Mishawaka woman spreads Christmas cheer through festive decorations

NOW: Mishawaka woman spreads Christmas cheer through festive decorations

MISHAWAKA, Ind. --- With less than just two weeks away from Christmas, one of the best ways to get into the Christmas spirit is to check out the lights and decorations around town!

One local woman has put her home on the map in Mishawaka for spreading the most holiday cheer through her decorations.

“Life’s about being happy, and what better way to be happy than to make other people happy?” says Tiara Balentine.

You can’t help but feel happy, and in the Christmas spirit, when driving past Tiara’s home during the holidays.

“Seeing all the kids faces light up, and I get a lot of messages saying how the kids look forward to it when the parents take them to school,” Balentine says.

Her display of Christmas decorations complete with Santa, gingerbread, and candy canes has made her home a holiday favorite in Michiana. She’s been doing it for years, and it began as a way to continue her mother’s tradition.

“My mom actually used to live here, and she was always known for being outside and doing her plants up and making it look really nice,” Balentine says. “After she passed and I bought the house, I definitely wanted to continue that and expand on that.”

For Tiara, Christmas begins the day after Thanksgiving, and the process is not done until Christmas day.

“The first week is pretty intense trying to get all the main things up, and honestly like I continually add to it up until Christmas,” says Balentine.

“They were always so nice, talking about how happy it made them and they were looking forward to see what was next,” Balentine says. “I was like ‘Alright, like I’m going to have to plan it out for every holiday.”

On top of spreading Christmas cheer to everyone driving through Mishawaka, the number one fan of Tiara’s decorations is her son, Tristan.

When asked how the decorations makes him feel, he says “Happy.”

Here's some other local light shows in Michiana: Saint Joe County 4H Fairgrounds' annual drive-through light show, Downtown South Bend's 'Holiday Light Parade', Potawatomi Zoo's 'Gift of Lights', Mishawaka's Winding Brook neighborhood, Elkhart's Wellfield Botanical Garden's 'Winter Wonderland Holiday Lights', Niles Fernwood Botanical Garden's 'Lights at Fernwood'.

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