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Decorating the Great Outdoors   
Author: Arleen M. Kaptur

If you have an old wooden planter or barrel in your shed or garage, bring it out. Bend some heavy wire into a handle and nail or staple it to the barrel. Wrap or staple garlands of evergreens around the barrel and handle, and then tuck some holly, clusters of pinecones, and assorted seasonal sprigs between the garlands. Cover the dirt inside of the barrel with a very generous amount of snow. Fill your basket with apples, Indian corn, or dried oranges, dried cranberries, etc. - A gift basket on your front lawn for nature's children to enjoy. 
   

Animals and birds give us so much during the entire year, a treat for the Holidays just seems appropriate.  Another treat for your "outdoor" friends, besides the popcorn and cranberry garlands - (birds and squirrels just love this) Spread stale bagel halves with peanut butter or honey and then dip in birdseed. Use twine strung through the hole in the bagel and use as tree ornaments on your outdoor limbs. Brightly colored bows will attract a myriad of birds to your "treat" tree and your entire family will enjoy watching the "new arrivals" come and join the festivities.
  

Window boxes that were delightful in the summer can be put to good use during the winter time as well. Use sand, pea gravel or dit to hold greenery and berries in place. Start with the taller and fuller items in the middle and work toward the ends with the smaller and less full sprigs. Evergreen, boxwood and pines are fantastic in outdoor arrangements. Don't be afraid to blend colors and textures - its the Holiday season and just being outdoors and working on your home is pure enjoyment.
  

Add a splash of color to outdoor buildings can also be a fun way of decorating the outdoors. A clementine wreath is just spectacular with its bright arrangements of seasonal fruit. The wreath is heavy and does need to be securely hung on doors and buildings. Using a plastic foam ring, approximately 12" in diameter, use fine wire and punch through the clementines (about 27 of them) to go around. The wire should go completely through the fruit and be long enough to bend down again, as a hairpin to attach to the wreath. Add assorted greens using the same technique as well as bright dried berries and other touches. Different, very bright, and colorful and a dramatic touch to your outdoor area.
  

Decorating your home for the Holidays does include the outdoors as well as the indoors. Its fun and a great way to spend a week-end - enjoying the weather, being outside, and having fun - the bonus - a beautiful home inside and out. ENJOY! 


About the Author:
©Arleen M. Kaptur 2002 November Wishing you and all your loved ones a truly Memorable, Enchanting, and totally wonderful Holiday Season Please subscribe to our free Holiday newsletters: e-mail : [email protected] to subscribe or visit: http://www.arleenssite.com   http://www.Arleens-RusticLiving.com
    

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