Christmas Decorating for Dummies

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There always seems to be way too much on my to-do list during the holidays. The older I get, the more quickly the holidays seem to arrive. What’s worse, if I’m too busy, I get through the hustle and bustle and feel as though I didn’t really get to enjoy myself. One of the easiest ways to celebrate Christmas, or your chosen winter holiday, is by decorating. But who has the time? Or the money? Or the energy? Well, I’m here with some really easy ways you can spruce up your house in time for the family to arrive for festivities! Let’s call it “Christmas Decorating for Dummies” (except you’re not dumb. You’re wonderful. Now, go get the tinsel).

A pre-lit and fake Christmas tree

I know what some folks think – a fake tree? Sacrilege! But it’s also a HUGE time saver. If you get one that’s pre-lit, you may not even need to put decorations on it. Throw a big ribbon/angel/star at the top, light ‘er up, and it’ll look beautiful. Tell your family you’re doing minimalism this year. Be smug – it’s what the holidays are all about.


Get thee to the dollar store and pick up as many candles in festive colors as you can carry. Return home. Distribute them around your abode. Light them when people come over, but don’t leave them unattended. House fires are so out for Christmas this year.

Wrap your pictures in gift wrap

This is one of the easiest and cutest ways to decorate for the holidays. Pull all your photos off the wall and wrap the fronts in Christmas/holiday wrap. Hang them back up, and your house will look like the North Pole in no time! If you’re careful, you can take the wrap off without tearing it too much and reuse it year after year, or at the very least be sure to recycle the paper.

Holiday screen savers and music on the TV

Both Netflix and Disney+ have really cute “yule log” videos that you can put on your TV to simulate a roaring fire. YouTube has a ton, many of them set to music. This one that goes for three hours and features a cute dog and cat is my favorite! While we’re at it, Christmas music is a GREAT way to “decorate” for the holidays. Leave it on just loud enough to be heard but not drown out conversation.

Bare branches

This is a great project to keep your kids busy. Get your kids to pick up medium-length branches from your yard. Lots of us have extra vases/empty wine bottles around – stick several of the branches in them and place them around the house. Your house will look like a winter forest scene. Just ignore the fact that that’s the setting of several upsetting movie/TV scenes.

Lights up!

If you’ve got any extra strings of lights around, find places all around your house to distribute them. Try wrapping them around your staircase, hanging them from your curtain rods, or even securing them under a glass table, if you have one. Lights make anything look Christmas-y. It’s just science, people.

There you have it! Now, go and festoon your home! Next year, you can pass on these tips to your relatives. It’s up to you whether you want to passive-aggressively include the “Christmas Decorating for Dummies” title or not.

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