Most of us will take down our Christmas decorations sometime in the next week. Personally, I like to have everything down a few days after Christmas. I love the decorations while they are up, and then I love when my house has breathing room again after they are down. That means pulling down my three big Rubbermaid bins from the attic and filling them back up with all of the lights and mugs and tea towels and cute things.
Here is permission, from me to you, just in case you need it.
If you come across a Christmas decoration that you don’t really love, don’t repack it for another year. Don’t put it in the Rubbermaid bin. Don’t haul it back up into the attic.
Chipped mug (that you don’t even like that much)? Stained tea towel? No question- toss them.
The “perfectly good” stuff? Somewhere, right now, there is someone who cannot wait to hit up the thrift stores after Christmas. That person cannot wait to lay eyes on that one decorative item that you are pretty “meh” on. So just do it- give it to her. Make her day. Donate that stuff.
Spent good money on it?
Loved it when you first got it?
You can still donate it, and I bet you won’t even miss it when you haul your stuff out again next year.
I have a bunch of my mom’s old Christmas decorations- ornaments, of course, but also a wooden nativity set and some Christmas angels and Santas. The kinds of things you put on tabletops and mantels. Last year I was packing up our decorations and realized that there was this one angel decoration that I didn’t really care for anymore, and had not liked for a few years. It always shed its angel “hair” and was supposed to hold a tiny candle but the candle always tipped over. I never would have picked it out in the store. But it was my mom’s, so I wanted to think long and hard before passing it on.
I pondered it for a bit and realized that I have a few specific things of my mom’s that I love- like the nativity set, for example- that I am excited to pull out year after year. I also buy a boxwood wreath or two, which I love the look of and reminds me of her. (My mom would litter the house with boxwood for about one week every December, making wreaths with and for whoever wanted them.)
So last year I donated the angel to the Salvation Army instead of packing it up. I donated a bunch of ornaments, too, and probably a few other things that I don’t even remember. Sometimes I get to donating and really get on a roll.
You can do it, too.
Merry Christmas, from the pragmatic decorator.