Does your home still look like this?
If it does, then you have my heartfelt thanks… and that of my young daughter who is utterly enchanted by outdoor holiday light displays.
Big, bright and gaudy is best, in her book.
While there are many of you, who strip your homes of festive knickknacks and toss out your Christmas tree by noon on December 26th, I happen to appreciate folks who keep the holiday spirit glowing well into January.
Why yes, I am one of them.
And no, I don’t throw up an extra string of red lights in early February, so I can pass our outdoor light display off as Valentine’s Day decorations. Nor do we keep the lights burning until Easter. Rather, we make like the Vatican and keep the seasonal shimmering going until Candlemas.
Given that we live in Northern Wisconsin, where the mercury struggles to get above freezing on most winter days, the majority of people keep their holiday lights up until the March thaw. Not many homeowners are willing to brave the wind, snow and ice in order to deconstruct the maze of frozen icicle lights hanging from their gutters.
While some cities across the nation have passed ordinances dictating how long illuminated holiday displays may remain up, here in the Frozen Tundra, where we drive our kids to school in the dark and return home in the dark, we like the twinkle, shine, and glow that is cast by our neighbors’ elaborate outdoor Christmas exhibits.
The only problem is that this year our festively-lit neighborhood has been plunged into an early darkness thanks to Mother Nature. The month of January has brought record highs to our neck of the woods. We’ve experienced a string of 50-degree days, which is virtually unheard of in these parts.
Whereas I am the last person on Earth to complain about record warmth in January, unfortunately, the winter heat wave has melted our neighbors’ desire to keep their holiday lights aglow. Yesterday, when the thermometer topped out at 51 degrees, my daughter tearfully watched as our next door neighbor took advantage of the balmy temps to pack up his inflatable snow globe, animated Snoopy and white flocked smiling LED lighted snowman for the season.
I calmed her by plugging in our Christmas lights and cranking up “Jingle Bell Rock.”
When do you take down your holiday lights?