Christmas Traditions Tips

Read these 13 Christmas Traditions Tips tips to make your life smarter, better, faster and wiser. Each tip is approved by our Editors and created by expert writers so great we call them Gurus. LifeTips is the place to go when you need to know about Christmas Decoration tips and hundreds of other topics.

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Are there any tips for being safe with outdoor Christmas decorations?

Be Safe With Outdoor Christmas Decorations

When you decorate your house and yard for Christmas, it can be easy to lose sight of anything but the fact that your place is perfectly decorated. However, you should never forget that you are dealing with electricity and that you need to put safety precautions first. Remembering the proper way to set up your decorations will help you ensure that the holiday is not marred by a visit from your fire company or a trip to the emergency room. To set up your outdoor Christmas decorations safely, you should:

  • Always follow manufacturer recommendations. If the lights you use should be plugged into more than two other sets of lights, it is not a good idea to add a fourth set. Instead, begin a new string and run the two sets of lights to separate spots on your power strip. If lighting is supposed to be for indoor use, don't string it up outside.
  • Check to be sure cords are not running in areas where they could trip family members, postal workers or your paper boy. Keep in mind actual traffic patterns in your yard. If everyone cuts across the lawn instead of using the sidewalk, you'll have to be very careful where you run your cords.

Take a look at some local Christmas lights and decorations displays to get some great ideas of your own!

   
Do I need to order anything other than the Santa suit?

Rounding Out the Look

Purchasing a Santa suit to use to build Christmas traditions in your home is a great idea, but make sure when you purchase the suit that you round out the look and purchase the beard, the boots, the hat, the bag and Santa's glasses. You can bet that if you paid a visit to a child without all of those items, that child will surely notice the difference.

Most retailers that sell Santa suits sell the suit separately from the accessories that go with it, so it's important to purchase those items as well. If you purchase a professional cotton velvet Santa suit, then you should make sure you get a matching hat in the same color.

Santa beards are available in a synthetic fiber or a natural looking wig and beard. A good idea when deciding on what beard and wig works for you is to carefully study both, and if ordering online, give the retailer a call and ask what they recommend. If you want Santa to have his sidekick, Mrs. Claus, there are Mrs. Claus costumes available as well. Imagine a child's surprise to see both Santa and his wife arrive for a visit.

   
Are there any tips for caring for inflatable lawn decorations?

Caring for Inflatable Lawn Decorations

Inflatable lawn decorations make a big statement in a Christmas yard display. They are easy to set up and add instant Christmas cheer to the yard. Once you're ready to pack everything away after the Christmas season ends, these massive decorations can be deflated and will take up very little storage space. However, if you'd like your decorations to be prominently displayed on your lawn year after year, you'll need to make sure to store them correctly.

Proper storage is important because inflatable decorations are made with a fairly sturdy, but not indestructible, plastic material. Crickets, mice and other pests can nibble holes in your decoration, leaving you with a very flat lawn ornament when you try to re-inflate it next Christmas. These plastic lawn ornaments are also in danger of being accidentally punctured by sharp objects if they are stored without the proper protection. To store your decorations properly until next Christmas, you should:

  • Follow the manufacturer instructions to dismantle your decorations properly.
  • Thoroughly wipe down the plastic surfaces to remove any dirt, insects and debris.
  • Neatly fold the decorations and place them in a pest proof container, such as a Christmas tree bag or a plastic storage container.
  • Store any accessories, such as lawn ornament stakes, in a bag that is taped to the storage container. This way, you can keep all the parts of your inflatable lawn decoration in one spot, but they will not accidentally puncture the material if they shift around.

   
What are some types of Santa Suits?

Dressing up in a Santa Suit

One of the fondest Christmas memories a child can have is having Santa Claus come to his house for a visit. There's something so precious about seeing a little child's eyes widen as Santa steps into the room and sits the child on his knee. For the most part, Santa Claus is played by a relative or family who dresses up in a Santa suit and travels to the child's house for a surprise visit. Because children are very inquisitive, it is very important that the Santa Suit is realistic.

If the plan is to make dressing up in a Santa suit a holiday tradition, then it makes sense to purchase the suit rather than renting one year after year and thus risk not having a suit available when the time comes. The first step in deciding on the perfect Santa suit is to make sure you purchase one that fits. Santa suits should not come in a one size fits all package. Once you have determined your size, it's time to determine the material. Some suits come in a beautiful red velvet, white plush cuffs and nylon gloves. A suit like this is very realistic and looks like the one the actual Santa Claus would wear.

If you want to get really technical in the Santa department you may want to think about purchasing a suit that the professional Santa's wear at the mall and other places. Suits like these are cotton velvet and come with faux fur cuffs for an extra real look. A child will surely think Santa is in their home with this Santa Suit.

Santa suits can cost anywhere from as little as $250 to over $500, but when you think about the number of years that it will be used and the memories made from it, the suit will pay for itself.

   
Are there any good options for decorating with a collection of Christmas reindeer?

Have Fun With Christmas Reindeer

You know the names of every one of Santa's reindeer and you start singing about Rudolph the moment Thanksgiving dinner is over. While you don't have a live reindeer of your own, you might support a charity that helps care for these four footed, magical creatures. You'd like to share your love of Christmas reindeer with the world, but you aren't quite sure how to decorate your yard with all the wonderful decorations you've collected.

Consider dividing your yard into sections and grouping the reindeer together in one section. This is sure to make a big impact and mimics the way live reindeer travel in a herd. Then, set up other vignettes in the other sections of your yard. Next to your reindeer, why not set up a scene with Santa filling his empty sleigh with toys? A group of carolers or a family of snow people could fill up other areas of the yard.

If you'd rather try different approach, consider making the reindeer a focal point by placing a group of them in front of a sleigh in the middle of the yard. Add a few other simple decorations, such as lights on the house and trees.

   
How Can I make Christmas Lights and Decorations a Tradition?

Looking at Local Christmas Lights and Holiday Decorations

Many families partake in holiday traditions and many times these traditions include looking at local Christmas lights and decorations in others yards, as well as citywide displays. There is something truly magical about going as a family to see homes and yards illuminated in a festive display. Do you have a favorite display that you look forward to seeing each year? Or perhaps you are considering making some holiday traditions of your own by decorating your home, thus making it a local Christmas light and decoration display home?

Many homes put out lawn decorations that include lighted plastic items, such as figures from the Nativity, a lighted plastic Santa Claus and of course, Santa's reindeer. Many local Christmas light displays will go a bit further and add an airblown inflatable. An inflatable such as this varies in size from as small as three feet to as tall as 10 feet and features items such as a snow globe with penguins to a snowman couple with a penguin family and a spinning carousel.

If you are contemplating displaying Christmas lights and holiday decorations that will bring people from miles around to your home, you may want to consider purchasing a holiday LED projector. It comes with eight holiday slides and can project these images onto your garage or home throughout the evening.

Making your own Christmas traditions can be a fun family event. Making your home "the house to see" is something that will stay with everyone involved for years to come. Visit Bronners.com for great Christmas decorating ideas!

   
Is it possible to have a great Christmas on a budget?

Christmas on a budget

You want to have a big Christmas so that your family and friends have fantastic memories of hanging out and having fun over the holiday. However, the truth is that your funds are a bit limited this year. Is it possible to have an awesome Christmas on a budget? Actually, with a bit of creativity, you can have a lot of fun and create some wonderful holiday traditions without spending a lot of money.

Placing the emphasis on the reason you are celebrating Christmas is a great way to get excited about the holidays. Remind yourself that you are remembering the birth of Jesus and spending time with your loved ones. Think about things you can do that allow you to have fun with Christmas.

One fun idea is to throw a decorating party. Ask everyone to bring one personalized ornament to add to the tree. You'll need to provide plenty of snacks, great Christmas tunes, holiday game ideas, the tree and the basic decorations. After you all set up the tree together, the guests can add their personalized ornaments. You get to enjoy decorating the tree with family and friends, create wonderful memories and have a whole tree filled with mementos of the special day.

   
Are there any tips for designing outdoor Christmas displays?

Designing Outdoor Christmas Displays

Outdoor Christmas displays can be fun to look at as you drive through your neighborhood during the holiday season. However, they aren't always fun to put together. If you live in an area where everyone goes all out, it can be a bit overwhelming to try to keep up. This is especially true if you are new to your neighborhood and haven't been decorating the same house and yard for a number of years. After all, the neighbors have had years to fine tune design ideas and tweak things that didn't work right. Fortunately, there are things you can do to make your display choices easier.

  • Choose a simple color scheme for your decorations and stick to it. If you're doing a blue and white yard and only buy decorations in those colors, you won't have to worry about putting things that clash beside each other.
  • Concentrate on the house and foundation plantings the first year. Next year, expand your display a few feet into the yard. When you only have to concentrate on adding new decorations to part of your yard each year, you can really work on making that part look fantastic.

   
Are professional Santa suits a good idea?

Santa Suits Help Make Great Christmas Traditions

You children were so excited about having Santa Claus in their home on Christmas Eve. They even opened a bag of their favorite cookies so they could put out the traditional Santa snack of cookies and milk. Before they went to bed, they left a long letter about all of their hopes and dreams beside the cookie plate. Of course, since you were playing Santa, you decided that you deserved to indulge in the snack after arranging gifts. You bit into a cookie and heard a horrified gasp. You slowly turned your head to see your children staring at you as if you'd done something terrible. Since you just killed their belief in Santa Claus, you have to agree. If only you would have gotten that Santa suit you were considering purchasing.

Santa suits are a great way to help children continue believing in Santa Claus. A professional Santa suit is durable enough to become a family heirloom that is passed down through several generations of parents who are happy to put on a suit to keep the tradition of Santa Claus alive. These suits may be a bit pricier than the cheaper suits geared toward consumers, but they are made with a better quality velvet material. Suits range in price depending on the quality of the suit, whether they are considered for long-term professional use or just intended to be used a few minutes at a time.

   
Is there a good way to find local Christmas lights and decorations?

Find Local Christmas Lights and Decorations

You enjoy looking at pictures of Christmas decorating ideas, but nothing beats looking at the real thing. You'd like to check out some local Christmas lights and decorations to get some great ideas for your house and yard, but you aren't sure how to find people who are serious about Christmas. Yes, you could just drive around looking for well decorated homes, but, with the rising cost of fuel, you just may spend so much on gas that you eat up your budget for lawn decorations. What you need is an easy way to locate homeowners who have a major helping of the Christmas spirit.

Luckily, the answer to your problems is as close as your computer. Bronners.com has a fun service for Christmas loving customers. You can add a picture of your outdoor decorations to My Christmas Wonderland. You can also see who has done a lot of decorating nearby. Once you know who sets up Christmas displays in your area, you can map an efficient, gas saving route, cook up a thermos full of hot chocolate and head out on your local Christmas decor tour. Don't forget to bring along a note pad and pen so that you can jot down ideas for your own amazing yard display.

   
Is there anything fun I can do with a Christmas snowman kit?

Create a Fun Tradition With a Christmas Snowman Kit

You can't wait for the first snow fall of the year. You're going to pull out your new Christmas snowman kits, bundle up the kids and head outside to enjoy a new holiday tradition—a family snowman competition.

Creating a snowman is something even a toddler can do if you don't get caught up in making sure everything looks picture perfect. Although some of the snowmen on your lawn may look more like snow blobs, the important thing is that everyone is outside together and enjoying the beautiful snowy day.

Before the competition begins, demonstrate how to roll one of the big balls of snow that form the snowman's body by packing a small amount of snow into a solid snowball and then rolling it through the snow on the ground until it is the desired size.

After everyone has finished making a snowman (or woman!), judge the results and hand out prizes. Make sure everyone wins an award by having plenty of prize categories like "best dressed" and "most creative shape" for those snowmen that don't resemble traditional Christmas snowmen.

Finish up the competition by going back inside to serve hot chocolate and Christmas cookies.

   
Are there any tips for stress-free Christmas décor?

Repetition Is the Key to Stress-free Christmas Décor

You want to wow people with your house and lawn decorations this year, but the truth is that you couldn't decorate your way out of a paper bag. You need some great ideas for decorating your place, but you need them to be easy enough for someone decoratively challenged. Luckily, stress-free Christmas décor is simple when you follow a few simple guidelines.

One of the easiest ways to make your decorating scheme look professional is to use repetition. One plastic lighted candy cane ornament sitting in the yard with a bunch of unrelated items looks a bit tacky and messy. Fifty candy cane ornaments lining the driveway looks incredible and will make anyone who drives up that beautifully decorated drive feel like a V.I.P.

Another smart decorating idea is to create a monochromatic display. It doesn't matter if the decorations come in different sizes and shapes because items that are all the same color look like a cohesive, planned display.

Finally, don't be afraid to copy. If you are really stuck for a decorating idea, check out the ideas other Christmas lovers have had over the years. Bronners.com has an entire section devoted to photos of other people's displays. Use one of them to inspire your Christmas décor ideas.

   
Are there any tips for buying Christmas lawn decorations?

Christmas Lawn Decorations

From inflatable snowmen to outdoor rope lighting, there are many options for Christmas lawn decorations. How do you decide which of the many types of decorations is right for you and your family? When making your decision, you should consider the pros and cons of each type.

Inflatable decorations are a great way to make a major statement that doesn't get lost in the great outdoors. The largest decorations may be a bit overwhelming in a small area, so consider the size of the different inflatable items when you are making your choice. These decorations come with a yard stake to help you keep them from blowing away. However, if you live in a particularly windy area, you may spend more time standing your inflatable snowman back up when he falls on his side then you do admiring your decoration.

Holographic decorations really shine in even the largest yard. However, they don't overwhelm a small yard as some other decorations tend to do.

Lighted decorations in various shapes combine the tradition of outdoor lighting with fun shapes. Stars, trees and other shapes offer plenty of sparkle and match any color scheme.

Lighted plastic items, like candy canes, add a retro touch to any decorating scheme.

   
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Susan Sayour