The following is a guest post from Amanda. Growing up, well… When we moved to Nova Scotia into our own house (as opposed to a PMQ) my parents went all out to decorate the exterior for Christmas. I loved it! Lauren is bugging us now to put decorations up outside, but we don’t even have a ladder! I should plan ahead now- for next year!
Christmas is the one time of the year when you have the excuse to go all out in decorating you house. You can be as fun, creative, and technological as you want. No longer are your choices simply large bulbs versus small bulbs, or colored lights versus white. You can choose from and array of colors, sizes, even LED lights, and lights that move to music or other computerized sound cues.
One of the first things you want to do is decide what kind of display you want and then obtain the proper materials to complete your vision. Many large home project stores have just about everything you will need from the lighting, to extra cords, bulbs, staple guns, or other decorating supplies. If you want to go high-tech you may need to do a little more shopping in other places to find what you are looking for.
All that is needed for a dancing light show is some lights, music, a control system and some software. All ready assembled systems like on Amazon will run $20-25 per channel, a kit will be about $15, or you can attempt it yourself for around $5 a channel. Next, purchase some software and begin designing your display. Using popular rock, or holiday music to coordinate with some net lights on the shrubs, icicle lights on the roof trim, and maybe a few mini 2-3 foot trees on the lawn can be an awesome sight.
Doing a theme can be great too, especially something that really goes with the holidays like the Nutcracker, or Santa’s House. Maybe even go a little crazy and do superheroes or something else that may be popular. To do something like this, you will likely need some plywood to make your figures, or often you can find inflatable or other premade characters for your yard. You can use the lights to help make the scene with lighted paths to Santa’s house, or even ray guns or other special effects if you do something like superheroes.
People all over the U.S. are getting into the holiday spirit by flooding their home and yard, like Dominic Luberto who adorns every inch of his Massachusetts home with lights, including a gigantic crown like display atop his roof. Alek Komarnitsky decks out his Colorado home every year, and has been using it as a way to raise money for the University of Maryland’s Center for Celiac Research. And no what type of house you have or what state you live in storing these display pieces is easy because storage units are a cheap alternative to attics and garages. For instance, if you’re a snowbird and want to store your Christmas palm tree lights and Bermuda short clad Santa, Miami, FL self-storage units run as low $30 a month and can hold just about anything you need.
Wherever you live, whatever kind of display you choose just having fun with it is the most important thing. And if you don’t have a big budget, start small and add to your Christmas supplies and storage each year until you can do any kind of display you want.