Start with small goals for clean up and tackle one item at a time. Start with ornaments and keep only those that are in good shape for next year. It might be helpful to store them in clear bags sorted by color or style in the same container.
When you take down your lights, this is the time to check for broken bulbs or frayed cords. Don’t keep anything that has cracked or frayed cords – this will be a fire hazard next time you go to use them. The same goes for extension cords. When putting your lights away, don’t just throw them in a heap – organize them and label the box or wrap them in masking tape and mark the tape. You can also wrap them around cardboard and they will be less likely to tangle.
Be sure to label whether they are indoor or outdoor lights. Remember if you are storing your lights in the attic, summer temperatures can get very hot and plastic lights can melt.
If you store in the attic, check your lights thoroughly when you get them out for the next Christmas.
If you store your artificial tree in the garage, consider shrink-wrapping it. This will keep it clean and protected. If you used a real tree this year, you will want to recycle that tree and help the environment. Please remember to remove all ornaments, tinsel, lights, etc.
As you put away gifts you have received, throw away the old version. New pajamas? Maybe it’s time to throw the old ones out. Remember the more cluttered your home gets, the greater your fuel load becomes for a fire.
Since your stove and oven most likely had lots of use over the holidays, this is a good time to really get your oven clean. It will make a difference for future cooking.
Make sure your fireplace is kept in good working condition. If you will be using it over the holidays and throughout the winter season, be sure to have it inspected for cracking or deterioration and make any necessary repairs.
BY: Cinda Seamon