Why people are decorating early for the holidays

Perhaps because we’re spending more time at home, we’ll take any excuse to brighten things up in this crazy year.

ZIONSVILLE, Ind. — Getting ready for the holidays is happening earlier this year, perhaps because we’re spending more time at home and we’ll take any excuse to brighten things up in this crazy year.

“Surprisingly, everyone is pretty excited,” said Isaac Beverstock, the lead designer with Christmas Decor by Second Nature Landscapes. 

They tell 13News their business is already getting a lot of calls.

“People are home this year,” said Beverstock. “People got a lot closer to their families this year. People are having a lot of family over this year, hopefully in a safe manner, and they just want to make the most out of this year because it’s kind of been a depressing year for a lot of people.”

So people are already preparing to put up their Christmas lights earlier this year. 

Now, before for all you grinches out there freak out about seeing decorations before Thanksgiving, there are ways to adjust your decorations for different holidays.

“If we’re utilizing light in the decor, there’s a lot of cool products out there now that will help with that transition with different color schemes,” said Beverstock. “Like for Halloween, you can run orange and purple.”

The lights they use can be programmed electronically so this doesn’t mean you have to hang new lights for every holiday.

Second Nature Landscapes, based in Zionsville, is also taking nominations of military families to offer holiday decorating.

“Military personnel who are overseas, they can be nominated,” said owner Cory Owens. “We go out and, as a surprise, decorate for those families. It’s always a very difficult time for those families not having their loved ones at home, so for us to be able to bring them a little cheer, it’s something that we take a lot of pride in.”

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People in the GOP, White House, and Trump’s campaign increasingly think they will lose the White House, and maybe the Senate too, reports say

graphical user interface, application: President Donald Trump speaks from the Blue Room of the White House on Octover 10, 2020. Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post via Getty Images

© Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post via Getty Images
President Donald Trump speaks from the Blue Room of the White House on Octover 10, 2020. Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post via Getty Images

  • Republicans and White House officials fear that President Donald Trump is headed for defeat, according to a series of recent reports.
  • Some fear the GOP could lose control of the Senate in a “blue wave” of Democratic votes on November 3.
  • The gloom from Republicans seems supported by polling data, which paints an increasingly negative picture for Trump.
  • Trump’s much criticised performance in his debate with Joe Biden and, his behavior when diagnosed with COVID-19, are among factors said to be alienating voters. 
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Fears are growing in the Republican Party and White House that Democratic nominee Joe Biden may be on course for a landslide presidential election victory, according to multiple reports. 

The weekend brought further gloomy polling data for the Trump campaign, with an ABC/Washington Post poll released Sunday showing that Biden has support of 53% of likely voters to Trump’s 41%.

The result matched trends in a series of other recent polls showing the president trailing Biden on average by 10 points or more. 

Swing state polls brought more bad news  — with Biden continuing to hold a lead in states that flipped to the Republicans in 2016: Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and Michigan, according to data compiled by the New York Times.

Though the races in these states are tighter, Biden’s lead has been consistent. It led to a rash of bad headlines prompted by worried insiders:

  • Citing dozens of White House and Trump campaign officials, the Associated Press reported on Monday the fear that Trump’s widely criticised first debate performance with Biden and erratic response after being diagnosed with COVID-19 could see them lose not just the White House but also the Senate. 
  • NBC News on Friday reported that Republican donors and operatives worry a “blue wave” is coming. They are said to favor shifting resources from the presidential race — seen by some as a lost cause — to protecting vulnerable Congress seats. 
  • Texas GOP Senator Ted Cruz on Saturday warned that the GOP faced “a bloodbath of Watergate proportions” and could lose control of the Senate and White House if conditions are wrong come polling day.
  • Reuters also last week reported that the GOP was increasingly anxious that the Democrats are poised to seize control of the Senate. Trump’s coronavirus diagnosis was “the nail in the coffin; it’s all over” for the party’s hopes of defending its majority, a senior Senate Republican aide told the outlet. 

Though Trump’s prospects of victory may appear to be fading, some campaign officials believe the president will able to claw back ground this week, reported AP.

The Senate confirmation hearings of judge Amy Coney Barrett, which begin on Monday, are expected to take focus away from the pandemic and fire up conservatives.

Other officials hope that, as in 2016, pollsters are undercounting

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Harry Potter super-fan Liam Payne has a replica of Hagrid’s hut in his garden | People

Harry Potter super-fan Liam Payne has a replica of Hagrid's hut in his garden

Liam Payne has a replica of Hagrid’s hut from the ‘Harry Potter’ movies in his garden.

The One Direction star is a self-confessed fan of the magical movie franchise – which is based on the series of books by J.K. Rowling – and has even gone as far as to have a special hut built in the back garden of his sprawling home, which has been decorated to look exactly like the hut Hagrid lives in in the movies.

Liam, 27, unveiled his impressive hut during a live broadcast on TikTok with actor Tom Felton, who played Draco Malfoy in the fantasy franchise.

In the broadcast, Tom hinted he had heard rumors of Liam’s hut, but demanded proof, as he didn’t believe Liam was as big a fan of the movies as he claimed.

Tom said: “I didn’t believe it, mate, because you played it very cool.”

But Liam then showed Tom a picture of the hut on his phone, to which the actor exclaimed: “Good Lord!”

The ‘Strip That Down’ singer admitted constructing the replica was a “crazy” move.

And the hut isn’t the only impressive nod to ‘Harry Potter’ that Liam has in his garden either, as in 2015 he confessed to splashing out on the blue flying Ford Anglia that Daniel Radcliffe and Rupert Grint – who played the titular wizard and his best friend Ron Weasley respectively – pilot in the 2002 movie ‘Harry Potter And The Chamber of Secrets’.

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White House ‘super spreader’ event in Rose Garden reminds people that yes, you should still wear a mask outside

Epidemiologists continue to scrutinize a White House event after more than a dozen people, including President Donald Trump and White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany, announced they tested positive for COVID-19.

Here is a list of other officials who have tested positive since President Donald Trump



Several of them attended a ceremony held outside in the Rose Garden on Sept. 26 where Trump announced his Supreme Court nominee, Amy Coney Barrett, in front of more than 180 people. 

The suspected “super spreader” event highlights the importance of wearing a mask and social distancing, even when outside. But some health officials, including leading infectious disease expert Dr. Anthony Fauci, say they don’t always wear a mask outside.

a group of people in a garden: President Donald Trump announces Judge Amy Coney Barrett as his nominee to the Supreme Court in the Rose Garden at the White House on Sept. 26.

© Alex Brandon, AP
President Donald Trump announces Judge Amy Coney Barrett as his nominee to the Supreme Court in the Rose Garden at the White House on Sept. 26.

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So, when is it appropriate to take it off?

In an interview with Rhode Island Gov. Gina Raimondo, Fauci said you can take your mask off outdoors if you’re around people you live with and there is no one else in the immediate vicinity.

The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease director said on his daily 4-mile walk, he typically wears his mask around his neck and puts it on over his mouth when he sees someone coming.

Dr. Lewis Nelson, professor and chair of emergency medicine at Rutgers New Jersey Medical School, says mask wearing outside depends on one’s ability to social distance. If you’re more than 6 feet away from someone outside, then it’s generally safer to take your mask off.

Outdoors is safer than indoors, but it’s never totally safe, he said. Especially when the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in its COVID-19 Pandemic Planning Scenarios estimates about 40% of people who have COVID-19 are asymptomatic.

To mask or not to mask: Now that Trump tested positive for COVID-19, will shoppers be more compliant with mask mandates at stores?

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“Asymptomatic spread is very real, which is why you can’t feel that comfortable in an environment where people aren’t sick,’” Nelson said.

Dr. Sunil Sood, infectious diseases specialist at Northwell Health’s South Shore University Hospital in Bay Shore, New York, says the rules of “mask-on, mask off” also apply when dining outside.

“It is tiresome… (but) you just have to do that,” he said. “The only time you should take your mask off is when you’re actually biting and chewing.”

This means keeping the mask on while chatting with other diners, waiting for food and speaking with your waiter. The only exception would be if you’re dining alone at 6 feet away from other people or if you’re dining with members of your household.

Health experts stress testing negative

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Speaker Pelosi, House Democrats leave town, fail the American people

Wheels up, off to California after adjourning the House until after Election Day. It’s a shameful display of partisanship in the wake of our recovery from the coronavirus. Rather than help small businesses continue to access unused funds from the Paycheck Protection Program, Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiGOP lawmaker calls on Pelosi to apologize for response to Trump contracting coronavirus Pelosi: ‘We’re making progress’ on coronavirus relief bill What President Trump’s positive COVID test could mean for the markets MORE (D-Calif.) is willing to block reasonable relief efforts, all in the name of politics. She doesn’t want to risk President TrumpDonald John TrumpQuestions remain unanswered as White House casts upbeat outlook on Trump’s COVID-19 fight White House staffers get email saying to stay home if they experience coronavirus symptoms White House says ‘appropriate precautions’ were taken for Trump’s outing to see supporters MORE and congressional Republicans getting an ounce of credit in the final weeks of this election.

Some things are simply more important than political posturing, like ensuring American small businesses can weather the storm of the coronavirus pandemic. We have unspent funds from the Paycheck Protection Program, a COVID relief program that saved 51 million jobs in the United States, 2 million in Ohio alone. Its authorization is expiring, meaning the program is closing up shop, despite $138 billion left in the coffers. My Ohio colleague, Rep Steve ChabotSteven (Steve) Joseph ChabotKate Schroder in Ohio among Democratic challengers squelching GOP hopes for the House Centrist Democrats ‘strongly considering’ discharge petition on GOP PPP bill Lawmakers call for expanded AI role in education, business to remain competitive MORE, has a simple, straightforward bill that reauthorizes the unspent funds through the end of the year, expands the eligible entities and expenses, and further protects the program so that businesses with fewer than 300 employees can get to the front of the line.

We are on the right path toward economic recovery, with more than 10 million jobs created or brought back after the worst of the pandemic. But as states re-open at different paces, we still have businesses struggling to adjust and keep their doors open. Mom and pop stores, those with just a handful of employees are bearing the brunt of the economic damage. That’s why this PPP extension bill earmarks $25 billion for businesses with 10 or fewer employees and, if a business receives a second PPP loan, this bill ensures the total of those two loans cannot exceed $10 million.

Those businesses with just a few employees can make up a large number of loans in the program, but those loans will often be some of the smallest approved by the Small Business Administration. They are businesses that would struggle with the compliance and paperwork costs associated with byzantine processes mandated by federal regulators. This bill eliminates this problem: a simple form attesting that the business complied with the loan requirements is all that will be needed. It also requires them to keep records

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Jalpaiguri tea garden suspends operation, leaves 1,500 people jobless

The Saili Tea Estate in West Bengal’s Jalpaiguri district suspended operations on Monday, leaving around 1,500 people jobless ahead of the festive season, officials said.

The management put up a suspension of work notice at the main gate in the morning, workers at the tea estate said.

Negotiations were underway for the Durga Puja bonus and the operations were suspended amid the talks, they said.

The management refused to give 20% bonus to the workers as being given by the other tea gardens, they added.

The workers were offered 15.5% bonus, which led to protests at the tea garden a few days back.

“When we arrived for work in the morning, we saw the suspension of work notice at the gate. Also, the garden officials have left, following which protests started,” said Swapna Pradhan, a worker of the tea estate.

Officials of the Malbazar police station were at the spot to tackle the situation.

The workers demanded resumption of operations and payment of 20% bonus, threatening to intensify their agitation.

“If the administration does not take immediate action, we will boycott the next year’s assembly elections. We do not get any benefit, neither do we get fair pay. We need 20% bonus and the garden has to be opened before the Durga Puja,” said Shanta Kujur, another worker at the garden.

The garden authorities could not be reached for comments.

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White House gave New Jersey officials list of 206 people at Trump’s Thursday fundraiser events

The White House provided New Jersey health officials with a list of at least 206 people who attended President Trump’s fundraiser events in Bedminster, N.J., last Thursday, officials said on Sunday.

a man standing in front of a tree: White House gave New Jersey officials list of 206 people at Trump's Thursday fundraiser events

© Getty Images
White House gave New Jersey officials list of 206 people at Trump’s Thursday fundraiser events

The New Jersey Department of Health said in a joint statement with the Somerset County Department of Health that it reached out to all of the individuals who attended the events hours before the president tested positive for COVID-19.

The agencies said they received the list from the White House and the management of the Trump National Golf Club in Bedminster.

The state health department made attendees “aware of possible exposure and recommend that they self-monitor for symptoms and quarantine if they were in close contact with the President and his staff.”

County health officials are conducting interviews with staff members at the golf club and analyzing how much contact each had with the president and his staff and “providing public health recommendations accordingly.”

The statement notes that contact tracing is “ongoing,” and the majority of the club’s staff lives within Somerset County. New Jersey officials said they were told the federal government is also conducting contact tracing.

Video: Dr. Ashish Jha: ‘Would not recommend’ gathering of senators for SCOTUS confirmation right now (MSNBC)

Dr. Ashish Jha: ‘Would not recommend’ gathering of senators for SCOTUS confirmation right now



The state and county health officials recommended attendees who want to get tested wait at least five to seven days after Thursday.

“While the risk is low, a negative test earlier than that time cannot definitively rule out that COVID-19 will not develop,” the joint statement said.

But officials called on those “who are concerned that they were in close contact should quarantine for 14 days.”

A list provided to The Washington Post on Saturday by the Republican National Committee (RNC) included 207 attendees at Trump’s golf club, with about two dozen in a small roundtable inside with the president. Several of the small roundtable members took pictures with Trump.

The RNC distributed an email to attendees saying they should contact their doctors “if you or any of your loved ones

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At least 8 people who attended a White House Rose Garden event for Amy Coney Barrett’s Supreme Court nomination have tested positive for COVID-19

a group of people sitting on a bench in a park: President Donald Trump and Judge Amy Coney Barrett in the Rose Garden at the White House on Saturday, Sept. 26, 2020. Alex Brandon/AP Photo

© Alex Brandon/AP Photo
President Donald Trump and Judge Amy Coney Barrett in the Rose Garden at the White House on Saturday, Sept. 26, 2020. Alex Brandon/AP Photo

  • At least eight people who attended an event on September 26 where President Donald Trump announced his Supreme Court pick have since tested positive for COVID-19. 
  • Trump announced that he and first lady Melania Trump tested positive for the virus on Friday. 
  • At least 150 people attended the event last week.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

President Donald Trump announced Judge Amy Coney Barrett as his Supreme Court nominee on Saturday at an event with 150 attendees. 

Almost a week later on Friday, Trump announced that he and first lady Melania Trump tested positive for COVID-19. Now the event has come under some scrutiny, as at least eight attendees have tested positive for the virus this week.

It’s unclear if the Rose Garden gathering qualifies as a super-spreader event, or how or when those who contracted COVID-19 got the virus — whether at the event or elsewhere.

Here are all the prominent attendees who have tested positive for the virus:

Barrett tested negative on Friday but had the coronavirus this summer. 

More people in the president’s inner circle who interacted with him the week prior to his diagnosis also tested positive. White House aide Hope Hicks, Republican National Committee chairwoman Ronna McDaniel, campaign manager Bill Stepien, and Trump’s personal assistant are also among those who have recently tested positive for COVID-19. 

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In the wake of Trump’s COVID-19 diagnosis, the White House has yet to mobilize a CDC tracing team to contact hundreds of people who were in the president’s company

a group of people sitting at a park: President Donald Trump and Judge Amy Coney Barrett in the Rose Garden at the White House on Saturday, Sept. 26, 2020. Alex Brandon/AP Photo

© Alex Brandon/AP Photo
President Donald Trump and Judge Amy Coney Barrett in the Rose Garden at the White House on Saturday, Sept. 26, 2020. Alex Brandon/AP Photo

  • The White House is yet to deploy a ‘test and trace’ team of CDC experts following the president’s COVID-19 diagnosis, reported The Washington Post. 
  • The team’s function is to trace test those the president came into contact with while infected to stop the disease spreading further. 
  • Trump attended a fundraiser with 200 people and was in frequent contact with top officials while infected. 
  • Trump has long sought to downplay the seriousness of the disease that has killed more than 200,000 Americans. 
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

The White House has yet to deploy a specialist Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) team to track and test those whom President Donald Trump came into contact with after being infected with the coronavirus. 

Two sources told The Washington Post Saturday that the CDC specialists’ team was on standby but had not yet begun to work tracing all of those the president came into contact with while infected. 

Contact tracing is one of the critical methods advocated by public health officials to contain the spread of coronavirus. The CDC in guidelines on its website says tracing “will be conducted for close contacts (any individual within 6 feet of an infected person for at least 15 minutes) of laboratory-confirmed or probable COVID-19 patients.”

It is not known precisely how or when Trump contracted the virus. Adviser Hope Hicks tested positive for the disease Wednesday and had traveled with the president to his debate with Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden in Cleveland, Ohio, on Tuesday.

Following the debate, Trump took part in several public events, attending a fundraiser at his golf resort in Bedminster, New Jersey, with 200 people only hours before testing positive on Thursday.

The previous day the president had traveled to Minnesota. He held a rally in front of hundreds of supporters, many unmasked, and met top state Republicans at a campaign fundraiser.

Officials in states where Trump has held events recently told the Post that they had not been contacted by the White House about tracing the president’s contacts and were mainly acting independently to find them.

Video: Why the next 48 hours are ‘critical’ for President Trump’s COVID prognosis (FOX News)

Why the next 48 hours are ‘critical’ for President Trump’s COVID prognosis



In the wake of the president’s diagnoses, several senior Republicans have also been found to be COVID-19 positive, including former presidential adviser Kellyanne Conway, Senator Mike Lee, Senator Thom Tillis, Notre Dame University president John Jenkins, and former New Jersey governor Chris Christie. 

There is speculation that a White House ceremony a week before Trump’s diagnosis to announce Trump’s Supreme Court nominee, Amy Coney Barrett, may have been the “superspreader” event where many became infected. 

At the event, few observed social distancing measures or wore masks, and some guests hugged

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At Least 8 People Test Positive For Coronavirus After Rose Garden Event For Barrett

Updated at 12:28 p.m. ET

A week ago, more than 100 people gathered in the White House Rose Garden to celebrate President Trump’s third nominee to the U.S. Supreme Court, Amy Coney Barrett. Guests mingled, hugged and kissed on the cheek, most without wearing masks. An indoor reception followed the outdoor ceremony.

Seven days later, at least eight people who attended the ceremony have tested positive for the coronavirus, including the president. Several more of the president’s closest aides and advisers have also tested positive.

The president and first lady

President Trump, first lady Melania Trump and Judge Amy Coney Barrett walk into the Rose Garden for last Saturday’s nomination announcement. The first couple have since tested positive for the coronavirus. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

President Trump announced early Friday that he and first lady Melania Trump had tested positive. In introducing Barrett and pledging a swift confirmation in the Senate, the Trump campaign appeared to be finally making progress toward shifting the focus of the campaign away from the coronavirus.

Less than a week later, the president would fly to Walter Reed National Military Medical Center for treatment after his own diagnosis. Barrett tested negative on Friday.

Kellyanne Conway

Kellyanne Conway and Attorney General William Barr talk with guests in the Rose Garden. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Trump’s now former senior adviser sat in the front row. She tested positive on Friday and said her symptoms are mild. Conway also reportedly participated in debate preparations inside the White House later in the week.

Mike Lee

Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah, and his wife, Sharon Lee, walk into the Rose Garden on Saturday. The senator tested positive five days later. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Sen. Mike Lee announced a positive test result on Friday. He was seen hugging and kissing other guests and not wearing a mask at the event.

The Utah Republican is also a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee and met with Barrett earlier this week, again without masks. Lee says he will isolate for 10 days.

Thom Tillis

Republican senators Rep. Deb Fischer (R-Neb.), Sen. Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.), Sen. Mike Crapo (R-Idaho), Sen. Thom Tillis (R-N.C.), Sen. Josh Hawley (R-Mo.), Sen. Ben Sasse (R-Neb.), Sen. Mike Lee (R-Utah) and Sen. Kelly Loeffler (R-Ga.) in the Rose Garden. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Sen. Thom Tillis, R-N.C., also received a positive test on Friday. Republican members of the Senate Judiciary Committee attended the Saturday announcement. Tillis wore a mask during the ceremony, but several of his colleagues did not.

Tillis later participated in a Senate debate in North Carolina.

He is the second judiciary committee member to test positive. He said he will isolate for 10 days. More positives from the Judiciary Committee could impact Barrett’s confirmation timetable.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., said Friday the hearings will proceed as planned.

Senator Ron Johnson, R-Wis., has also tested positive. He is not on the Judiciary Committee and did not attend the Rose Garden event.

Father John Jenkins

Notre Dame President Father John
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