Before you pack up all those holiday decorations do future-you a favour: clean them.
If you hung wreaths or garland up in your home this year I can pretty much guarantee you that they’re covered in dust right now. Mine have a mix of dust and pet hair because my dog is an expert at spreading himself all over anything and everything.
We are deep in what may be the most stressful time of the year — and that’s for people who like the holidays. The travel, the expense, the family dynamics: end of the year celebrations can make a Grinch out of anyone. Here’s how you can get into the holiday spirit without being taught a lesson by various ghosts.
Cleaning your decorations now can save you the hassle of having to clean them next year and will make setting up your house next year a lot more pleasant.
Obviously, your methods will vary depending on the type of item you’re cleaning. Most plastic decorations can be rinsed off with water and left out to dry before you pack them. Others can be gently wiped down with a moist paper towel, dusted, or even hit with your handheld vacuum to get clean. Here’s a rundown on how to appropriately clean a number of different types of ornaments.
The idea here is that when you take things out next year they’ll be fresh and clean, not caked with year-old dust and grime.
I also HIGHLY recommend picking up a few plastic storage containers to keep everything in. If you haven’t already moved to plastic storage, the containers can be amazing for keeping things safe and dry during the offseason.
We had squirrels get into our attic a few years ago and go to town on a number of ornaments and decorations that I wish they hadn’t. When I was a child we did a ton of “cookie” decorations that were then sprayed with some sort of shell so they would last forever.
Turns out squirrels thought they were still delicious after 20 years. They also ate through the cardboard boxes we had them in, so taking the boxes down the next year was… an adventure.
Don’t be me and spent $US10 ($14) on a decent plastic container you can use forever. Besides being a bit better at rodent protection, the plastic can also keep your stuff safe from the elements and will give you a fighting chance if you end up with a leaking roof/pipe in that attic down the line.