“Christmas is the keeping-place for memories of our innocence.”

Sorry for the rather late start today, but Skip, my factotum, is here to put up the outside lights, and I am periodically called outside to check progress and to see if everything is in the right place then when the spotlight blew I had to go to the store to buy another one and some new garlands for the fence. Last year there was enough garland to span the fence but it seems to have disappeared over the summer. My artificial tree, the ugliest scrub pine you ever saw, is now up in the dining room. Over the summer, a few of the ornaments were gnawed in places and some of the ribbons were eaten, nesting material I suppose. All that seems to be the work of the mini-spawns, the field mice who call my cellar their home. Around here we all have mice. My brother claims that anyone who lives on Cape Cod and says he has no mice is living in a fantasy world. Luckily my cats are adept at catching the critters, and I often find one lying perfectly still on the rug in the hall having peacefully gone to its rest.

The lights outside are all connected to timers. I’m crossing my fingers that everything will light as hoped. The newest light is a giant star with a trail of lights. It is atop the fence. If all goes well, it should be spectacular.

Tomorrow will begin the transformation of the inside of the house. The tree will arrive either Sunday or Monday. I’m wondering if a parade might be a bit over the top.

I was going to decorate only a little this year, but once I started I got the Christmas bug. It’s a disease most of my family has, inherited from my mother’s side of the family. My father’s parents were more the socks and underwear sort ofย  Christmas givers while my mother’s parents, with their eight kids, went all out for the holiday. Most of my cousins have also inherited the same disease.

The goldfinches are back to the feeders, drab and pale. Gone is the brilliant yellow of their summer feathers. Today there were five or six of them. I wonder where they’ve been.

I opened day one of my Advent calendar today. Only 24 more to go!

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6 Comments on ““Christmas is the keeping-place for memories of our innocence.””

  1. olof1 Says:

    Decorating with lights outside is rather new over here, well lights in the garden spruce has been there since they started to make them but that’s it. Still most people only have lights in the spruce and some light mets in trees and bushes. When someone goes the american way they usually show it on the local news ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚

    Every one living in the countryside like me have mice in their house ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚ I can hear them in the walls at night but my two cats do their job well ๐Ÿ™‚ This year I’ve only heard one or two.

    Tomorrow I’ll drive by the super market and I’ll buy some light nets if they have, the last Harry Potter movie and Kate Bush latest if they have it. It’ll be a good weekend ๐Ÿ™‚

    Have a great day!

    • katry Says:

      For as long as I can remember people have decorated with lights. I would think it perfect for your long winters. It would give a bright beauty to the darkness of Christmas time.

      I love the sound of your weekend. That was a great movie and you can hear Kate as you putter about in the kitchen.

      Show the lights please.

  2. Zoey & Me Says:

    We are not getting a live tree this year. Our Christmas is scheduled at my son’s house in Sanford and the small fake tree will be in the foyer like always. We decorate the fireplace mantle and large wreath which always gives us that Christmas spirit. Santa and his tribe will line the mantle with stockings filled that we will take with us. With our daughter up in DC it’s going to feel like leaving one child behind this year. She only missed two Christmases with family at home when she served with the Peace Corps.

    • katry Says:

      I remember when my mother got her artificial tree when we were all grown and out of the house, but it still horrified us. The idea of not having a house infused with pine didn’t seem like Christmas to us.

      Like your daughter, the only two Christmases I missed were the ones when I was in the Peace Corps. When I got my own house, I decorated every year, including a tree even though I would spend Christmas with my parents at their house. Though I have barely started, my house smells wonderful from the rosemary herb tree I bought and the juniper bough hanging from the mantle.

      this is getting fun!

  3. Bob Says:

    Why not have artificial trees since the lights are artificial. There was a story on the news the other day that a Christmas tree farm in East Texas was so stricken by the drought that they had to import cut trees because their crop was decimated over the summer. Why not have Christmas trees made out of artificial stuff instead of having to dispose of the trees and it would eliminate the fire hazard that an unwatered tree can become. After all, people decorate them with artificial stuff and light them with electric lights.

    Although we don’t do Christmas, I do enjoy the holiday season and looking at the decorations and lights that my neighbors encircle their houses and trees with until the new year begins. When I was a kid living in Brooklyn we would spend part of the holidays with our Italian neighbors who always decorated their tree with popcorn strings, candy canes and fruit along with the other artificial ornaments. They also served the best food at Christmas. I always had the most fun playing with the electric train set that circled the tree in artificial snow on the floor.

    In Texas we have a problem with attic rats. They come into the house through the trees near the eves of the house and can be heard at night running up and down the inside of the walls. Once we had an infestation which drove our dogs nuts since they could hear the rats but not see them. I used a special bait in the attic that not only dispatched the critters to their final reward but also made their carcass’s disintegrate without decomposing. I think that it’s called better living through chemistry.

    • katry Says:

      I love the aroma from a real tree.The trees I buy come from tree farms where the trees are grown just for Christmas. I doubt they’d be grown if there wasn’t the business. After Christmas, the trees are used on the beach to keep the sand from eroding or they’d put in a chipper then the chips are used as ground cover. None of it goes to waste.

      We used to string popcorn and cranberry for the tree when we were kids.The stringed popcorn would then go on the trees for the birds. I just bought a train last year for around the tree. I can’t wait.

      I use a have a heart trap for the mice. Once, at a firend’s house, a mouse was in a trap and we could hear it flapping back and forth. That did it for me. Now I catch them and drive them a long way off to their new homes. The ones the cats get go to the dump in the trash.

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