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  • The Christmas wreath was originally hung as a symbol of Jesus. The holly represents his crown of thorns and the red berries the blood he shed.
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  • Tinsel was invented in 1610 in Germany and was once made of real silver.
  • The oldest artificial Christmas trees date back to the late 1800s and were made of green raffia (think grass hula skirts) or dyed goose feathers. Next the Addis Brush Company used their machinery that wove toilet brushes to create pine-like branches for artificial Christmas trees that were less flammable and could hold heavier decorations.
  • ‘Jingle Bells’ – the popular Christmas song was composed by James Pierpont in Massachusetts, America. It was, however, written for thanksgiving and not Christmas.
  • Coca-Cola was the first company that used Santa Claus during the winter season for promotion.
  • Hallmark introduced their first Christmas cards in 1915.
  • The first recorded date of Christmas being celebrated on December 25th was in 336, during the time of the Roman Emperor Constantine. A few years later, Pope Julius I officially declared that the birth of Jesus would be celebrated on that day.
  • Santa Claus's sleigh is led by eight reindeer: Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Dunder (variously spelled Donder and Donner), and Blixem (variously spelled Blixen and Blitzen), with Rudolph being a 20th-century inclusion.
  • Outdoor Christmas lights on homes evolved from decorating the traditional Christmas tree and house with candles during the Christmas season. Lighting the tree with small candles dates back to the 17th century and originated in Germany before spreading to Eastern Europe.
  • That big, jolly man in the red suit with a white beard didn’t always look that way. Prior to 1931, Santa was depicted as everything from a tall gaunt man to a spooky-looking elf. He has donned a bishop's robe and a Norse huntsman's animal skin. When Civil War cartoonist Thomas Nast drew Santa Claus for Harper's Weekly in 1862, Santa was a small elflike figure who supported the Union. Nast continued to draw Santa for 30 years, changing the color of his coat from tan to the red he’s known for today.
  • Christmas 2018 countdown has already begun. Will you be ready???
  • Why do we love Christmas? It's all about the traditions. In this chaotic world we can miss the "good old days." Christmas reminds us of that time.
Carrie Sansing

Best Picture from the Chicago Mini (BMMT)

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For quite a few years now, I have wanted to create a Mega Tree that was suitable to my style of decorating..blow molds, of course. I came up with an idea, a blow mold Mega Tree (BMMT) after seeing all the Mega Trees made out of light strings. I created a picture of what I wanted using catalogue photos. Then over the past few years, I added to my stockpile of certain molds I was short on, with the view of one day getting my tree built. I talked to several people about this at PLUS07and after.. running the idea by them.

At Light Up Ohio two years ago, I saw the Monkhouse's JUMP Pole. I asked Walter & Jackie if the JUMP could be modified to my purpose. They said definitely it could and I was hoping to build and modify a JUMP. But time slipped by and I was unable to do so.

A couple of months ago, Walter wrote me about it. He and Jackie had decided to modify and build a JUMP Pole to fit my needs. I sent them a picture of what I wanted, measurements, etc. After numerous emails and phone calls, Walter was able to work out the engineering for the most part.

They came here a week ago today and we started the build. I say we reservedly.. my input was nominal when it came to the actual construction of the tree. It was exciting to watch, help a little, and actually see it happen. We wanted it to be ready for the Chicago mini..and it was lit for the first time last Thursday night.

I am knocked out by it and happier than I have a right to be. I can't ever thank them enough. Walter & Jackie Monkhouse were able to make my dream a reality, building the tree I had in my minds eye for at least the past 5 years.

The tree stands 19' 7" tall at the top of the star, but it can go up to 30' feet if I ever choose to. I plan to take it down this week and swap in some Halloween molds at the appropriate time. After Halloween, Christmas will go back up. Currently, the tree is static, but that will change..I plan to use 42 channels of LOR and animate it to music, hopefully this year.

post-95-12957123656_thumb.jpg

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I gotta go with Chuck on that one. It was the coolest thing to see. What a marvel to look at the construction. Walter & Jackie, hats off for helping that dream come to fruition.

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Outstanding! I'm so happy I attended the mini and got to see it first hand. You guys did an awesome job! Walter and Jackie are such warm and friendly people and I'm so glad they were able to make your dream come true.

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OH YES VERY AWSOME!!! I'm so glad yall had a great time! Wish I could have been there!!

Jim

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That is Awesome Carrie....We got to meet Walter and Jackie at the Mississippi Mini....They are a cool couple that has the heart for decorating...That tree should be your center part of your display this year....congrats...

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Carrie, The Blow Mold Mega Tree (BMMT) was truly a AWESOME Piece of work to see this weekend, the Large size of it made it really stand out from 5-6 houses down and when your husband said something about people stopping all week to ask if you were having a Garage Sale, I can see that it is already catching a lot of attention :) Of course that may be because it is the beginning of September, but I really like the design, it is one of the most unique ideas and something that you have had you mind set on for quite some time. I look forward to seeing the sequences that you create for it.

P.S. You probably should go ahead and patent the name of the Tree so that we don't have the Spiral/Weber debate that happened earlier in the year lol :P

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Someone ratted me out. I just finished up a telephone interview with the Chicago Sun-Times. The reporter would not tell me how they found out about me, the mini, or the tree, but he said they are sending a photographer out tonight around dusk and asked me to light it up. I've been interviewed before, but this guy dug pretty deep. He wanted to know everything about my decorating, how I got started, the mini, etc. I plugged the heck out of PlanetChristmas.

I've never sought out media coverage in the past, but they come around anyway. How do these guys find out? On this one, though, I did consent, I love that tree!!

Anyway, he said they hope to run the article in tomorrow's paper (but with Mayor Daley's big announcement today, who knows?). Only thing I specified was do not publish my address.

I'll let you all know what happens, if anything.

Edited by Carrie Sansing

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Someone ratted me out. I just finished up a telephone interview with the Chicago Sun-Times. The reporter would not tell me how they found out about me, the mini, or the tree, but he said they are sending a photographer out tonight around dusk and asked me to light it up. I've been interviewed before, but this guy dug pretty deep. He wanted to know everything about my decorating, how I got started, the mini, etc. I plugged the heck out of PlanetChristmas.

I've never sought out media coverage in the past, but they come around anyway. How do these guys find out? On this one, though, I did consent, I love that tree!!

Anyway, he said they hope to run the article in tomorrow's paper (but with Mayor Dailey's big announcement today, who knows?). Only thing I specified was do not publish my address.

I'll let you all know what happens, if anything.

That's great! Hopefully it will be a fun article once it runs.

When I had a TV interview a couple years back I asked them not to share my address. I did allow them to share my website address, so people could find it indirectly if they wanted. I didn't notice any kind of traffic spike after it ran.

I was going to do an experiment last year and not get listed in the local paper's big list of displays. Normally I send in a little blurb about the display, last year I didn't. To my surprise, we were listed anyway. So much for that experiment...

This year I may actually ask them NOT to list us. Traffic creeps up just a bit every year and it would be nice to have a "cooling off" year.

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Carrie, just LOVE the BMMT! Kudos to all who helped make your dream a reality.

I like the way the soldiers are nestled in at the top. I would love to see it in person. Make sure you post pics of the Halloween BMMT. Can't wait to see it!

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Someone ratted me out. I just finished up a telephone interview with the Chicago Sun-Times. The reporter would not tell me how they found out about me, the mini, or the tree, but he said they are sending a photographer out tonight around dusk and asked me to light it up. I've been interviewed before, but this guy dug pretty deep. He wanted to know everything about my decorating, how I got started, the mini, etc. I plugged the heck out of PlanetChristmas.

I've never sought out media coverage in the past, but they come around anyway. How do these guys find out? On this one, though, I did consent, I love that tree!!

Anyway, he said they hope to run the article in tomorrow's paper (but with Mayor Dailey's big announcement today, who knows?). Only thing I specified was do not publish my address.

I'll let you all know what happens, if anything.

That is AWESOME!!! More Awesome than a Guy named Chuck who really likes your tree aswell :) Please be sure to share the link or scanned article with us :) Did you tell them about the 80 some people who came from all around the world to hang out at a Christmas Convention in September?? LOL!!

You deserve the recognition on this Carrie, it was a very original idea... One that could only come from "The Original Blow Mold Bohemian!"

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That is AWESOME!!! More Awesome than a Guy named Chuck who really likes your tree aswell :) Please be sure to share the link or scanned article with us :) Did you tell them about the 80 some people who came from all around the world to hang out at a Christmas Convention in September?? LOL!!

You deserve the recognition on this Carrie, it was a very original idea... One that could only come from "The Original Blow Mold Bohemian!"

Tory, yes I told him about PC, about PLUS, and about mini's. He wanted to know all about the Chicagoland mini specifically. His comment to me was "this would make for a great tv show, like Hoarders". He asked me to email him some pictures because he didn't know what a blow mold was, did not know about computer control. He asked about the classes here, where did I get the instructors. He even asked me "And what do you guys drink at these things?" I started laughing..it was a fun interview, he's called me back twice so far.

Edited by Carrie Sansing

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Tory, yes I told him about PC, about PLUS, and about mini's. He wanted to know all about the Chicagoland mini specificially. His comment to me was "this would make for a great tv show, like Hoarders". He asked me to email him some pictures because he didn't know what a blow mold was, did not know about computer control. He asked about the classes here, where did I get the instructors. He even asked me "And what do you guys drink at these things?" I started laughing..it was a fun interview, he's called me back twice so far.

Should have said Egg Nog of course :) LOL!! This is really interesting... Carrie's BlowMold tree may be featured in a Beer Commercial this year, which beer you choosing carrie Corona?

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I'm not sure I like being lumped into the same category as the folks on "hoarders". Did he say that after seeing your blowmold shed? :)

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The BMMT is absolutely outstanding. It blows away the blow mold stereotype of short little plastic things that will be covered by the snow. It is a great, eyecatching decoration!

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The BMMT is absolutely outstanding. It blows away the blow mold stereotype of short little plastic things that will be covered by the snow. It is a great, eyecatching decoration!

Thanks, Mike (and thanks to you and Anne for the Sailor Jerry & Caravella..yum!)

The reporter has called again and I just finished up with the photographer. Arrgh..he made me be in the pictures. I told him no right from the git go..I had no idea I had to be in the photos. But he said that if it was just the tree, its a "product shot" and that a human being needs to be in the pics. The wind here has been blowing like crazy..so I will probably look more horrid than usual! LOL

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Should have said Egg Nog of course :) LOL!! This is really interesting... Carrie's BlowMold tree may be featured in a Beer Commercial this year, which beer you choosing carrie Corona?

I guess it would have to be Corona..it's my once a year beer.

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Carrie, that is amazing. I'm glad you where able to get what you wanted completed. It looks great and can't wait to see it on LOR.

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Carrie all I can say is WOW!!!!!! that BMMT looks awesome:) maybe I will get to a mini sometime. now you have the gears turning in my head for my own version ! Congrats on a successfull Mini ! This idea is really ground breaking :)

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I'm not sure I like being lumped into the same category as the folks on "hoarders". Did he say that after seeing your blowmold shed? :)

Now that is funny. I agree though.

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Tory, yes I told him about PC, about PLUS, and about mini's. He wanted to know all about the Chicagoland mini specifically. His comment to me was "this would make for a great tv show, like Hoarders". He asked me to email him some pictures because he didn't know what a blow mold was, did not know about computer control. He asked about the classes here, where did I get the instructors. He even asked me "And what do you guys drink at these things?" I started laughing..it was a fun interview, he's called me back twice so far.

Did he ask about what people wear to such events? Or if there is some sort of unwritten policy about needing to wear the same attire to all similar events? ;)

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