This article is for all of you hard-working decorators who braved those ladders, climbed those trees, and crawled across those rooflines stringing your own lights. And it is for those of you who had no outside display at all, but instead, chose to have a nice cozy living room setup.
Tips for storing outdoor Christmas displays
Be careful when you take lights down. Always have a partner work with you. It's good practice to have someone hold the ladder, and a second set of eyes can warn you of dangers you might miss.
If you bring wreaths or other greenery in, shake them off and inspect for webbing. Spiders and other insects nest in wood items.
Tips for storing indoor Christmas displays
The best way to store any item is to put them in plastic totes. Rodents and insects can chew through boxes, in fact, termites and silverfish prefer the boxes to what is inside. A sealed tote will keep smells in, seal pests from entry, and keep your attic from feeling welcoming.
If you can't get your hands on totes and must use boxes, consider throwing away food ornaments or sealing them in a plastic bag before storing them. A plastic Ziploc bag won't keep all pests out, but it will trap smells in.
Pests can live in boxes filled with clean, antiseptic ornaments, but they don't prefer them. If you wash ornaments with soapy water or alcohol wipes, you will make your decoration boxes less appealing.
If you're storing an artificial tree, be sure to vacuum the branches to get dust and food particles off, and store the tree in a sealed plastic bag--even if it is already in a box.
Keep your attic or other storage space dry, well ventilated, and free of clutter. This will make it less welcoming to pests.
While you're in your attic space, check for rodents or wasp nests, termite and ant colonies, or other signs of overwintering pests.
Be safe, stay alert, and protect yourself from invasive pests as you go about completing your holiday checklist. This is no time to be giving those pests the upper hand. Start the year off right, with proper prevention.