Since 1994 there is a Residential Home in Glendale that has done Extreme Christmas Decorating. The Owner used to do it with his Partner Years ago, but now does it all by himself, since his Partner Died many Moons ago. He begins in July, it's truly a Labor of Love on the exterior and interior and the Tours are Free, tho' you can make Donations towards his expenses to Host it to the Public at no charge. I've taken my Children when they were younger and then my Grandchildren and many of their Friends over the Years. This is Isaac's first time going with us and he was duly impressed.
There are over 50 Decorated Trees and various Christmas Collectibles inside, every Room has a Theme. The exterior, Front and Back Yards, are extensively Decorated with Blowmolds, Animated Characters, a full size Sleigh with manufactured Snow falling, and Hundreds of Lights. This Year we decided to go on a Monday, since Princess T said she looked 'Cute' Today and didn't know if she'd Feel like looking 'Cute' Tomorrow... I was LMAOROTF at that comment, since, she was Serious! *Bwahahaha* Well, she DID look Cute... so, we went Monday Night after Isaac got off Work and it got Dark.
I like the Rainbow Christmas Tree, this Homeowner has every kind of Tree probably ever made tho', in every Color and Style you can possibly think of. I don't know that I could ever do Extreme Decorating since it really renders most of the interior non-functional for the Residents for Months of the Year, since it takes so long to set up and take down. It would be impossible to clean around as well while it's all up since most of the Rooms are packed solid with Decorations and there's no real place to walk around any of it. But, the impact it makes Visually is Magical and Enchanting for the Holidays.
Extreme Holiday Decorating used to be very Big in the 1970-1980's Eras, then it kinda tapered off, since most Communities became HOA Based and wouldn't allow it. Restrictive Communities can be quite anal about what Homeowners can do on their own Properties, which is why I feel that the HOA's are The Devil. *LOL* Anyway, in the Older Communities people can express themselves with much more Liberty and Freedom to, and so most of them do. It's worth driving around the Historic and Older Neighborhoods that were built right up to the late 1980's because they're always Decorated better for the Holidays.
This Year The Man wanted to come with the Kiddos and I, The Young Prince Opted Out and Allen works Nights now so he wasn't Home from Work. The Man is losing a lot of weight from all the walking and can gleaning I'm taking him on, so his Mobility has been improving and he doesn't get as worn out so easily now. With going on a Monday Night there weren't the Crowds, so it ended up being very nice, we almost had the place to ourselves for the first half of the interior Tour! That gave me abundant time to Pathologically Picture Take and with my much better Camera, they turned out way better than previous Years Images taken there!
It has been our Tradition and Ritual to go every Year, we used to go to others, but those Homeowners, who were of my Parent's Generation, have now Passed Away. So, this is one of the last of the Extreme Decorating Holiday locations we've gone to for Decades that is left. The Homeowner is probably the Age of The Man and I so I don't know how many more Years he'll be able to do it by himself? I mean, can you only Imagine how much Work is involved with Scenes like this in just One Room, let alone an entire Home?! There are Water Features and moving parts, the Walls and Ceilings in some Rooms are completely covered to give the illusion of Snow and being Outdoors.
Even Outdoors everything is completely Transformed on every square Inch of the Property. And the Homeowner has Big Screen TV's set up playing some of the Cult Classic Christmas Favorites. One Room has been Transformed into a Santa's Shop where you can buy Decorations and Holiday Candies. We've mused about what kind of Offsite Storage someone would need in order to Store away all of these Decorations when they're not being used and Displayed? I couldn't even Imagine! I know how much room my paltry Holiday Seasonal Decor takes up! You would also have to be ultra Organized to Create this much Magic and various Themes. I've seen entire Malls that didn't have as much Seasonal Decor Displayed!
And the Money tied up in so many of these Decorations, especially the Life size ones, must be staggering. I don't even know how or where you'd procure some of the ones that clearly were made for Commercial use? I remember Years ago when his Partner became clearly very ill and then passed away, I thought after he Died, that his Partner wouldn't carry on this Tradition, but he Faithfully has. It's such a Selfless Gift to his Community and he's very unobtrusive while you're there, just dressed up in his Holiday finest and Greeting each and every Visitor when you arrive. I think perhaps for him, seeing how much Joy all his hard work brings to Strangers and those he's come to know over the Years, is the Gift to himself?
Every Year I like to try to Guess and see what is New to the Displays, since every Year there's been new additions. This Year we got the best parking we ever have, very close to the Home, so we didn't have to walk as far. Since it's in a Residential Neighborhood and yet draws Crowds, parking can be at a premium up and down the entire Street. I think I'll make a Note to Self to always come on an Off Day like a Monday before December arrives, we could linger longer and not feel rushed by Crowds coming in behind you on the Self Guided Tour. Since I like to take pixs, that's important, not to feel rushed.
Plus, with not being rushed, the Kiddos were having a really Big Time. Here at the Lifesize Sleigh is where the Snow Machine spits out Real Snow in intervals... tho' we didn't get any since they didn't want it in their Hair, so timed it accordingly to be out of there before Snow fell. *LOL* This Year was way warmer than any previous Years we've been here, so really we didn't even need to bundle up after Dark this Year. The Kiddos were probably more bundled up than Grandpa and I, but then again, they're thinner. The Man and I have our Natural Insulation going on. *Smiles*
I remember when my Mom was still Alive and used to go with us here, she was always fascinated by some of the Props that looked Egyptian and she said looked like something from a Vegas Casino. *LOL* Over the Years we've introduced many people to this Delightful location during the Holidays. At one point we used to do a Convoy of Friends and Family that would all go together in various Vehicles to go to all of the Extreme Christmas Homes doing Tours. Sadly, everyone from those Days have either moved away or passed away. So now I usually just take the Kiddos and our Family. Tho' just before Pandemic I did introduce a long time Friend to the Location since she'd never been there before.
The Decorated Themed Trees always remind me of the "Dillard's" Department Store Trees, which were always exceptional and numerous. In recent Years tho' even "Dillard's" has scaled way back and only has a scant few Trees now and a way smaller Christmas Merch area. "Cracker Barrel" has also scaled way back from having numerous Trees, to having fewer in their Gift Shop portion of the Restaurant. Their Trees always looked exceptional too... I miss that most Stores now just don't even bother to put Decorated Trees up anymore. Most Malls don't do Extreme Holiday Decorating like they used to either.
So, some of our Holiday Traditions and Rituals have shrunk over the Years when places we always made a point to visit, no longer exist or participate in what they once did during the Holidays. We have to drive thru Old Towne Historic Glendale to get to this Santa House and even "Glendale Glitters" is scaled way back from previous Years. It's still very Festive, but not nearly so much Decorating and Lights as Years past. I didn't see them doing Horse Drawn Carriages and a lot of the best Shops have Closed during the Pandemic.
Almost all of the Antique Stores are now gone and the Historic "Gaslight Inn" never reopened after a reckless Teenager lost control of his vehicle and drove his Car into the Historic Building, rendering it unsafe until Restored structurally, if ever. What saddened me about that is it's a Fabulous 1800's Hotel and a Family from Cali had just bought it and Restored it just before the Accident. The Daughter and her Dad had done the Restoration of all of the Rooms and gave us a Pre-Grand-Opening Tour, I had always intended to book a Room for the Holidays on a Weekend, but never got the chance to due to the Closure after the Accident.
Whether those New Owners have been justly compensated or gone Bankrupt due to the damages and loss of their Business and Investment, I just don't know? The Daughter was so Nice and they had such a Vision for the place, it's just a Shame someone else's reckless negligence led to the Closure, it's been Closed now for over 3 Years and has Scaffolding in front of the whole Building to Stabilize the Two Story Structure I suppose. I've tried to Google what is being done now, but nothing ever comes up to give a Progress Report... I just Hope it can be Saved and not have to be Condemned and Torn Down?
We used to always go to Old Towne Historic Glendale during the Holidays and walk around, Shop and have a Meal. But, most of the best Restaurants have Closed now and are gone, most of the best Shops too, it's just not the same anymore with all that has been Lost. Some things have moved into the Vacant Commercial Buildings, but when a Church takes over what was once a Two Story Antique Mall in a Historic Building that a Friend of mine owned for Decades, what makes that a Destination for the General Public? Unless you happen to Worship there, it's just diminished the Appeal of the area once known for certain Unique Establishments that everyone Loved and frequented for Decades.
I have been told by several of the Business Owners that Closed Shop that a Chinese National bought up most of the Buildings and Doubled or Tripled Rents and then didn't renew Leases if Tenants wouldn't leave, and left the Buildings Vacant after forcing them out. So, that had a lot to do with the mass Exodus too and I have no idea what that Foreign Investor has in Mind to leave that many Buildings of a once vibrant area Vacant and not Rented Out? It's highly suspicious to me and the City ought to be concerned about that, when one Investor from out of the Country especially, buys up so much Prime Real Estate and then lets the area lay to waste and neglect. NOTE: Above pix, Holy Orbs! You couldn't see those Spirit Orbs with the Naked Eye!!!
So, the Family wanted to blow up the pix to see the Manifestations clearer and just look at that apparition on top of that Block Post! The Family said it looked like the Head and Shoulders of a Man peeking over that top Block and looking at us all! I'm not at all Creeped Out by such things, Spirit is literally everywhere and could be crossing Realms, I like to think perhaps it's those who once Loved this place and come back to visit during the Special times of the Year when it's Presented again? Energy never Dies, it just Changes Form. Anyway, Cool unexpected capture on Film that couldn't be seen while we were there. I have seen Orbs with my Naked Eyes before and sometimes they'll show up on Pixs too, but often you don't see them but they'll show up on Film.
We blew up some of the Orbs on the other side and like to look inside of them to see what we make out of their interior structures? The Eyes can Matrix things of coarse, but it's rather like looking at Clouds to me and I enjoy seeing what my Eyes and Mind make of such things when they're visually captured? Anyway, what do you see my Friends, anything interesting?
Okay, so we'll go back inside, in case any of you are getting the Heebie Jeebies now? *LMAO* That was the only Frame taken where Orbs showed up, I didn't take that many pixs outside against the inky backdrop of Night where they'll show up best if they were present and wanting to be seen... or were busy joining us. *Smiles* Anyway, that Lavender Tree is rather Lovely and different. I had gone back to the Chazza that had the Black Christmas Tree but it was already gone and had Sold... ah well, someone was willing to Stand Taller than me on their Pricing. I thought it was rather high for a secondhand Tree, but perhaps Black Trees are expensive, I don't know?
Like I need another Tree anyway... so it doesn't matter. *Smiles* But, I have toyed with the Notion that whenever the RV Garage is finished and completely Decorated, I might keep some Year Round Seasonal Displays up in sections in there. Just to have the Atmosphere and Joy of favorite Holidays more than just the brief time of the Year they're actually Celebrated. Plus, then I could take more time to put them up and not worry about taking them down like you do inside your Main Living Areas each Year.
This Room's Theme is Extra Terrestrial, Star Wars, and such... it's a Fun Room and it has one of those Black Christmas Trees I spoke of. You can see the Black Tree here in the background of this Pix. I think the Tree at the Chazza was a smaller less lush version of a Black Christmas Tree. This Homeowner tends to purchase the really good quality Trees and not the cheap versions. I can't say which Room of the Home I like best since each has it's Theme and Merits. But I am drawn to the ET Room and the M&M's Colorful Room.
I like the Blackout of the Walls with Starry Dark Backdrop. Those Vintage Aluminum Pom-Pom Trees are worth a lot of Money now, way more than I Sold the one my Parents had that I Inherited and was 6 foot Tall, in it's Box and still had the Paper Sleeves to keep the Branches and Pom-Poms in great condition. The only thing missing was it's Color Wheel, which got lost in transit during the many Military Moves my Parents endured during my Dad's 27 Year Military Career. I Sold it at our Antique Mall during one of the first Years that the Mall was open, it is one of the few things I thought perhaps I should have kept, but I never put it up so it felt wasteful not to Display and Enjoy it.
If whoever bought it does, then it went to the right place and perhaps they have a 1960's Retro or Mid Century Mod Home where it will be Era specific to when it was made? During the Era my Parents bought it they had Mid-Century furnishings that were Contemporary with a Futuristic leaning. I remember Loving that Furniture, it was comfortable, Iconic and very Classy looking. I think my Mom was very drawn to Mid-Century Decorating and I still can Appreciate a Home done Authentically with The Real Deal and correctly for replicating the Atmosphere of that Era, Design and Aesthetic.
I don't know what this Home looks like when it's not all Decorated for Christmas, or what the Homeowner does with most of their Furnishings during the Months they banish it in order to Host this extravaganza? I think I'd miss my Stuff too much to Host something like this, even as much as I like the Holidays and the Atmosphere the Seasonal Decor imparts. I'd want my Home back too soon to be this over-the-top with a Seasonal Muchness. I don't even know how a whole Family could manage to Live around it, but some Extreme Decorating Families have. If you're Single and Alone perhaps it's easier to overindulge like this, since you don't have to consider anyone else, but I dunno?
We're only there for a brief moment in Time, but the Hosts are Living it 24-7 during the time they Host this kind of thing. That's really Sacrificial, I wouldn't have it in me to do that much for other people and General Public at large. I also don't know how comfortable I'd be with how intrusive it would feel to have that many people Touring our Home? I always think of things like this even whilst enjoying going on these Home Tours in Residential Homes that people are still Living in. The above pix was taken in front of a Main Room where we had a lot of trouble getting the Camera to work for some strange reason. Ninety-Nine percent of the Images taken at this Space didn't even show up on my Camera's Storage Card! Those that did were all out of Focus... Weird!
Especially given all the other Images taken everywhere else in that Home turned out crystal clear and all of them downloaded and were on the Card. We knew we were having New Camera malfunction only right there so we spent an inordinate amount of time right there trying to get Pixs taken, to no avail. After we left that Space the Camera began functioning fine again! It did remind me of those Paranormal Shows where in certain places all their equipment malfunctions or drains the Batteries. I didn't want my new Camera's Special Battery Pac to drain so after a while we just gave up and let it remain a Mystery as to Why? Yes, a bit Spooky to be sure! *LOL*
I don't know if everyone was having that problem, people were taking pixs with their Cellphones and I couldn't say if they were having any Luck in that Space or not? I just know we tried to take about Two Dozen pixs and only Two blurry ones even were on the Disc Card, yet we knew we'd taken Two Dozen, don't know where the other 22 went? Or why the only 2 were out of Focus? Que in Macabre Horror Flick Music. *LOL*
Okay, back to the M&M Room then... where everything Photographed just dandy and no Creep Factor evident, Camera working just Fine, all pixs turning out great. Only Poolside with the Orbs and right in the Front Entryway by the Living Room Display was problematic. I may just have to go back again and try a 2nd visit's Photography to see if the same problems arise... or not? Should be interesting... stay tuned. *Smiles*
Isaac, The Man and I dutifully kept our Masks on the whole time, except when Isaac sometimes took it off briefly for a Photo Op. Princess T ditched hers when she observed nobody else was even around... we had most of the Tour all to ourselves really, anyone in front or behind us was Rooms away the entire time. So, I suppose Masking was Optional, except that being in someone's Home, I felt like I should keep mine on for the Homeowner's sake during a Pandemic. I don't know how vulnerable his Health may or may not be, you know?
Okay, so when I'm doing Home Tours I can't help but critique the actual Architecture of the Homes I'm in and see what I like or dislike about each. This neighborhood was probably built in the 1970's-1980's so most of the Homes are your Basic Ranch single level. This one has a lot of very nice Features, including an Arizona Room with Flagstone Water Feature, but the Kitchen is probably one of the Smallest Galley Kitchens I've ever seen. I am not a Fan of the Galley Kitchen... even if it opens into a large Dining Room like this one does and has a large walk-in Pantry at one End too.
This Home is probably average sized but has a lot of Rooms and a very nicely laid out Back Yard. I could see it being a Home that lends itself well to Entertaining when it's not Decorated for the Seasonal Display. The Double Car Garage has been converted into Living Space and the Arizona Room was probably an Addition, they were very popular Rooms to add in that Era. Most Arizona Rooms, if you are not familiar with the phrase, were set up as either Screened In Porches or Closed In Sunrooms, enlarging Living Space for Indoor-Outdoor Living. Some resembled Conservatories, depending on the use of the Room by the Homeowner. This Homeowner has that Water Feature that is Fancy but resembles a Grotto.
And when I Think "Grotto" my Mind always strays to Hugh Hefner's infamous Grotto. *LOL* Okay, so now that I must get my Mind straight out of the Gutter, let us move on to the Coca-Cola Room which is set up as a Bar in this Home. The Bar section actually has one of those Train Set Studio 56 Christmas Villages set up on it during the Holiday Display. But, clearly it's a full Bar and opens up on one end to the Dining Area and the other end to the Double Car Garage conversion which kinda reminds me of a Disco Room.
And so a part of me is having Imaginings of the 1970-1980's Era Parties that must have gone on here? *LOL* Can't help it, that's just where my Imagination goes. And during the early 1990's there were remnants of Decor where I am pretty sure some Wild raucous Parties might have been going down here when it wasn't being Hosted as the Christmas House for Families? *LOL* BTW: Downloaded this Image and did see some more Orbs high above the House.
And then that part of me that Imagines, and has experience with some Wild Parties of the Eras I speak of, during our Free Spirited Youthful wayward days... turns to wondering what uses one might have during a Par-tay for those Sarcophagus? *LMAOROTF* Okay, so I know you had to be thinking, Sarcophagus in the Home... Humnnn... wonder what THOSE are for? I mean, I got some freaky shit in mi Casa too, so I'm not one to Judge mind you, but I don't have any Life sized Funeral receptacles among them, not from Egypt or anywhere else. I'm not even entirely certain if the LUXOR in Vegas had them or any of my Hard Core Goth Friends? *Bwahahahaha*
So, I've given you most of the Tour of The Santa House with us... and I might go back Solo some other time just to experiment with that Dead Zone where pixs would not take and the Camera would not work. Just becoz now I'm Curious as Hell and my Inquiring Mind NEEDS to now know... and I should have whipped out my New Cellphone Camera. But by the time the Camera didn't work Two Dozen times, the Kiddos were getting a bit impatient and Creeped Out becoz we didn't know why it was happening and they said it was Freaking them Out a bit, so lets bounce and get out of here before we piss some Spirits off?! *LOL*
Merry Christmas from the Arizona Desert... Dawn... The Bohemian