It may not look at all like Christmas yet, but in two weeks Kurt and Linda Hanson's home overlooking Gilbert Lake will turn into a Christmas village.
The Hansons' 20-year-old contemporary style home will be one of six Brainerd homes featured in the Heartland Symphony Orchestra Grand House Tour Dec. 4. The tour is a fund-raiser for the orchestra.
This is the first year the Hansons' home has been on the tour. Linda participated in the tour for three years and after she and her husband remodeled their home, they decided to be part of the tour.
The Hansons spent seven months remodeling their home. They doubled the size of their kitchen, adding cherry wood cabinets and granite counter tops. Kurt's hobby is gourmet cooking and the larger cooking space has been a blessing.
The kitchen area is open and adjacent to the dining room and sun room. The sun room's walls and ceiling are covered with windows that allow the sunshine in. The Hansons have a beautiful view of Gilbert Lake and trees from these windows.
They also watch birds from their sun room. They enjoy the sights and sounds of hummingbirds, chickadees, cardinals and even pileated woodpeckers.
Separating the kitchen and dining room area from the living room is a two-sided gas fireplace done in cultured ledgestone. Kurt, who had no masonry experience, built the fireplace, following tips from his contractors.
The Hansons had the old staircase ripped out and built a new one with cherry wood railings and steps accented with a gold patterned runner. Up the stairs the Hansons turned their small office area into a coffee and reading room. The room has two comfortable, cushioned chairs with a soft reading lamp. The area is open, like a loft, and overlooks the living room.
The master bedroom and master bath also are upstairs. The bathroom was remodeled to give the Hansons a larger shower area. There also is a large soaking tub with white shutters over the windows. Ceramic earth-tone colored tiles cover the tub and the floor.
This will be the first year the Hansons decorate the house with the addition complete. Linda has always loved decorating for Christmas.
"I plan to decorate the home Victorian style," she said. "I'm going to use a lot of white and gold. I just bought 1,000 gold lights.
"The downstairs will be a country Christmas."
There will be a 20-foot Christmas tree in the living room, which will be decorated simply with ribbons and bows lighted in gold.
A Dickens Christmas village will be displayed in the Hansons' home, as well as an electric train set, a handmade Santa collection and a nativity set.
"I'm excited," Linda said about decorating her house for the Christmas tour. "People are going to feel like they are at the North Pole."
She said she may have the tour begin in their gazebo, which is attached to the home from the deck and also will be decorated.
JENNIFER STOCKINGER can be reached at email@example.com or 855-5851.
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