'Tis the Season to be Organized

Christmas is just 18 days away! Yikes- I hadn't really counted it out until just now....I have some serious shopping. wrapping, packaging, and shipping to do!
Luckily, the decorating part is done. We keep it pretty simple, just a tree and a small shelf filled with collectibles, along with a handful of lights wrapped around trees and bushes in our front yard.  Sometimes I wish that I had one of those houses that was beautifully decorated in every room- but once we start dragging the boxes of Christmas stuff out, I realize that even a house with just a handful of decorations requires quite a bit of storage!  We have all of our stuff stored in water tight containers (after a small mold issue a few years ago when our stuff was in an outdoor storage unit), but even with the careful packaging I do every year at the end of the season, when we pull it out at the beginning of the next year, the lights are always tangled, and there's a few ornaments that weren't packed as carefully as they should have been. 
So what's the key to keeping all of this stuff organized?  
Ornament Storage

Christmas Light Storage
Once again, a quick Google search pointed me to the store that might as well sponsor this blog- The Container Store. 
 Honestly, I was looking for a few specific items and hoping to find them someplace else to give a bit of variety to the sources that I feature here- but all of the options that I liked the best came from the Container Store.  Go figure!  I liked both of these boxes because they would be both air/water tight, and also prevent breakage and tangling.  Plus, they look like they would stack very nicely, which is also a plus for something that stays in storage 11 months out of the year.
Command Adhesive Light Clips

While I was looking for light storage, I came across these nifty little clips to hold lights in place if you chose to line windows with lights from the inside.  These look like they would work MUCH better than the variety of tapes that I have tried in the past.

wrapping paper and ribbons

Also on the topic of Christmas Storage- here's something that probably just about everyone could use. Every year I say that I am going to get one of these- and I still haven't...but it definitely would be a better solution than storing my wrapping paper next to the washing machine like I currently do :) The added bonus here is that you can store your tape and everything right there to minimize the last minute scrambling of "Now where the heck did I put the scissors/tape/labels???" once you sit down to wrap presents.
My final organizing tip, which is what I initially sat down to post about, (but then the Container Store website got me very distracted), is how to try to keep your address book organized so that sending out Christmas Cards isn't the biggest pain of your Holiday Season. 
Recipes, or Addresses!
My parents have lived in the same house now for almost 20 yrs, but most of the people in my address book are in their 20s and 30s and have moved at least 4 times in the past 10 years.  I was getting rather sick of all of the scribbling and white out needed to maintain my address book, so I started using a recipe file box. You can use index card to hand write the addresses, and then just throw away the old card and replace it with a fresh new one when they move. OR, if you want to be really lazy (like me)- when people mail you stuff, just rip off the return address portion of their envelope and toss it behind the correct letter in your file box. A cute little business card holder would work as well. 

Business cards, or Addresses!

Every once in awhile I go through and tape all of the scraps onto index cards- but at least they are safely (and alphabetically!) stored in the  meantime.  It may be too late for this year, but as people send you cards, rip off that corner of the envelope and put it in the right place for next year.  
 I am extremely guilty of storing tons of my addresses online in my email, because every time that I notice my recipe file is out of date, I email people to get their updated info.  I don't really have a great solution for that- although there are tons of websites and downloads that offer to "manage your address book online," I didn't really find anything post worthy. I just try to be conscious of saving emails with addresses in an email archive file labeled "contact info."  But after that point, it's just a matter of actually putting that info onto an index card.  I guess maybe we all need to make a date with our address books this December huh?  

1 comment:

  1. Love this post! These products make this Penelope's heart sing.



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