Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Decorating for Christmas

I finished my novel, Threadbare. I was beginning to think it was going to miss its deadline of December 1, but all it needs now is a final reading looking for typos and grammatical errors. I am starting to hope it’s not a bad novel. I love the title, anyway.

Starting this Saturday I'll be doing a series of local appearances to promote Buttons and Bones, whose pub date is December 7. It's interesting when a pub date and a due date cross like this, I don't know which is more exciting.

The Christmas season is upon us. This past Sunday was the first Sunday in Advent, only three more, then, the following Saturday is Christmas Day. It seems we practically leaped from Thanksgiving to Christmas, but helping the switch is fresh snow on the ground this morning. Interestingly, there are not a lot of houses all lit up with Christmas decorations in my neighborhood. Usually the outdoor decorative-lights business starts before Thanksgiving with some houses, but I saw only one house with colored lights on the big evergreen shrub in their front yard the week before Thanksgiving. I got out my enormous artificial evergreen wreath on Sunday, checked its lights, and tied it to the railing of our balcony. It has a double drape of garland that extends to either end of the balcony. That’s the extent of our outdoor display. Sometimes it’s very convenient to not have a front lawn.

When do you decorate outdoors? Do you perhaps not decorate at all? Or are you one of those families that goes all out with moving figures, Christmas Creche, lights outlining roof, doors and windows, perhaps even broadcasting music? Carson Williams’ house comes to mind - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rmgf60CI_ks – aren’t you glad you don’t live in his neighborhood? (I should say, didn’t live in his neighborhood. This huge display – a new one every year – generated so much traffic that he was persuaded to move its location to a nearby park.) In the neighborhood of a late friend of mine, there was a family that covered their front yard with lit Christmas figures of every sort, from snowmen to Santa’s helpers to Baby Jesus in the manger, all scattered haphazardly. It was, as they say, gaudy but tasteless. I looked forward to it every Christmas season. I should drive by this season to see if they’re still at it.

I haven’t begun to decorate inside our apartment, nor have I done any Christmas shopping. How about you?


NL Gassert said...

We don’t really decorate outside the house. Maybe a string of lights or two. Nothing this year, because my husband is deployed and I’m so afraid of heights, I can’t even step on the short ladder to hang anything up. I grew up in Germany and traditionally we wouldn’t decorate the tree until Christmas Eve. We’d have a few wreaths and candles throughout the house starting with the advent season (the 4 weeks before Christmas), but the real Christmas stuff wouldn’t come out until, well, Christmas. After moving to the States and having kids, I compromised and usually decorate the house two weeks before Christmas. This year, we’re expecting Dad to return from Iraq in mid-January, so all the decorations will stay up until then. That means, we’re probably decorating a bit late, so as not to get sick of it all :-)

Now some people in our neighborhood have had their houses, inside and out, decorated since Halloween. I think that’s a wee bit early.


signlady217 said...

No outside decorating, just inside. And I'm already done (please don't hate me!). :) We were out of town for Thanksgiving this year, so I did my Christmas decorating before we left. I am also completely done with all my Christmas shopping, just need to mail two boxes, Christmas cards are done and ready to be mailed, and most of my baking is done. I just have a few things I will do this Saturday morning for our annual Christmas party that night. After that I will just relax and enjoy the rest of the season! :)

Monica Ferris said...

Nadja, I was raised Roman Catholic and my mother wouldn't allow any Christmas decorations to go up until Christmas eve, too. And they stayed up until Epiphany, January 6. I agree that starting at Halloween is early - more than a wee bit! God bless your husband for his service, BTW.

Signlady, your baking is done already, too? Wow, that's amazing! I don't even know if I'll get around to anything more than a batch or two of cookies.

Linda O. Johnston said...

No to decorating so far, Monica. My husband usually does that in late December before family arrives for the holiday. But yes to shopping! Not done yet, though.

Anonymous said...

I haven't even gotten the tree out yet. I need to start preparing a spot for it. This year there is a wood stove in the spot we put it last year. I'll have to improvise this year. I hope you all have a Merry Christmas!

BeadKnitter said...

Congrats on finishing your book! That must be exciting. I am looking forward to Buttons and Bones.

My daughter and I put up the Christmas tree yesterday. I usually do it the friday after Thanksgiving, but didn't get a chance to this time. I've also put up a few of the inside decorations. I'm planning to finish next weekend.

Sometimes my husband puts lights up outside, and sometimes he doesn't. I think this year he won't because we got 18 inches of snow last week. He's been too busy moving snow out of the way. It's snowing again today and we're expecting to get a lot more inches from this storm-which is continuing until Thursday. sigh... Good reading weather though. And knitting! I've gotta finish the Christmas knitting.

Betty Hechtman said...

We don't decorate the outside, other than I like to hang a real pine wreath because they smell so good.

I am busy crocheting presents. Yay, for quick and easy ones.

Monica Ferris said...

Yes, one nice thing about bad weather is getting to stay indoors and read or do crafts. I'm doing bookmarks this year, though they're coming along slower than I thought they would. If there were record keepers for World's Slowest Stitcher, I'd be in the finals!