Flowers are blooming, farmers’ markets are in full of swing again, school is just about out — in other words, it’s time to pack up winter gear.

Before you stash things away, follow these tips to help ensure you’ll be ready again when the first snowflakes fall.  This can also be a good opportunity to teach other people in the household how to care for their winter gear, ensuring years of use and enjoyment.

  • Don’t pack anything dirty.  Wash it, dry it, let it air out as needed.
  • Make sure your things are in good condition.  Clean, sharpen, and wax your skis. Have your ice skates sharpened, check the lacesClean your boots.  
  • Replace things that were damaged during the season. Look for items on sale as stores clear out their winter inventories. 
  • If you have children, anticipate their size needs for next year.  If you don’t already have items for them to grow into, make a note on your calendar to check Black Friday deals in November for whatever you might be missing. 
  • Use bins to organize items:  one per person, per activity, or one per size range (toddler, 6-10, 12-16, etc.)
  • If you’re tight on space and have to store big items like skis separately, make a note on the gear and skis showing where the skis are stored and vice versa so you don’t have to go hunting for them later.

Once you’ve got everything cleaned up, organized, and stashed away, get out and enjoy the summer!  Leaves will be falling again before we know it. Happy June!