Christmas decorating is never really "done" until you have the tree and can put up the most beautiful part about the whole holiday season!
I did pull out the decor, decorated with the candles and knick-knack's we have saved over the years. I was surprised that I didn't buy what I had thought I bought last year, for tree decor this year. My thoughts were, that I bought all Martha Stewart baby blue and brown, when in fact, I purchased something completely different. Hmmmmph! The more I thought about it all, I realized that I didn't buy the blue/brown rather I later remembered standing in Kmart with Paul contemplating what to buy, and we agreed on the other decor. More on that when the tree is up in a couple weeks!
Each year, Paul and I HATE to decorate the front of the house with these so called "net lights" WE HATE THEM! They always blow out after a year and they are cantankerous to hang! We tried to put on our tough faces this morning and put them on the bushes and low and behold, we ripped every one of them off and threw them in the trash! SO, needless to say that decorating the front of the house did not commence this morning!
I've noticed less and less houses decorate as years go by. It's sad. I know people are all about the money right now, but Christmas isn't about what gift you can buy this person and that person. It's a time to celebrate with family and friends and not about what's in the package. Every year I spend less and less for gifts because the reason for the season to me is spending time with the people I love. I'd rather hang out playing games or watching a movie and making some popcorn, go out for lunch or breakfast, scrapbook with a friend or talk on the phone. The materialistic things don't matter.
I tell this story of 2 kids that I knew many years ago. I knew them from my car racing days, I was friends with their car racing parents and uncle's. After a few seasons, I got to know them pretty good. I remember asking them what they asked Santa for Christmas that year and they replied that they do not ask Santa to bring them gifts, rather they asked Santa to give a gift to a child that needed something more than they did. This came from a then 9 and 5 year old. Since then, and I bet that that has been since about 1998, I try to live those kids motto. Give to those in need. Well, for me, I donate all year long to the MSPCA, not just at Christmas. That's my "giving back" present. Paul and I also grabbed an Angel off the tree this year at his church, too. My staff and I also donated to gift cards for others that are less fortunate in our organization, too. To me, that's as good as it gets!