It’s Santa’s house. Not in C.R. and Jane Conn’s imaginations at all.
Standing high above the Colville Valley in Eastern Washington state, there’s magic here.
This home has no corners, vaulted ceilings, white walls, and it’s all concrete and built into a hillside. The home is backdrop for a veritable feast of Christmas ideas.
Four gigantic seven foot trees are centerpieces in the huge rooms, all with big windows looking out at wooden rain deer flying through the night sky or upon other huge trees outdoors, all lit at 5 p.m. exactly, so they’ll glow below to folks passing by on the highway.
The first encountered is filled with handcrafted decorations, one created every year for years or given to them as gifts. Each has a story.
One twinkling tree, all silver and big silver snowflakes, is nearby cozy furniture arrangements and other unique ornaments. “Here’s the area kids and adults love,” says Jane who leaves her hostess duties to show the animated bears playing instruments or dancing.
The bar room features the most whimsical tree of all — friends have made ornaments that are puzzles to solve. One made of little blocks of wood is ‘a cord of wood’. Another is a painted white and black cow which has a hole in its center and from which dangles a little pink toilet, a brown deer, and ends with a John Deere tractor, all items at the Conn house, and standing for “Holy Cow, It’s a John Deere.” There’s so many, a printed key is needed to untangle the mysteries!
“The more risqué ones,” says Jane, “Are hiding on the back side,” as she leads us off to the master bedroom with its little silver tree. “This one is up all year. I change it for each holiday.”
“You must work at this for days,” someone says in awe, “Actually, we do a little bit every day for weeks,”
Then, comes along C.R. with a group of men who slyly asks, “Want to see my Man Cave? It’s in another building.”
The house smiles. Guests grin.
Santa lives here, joyful, smiling, welcoming, loving, as he witnesses the joys of Christmas unfold.