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Why Put Up Christmas Lights?

Merry Everything and Happy Always! from Dennis, Tom and Susan.

 

It’s a lot of work, figuring out how many of them you need, choosing your light scheme, heading to the store to buy them and pay for them. Then you have to go out in the cold, through the snow, up and down a ladder, and string the lights, all the while drinking.

Putting up Christmas lights is a supreme Dad Moment.

I don’t put up lights. Judge me. We decorate our house and have a Christmas tree and stockings hung by the chimney with care, but I don’t put lights up outside.

And yet, a lot of people in my neighborhood do, including my neighbor. He was out there the other day stringing them up and I wondered …

What’s in it for him?

I know that people like the way it feels to live in a nice neighborhood where people care enough to put up lights. I’m one of them. I will often take an extra turn or two on my way home to see the lights, and I have noticed that I’m not alone out there. At night, there are more couples and families walking the dog, also looking at the lights.

But some of us appreciate it enough to participate, like my neighbor and all-around good guy, Manfred.

He likes it enough to not ride for free.

What he gets out of putting up lights is the opportunity to contribute, and he is happy to do it. For him, participating is part of it. It would make his day if I asked him to help me put up lights. I would make his Christmas. I’m not going to, but I’m just saying …

I’d like to point out that nobody ever gets paid to put up Christmas lights on their houses, but some neighborhoods are full of them. People do it because giving makes them happy.

I suspect that the reason we all love Christmas is that it gives us an opportunity to give. Of course, it can’t be Christmas every day.

However, through our work, we all have an opportunity to share and contribute. It’s never been easier or cheaper to create and share with our community. So in that sense, it can be Christmas every day in that you can contribute every day by giving generously and freely to your community.

All it takes is time, focus, courage (of course) and a willingness to accept that it won’t be perfect but do it anyway.

 

Thanks to Jason Moore for sharing the photo of his Christmas-lit home. Jason is a fan of the Show, and has brought me in on many occasions to speak and share his experience goodness.

We’ll be back January 2 of the New Year.

 

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