150 CHRISTMAS TREES
POSTED: Wednesday, December 24, 2008 - 3:13pm
UPDATED: Wednesday, February 17, 2010 - 3:22pm
Nebraska woman takes Christmas decorating to the extreme. Dennis Kellogg reports.
An 1893 mansion in Geneva, Nebraska looks a little like a giant gingerbread house from the outside.
Inside it's a Christmas wonderland.
83-year-old Vina Mody has been collecting Christmas trees, ornaments and decorations for 20 years.
"It is kind of a disease you might say!" said Mody.
She has about 150 Christmas trees she puts up and decorates throughout her home every year.
"I start the first of November really bringing in the trees and decorations, but before that I am putting away other stuff so I have room for trees," Mody said.
Each Christmas tree is decorated with a theme.
There is a tree filled with butterflies and another one with fish.
There are trees decorated with colorful birds and flowers.
There is a clown tree, a teddy bear tree and a tree filled with Santa's elves.
There is even a cat house tree.
"Cats up there. The ladies are here," said Mody.
If you like shoes, there is a tree for you.
You can find a tree with Marilyn Monroe and another one with Santa Claus.
There is even one decorated in an environmentally-friendly way.
"This is a natural fiber tree. You know, all weeds and cane and bamboo," said Mody.
Vina takes her Christmas collection seriously.
The decorations are stored in her attic, well-organized with numbered boxes matching a master list.
The attic cannot hold everything, so there are more decorations stored neatly in the garage.
It is a job to get everything up and it does not leave her much time to enjoy her work.
"I tell you once I finish a tree, I got no more interest in it," said Mody. "It is a project and you do it and ok, good or bad, job is done."
Vina puts up thousands of Christmas decorations every year, all of them unique, but perhaps one is the most unique is the up-side-down Christmas tree, suspended from the ceiling.
"I got some fittings so the branches would go in the other way. And then my carpenter friend made a fitting and hung it," said Mody. "Oh they love this tree. Everyone loves this tree."
It is hard to find a tree you would not love.
It is a far cry from the kind of Christmases Vina remembers growing up.
"We did not have that much in those days. We had one little tree, about three-feet high with red berries on the edge. And in those days, we were happy if we got an orange and apple in our stocking," said Mody.
Now, after two decades of decorating, Vina said this Christmas will be the last one for her elaborate holiday display.
"I enjoy doing it. But I think it is one of those things you do as long as you can and then do something else," said Mody.
Christmas will still go on as scheduled next year, it just may not be quite as colorful in this small town.