How to Put Away Your Christmas Tree If It Came in a Box

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Taking down the Christmas tree can be a real bummer. There’s that sudden void in the living room that wasn’t there before. Your hopes that you’ll find one more present will be unmercifully dashed. And of course, there’s the dilemma of packing that beast up for storage.

We may not be able to do much about the first two, but we can help you with that last one.

Back in the box?

FrugalGinger.com

Fancy tree cases are either expensive or hard to size up to your exact tree, so putting your tree back in its original box may seem the most logical way to go—until you try it. You could probably sing the entire Twelve Days of Christmas song before you even come close because the reality is that your tree only fit in that box in the first place because a machine specifically designed to pack it put it in there. Humans may be a lot of things, but we are no match for tree-boxing robots.

If you are determined to pack your tree in its original box, go for it. What we’re going to do is talk about how to pack up your artificial tree if you don’t have (or don’t want to fight with) your tree’s factory box. 

Hold the tree super tight.

Once you’ve taken everything off the tree and taken it apart (some fake trees come in separate sections), give each extended piece a big gentle bear hug to get those branches compacted. Do take care to avoid putting undue pressure on the points where the branches connect to the tree stem. Otherwise, common sense will say how tight you can hug your tree.

This is all you need to get the branches to start pointing downward (sometimes upward, depending on your tree). Naturally, the branches will loosen up some when you let go, so consider tying them up tight again with some basic string. And since we’re tying up tree branches, not our shoes, it’s a good idea to make a slipknot, not a bow. (Here’s how to do that.) Or simply tie a loop in one end of the string, bring the other end through the loop (don’t forget to wrap the string around the tree) and pull it tight. Either method lends much more mechanical weight to your string than a shoelace bow.

Protip: You can try a rubber band if you’ve got some big enough, but don’t overdo it. They can deform the shape of your tree that way! Plus, they’re just hard to get off a year later.

Think outside the original box.

Now instead of wrestling our tree back into its original box, what can we use to pack it up?

One option is a mattress bag, durable and likely plenty big. Another is a wardrobe box, which is obviously sturdier than a mattress bag and may end up offering you plenty of extra space to pack away much, if not all of your Christmas decorations. Your tree and all the trimmings in one sturdy box—how cool and convenient is that?

If you don’t need a box quite that big (they usually run from 46 to 60 inches tall), see if your tree will fit into the kind of extra-large boxes movers use, which are around 18” x 24” x 24”. You can get them at Home Depot, Lowe’s, most self-storage facilities or from your local moving company (who will probably have those wardrobe cartons available as well). Home Depot also has a wardrobe box measuring 24” x 24” x 34”. What size you get depends on how big your tree is— and how good a slipknot you can tie!

One more and somewhat more expensive option is getting a bag designed specifically for packing artificial trees. Check Lowe’sHome Depot, or the fancy-schmancy bags at Tree Classics.

More durable and flexible than cardboard, they can come with various features like interior tie-downs, wheels and bases to allow you to store your tree upright.

Keep it safe until next Christmas.

However you pack up your tree, you’ll want to keep it away from moisture, dust, heat and critters for the next eleven months. Seal it up good and put it in a cool dry place. (Especially those frosted trees.) Lay it down if at all possible. 

Then when you’re all done, make sure you go fill up that void in the living room!

The 5 Hippest DIY Displays for your Holiday Cards

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Now that Thanksgiving is behind us, we’re guessing your holiday cards are beginning to roll in. Isn’t receiving snail mail just the best? There’s just something magical about opening up your mailbox to find personalized letters just for you.

But don’t let it be one and done: keep that magical feeling going by displaying your cards in unique ways around your home. If you’re looking for a new way to showcase all of your holiday cards, then today’s post is just for you!

(more…)

New Home Holiday Cards!

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New home holiday cardsSending out holiday cards to your family & friends can be a heck of a lot of work. But there’s just something about sending & receiving snail mail that makes the holidays a little brighter.

If you’ve moved in the past year, then we urge you to send out some holiday cards this year. This is a wonderful opportunity to give the people you love your new address, and let them know that you bought a new pad. Plus you’re knocking 2 things off that list…sending new home announcements & sending a holiday card! That’s snail mail efficiency at its finest.

Yes, finding the perfect card and them mailing out dozens is a time-consuming task. But we’re here to help make this holiday to-do a little easier. We researched and found some of the best holiday cards that you can send from your new home. Take a look at some of these good lookin’ options… (more…)

How to make the holidays LESS stressful

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holidayAs of today, we are six weeks away from Christmas Eve…. but hey, who’s counting?! No, we are not here to make you dive into full panic mode. That is NOT our intent at all… actually, this post is designed to do quite the opposite.

We are offering 5 quick tips on super simple things you can do now (as in this week!) to eliminate the last-minute stress of the holidays.

Just think about it… you get it done now, a time that is slightly less chaotic, and you won’t have to think about doing these things in the midst of gift buying, holiday party prepping, and everything else that makes  a complete whirlwind. Heck, even if you do 3 of these things, you are ALREADY ahead of the game. (more…)

How to Avoid Holiday Moving Stress

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by Jenny Zhang, SpareFoot

If you find yourself in the unlucky situation of having to move during the holidays, I’m sorry. On top of buying presents, finishing end of the year responsibilities, and dealing with weird family gatherings, you now have to undergo the super stressful task of moving. Thankfully, one of the first steps you can take is to use an online self-storage finder to put extra furniture away. Here are some more tips on how to reduce holiday moving stress in advance.

Use Online Tools to Plan Ahead

It’s really quite easy nowadays to prepare for most of your moving online (changing utilities, cable, internet, etc), except for the actual move itself. Take advantage of sites and services like HireAHelper, which can save you a lot of time, stress, and money in the search for the right moving labor to load and unload your moving truck.

Keep Children and Pets Occupied

Don’t add stress to your moving day by having to manage your kids or pets as well. Plan ahead to keep them occupied either with a sitter or family member.

Use Your Move as a Tool for De-cluttering

Moving forces you to be realistic about your possessions: do you really want to keep that extra love-seat or wall clock? Since it’s the holiday season, take advantage of people looking for gifts, and consider selling the stuff you don’t want at a garage sale, online, or even donate to charity. You’ll have less to move, and your possessions will end up going to a good home. Alternatively, if you find that you cannot part with some of your belongings, you can always rent a self-storage unit for your stuff until you need it again.

Research Your New Home

Get to know your new location before you actually move. Research the stores, restaurants, and services around your area so that your first few days in the neighborhood will be as seamless as possible.

 

Photo Credit: Shermeee

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