Here are three easy ways to decorate your home -- that won’t take long, won’t break the bank, and will most definitely add some cheer to your life.

Decorating should be fun -- not stressful! As Washingtonians, we already deal with enough stress from our busy jobs, lives, and relationships. Let the holidays be a time to unwind and enjoy! And whether you live in a large house or tiny apartment, taking the time to decorate your house will be worth it.

Look for the right-sized tree.

decorate Yes, everyone dreams of a big tree, but what they don’t dream of is the hassle of acquiring it, lugging it home, fitting it the room, and having enough ornaments to adorn it. Plus, if you’re going somewhere else for whatever holiday you celebrate, it’ll just be sitting there unused. Be realistic with yourself this year. Ask yourself the right questions. What corner of the living room is it going to go in? How will you get it up the stairs of your walkup?  By getting a smaller tree this year (or at least a medium-sized tree), you’ll save yourself time and money, without losing any of the merry benefits. You can also look into getting a fake tree, and even though that doesn’t sound as Christmas-y, logistically, you might thank yourself later. You can take them apart and re-use them for years to come. Plus, now you can have a little fun with it and get something in white or something sparkly, or anything that strikes your fancy. If you’re looking for a tree in Washington, D.C., or the metro area, check out Ace Hardware and Whole Foods (yes, surprisingly so) for some of the best deals.  

Hang up a string of lights in your living room (and bedroom if you’ve got enough).

decorate Lights are an incredibly easy way to get your home ready for the holidays. Nowadays, you don’t even need to drill holes into your walls (which is especially nice for those of us that rent). Buy command hooks, and place three to five along your wall. Then hang a string of lights on the hooks, and voila, you’re done! You can get all sorts of different-colored lights to really make each room stand out. On a side note, if you don’t have a fireplace, command hooks are also wonderful for hanging stockings. You can hang the stocking along the wall with your lights for an extra festive touch. Again, Ace Hardware is a great place to look for lights, but also check out Target, as they have some very reasonably priced lighting and stocking options.

Buy holiday scented candles and place around your home.

decorate Decorating with candles is an absolutely effortless way to prep your space for the holidays. Acquire some that smell like pine, or cookies, or peppermint, or whatever else you like to smell during this time. Place them in different rooms, and burn during cold frosty nights to stay extra cozy. They’re also great mood lighting for any holiday parties or gatherings you may be hosting. You can buy candles in almost any décor store or department store, but if you want a get a steal on some amazing holiday candles, go to TjMaxx. They sell quality, often brand name candles, for a fraction of the cost.   Do you have any easy tips and tricks for decorating your home for the holidays? Share your ideas with us in the comments below!

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