The last day or so I have felt like I might be the last person in town to have put away her Christmas decorations. Logically, I know that's not true......but I was feeling that way anyway! Like a lot of us, I'm hard on myself that way sometime. But now I'm happy to report that I am finally and completely finished! I'd love to say that I do this good a job every year, but the truth is I don't. For instance due to a certain set of circumstances last year I rather haphazardly stored my things and was done with it in quick order........and this year I was very frustrated when I started to plan the holidays. You see, I like to do something a little different every year, and I never use all of my decorations at the same time, so I really like to know exactly what I have from year to year, and where everything is! And much to my poor husbands bewilderment I buy a little something new every year! I determined that this year was going to be a "good packing away" year. I even got rid of 2 huge boxes of decorations that I know I will never use again. That's a biggie for me! I hate to get rid of holiday decorations and books, and so I felt very liberated taking those discard boxes to Goodwill. Still, even after that I had a lot of things to store. It's taken me several days because I started from the inside out and re-organized everything!
Here he is wrapped in his bubble-wrap cocoon.Here's what probably takes the most time. I write down every single thing that is in the boxes. Actually I create a Database Sheet on my computer and list each item, what box # it is in, and where it is located ( I keep most of the boxes in the attic except for my Keepsake Ornaments and a few very special things that I want immediate access to in an emergency). Finally, on my database sheet I have a column for "Comments" where I write anything special I want to remember about that item. For instance the sizes of my 3 tartan plaid tablecloths, or who gave me the china candy dish for my December birthday in 1998, or the fact that the puppy chewed the foot of a particular wooden gingerbread boy in 2008.......all of these things are recorded there. For years I just kept a record of these things in a notebook, but using the data base feature in Microsoft makes it possible for me to search for an item easily and quickly. A search for tablecloths will bring up every holiday tablecloth I have and which boxes they are located in. It's just a little feature that I like, but whether you record what you have on your computer or use plain old pencil and paper it will make decorating for the holidays next year so much easier! It is well worth the extra time it takes on this end. You can start your planning whenever you want without having to dig through a multitude of boxes trying to see what you have! If you have a decorations collection of any size at all it is almost impossible to remember exactly what you have from year to year. You think you'll rememeber now, but you won't. This makes it so much easier.
I try to carefully pack the boxes, with associated things in them if possible. This box, CM#1, has gingerbread things and everything Snowmen.(Except my Snowmen Stemware and Snowmen Mugs are in a regular dishpak box for safekeeping CM# 7)