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Tips to make holiday cleanup happier

It is a wrap on the holiday season. Now it is time to put away all the decorations. Tips for easy and inexpensive storage to make next year’s set up merrier.

SAN ANTONIO, Texas — No one wants to face the frustration of tangled lights next year.

“You’re already putting an investment into these things,” said Mani Schneider of Two Men And A Truck. “You’re spending $30 on a wreath or you’re spending X amount on Christmas lights. Why keep buying them when you’re ruining them by not putting them away properly?”

Storage does not need to be costly or require specialized containers. Find storage supplies at any movers or hardware store. Use boxes with dividers and tissue or packing paper to protect ornaments. Newspaper should be avoided because the print can wear off on ornaments.

“A lot of people don’t take the hooks off,” said Schneider as she packed away ornaments. “Take them off because it can cause it to break and then wrap it. You can put more than one ornament, too, if you like, then into the cubby.”

Use an empty egg carton to store small tree ornaments. Keep ornament hooks in a separate bag.

Use the dividers or a piece of cardboard to wrap tree lights.

“You want to leave the ends out,” said Schneider. “If you want, you can tape the ends, but then you’re just winding through. That way you’re not fighting and untangling Christmas lights.”

Do the same with garland.

“I don’t know how many of us buy garland when it’s on sale and then it is such a pain to try to curl up and it gets tangled again,” Schneider said.

 A wardrobe box will store wreaths and wrapping paper. Use the rack to hang multiple wreaths.

“Then all the wrapping paper that you bought on sale when it was 75% off is going to fit within here,” Schneider said as she added wrapping paper to the bottom of the box.

You can also store wrapping paper rolls and supplies in a hanging garment bag. Use the outside pockets to keep gift tags, cards and tissue paper. Cut an empty wrapping paper tube from end to end and then slide it over a roll of wrapping paper you are currently using to protect it until next year.

Ribbons and bows should be packed loosely so they do not lose their shape.

Wrap up holiday clean up with stretch wrap, which you can also find at moving or hardware stores.

“Lay this on the ground next to your tree and you can wrap your tree in here and it keeps the branches and everything safe,” Schneider said.

Other storage ideas include packing an “open first” box for holiday items you need immediately like extension cords. Plus, label every box to make items easier to find.

These tips make decorating for the next holiday season less stressful and merrier and brighter.

If you have a question for Eyewitness Wants To Know, email us at EWTK@KENS5.com or call us as 210-377-8647.