From the front yard decorations alone, you have a sense that Christmas is a big deal at the home of Kim and Ty Troutman. But step inside their Loyalton residence in upper Dauphin County and you know it's a big deal.
“It just seems to me that most of the time we are inside,” said Kim Troutman with a chuckle, “so we should decorate inside.”
And decorate she does. From floor to ceiling, wall to wall and room to room visitors are treated to more than 270 miniature houses and nearly one hundred collectible carolers. It's a passion that began when she used to decorate her bedroom as a child.
“I like Christmas,” she exclaimed with a laugh.
Bur her love for celebrating Christmas is based first and foremost on her Christian faith.
“I used to think,” she said, “that if we held a one day birthday celebration for me, then we should have at least a month-long birthday party for God's son.”
Her husband Ty said the layouts are based on plans that Kim dreams up. He said he's just there to help those dreams come true. The couple start putting up the decorations and villages in mid-October, but planning for the display is a year round effort.
“I will begin planning for next year's layout starting on December 26, “Kim said. “I will begin writing down what I want to do differently next year.”
Kim said friends and neighbors look forward to the new layouts each year, but it's the grandkids she keeps in mind when making her plans.
“The kids really, really like it, ” she said.
And among all the villages, trees and decorations in the Troutman household are several works of seasonal art from Kim's own brush. For background Christmas music, you sometimes will find Kim at the piano providing her own sounds of the season.