Unique & Quick Ideas for Christmas Decoration Storage

Christmas, Christmas time is here…I just realized this morning when I was singing that old chipmunks song, that I didn’t hear those cute little chipmunks singing on the radio one time this year. My second thought was, “I bet my kids don’t even know who the chipmunks are.” They didn’t know what JibJab was when I suggested we do a JibJab dance on Christmas Eve either. I guess I’m really telling my age. Ugh!

Anyway, back to Christmas, Christmas time is here…and gone. Some of you really efficient people may have already packed up the tree, ornaments, lights and other decorations, but I’m not one of those people. I usually de-decorate my tree on the 26th and re-decorate it for my daughters birthday on Jan. 2nd. However, she has her own house now and wasn’t even going to be here that day, so I packed up those ornaments and took it down the 27th.

As I was taking the ornaments off the tree, I started thinking that one day, those kids of mine would probably take the ornaments they had received every year and use them on their own family tree. So, as I took each one down, my intentions were to sort by child, in order of the year they received them and photograph them as a keepsake. It didn’t take me long to realize that I didn’t have the patience for all that organization. So, I just sorted them by child and took pics! Better than nothing, right?

So, now it was time to take down the rest of the decorations. I won’t bore you with those details, I’m sure you have boring details of your own about doing this. But, I will tell you about a few new things I did this year to help protect my fragile decorations and to make finding those precious ornament boxes easier next year.


First, I have rediscovered shrink wrap!

I wrapped many pallets loaded with cartons of diecast cars using this stuff back in the 90’s, but had not thought about it for years until I saw this idea on Pinterest about shrink wrapping your Christmas tree for storage. Check out this cool tutorial at www.Epbot.com. I bought shrink wrap for the tree, but haven’t gotten that far yet. However, I have used it for several other storage solutions.

  • Wrap up fragile decorations in tissue paper and then shrink wrap for extra protection

  • If you use cardboard boxes and put them in plastic storage totes, fill the cardboard box, then shrink wrap to protect from bugs and dust. We all know those storage totes are not completely airtight.

  • Wrap your Christmas frames in tissue paper and shrink wrap to protect and keep secure. Note to young parents from old parent: Always date the frames if the year is not shown as part of the design. I PROMISE, after 10-15 years, you will not remember which pictures came from which years unless you do this. Alas, the reason I photographed all of my yearly pics before packing this year is to give me time to determine the correct date before unpacking them next year. You better believe, I will add that date as soon as they come out of the box. Lol.

  • Shrink wrap the stack of Christmas cards you received this year so you can save them for that project you have planned to put all of them together from past years. Oh, “so many somedays”!

Second, take a picture of the inside of your storage tote before you seal it up!

Years ago this would have been a pain, but with cell phones and printers at our homes, BOOM! Snap, snap, snap, print, and there you go. I slip mine into a 3 ring plastic sleeve like we used in our “Lifesaving notebook” Time Saving, Life Saving Thanksgiving Notebook, back in November. Slip a piece of ribbon or string through the top hole and tie on your tote! Now, you can easily see what is in the bin without having to lift the lids and dig.

WOW! I wish I had done this in past years and how convenient would it be if we had done this with all of our storage bins, not just Christmas?


Last big idea I have for storing your Christmas treasures this year is to buy these plastic bags at IKEA.

This particular pack has two sizes, but you can also buy them individually. They are very inexpensive and an absolute necessity at my house. You can use these for so many different things like, packing cosmetics for a trip, storing sheets & pillow cases, (yes, they will fit), and packing away children’s clothing. They are sturdy, very large, double locking & inexpensive!

For Christmas, I used them to pack anything that wasn’t so fragile that it had to be shrink wrapped, anything with lots of pieces that need to stay together, books, cookie cutters and linens that need to stay clean and dry. The possibilities for storage are endless with these babies! If you were using regular clear zip bags, which you can if you don’t have an IKEA close by, you would probably go through a whole box and many of your things would not fit. I believe that I used about 5 bags and I had a lot of decorations scattered around the house.

Well, I’ve help you procrastinate long enough. Hopefully, I’ve also given you some inspiration to make your Christmas packing a little easier this year and finding those decorations and unpacking a little easier next year as well.

HAPPY PACKING AND HAPPY NEW YEAR!

Create a Life Saving, Time Saving, Thanksgiving NoteBook

Around ten years ago, I started filling my Halloween and Christmas notebooks, so I don’t know why I just thought about creating one for Thanksgiving this year. Unless, maybe, I was waiting on you so we could create ours together! Good excuse for procrastinating anyway.

But seriously, you can create your Thanksgiving notebook right now and it will save you so much time and stress, not only this year, but in the years to come. You will be so proud and relieved next year when you open your notebook up and Thanksgiving is already planned and under control. Just follow your organized notes and recipes so you can relax and enjoy the preparation of food, the festivities and time with your friends and family. Wouldn’t that be amazing?

This is actually a very simple project to accomplish and you only need a couple of items to get your holidays organized forever.

First, get a cheap three ring notebook. I prefer the notebooks with a clear pocket on the front where you can slide in a picture. When I pull out the notebook, it makes me happy to see the cover and brings me joy in knowing how easy this is going to make my holiday. 

COVER IDEAS:

1. Let your children draw a picture each year and slide it in and the clear pocket, over the old one. So much fun to look back year after year at the different pieces of artwork they have created.

2. Print out a Thanksgiving family photo on 8.5 x 11 copy paper and change yearly.

3. Print a favorite blessing, quote or graphic on 8.5 x 11 copy paper and insert.

4. Use a piece of pretty scrapbook paper in the clear pocket.

5. Leave it empty if you choose, but that’s not fun or very pretty. Remember, pretty can be really quick and easy, just go for it!

Second, you will want a pack of three hole punch, clear, letter sheet protectors. You can create your notebook without them, but I’m a really messy cook so for Thanksgiving, sheet protectors are a must for me.Third, grab some 8.5 x 11 copy paper for printing, writing recipes or notes.

THAT’S IT! I know it’s hard to believe that with so little expense and using time and resources that you have to use right now anyway, you can simplify your holiday season now and for years to come! Just trust me, you won’t be sorry.

MENU:

Write out your menu, make a copy and file behind current one so that if you share cooking duties you can add names beside the items. If it is different next year, you have a blank menu (without name assignments) for the next Thanksgiving.

.

RECIPES:

After you have created your cover, which I usually spend too much time and thought on, and your Menu, start collecting the recipes that you use every year. Print, copy or write all of them, slide into clear sheet protectors and BOOM! you have all of them together and don’t have to go through that dreaded pre-Thanksgiving recipe hunt ever again.

If you find new recipes or run across a really special one, like below, you have a three ring binder, just add them as you go.

Good Tip: Go ahead and put several empty clear protectors in your notebook so you don’t have to try and find them or buy new ones if you want to add recipes.

 

GROCERIES:

Make your grocery list, make a clean copy for next year, and place in a clear pocket folder. This will save you hours of trying to recreate a list of things you basically need every turkey day! How many Thanksgivings have you not needed to buy pumpkin, turkey, whip cream or wine? You could probably leave wine off the list because I’m pretty certain you would never forget that anyway. But just in case, put it on there…

That’s pretty much the scoop on how to make your Thanksgiving planning a breeze. You can add some “WOW” factors, but those are the necessities. For my Halloween and Christmas notebooks, I usually print out a collage page of pictures, insert into a clear sheet, and add to the notebook, just because it’s fun. But, wIth or without the additions, you have basically just made yourself a magical time saving, life saving, Thanksgiving notebook to keep and add to as long as you have the awesome responsibility of directing this special day for your friends and family.

If you are like me, and I know many of you, so I know you are (lol), I feel like I spend most of my days looking for “things”. Let’s get it together this Thanksgiving so that next year’s Thanksgiving plans will be all in one place, ready to execute with no stress.

Now, if only we can remember where we keep these magical notebooks…

HAPPY THANKSGIVING to you and your families!

Are you a Someday Wanna-doer?

Someday, I’ll paint that old wooden chair. Someday, I’ll make a clock out of that big round piece of wood. Someday, I’ll “sell a million” of those…

Wanna-do Chairs

“So Many Somedays” I have spent collecting pieces and parts hoping to use them to make something grand. What I have finally realized, or was pointed out to me by my normally wonderful husband of almost 30 years, is that I was spending all my time collecting for someday and never getting around to creating any of those grand projects. Much less, if I continued collecting at the current pace, not only would I fill our barn, which I pretty much already have, but I would never get to that ever elusive “Someday”. Yes, I have enjoyed collecting these little treasures. No, I don’t regret any of the Flea Market trips, yard sales or donations from friends. That was all part of the fun for that time of my life.  But now, I am going to CLEAN HOUSE. Any pieces, parts or supplies that were gathered for a far-fetched “wanna-do” someday project or that I have lost interest in or forgotten what it was to be turned into in the first place, is going to be donated to a charity, another junker friend, or burned, since some of it really is junk! Now, I can’t say I will totally stop hunting for new finds but seriously, I am going to try and decrease this “treasure chest” of supplies drastically.

It’s going to be hard to part with some items, especially when many of them bring back such fun memories. Like the time we were in the pouring rain rummaging through the field at Crumpler’s Antiques. Or the time my sister and I spent the weekend in Hampstead at the Women’s Club Annual Christmas sale and coincidentally bought matching black dresses. Then we made a dance video to Taylor Swift’s “Shake it Off” to proudly present to, or rather, embarrass, our families on Christmas Eve. Yes, we were in our early 50’s, and no, there was no wine involved (this time)!

We’ll have successes and failures, but isn’t that life? Just keep moving and organize a nice clean space to actually create something amazing on a “Someday” more realistically within reach.

I hope you will join me in this journey. Of course, it won’t be all about “cleaning out” because as we go along, we will surely get distracted with fun things we uncover like, favorite recipes, ideas, tips, craft projects, old photos, home décor, DIY ideas, etc. We have to remember that being a Someday “wanna-doer” is not limited to amazing craft projects. It spreads to all areas of our lives. By sharing my treasures, aka JUNK, with you, I can make my case that they were worth collecting and now move on with a clear conscious to “So Many Somedays” ahead…

(If you are a “Someday” Wanna-doer, shoot me a comment and let me know what you collect for your projects).