it's room. Once in each room, I put the items back from whence they came. (Starting to see a pattern here?). And, assuming I still had time and energy, I went back to my unpacking base to grab the next pile.
All in all, this probably took about a half hour. Time well spent, considering what a pain it is to step over bags on the floor for an indefinite amount of time. It's so easy to let those bag sit when you're exhausted from travel. But, it's so much better to feel settled and back to reality... Or...... back to planning the next vacation?