The temperatures are dropping and winter is approaching, which means now’s one of the most rewarding times in your new Miller & Smith home: celebrating the holidays!
Of course, there are many holidays in the winter months, as this season has always been a time of introspection, coming together, and celebrating the successes of the year.
With all the many religious winter observances, there are quite a few things they have in common.
And as we wish you a joyous holiday season, we wanted to highlight some ways it’s easier and more enjoyable celebrating the holidays in your new Miller & Smith home.
Winter contains the shortest days in the year, so light has always been seen as valuable: both in a literal and metaphorical sense. In olden days when most of our traditions were forming, that meant candles. Whether it’s setting up candles in a Christmas display or lighting the special daily candles for Hanukkah or Kwanza, the warmth and brightness they share with your family is delightful.
You want your candles to be both in a place that’s central to your home and where the flames can be monitored. If you lived in one of our new homes in Patapsco Crossing, you could set them up on your large kitchen island. They would be easily seen in your entertaining room and be right near your sink, just in case. And, as a reminder, there are homes in this community that feature a Multi-Gen Suite, which can be invaluable for large families during winter festivities.
Sort of like big candles that can warm a room, fireplaces are able to create an instant holiday atmosphere. Fireplaces are such a popular sight and ornament for the holidays that there are many virtual ones online. In fact, the Yule log actually predates Christmas by possibly thousands of years (again, as a symbol of light and warmth against the cold, dark winter).
Many of our floor plans include the option for at least one fireplace (some have more than one). Our Rainier Villa homes at the 55+ Active Adult Cascades at Embrey Mill, for example, have the option for a beautiful fireplace in your great room/dining area which will bring boost the holiday hospitality of this space. Fireplaces also mean mantles, which take us right into the next section on this list!
Mantles. Railings, both stair and deck. Front porches. Kitchen islands. These are just some of the spaces in your home that are happily volunteering to be decorated for the holidays. From extra Christmas ornaments to garlands to festive LED lights, there are many details that can be added to your home to bring the spirit of the holidays inside.
If you’re lucky enough to live in our Delano elevator single-family home in Birchwood at Brambleton (another 55+ active adult community), you have a wide range of places you can add decoration. If you chose the extra space on the optional extended kitchen island, you’d have the perfect place to play dreidel. Or, it could serve as the main location for your Kinara. Decorating the inside of your Miller & Smith home will be as fun and exciting as the holiday itself!
Of course, sharing your holiday spirit with your neighbors by decorating the exterior of your home is just one of the perks of having a home! It could be as simple as wreath on your front door to as complex as projection-mapped light shows across the entire front of your home. Using the example of the Miraval Elevator Brownstone in Birchwood, you can imagine putting up lights framing your garage and front door—maybe even some of those icicle lights hanging from your front portico.
Putting your outdoor living spaces to good use, too, is a beautiful way to extend the holiday feeling outside your home. It’s wonderful to gather outside on a cold night with a mug of hot cocoa (or mulled cider or wine!) and share stories about hopes and dreams and holidays of the past. And if you want to have a real blast from the past, do what they did in Victorian times for Christmas: tell ghost stories!
Every winter holiday has its own special foods associated with it. Whether yours is glazed ham for Christmas, potato latkes for Hanukkah, African peanut stew for Kwanzaa, or any other distinctive holiday fare, there are two things you need to succeed: a fantastic kitchen and enough room to eat in! Miller & Smith homes are ready to provide both all wrapped up in a bow.
Also in Birchwood, Aurora Courtyard homes has an open kitchen perfectly designed to help you whip up your holiday meals. As part of the home’s open floor plan, even when you’re cooking, you’ll still be able to interact with your family and friends in the great room and, eventually, the dining room. And, if you’re the type who like very formal holiday meals, there’s the option for a formal dining room with butler’s pantry to connect it to the kitchen.
One final thing you can do to celebrate the holidays in your new Miller & Smith home is give back to those less fortunate. Though your closets are large, one easy way to give back is to donate any clothes you find yourself no longer wearing. Work with your children to find old toys they no longer play with, and donate those to make room for the new toys that will be forthcoming. You can even find things like old towels and blankets to donate to local animal shelters and vet offices. Everything you share makes the world smile a little bit more and the holidays more meaningful.
The winter holidays are a time for family and friends to come together and observe holiday traditions and customs, celebrate the year, and enjoy each other’s company. Everything about celebrating the holidays is easier and better in a new Miller & Smith home. When you’re ready to find yours, send us a message. We’d love to help you find your forever home.
Happy holidays from all of us at Miller & Smith!