As Christmas approaches one family tradition is to drive the neighborhoods enjoying the Christmas lighting displays everyone puts up. The last few years there have been less and less. I understand, as our own lighting display has been downsized.
Last year many around our area protested a utilities rate hike in November set to reap the benefits of those who put up Christmas lighting displays. Yes, sadly we were one of those, since the year before our December utility bill had been a lot higher than in previous years. We couldn’t afford another huge increase, and the deliberate timing of the hike was deliberately grinchy, so we put up only the minimal lighting display. It was a sad year for enjoying Christmas lights displays.
This year, the rate hike will be put off until January as in previous years, except last year. Wise decision, utilities department. The lightening displays have returned, and ours included.
The real point of this post is for many years, we watched a certain home in our area add to his homemade Christmas display and looked forward to seeing what had been added each year. It was not religious in nature, but fun. There were Peanuts characters, then Tweety Bird & its companions, Little Mermaid, the Grinch, Disney Characters, Winnie the Pooh and pals, just to name a few, all homemade. Spotlights illumined the display. Suddenly about four years ago, not only were there no new characters, but the display disappeared entirely. Each Christmas we checked, still the house was dark, no sign of the previously wonderful Christmas light and character display. Had they moved? After all this is a military town, people come and go a lot? Was there a family illness or emergency that caused the display to go missing? While we reveled in the other fantastic lighting displays, we were saddened as we drove past the dark house checking each year.
No we never knew the people who lived in that house. But we felt a connection to them watching the display grow year after year.
Last night, December 10, 2018, we clambered into our truck, hot chocolate in hand, to go check out the neighborhood Christmas lights. With trepidation we turned the corner where the darkened house had been for several years. Lo and behold, in all its previous glory the Christmas lights and beloved characters were on the front lawn, house and roof. We were ecstatic to see the house lit up once again, the Peanuts merry-go-round spinning slowly, all the other cartoon characters smiling broadly. No new characters, but that was all right because the decorations were back.
We took pictures, and decided to share the beloved display with you. Funny how one thing can brighten your spirits as that house did ours that night. This year I believe we will go back to that house and knock on their door and tell them how much we have enjoyed their display throughout the years. Also how much we missed it when it was gone. Christmas lighting is a time consuming, expensive endeavor and a labor of love. To those of you who set up Christmas displays year after year, THANK YOU!
Please share your Christmas Traditions with us in the comments.
A Magic Redemption
Synn, a demon, carries extraordinary magic and power, but there is more within her than she dreams. Kidnapped as a child, her captors murdered her family and forced her into training as a warrior assassin.
When an assignment goes horribly wrong, she finds herself at the mercy of the friends and family of her intended target. Offering valuable information in exchange for protection, she gains her freedom, but it is not without its challenges.
Gavin Shaughnessy is the publican at his family's Irish pub. He is certain Synn is meant to be his and isn't bothered by her past. He must find a way to convince her their future together is stronger than the dark memories that haunt her dreams.
When her past comes calling for revenge, will their love survive the raging inferno she brings down upon them? Or will the searing path of destruction destroy all they hold dear?
Tena Stetler is a best-selling author of award winning paranormal romance novels. She has an over-active imagination, which led to writing her first vampire romance as a tween to the chagrin of her mother and delight of her friends. With the Rocky Mountains outside her window, she sits at her computer surrounded by a wide array of paranormal creatures, with a Navy SEAL or two mixed in telling their tales. Her books tell stories of magical kick-ass women and mystical alpha males that dare to love them. Travel, a bit of mystery, and adventure flourish in her books.