Last year, one of our Move Makers team members realized that the holiday decorations she’d collected over the years were taking up more time and space than she wanted. What was once a fun activity had become a chore, due to the sheer volume of decorations she had accumulated. Dragging those boxes and totes out of storage was becoming exhausting.
Those of us who have been in our homes for many years can face the same challenges. Do I need to put out ALL of my decorations each year? Will it still feel like Thanksgiving, Hanukkah or Christmas if I don’t? Should I keep things I bought on a whim at the holiday craft sale but have displayed only once? Will my visiting family notice if I don’t bring out everything?
The holidays and the things we associate with them are imbued with annual tradition. The guilt and the prospect of change we feel about downsizing our belongings can get in the way of actually doing it. But once the process starts, you may find it easier to let things go. Consider the following steps and you may find it brings a little more joy back into the holiday season!
1. Start early and begin by opening each container and examining the contents – This process could take awhile, so give yourself plenty of time and space, a spare bedroom or corner of the garage, for example, until the job’s complete.
2. Create organized piles – if the item is broken, hasn’t been put out in more than a couple of years, has no particular usefulness other than its decorative properties, or doesn’t float your boat anymore, put it in the “donate” pile.
3. Consider giving away a family piece to another family member who might appreciate it if you haven’t put it out for a while. Do it before the holiday season, so they can enjoy it in their home.
4 Check wear and tear on holiday linens. If you’re saving a stained tablecloth or runner in case you need it after you’ve purchased a new one, is it worth it to use storage space for something that is easily purchased later or found on sale post-holiday?
5. Cull out duplicates – if you once had three Christmas trees but have only decorated one the last few years, there is no need to keep the excess tree decorations. Keep enough for one tree and donate the others.
6. Keep things that flood you with fond memories. Those items are probably less than half of what you currently have.
When our Move Maker team member decided she was ready to organize her decorations in order to let things go, she had filled a very large tote with perfectly good decorations and then gave them away on Facebook Marketplace to a family who needed to brighten up their home a little more, lightening her load considerably when it was time to put things away. If you need some extra help sorting and organizing your holiday decor, consider enlisting the help of one our our organizing specialists at The Move Makers.
Here is an additional video from Lisa Pelletier that walks through a few ideas on how to systematically organize your kitchen collections, as well!