Year Round… by JoAnn

A house with christmas lights on the outside.

I was watching one of my favorite people on YouTube the other day, and she said something that I have not been able to forget. She was showing the new Christmas decorations she had bought for her front porch. It’s their first holiday season in their new home, and she is eager to decorate. Her dad is planning to put up the lights around the outside of her house. He asked her if she wanted to have them up temporarily or if she wanted him to attach them more permanently. As in, leave them attached to the house forever! What? Did I hear that right? Does he suggest she leaves her home strung with holiday lights year round? She asks him the same question, and he answers that it is the new thing people are doing.

At first, I chuckled at the thought of doing such a thing. What first came forward into my memory bank was the vision of a dilapidated tin can of a mobile home, with twinkling lights of every color, strung in no particular order, around every inch of the trailer. We’ve all seen them either in person or in the movies. A redneck couple usually lives there. I’ll admit I have a few of these festively lit homes in my neighborhood. That’s how I know for sure they exist. I am thankful that I have never been so colorful myself.

As lovely and joyful as holiday lights are, is it necessary to leave them up all year round? I understand the chore of placing them on the outside of a house. I used to put them up just around my front porch back in the day, and it wasn’t easy. I’ve watched my grown children and their spouse venture into decorating with outdoor lights, and there is a struggle. No one wants to climb a ladder and feel unsafe just for a few lights. I can understand someone thinking it’s a great idea to string up the house and leave them there. Maybe they think if they are not turned on, people won’t notice the lights are there. I would know! And it would drive me crazy.

The YouTube video ended with her saying she would have to think about it and decide if she wanted temporary or permanent lights. I hope she decides temporary. The home is a beautiful, classic brick farmhouse built around 100 years ago. I think permanent holiday lights would bring the classiness down a few notches. I hope she agrees.