Family fills home with more than 200 unique Christmas trees

Published: Dec. 8, 2011 at 10:47 PM CST|Updated: Dec. 15, 2014 at 1:32 AM CST
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NEW DEAL, TX (KCBD) - Anyone passing by can see that the Rieken family loves Christmas, but you won't understand their true passion for the holiday until you go inside.

Just northeast of Lubbock, near the town of New Deal, this family has built a place that Santa would be proud to call home.

For more than 25 years, the Rieken family has filled their 2,700 square foot home with Christmas trees. This year they have more than 200 trees, all with unique themes.

"People when they see my house they say, 'I can't even get one tree up. When I see your house it makes me want to get in the Christmas spirit,'" Sheryl Rieken said. "There are over 200 trees, my grandson counted them."

There's one for Santa, one for Texas Tech, one for the town of New Deal, and one for Scooby-Doo.

But trees aren't the only symbol of Christmas in the home. Sheryl Rieken has spent more than 25 years making various types of ornaments and decorations.

"On the Coke tree there's tongue depressors, coke cans, just lots of things I like to make," Rieken said.

Rieken says memories hang on every branch. "My three grandkids, I have pictures of them playing sports, Halloween costumes."

There's a different theme for almost every tree.

"I think both of my kids think I'm a hoarder, but I'm a neat hoarder," Rieken joked.

A Christmas tree wouldn't be complete without lights, and this family uses plenty.

"We actually threw the transformer out on the pole and the electric company had to come out and fix it," Rieken said.

Sheryl's husband is an electrician, so they're safe with the wires, but it's not cheap.

"It's probably $1,500 more - maybe double, I don't know. It costs a little bit more to run all the lights," Rieken said.

Sheryl decorates the inside while her husband Karl decorates the outside.

"Sometimes his remote control won't work because there are so many things in front of it," she said.

"You have to share with someone all the time," Rieken says. "You have to pass it on."

Copyright 2011 KCBD NewsChannel 11