There is a lot to do outside during the autumn months to prepare for winter. Taking care of things now will save you money over time because you will not have to replace things so often. Doing so also means that toys, furniture and other items will not be in the way when you are trying to shovel or someone decides to be nice and plow your driveway.
Place everything you can into a shed or garage to get them out of the yard. Toys, bikes and furniture, as well as hoses and planters.
If you must leave things outside, move them out of the way and cover them with tarps or other plastic coverings.
Place a bucket of ice melt with a scoop, as well as a shovel, inside/outside each entry to the house.
Deadhead flowers that need it, and cover small trees and bushes to protect them from the elements.
Take up other old plants, such as tomato and cucumber ones, and compost them.
Add a two inch layer of compost to garden beds. Work this into the existing soil and you will be able to skip this step in the spring.
Taking care of these things now mean that your belongings will stay in good condition so you spend less money over time. It also means that spring preparations will take less time next year, making it easier for you to get started with growing your own food when the time comes again.