Deck the Halls and Give Your Extras

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With the early wintry weather, it's been easy to get into the holiday spirit and decorate for winter festivities. As we unpack those totes of garland, lights, and other décor, the amount of decorations we've collected over the years may seem a bit overwhelming.

Before you start to hang up or find coffee table space for every decorative item you own, consider adding a charitable giving component to your decorating process.

Buying holiday decorations may be beyond the budget of many who are struggling financially. As you decorate your home, consider relegating a specific tote or shopping bag for donations for one of your local charity resale shops. We all have "almost new" items that may have been given to us as gifts that aren't really our style, or items we just don't have space for. Consider which items will be the focal points of your décor, have great sentimental value, or serve a functional as well as decorative purpose. Those items definitely get to stay. But as you sift through the remaining items, think about which ones it might feel good to give away to help another family.

Winter clothing is another area where less fortunate families may be struggling. At our house, those first cold days often reveal that coats, mittens, and boats have been outgrown, and the hunt is on for new items. Add those items of winter clothing that your kids can no longer wear to your collection of winter items to donate.

This might also be a good time to get your children into the spirit of giving by asking them to look over their toys to see if there is anything they no longer use that they'd like to give to those in need.

Finally, put that bag or box of donations into your vehicle, so the next time you need to run an errand, you can simply drop it off at your local charity resale shop.


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