Monday, December 1, 2014

Why We Decorate

 Whew – another Christmas season is upon us and even before the ax was laid to the necks of millions of American turkeys in honor of Thanksgiving, many were contemplating the day after thinking, “where shall I hang that big wreath Aunt Joe gave us last year?” Sure, we fight those urges, but it’s there lurking just beyond the cranberry sauce and burned crescent rolls. So why do we do it?

I have a theory.

Our celebrations are seasonal, right? And what’s outside we want to bring inside to remind us of whatever it is we’re celebrating. You know, reliable reminders that don’t . . . melt.

You can’t bring a snow snowman inside (unless you’re uber rich and have a dedicated room), so you find them fashioned from fabric, wood, ceramic or made out of cotton balls by your kindergartner. They lend such a festive air. My friend Karen has more snowmen / women than anyone I know and she has several dedicated rooms. It takes about a week to look at them all. Imagine if they were made of real snow. That little graph running along the baseboard in that flood insurance commercial would be off the charts at Karen’s should she happen to crank up the furnace one day.   

And then there are woodland creatures like, oh, bears. I have lots of those. Stuffed or of ceramic or “composite” - whatever that is. I have them all tricked out for Christmas, 4th of July and maybe a few other celebrations I can’t remember right now. That’s one of the Christmas ones in the picture up there. Representations of this particular critter are far preferable to the real deal for indoor use. Imagine the poop duty for a minute and you’ll probably agree. Feeding can also be a problem (and related to poop duty). Give me composite any day!

We want to pluck the stars from the heavens, too, and plop them on top of our Christmas trees. But a recent report from NASA states that even the smallest star weighs about 80K. Even the tree wiring champion of 2011 ( who was hired by the Obama’s in 2010 and subsequently received a star shaped medal) couldn’t get one of those babies to balance. And the Star of Bethlehem hasn’t been seen in centuries so we have to imagine it in aluminum foil. Those kindergartners again. 

But we can’t stop decorating, can we? I confess, I’m addicted. It helps to move our lives along in a delightful way. It causes curiosity in the very young and brings back memories of our youth. I’m 100% in the corner of all those who decorate to celebrate. Just don’t think I’m ever going to approve of twelve reindeer and a fat guy in a red suit crash landing on my roof. Even if he’s got a red BMW in his bag just for me.

This year I hope you decorate with Abandon, whoever he is. 


  1. Jennifer Brown BanksDecember 1, 2014 at 8:36 AM

    Lovely read! Do you travel with your decorating services? I could use some help. :-)

    While you're "addicted" I'm conflicted. LOL

    1. No traveling but lots of free advice! I'll bet your place looks super for the holidays. No, really.

  2. We have the tree, the lights, the nativity, the candle, and the porch all done and lovely. I'm reveling.

    Which I do all season long right inside my four walls. With Mister, of course, and all those boys...

    Happy girl!

    1. Hey, Happy Girl, thanks for stopping by! Our tree will go up soon and the Advent candles are standing tall. Nativity graces the mantle and cookies await. Must be Christmastime! =0)