Everyone is so happy and joyful to “deck the halls”, they even wrote a song about it!  The same joyful spirit does not come with taking it all down and storing the treasures for next year.  

Here are a few simple tricks as you pack up this year.

Storage Containers:  Storage boxes and tubs are only helpful if they fit the stuff you are storing and the place where they are stored.  Think about your storage space and decide on uniform sizes so they will stack evenly and take up less room.  Also, label your totes so you know where they go as you Deck the Halls next year.

Recycle and Reuse:  If matching tubs and totes are not your thing, try using diaper boxes and/or liquor boxes as your storage of choice.  These are usually a good size, have side handles and are sturdier then most boxes.  Another great idea is using Holiday Popcorn or Cookie Tins. Once the food is gone, clean them out and pack with your holiday lights or decorations.  

Keep it Safe:  Remember that some of your items may not like hot temperatures, or may be edible and invite unwanted guests.  You may consider a special container for items which need to stay indoors in the back of a closet.  At the least, use silica gel packs in your decoration boxes to help with humidity issues.  You can save these from new shoes, purse and even vitamin purchases.  

Lights:  The best way to store lights is with the purchase of specialty light storage containers!  They can be found this time of year and contain spools to wrap lights around, which also fit into a bag or box.  However, using cardboard from a gift or cereal box to wrap lights on works too.  It helps to use labels, so you know where on the roofline or in the house they go.  (Example: from the east corner of the house to front porch or Fireplace Mantel)

Greenery and Trees:  If you no longer have the original box, then bagging these items works best.  This storage method doesn’t smash them and keeps the dust off.  Once your items are bagged you can hang them from hooks or nails in the attic or garage.

Clean it up and Clean it Out:  Be sure you clean your items before you store them.  Make sure any food spills are wiped off, dust is gone and items are ready for storage.  At the end of the season is a great time to clean out items you no longer use.  If you didn’t put it out this year and it doesn’t bring you joy for the season, then it may be time to donate it.  

With a little extra time and effort at the end of the season, may help bring you less work and joy next season as you begin to Deck the Hall for 2019.