Brady and Brooke Black family included on Saturday's homes tour
Brady and Brooke Black and their three children are gearing up to celebrate their third Christmas in their new home in the Oak Ridge subdivision in Holton. Decorated in bright, festive colors, the home is one of five stops on Saturday’s “I’ll Be Home For Christmas” homes tour.
The Blacks and their children, Kobe, 10; Khloe, 4; and Kenzington, 15 months; are eager to welcome guests into their modern home.
“I really like brighter colors, such as turquoise, in our home so we tried to incorporate that into our Christmas decorations so we wouldn’t have to take down our usual home décor,” Brooke said.
Three Christmas trees are set up in the dining room, living room and the kids’ playroom and are all uniquely decorated.
In the upstairs playroom, the tree is adorned with toys and a variety of action figures from television shows and movies. A wreath outside the playroom is also designed in a similar fashion.
“I think Khloe was maybe a little upset that we put her toys on the tree,” Brooke said.
In the living room, ceramic ornaments designed by young patients at MD Anderson Cancer Center in Texas grace the family tree. The ornaments were designed by cancer patients and then sold as a fund-raiser to benefit cancer research.
The cancer center has been a saving grace for the couple as Kobe was diagnosed with pediatric thyroid cancer and a brain tumor in October 2008. Now the cancer is stable, and he is symptom-free. The family has made several trips to the center since 2008 for tests and surgeries.
“It holds such a special place in our hearts, and we buy several ornaments each year to support their ongoing work,” Brooke said.
The couple was drawn to a new home in Oak Ridge in order to be just a few steps away from Brooke’s parents, Brian and Karol Bell.
“When we moved back to Holton, we started looking for a home to buy, but we couldn’t find anything. Then this land became available,” Brooke said. “Before we lived here, we lived in smaller apartments, and I really didn’t have that many Christmas decorations. Being on the homes tour has pushed me to get more. We may not have as many decorations up as some houses, but I think they reflect our family.”
On one side of the family’s double-sided fireplace, stockings are hung that were crafted by Brooke’s mother.
“I had one as a child, and now she’s made them for our kids,” Brooke said.
The family attends a Christmas Eve church service each year, and kids enjoy making gingerbread houses with extended family.
“We try really hard to incorporate giving to others with our kids,” Brooke said. “We pack shoeboxes for Operation Christmas Child, but we also like to focus on giving throughout the year. We’ve been blessed with such a beautiful home, and we know that not everyone has that. Kobe has a real heart for the homeless so we pack gift bags and hand them out throughout a city.”
Brady is a financial planner, and Brooke is a pharmacist at Walmart in Holton.
Sponsored by the Holton/Jackson County Chamber of Commerce and in part by the Jackson County Tourism Council, the “I’ll Be Home For Christmas” homes tour is scheduled from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday and include homes owned by the Blacks, Les and Rosemary Wilkerson, Brooks and Tonya Barta, Phillip and Ginger Lloyd and Dennis and Joni White.
Five Chamber businesses – Koger Variety, expressions, Lee’s Flower & Gift Shop, Uptown Treasures, and Heart to Home LLC – will showcase holiday items at each of the five homes that will be available for purchase after the show.
Tickets are $15 and can be purchased at Denison State Bank, Holton National Bank, Farmers State Bank and the Holton/Jackson County Chamber of Commerce. The tour is a fund-raiser for the Chamber, it was reported.
For more information about the homes tour, call the Chamber office at 364-3963.