December 28, 2017



Holiday decorating can be fun but putting them away can become stressful.  To help you get it done faster so you can enjoy more time sipping hot cocoa next to the fireplace, here are a few organizational tips.

The most environmental friendly way of getting rid of your live Christmas trees, garlands, and wreaths is to throw it in the compost bin or have your local trash collector pick up the tree as a whole for free.  Check with your local trash collections company to see about dumping rules.  Where we live in California, Recology San Mateo requires a tree to be cut down to 8 feet tall max.  If you can place the tree inside the compost bin, they ask that it goes in upside down with the tree trunk sticking up from the bin.  If it's too large, just leave it next to your regular compost, recycling & trash bin on the day of your pickup in through January.  Be sure to remove all decorations off the tree prior to composting.


Artificial greenery can last decades with proper care.  For ease of rolling the tree to your storage space, this tree storage bag fits up to a 7.5' tree, comes with wheels and is currently on sale.  Artificial trees are quite heavy and bulky.  If possible, pick a spot to store on the same floor as where you had the tree displayed.  Chances are you're going to display the tree in the same location next year, and you won't want to lug it up & down the stairs again.

Keep string lights tangle-free by:
  • Wrapping them around a rectangular piece of cardboard or paper towel cardboard roll
  • Storing each set in a reusable bag
  • Keeping them in an old coffee can
  • Tie them up into a bunch with a ribbon from a gift you recently unwrapped


Glass ornaments are known to break easily, and glitter ornaments will transfer everywhere if they're not individually protected.  Here are a few ways I like to store my ornaments.  Some of them have been with me since my childhood!
  • Reuse the original packaging - duh, so easy!
  • Use tissue paper from unwrapped presents.
  • Upcycle plastic containers.  The plastic packaging used by Costco to store apples are the perfect size for most ornaments.  I've collected a few of these over the years.  
  • We don't have stockings or a tree skirt, but you can easily wrap ornaments in any soft cloth items so all Christmas-related items are stored together without extra packaging.


Once everything is ready to be packed up, all of our holiday decorations go into large, clear plastic bins.  They're airtight (to avoid mold or mildew if you're storing in the basement or garage), stackable (for easy storage), clear (so you can easily spot what's inside when you need to pull it out for next year), and labeled on the outside.  Designate a storage spot within your home so that every year, it's the same spot.  This will help you keep organized and avoid moving boxes around when you're trying to go through your storage piles the rest of the year.   

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