Contributed by Cate Palmer
The holiday season is here and all of a sudden, everything feels better. Some can’t wait to have some time off from work, others like the snow. For most, it’s about family and values we all keep close to our hearts: love, friendship and kindness.
This is one of the main reasons people enjoy decorating their homes and sharing that festive euphoria with the world. The real challenge, though, is turning your outdoors into the merry scenery ready to welcome guests in your home and carol singers at your doorstep.
1. Festive porch
If you have a porch, you already think about the ways to decorate it. Instead of going all out, consider creating a more homey ambience. Place some red plaid blankets on the chairs and garlands on the columns. Create small bundles from the battery operated Christmas lights and place them in lanterns. You can place those by the front doors, or use one as the centrepiece on the porch table.
Pinecones are the symbol of winter, so put a few on the windowsill along with some evergreen branches. Finally, hang a berry-filled wreath on your door, and your porch is ready for the upcoming holiday season.
2. Wine bottle candelabra
Wine bottles are perfect for creating decorative items, but probably the last thing you expected was to turn them into holiday candelabra. You can simply paint the bottles black and place white candles on them. On the other hand, you can be more creative and play with colors, for example, paint some festive patterns like snowflakes, stars or snowmen. Use glitter or glue some sequins to bring out the joy and merriness. Place the candelabras on the side of the steps or along the walkway. This will be quite a sight for your guests.
3. Create decorative arrangements
In winter, the garden retreats and falls asleep. Besides planting some evergreens or buying some last minute for decorative purposes, you can also create some rustic and natural Christmas embellishments. Use a shallow wooden box or metal container, even an old ceramic bowl will do. Place some evergreen branches along the sides and place some decorative leaves on them.
Now, you can buy these leaves in the store, or you can make some yourself is that the fall is the perfect time to start. It’s best if you use yellow, orange and light brown leaves to complement the pinecones you will arrange in the middle. For the finish, scatter some berries around and place it in the garden or at the foothill. Spread some subtle battery lights on it and around it so it can draw attention in the night.
4. Ornaments on the windows
The flower season has passed and now it’s time to use those empty boxes and pots for decorations. If you had flower container underneath the window, you can now have an ornamental one. Crumple old newspapers and fill in the container almost to the top. Place garlands to hand on the sides. You can do this by taping or glueing them on the inside of a container. Put some on top of the newspapers until you cover it all.
Big, colorful ornaments are the final touch. You can use evergreen branches instead of garland and glue small wreaths on the sides. In addition, you can use only red, gold or any other single color ornaments if you’re not a fan of the vivid decorations.
5. Outside holiday dinner
Those who lack snow and winter temperatures during the holiday can enjoy the Christmas dinner with family and friends outside in their yard. Set the table with a white tablecloth and place red napkins tied with thin green ribbons on the plates.
As stated at Oztech, pergolas & awnings systems “are suitable for use in any weather conditions” so make sure you have one installed. This overhead roof will not only keep your guests safe from the wind and foliage, but you can hang lights, candleholders and ornaments on it. Instead of placing candles on the table, for example.
6. Other small ideas
There are a few simple and smaller budget-friendly ideas you can use. Mason jars with a battery operated light inside are the great addition to the windowsills or on the porch. Tie several pinecones and berries with red ribbon and hang them on the mailbox. You can add some silver paint spray on top of each cone for the glow.
Tie lighted garlands around the handrail columns on the porch steps, or simply lay them along the house outer walls, away from the snow. This will modestly light your house from below and give it a fairy ambience.
Holidays are the perfect time to reflect on yourself in the past year and bring some decisions for the future. It is also the time of forgiving and being forgiven but also feeling grateful for what we have and offer to share it with those who don’t. The troubles won’t disappear until you face them, so spend the time with family and friends, surrounded by love and care in order to find the courage to overcome your fears and insecurities.