Is Your House Ready for the Holidays?

The holiday season is just around the corner and will be here before you know it. If you plan on entertaining over Thanksgiving and Christmas, now is the time to prepare your house for the holidays. 


As you watch the leaves turn and keep an eye out for snow here in northern Idaho, the mood you will want your home to exude is warmth and hospitality, festive and fun. It’s time to get your house holiday-ready, from basic maintenance tasks to the latest decorating trends that will leave your guests feeling warm and loved.


Necessary Maintenance: Setting the Stage for Festivities


Before diving into your holiday decorations, laying a solid foundation is essential. 


You can’t count on northern Idaho weather to cooperate when it comes to outdoor maintenance. Don’t wait for the snow to pile up before tackling your yard decoration prep projects. Clean gutters and trim back overgrown trees to set the stage for your holiday lighting displays and lawn ornaments. Ensure your weather-resistant outdoor extension cords are in good repair, and replace any that aren’t. Pull your lawn ornaments out and make sure they are in good condition. If you need new ones, now is the time to buy, even if it seems early. Stores often sell out of the most popular items before the season is in full swing.


Indoors, start by thoroughly cleaning your house. This makes your home more appealing and creates a clean canvas for your holiday decor to shine. Pay special attention to high-traffic areas, like the entry hall and living room. You will also want to give some attention to your kitchen and bathroom. Why the kitchen? Because the kitchen is the heart of your home and food is often the star of the show when it comes to holiday gatherings. No matter how hard you try, you won’t be able to keep friends and family out of the kitchen.


Now that your house is sparkling clean and well-maintained, it’s time to deck the halls! Here are some ideas for holiday decorating.


Getting the Mood Right


Everyone has their favorite holiday decorations, and that is as it should be. Christmas, in particular, generates nostalgic feelings about the past, and it is fun to revisit special decorations and ornaments and remember times with family and friends. But now and then, you should change things up and start new traditions. That doesn’t mean getting rid of your special decorations; it means making some thoughtful additions, particularly if you are welcoming new people into your circle of family and friends: a new son- or daughter-in-law, for example, or a new grandchild. 


One place to start is by creating a particular theme for your Christmas. Selecting a theme can help tie your decorations together for a cohesive and visually pleasing look. The theme can relate to colors (like gold and crimson or silver and ice blue), a particular Christmas carol (maybe sleigh bells, the three kings, or a drummer boy), a culture (such as Italian, Swedish, or Mexican), a particular focus (perhaps angels, gingerbread, children, or the nativity), or styles (such as Dickensian, rustic, or modern). Pick something meaningful to you and research holiday ideas that will bring your theme to life. Find a way to integrate some of your current decorations into your theme, then add new ones that will delight family and friends.


Outdoor Decorating


Beautiful outdoor decorations are one of the highlights of the Christmas season for everyone. You should never discount the impression a beautiful outdoor display makes on family, friends, and even strangers as they drive up to or by your home. You will enjoy them, too! 


Holiday lights are almost always the star of the show, whether on your house, trees, or lawn ornaments. Today, all types of lights are available in multiple designs, colors, and patterns, and many of them can be set up to sparkle and flash in patterns. When arranging your lighting, make it fun, but don’t go overboard: you are not a Broadway marquee! Keep your lighting proportional and consistent with your theme.


Although some of your trees may have lost leaves, you can still decorate them with oversized ornaments, and tasteful lawn decorations are always a joy to behold. Don’t overlook the value of natural elements: garlands, poinsettias, and well-placed planters with evergreen arrangements can subtly and tastefully enhance your home without a lot of dazzle. 


Make your front entrance inviting by lining the walkway with luminaries, placing a holiday-themed doormat on the porch, and decorating your front door with a wreath and garlands. All of these outdoor touches will increase the anticipation of your guests as they join in the holiday cheer.


Adding Elegance to Your Home


Your entry hall should never be overlooked for holiday decorating, even though you don’t expect your guests to spend much time there. It doesn’t have to be elaborate, but a few poinsettias, velvet ribbons and bows, and some ornaments and mistletoe hanging from your entry hall light can give the space a rich and warm feel that sets the tone for the rest of the evening.


You will surely have at least one tree, so don’t hesitate to rearrange your furniture to make your trees the focal points. Depending upon your preference, you can arrange furniture to create intimate conversation zones or open up your space to more general mingling. Create clear pathways so people can move around easily.


For decoration, here are some ideas that may help, depending on the theme you have chosen:


  • Metallic accents: Incorporate gold, silver, or rose gold in your decor for sophistication and glamor.
  • Natural elements: If it fits your theme, embrace the beauty of nature with items like wooden ornaments, burlap stockings, natural pine boughs, and pinecone centerpieces. 
  • Layered lighting: Incorporate multiple lighting sources, including candles, string lights, and table lamps. You don’t want your space too bright, but pay attention to the overall light level to create a warm, inviting glow with a cozy ambiance.
  • Scented delights: Don’t forget the appeal of holiday scents. While you want to avoid overpowering the atmosphere or competing with food smells, you can decorate with cinnamon, pine, or cranberry-scented candles. Put similarly scented soaps and lotions in your bathrooms. 
  • Luxurious textiles: Upgrade your holiday table with rich fabrics like velvet-accented tablecloths, table runners with metallic threads, and silky napkins. Soft textures add a touch of luxury to any meal. Find a nice set of holiday towels for your guests, and accent your furniture with holiday-themed pillows or throws.

Make This Christmas Extra-Special

Preparing your home for the holidays is not just about aesthetics; it’s about creating an atmosphere of warmth, beauty, hospitality, and joy. 


At Aspen Homes, our clients invest in creating custom homes that bring them joy and satisfaction. Whether your house is large or small, simple or fancy, your home should never be just a building of wood or brick that you sleep and eat in but a place that shelters you and your loved ones from the troubles of the outside world. This Christmas, celebrate the idea of “home” by making this year with family and friends memorable.


Sometimes, Christmas decorations are seen as an indulgence or luxury. Still, the purpose of decorating is not to show off but to create a festive mood that evokes the wonder of Christmas. You don’t have to break the bank to make your home a holiday retreat: in northern Idaho, you can always go out in the woods and find piles of pine boughs and pine cones and make your own wreaths and garlands. You can even make your own scented candles and decorated cookies. In fact, gathering with family and friends to make homemade decorations and treats and to decorate your house together might be the perfect way to kick off your holiday season.


Aspen Homes is all about the meaning of “home.” It is our pleasure to see our client’s joy when we create the home of their dreams. It is such a special feeling that we want everyone to enjoy it, no matter where they live. If you are interested in a custom home, please reach out to us and let us show you what we can do.


But whatever you do this season, make your home welcoming and warm to ensure that this Christmas will be remembered with fondness and joy by all who share it with you. All your efforts will be more than repaid in the memories you create with friends and family, so cherish the moment. Make this Christmas unforgettable.

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