Sunday, December 23, 2007

Zabcikville woman welcomes loved ones home for Christmas with a lot of beautiful decor

Telegram Staff Writer

Her house is a life-size snow globe.
Well, it would be if it had a dome-shaped layer of glass around it.
Reindeer prance in her lawn, carolers guard her doorway and icicles cling to her rooftop and tree branches.
But that's not it.
Della Green has seven Christmas trees in her house, each fully decorated. And, from bathroom to kitchen, on top of every table and counter sits a unique, handmade floral arrangement.
Fluffy bows adorn every window, serving as wreath centerpieces. Wrinkle-free and their color a vibrant red, they look store bought.
But no - the 89-year-old woman makes them herself. 'I use the same ribbon year after year,' Mrs. Green said. 'I start making the bows right before Thanksgiving and usually have them done at the beginning of December.'
It takes her about 10 minutes to make a single bow.
'I think I made 75 of them this year,' she said, scratching her head.
All of her decorations are in place by the end of the 12th month's second week.
She does all of the holiday decorating herself with the exception of some of the yard work, the very high and very low.
'I usually have some help for that,' Mrs. Green said. This year's helper was a nephew, Willie Stermer.
'But everything else is a product of my mother's genius,' said daughter Henrietta Miller. 'She makes rooms look like pictures right out of a magazine.'
Two reindeer sit in the laundry room, and a Christmas village is at the end of a hallway that leads to her workroom. Underneath the cotton snow and tiny houses, she stacked piles of cardboard at an angle to make the village look like a little town on a hill.
The leftovers - eight undecorated Christmas trees and a pair of antlers - are in the garage.
Mrs. Green has lived in her Zabcikville home since 1962. She's the widow of Jerome Green, the man who started Green's Sausage House.
Mrs. Miller says Mrs. Green has always had a flare for decorating.
'She keeps one tree out all year long. It's the one in the family room,' Mrs. Miller said. 'She just changes out the decorations for whatever holiday - Valentine's Day, Thanksgiving, the Fourth of July, all of them.'
When it's not Christmas, the decorations retire to their boxes. A spare bedroom in Mrs. Green's house is designated for decoration storage.
'I take it all down in mid-January,' Mrs. Green said. 'I like to keep them up for when my brothers and sisters come.'
Mrs. Green is one of nine siblings. Eight survive; the oldest is 97. They all gather every year for a post-Christmas tea and luncheon at Mrs. Green's house.
When Mrs. Green's six children were young, she said she only decorated three Christmas trees each year. But as her children grew, so did her decoration collection.
'I just keep putting everything out,' Mrs. Green said. 'I can't help it. I just like decorating.'
As for the rest of the year, Mrs. Green said she spends her spare time maintaining her lawn.
'Just give me a rake and a cotton hoe. I love that. Don't know how long I'll be able keep it up,' Mrs. Green said. 'But if the good Lord's willing, then the lawn will be good and next year, there will be a another shining Christmas.'

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