Dos and Don’ts of Christmas Decorating

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‘Tis the season y’all! Time to drag out that box of decorations, go buy a few more, and start adorning your home, your office and yourself with Christmas cheer! The quicker you get it all up the sooner you can start all the Christmas festivities for this year. Here are a few tips that will make your decorating experience more fun, festive and fruitful:

Do it yourself! If you’re a creative soul try making some arts and crafts yourself. It’s not as hard or daunting as you think, all you have to do is start! Research some cool ideas online and you’re bound to find a DIY guide. This is a guaranteed way to make your Christmas décor as original as can be!

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Do be original. Match your tree to your lifestyle, your hobby or something else you’re always or currently obsessing with. If you love the sea, put on some starfish and shells, maybe even some anchors and boats. If you’re into a certain color, make that your theme of the year. The sky’s the limit!

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Don’t make it look like Santa vomited inside or outside of your house. It’s certainly a time to go “over-the-top”, but even that should have its limits.

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Do use lights! It’s the best part of Christmas, go overboard and cover everything with that special Christmas sparkle! But don’t forget to turn them off when you leave the house and at night—Lebanon’s electricity problems are bad enough.

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Don’t be disrespectful. It’s Christmas, so keep it classy and even if you want to be funny at least try to maintain some respect for the holiday.

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Do go all out with your Nativity “mghara”. The West is tree-centered but in Lebanon we love our “mghara”s. I have a friend who’s mgharas have taken over large portions of the room. She’s such an expert she’s called in by all family members and friends as the exclusive mghara designer. She takes it very seriously, and so should you. When done well this can be a beautiful addition to the Christmas décor in your home.

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Do let the kids help. It’s a wonderful time to spend with children, and letting them help is a great bonding experience. Make sure they’re doing things that are safe for their age and let them unleash their creativity!

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Do Instagram/Facebook/Tweet your masterpieces. We’re digital and we love to share, so what’s a better time than Christmas to show off your decorating skills, creativity and Christmas spirit? May the hashtagging begin!

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Do decorate your pet (in a safe way!!!!) dress them in some cute costumes (if they let you) or give them a festive little sleeping area. They should be part of the cheer too!

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Don’t be afraid to decorate yourself too! Decorating should be fun and you can have even more fun if you’re part of the creativity. Get your Christmas spirit on and put on some reindeer horns, a big Santa hat or just wrap yourself up with tinsel.

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Don’t forget to take a break. If you overdo it in one go, you might end up hating Christmas altogether. If you’ve got a lot of décor to take care of, do it in parts and get help. Take breaks with yummy winter snacks like hot chocolate or spiced tea!

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Don’t forget to make an effort. If you’re going to do it, do it right. There’s nothing worse than decorations that are obviously underdone. Don’t put up what looks like a tree carcass, it’s one step away from the Festivus pole (Seinfeld joke). Try to get a tree that’s as full, fresh and attractive as possible. Put up the ornaments properly, and get your lights on right.

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Do be safe. Use proper ladders and have someone hold them, and use safe tools and equipment. Don’t try to balance on something to get to an unreachable corner of the house. Let’s keep the holidays happy and accident free 🙂

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Do have fun with it! This is the season to be merry and there’s nothing like cheerful Christmas eye-candy to lift your mood in the cold of winter. Get into the spirit, get a tree and a traditional Lebanese Nativity mghara, decorate your doors and windows, your balconies and gardens, your dining tables and your food. Go over the top and enjoy the best, most outrageous, most beautiful and most fun Christmas ever! Happy decorating!

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