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    Undeck the halls

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    Organizing Tips for Undecking the Halls this Holiday Season

    Holiday decor“It’s the most wonderful time of the year,” and decorations and lights are a big part of what makes the holiday season feel so special.  Here are some tips on organizing those decorations to make the days more merry and bright!

    As you deck the halls this year, keep in mind that what goes up must come down. The more elaborate you make your home, the more time it’s going to take when you put things away later.  Consider reducing your decorating by a small percentage, focusing on those items that give you and your family the most enjoyment.

    Give yourself a deadline for taking down decorations.  Many people wait until Three Kings Day, January 6, to officially end their celebrations, and the weekend following that date is a great time to set aside for putting things away.  Don’t be that family with a tree on the curbside in February!

    Look for sales on containers right after Christmas, and check your local Goodwill® store for all kinds of great holiday storage options.  You might be able to find red and green bins for your holiday stuff which isn’t just festive—color-coding the bins can help you find your decorations more easily next time in a crowded garage.

    Before you take your decorations down, take photos of each room so you’ll remember how you set things up for next time.  You can even store the photos in the same bin with their corresponding decorations.

    Gather all decorations from around the house and bring them to one central location to pack up.  Centralizing the items makes the job feel more manageable and allows the rest of the house to get back to normal really quickly.  A large family dining table is a great place to handle this project.

    Don’t try to store an artificial tree in the original box, which was designed for shipping and selling the tree, not storing it long term.  Cardboard is not the best material, and rarely does it fit back neatly into the box anyway.  Inexpensive tree bags with a zipper are available now, and are much easier and sturdier.

    As you put it all away, a good rule of thumb is to donate anything that you haven’t used for two seasons. Keep only what you and your family use and love!  Find your nearest Goodwill donation center on our homepage at http://www.goodwill.org. Happy Holidays!


    Lorie Marrero
    is a Certified Professional Organizer® and Wall Street Journal bestselling author of The Clutter Diet: The Skinny on Organizing Your Home and Taking Control of Your Life and The Home Office Handbook. She is also the creator of ClutterDiet.com, an innovative program allowing anyone to get expert help at an affordable price. Her organizing books and products are sold online and in stores nationwide. Lorie is a spokesperson for Goodwill Industries International, and she is a Contributing Editor for Woman's Day. She has also served as a spokesperson for many other companies, including Staples, Brother, and Microsoft, and she happily lives in Austin TX.
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    • nancy
      January 6th, 2015 at 6:55 am

      My husband and I are working on downsizing our book collection, this can be a painful process but he is slowly working on it. We have put them in piles, what to sell, what to give to family and friends, and what to donate.

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