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Tips help keep holiday clutter under control

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We know you’re still shopping, but it’s never too early to start thinking about organizing your holiday items. It will make next year’s holiday decorating a piece of (fruit)cake.

“It’s a good time to weed out items you no longer use or like,” said professional organizer Lori Rowan of Columbus. “You can always give them to a loved one, or donate them to give them a new home.”

Group holiday items by category, recommends Rowan, such as linens, outdoor decorations and wrapping paper.

If you are adding to your decoration collection this year, keep the boxes, and pick up new storage containers based on the size of each category of decoration, Rowan said.

Next, label the containers, then number them in the order they’re needed.

Make sure outdoor items are free of debris and moisture before packing them away, Rowan said. It’ll make next year’s decorating hassle free and prolong the life of your decorations.

When it’s time to put away the containers, make sure they are safe from moisture, and place cardboard boxes on a raised pallet if they are going in a basement. And don’t worry about storing all the containers in the same place, Rowan said.

“The important thing is that the items you will want, or need, first are put in a spot where you can locate them first,” Rowan said.

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