It's the New Year and the joy of the Holiday Season came to an end in Cancun, especially now that many Mexican families have experienced a visit from the Three Wise Men in their homes and gotten the opportunity to enjoy amongst friends and family a piece of the traditional "Rosca de Reyes" (crown bread with sugar and dried fruits) accompanied by a delicious mug of "Chocolate Abuelita" (also known as hot chocolate).
So now, to help you eliminate the stress of storing your Christmas decorations, I am going to share with you a few humidity-proof tips that will not only help you preserve the value of your artificial Christmas tree and ornaments, but also save space in your home!
First, you need a humid cloth to dust-off all your ornaments and light series, as you are taking them down. Make sure to store them in their original plastic containers or any left-over chocolate boxes to protect them from breaking or moving too much and thus loosing pieces or glitter.
After placing all the ornament boxes in a large plastic container, preferably see-through so you can easily identify the items, make sure you include a piece of felt or cotton at the top, just before you close it with the lid. At home, we have a cute penguin sac that we love for this purpose!
Next, you want to divide your Christmas Tree and place each trunk in a "manta" or coarse cloth bag (usually made from cotton). We custom-made each bag, to get rid of the big box that came with our tree. This allows each member of the family to store a piece of the tree in their closet, without it taking up too much space. You can even rock-paper-scissors to see who gets to keep the largest or or smallest tree trunk!
Before placing each trunk in its corresponding custom-made coarse cotton bag, you will need to run a humid cloth through each branch to remove any dust particles. This can be done at the same time you are closing the artificial branches to protect them against damage. At the end, you should be left with a clean and more compact tree part.
Now, the fun part! With the help of a thick string, make a loop and place it at the base of the tree trunk. Run the string up the tree trunk, tying some knots every few inches and pressing down on the branches to tighten the trunk as much as possible.
Turn the trunk to make it easier for the string to go around it. Once the length of the tree is tied-up, use the remaining string to wrap up any branches that poke out. Place the cotton bag beside the tree and carefully slip the trunk inside to avoid causing damage to the branches. Remember to use a broom or a vacuum along the way to collect the debris.
At this point, you can also stand the trunk over its thickest branches, to finish covering it up with the cotton bag. Place any complimentary pieces on the inside, like the stand and screws. Preferably, also keep the screws in a smaller ziploc bag, to keep them from getting lost. Begin closing the bag and make a tight knot.
In the end, you will be left with multiple parts that you can store altogether in a corner in your home or split between your family members' closets.
This is the fourth consecutive year we store our Christmas Tree in this manner, primarily because we were used to having a natural tree. Now we feel this has been the best option, not only because our Christmas Tree has remained green and fresh-looking all throughout the Holiday Season, but also because we are saving trees every year! As for our Christmas ornaments, they have remained in mint condition ever since we bought them six years ago!
If you feel this post has been helpful to you or someone you know, kindly remember to share it with your friends and family! Also, feel free to post any questions in the comment section below or share any additional tips!
Written by: Nadia El-Sharkawy