Festive Choices!

It's the most wonderful time of the year.  The question is, when does it start?

A popular discussion topic in person, on Facebook, and in blogland this weekend has been decorating for Christmas.  Some people have been polling whether it's too early to decorate, while others are happily declaring that their decorating has commenced!  All around our town, folks are putting up their exterior holiday lights.  However, considering the forecast is calling for snow (which in these parts can reach depths of several feet), this is a practical exercise.  Nonetheless, a couple festive souls have flipped the switch, casting the glow of green and red lights onto their streets.

It all leads to the question; when is the best time to decorate for Christmas?

I'm a firm believer that if it makes you happy, go for it.  Granted, this theory would be stretched if it were August.  My general rule is to wait until after Remembrance Day, and then start moving things out gradually. I start with my "winter" items (snowmen, snowflakes, etc).  Heading into December, I'll begin adding more Christmas specific items, with the grand finale being the reintroduction of the tree.

It's a funny thing about the tree.  I used to wait until after December 15 to put it up.  Mind you, I used a fresh tree, so keeping it fresh was a consideration.  Last year we cut our own tree with friends.  The tree cutting expedition had to accommodate several schedules, so we went a little earlier, and I found it quite pleasant to have my tree up earlier than usual.  

In years past, when I was working, we had some last minute situations.  I would have great intentions of having my decorating complete by December 15, but something would happen and it would get pushed back.  One year in particular we had to go tree shopping quite late in the season; it's a great story (now) but you'll have to wait until December to hear it!  Suffice to say, it was interesting.

I've relaxed a lot on the "rules" of Christmas.  Like I  said, whatever makes you happy is what's important.  This year, I'm starting early and enjoying the whole process, from unpacking my treasures, to deciding where to put my favorite snowman, to sitting by the fire in the the glow of Christmas light, sipping hot chocolate and Baileys.  To achieve this, I'm going to begin doing a thorough late fall cleaning this week, and when it's complete I'll start moving in my "Winter" stuff. (One of my cousins was explaining the concept of "Winter" versus "Christmas" decorating on Facebook today.  I smiled, since this is a conversation I have several times throughout the festive season.)

As for the tree?  This year I've got some novel ideas regarding my tree (or should I say, trees?) that I'm going to keep to myself for the time being.  However, I will share that I'm aiming for earlier rather than later.  Stay tuned!

So, I'm interested; when do you begin decorating for Christmas?  Share in the comments!


  1. Thank you! Thank you for just letting people be and do what they please. Why do people JUDGE when you put your tree up early? Christmas is the most amazing and fun time of year so who cares if we start early!!!

  2. Yay!!! The first Nesty Christmas post!! Since we had a very similar upbringing, my ideas on decorating are much the same as yours. I start with the tunes as soon as Remembrance Day is over, and then move to cleaning and pre-decorating prep. I usually then wait until Dec 1st to really get rolling and then do it over a couple of evenings after the kids are in bed.This year, however, I've noticed that the last weekend of November is very close to the first of Dec, so I might do it then.

    I've also made the decision to put the tree up a little earlier this year. A big step for me! We always waiting until the 17th or 18th, but I've decided I want a few more of those evenings where you sit around with only the treelights on and sip Bailey's! Change is good, right??

  3. I love putting up the tree as early as the day after Thanksgiving (Nov 26th),I figure it's all good once Thanksgiving has been celebrated.

    We put it away mid day on Christmas day, mainly because we have the day off from work that day and it's a day we concentrate on putting everything away in the garage. If we don't put it all away then, who knows when it will get done. Also, we usually visit relatives on the weekend after the 25th.

    It's embarrassing to mention but since the weather is so accommodating here (mid 70's), quite a few of our neighbors don't put their lights away until as late as February. We like to count the houses with Christmas lights as we drive by during late January and February.

    I agree with you, what ever makes you happy, go for it.

    My outdoor lights come out in mid December along with other outside decorations. The house will get decorated sometime in between. We begin the month with a celebratory meal and end it the same way.

  4. Now how cool is this reading about others "traditions" I must admit since the girls have their own lives now, Mike and I have been lax on the ol traditions.. and have to make a real effort to follow what we used to.. I shall take pics of our decorated living room.. great post Kim...Sue


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