Archive for December, 2010

Holiday Lights

Have I said this before????  December is just SOOOOO dark.  This year, come 5:30pm, my body just wants to shut down and go to bed….at half past FIVE!  Maybe that’s one reason I’ve appreciated the holiday lights around town so much this year.  I have to really really push myself to go anywhere after dark these days…which makes getting to Wednesday night Bible study a bit of a battle, even though I WANT to be there.  Just getting a little glimpse of twinkly light as I navigate the streets or country roads seems to help.  So I can understand people wanting to decorate with light during the end of December.  I do however, hate the pretext that this is somehow pleasing to God, the maker of all Light.  Which brings me back to my Christmas conundrum.  I love decorating, I love pretty things, special gifts, time with friends and family, traditional foods, holidays of all sorts.  But it’s a human thing, not a spiritual thing.  Ok, just wanted to get that out there again this year.

It’s a gray day here, looks like we might get a little snow, so here’s a few little human lights to light up the grayness.  When I was young, it was a pretty big family tradition to drive around looking at holiday lights with my family on Thanksgiving night.  Dad especially loved this.  We were alike in that way!

Holiday lights downtown Ames, Iowa

Ames is a city of around 50,000 residents and has a cute, thriving little downtown.  I’ve often thought it would be fun to go to Chicago to see the holiday lights, but we have quite a nice view right here at home.   We could use a little snow to go with them though, don’t you think?  Some fluffy white snow would reflect the lights rather nicely!

A snowflake, the perfect winter lighting decoration!

My dad was a city commissioner in Sterling, IL for 8 years while I was growing up.  He was commissioner of streets and alleys!  There was probably a more official title, but that’s what he called himself!  One of his favorite songs was Alley Cat!  Under that umbrella, he was also in charge of holiday lights downtown.  I think they settled on very subdued, classical looking wreaths during his tenure, which, as a child, I thought was kind of dull.  But he had definite opinions about holiday lights, so as we drove around various small surrounding towns, there was a always a steady stream of criticism about this, that and the other!

Iowa State University Christmas lights

Iowa State University Christmas tree

And here are the holiday lights that greet Iowa State students as they head home from late afternoon classes at the end of fall semester.

I am counting the days now until December 21st when the days will start getting longer again…less than a week!!!  And just to keep it all in perspective, I’ll end with some God made light…..a picture of the real spiritual light that we can have in our lives.

Even at sunset, it's pretty spectacular!


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There are so many pretty poinsettias these days, but I think I still like the dark reds the best!

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The End of Another Year

Advent calendar

More than anything else, the coming of the holidays reminds me of the ending of another year.  I love paper, cards, scrap booking, and especially these adorable little advent calendars.  Do you remember opening one little magical door as each day passed? 😀  Let the countdown begin!

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