I know this may sound crazy...
...but right now is really a great time to plan for next year’s Christmas. By following a few of these tips you can take some of the stress out of your holiday season.
1. If you like the way your decorations turned out this year, take a picture and create a folder on your computer labeled “Christmas ideas/info”. Or if you prefer, you could print a copy of the picture and store it with your decorations. Next year you will be able to recreate it without any problem. When you get ready to take down your decorations be sure to store each section together in plastic storage totes, combining smaller pieces in zippered bags. Be sure to label the outside of the tote, so you will know which room or area of the house the decorations belong in.
2. Before storing your ornaments and other decorations be sure to discard or donate any items that are worn or broken. Were there any pieces left in your storage boxes that you did not use this year? Don’t just leave those items in storage, rather ask yourself why you didn’t use them this year. Although reasons vary, it is often due to a change in decorating style or simply because you have too much stuff. Whatever the reasons may be, clear out the old and let someone else enjoy them next year.
3. To extend the life of your ornaments be sure and pack them away carefully in specialty containers or make your own dividers by using cardboard. Wrap fragile pieces in tissue paper to keep them from breaking. Here is a picture of my ornament storage, which I love.
4. Take time to properly store your Christmas tree lights, garland and ribbons by simply wrapping them around a piece of card board. This will keep you from having to deal with tangled-up messes next year.
5. When you are done wrapping presents this year take a moment to inventory your gift bags, paper, ribbons, gift tags, tape, etc. Make a list of all the items you will need and then take advantage of after Christmas sales to be ready for next year. Avoid picking up items that you already own and rarely use, chances are you will not need them next year either.
6. Look over the Christmas cards you received and make appropriate address changes for next year. If you still send out cards, you may want to grab a few boxes on sale after Christmas. This will give you one less thing to worry about next year.
Whether it’s Christmas time on not, taking a few extra minutes to do things well will always help make life easier.
Think about what causes you the most stress during this time of year. Maybe you will be able to find a few more things that you could do now in order to save you time and frustration next year.