Look at those decorations!!!!

I remember when I was growing up, it was always a holiday tradition to start decorating for Christmas after Thanksgiving, generally the first week of December. I remember my dad and I would be stretching out those strings of lights, checking for burned out or broken bulbs, wondering how some of the light strings got so tangled up sitting in a box for almost a year. Some of those cardboard boxes we stored the decorations in had to be older than me. Dad always liked the beer or whiskey boxes. I don’t know why. You couldn’t see it from outer space, but it was the best looking display in the neighborhood. My dad was always so proud and I was always so happy to be helping out in a grownups project. When I became a teenager, it became my project because he usually worked. He always gave a lot of good tips though. Forty years later, I can still see some of those displays in my memory.

After moving to Alaska, I found out it wise to have your exterior Christmas lights up before winter. You don’t have to turn them on right away, but it’s nice to be able to put them up when the temperature is tolerable and the gutters aren’t frozen over.
My next door neighbor is always in the holiday spirit. She never takes her decorations down, but she only turns them on during the Christmas holiday. I’m not exactly sure when she determined what was the day to start turning them on.
Other neighbors decorate too. Some might only hang a wreath or a Santa Claus in the window, but they all seem to put something up. Christmas is on a tight budget this year, but I think the spirit account is full. I think the holiday spirit will pick up even more when we get more snow.

The focal point of my decorating though is the Christmas tree in the picture window. I’ve been using the same artificial tree for about 8 years now. I love it and always get compliments on it. I’ve been slowly changing the decorations on it every year. The old ones I give to my kids to put on their tree at their houses. Those are ones that have accumulated over the years from Nana & Pop Pop, aunts, schools, Barbie, etc. It’s their memories of Christmas and growing up. The angel is starting to show some age, but I can’t give her up yet. To many years of lifting one of the kids up so they could put her on top of the tree. Then for weeks after she gets to watch down on everyone as they enjoy the holidays. That might be the hardest one to replace if I ever do.

Growing up, my folks never had a lot of money, but they always had the Christmas lights on from the time it got dark and until we went to bed. I don’t know if dad ever worried about an increase in the electric bill. Now a day, with all of the improvements in technology, I don’t even notice if there is an increase in the electric bill.

Decorating for Christmas has got to be one of my favorite parts of the holiday. It brings back so many fond memories of Christmas past.