Yesterday, finally, I finished putting away the last of the Christmas “stuff.”
I grew up in a house where we took down the decorations on January 1st, but as an adult my habit has been to put away on New Year’s Eve. I love the idea of a fresh start for the new year. So the idea of being done on January….8th? Really??
There were a few factors playing into the delay: first, we had a new furnace installed. (Yeah, that’s a whole other post.) Not much sense filling up boxes and loading the basement if you’re just going to have to move all the boxes, right? Secondly, because of the new furnace, the basement shot to the top of my “to-do” list and I was determined to get it as clear as possible, since so much floor space was already freed up in giving the crew room to work. Focusing on the basement meant the house stayed decorated a bit longer than usual. A smaller, side reason was that our kids school break was just so long…..why not enjoy the pretty a little longer? (Honestly, I think the week after Christmas is more appealing to me than ever, because I can finally just sit down and relax. It’s over.)
Finally–and this is the big one–clean-up took forever because I really wanted to go through everything and purge. There is so much in with Christmas “stuff,” and so rarely any out. Some things are easy; lights burn out, you throw them away, and replace them with new ones. But other things sneak up on you: ornaments, for one. They accumulate and grow and multiply in the dark of the basement and suddenly you can’t fit them all back in the boxes they came from.
I would love to say that I got rid of a bunch of bins of stuff. I didn’t. I did, however, get things reorganized to where next year should be much easier to set up and decorate. And while I didn’t get rid of a bunch of bins, I got rid of two HUGE ones: I’m getting rid of a Christmas tree. (Yes, that’s my dirty little secret….that chick who writes a blog on simplifying had two Christmas trees for a few years.)
Also ditched: a wreath, oodles of gift bags/ribbons, some decor items, and a substantial number of ornaments.
The basement is really starting to look good. Amazing what the loss of a couple of giant tubs can do.