“I’ve learned that you can tell a lot about a person by the way (s)he handles these three things: a rainy day, lost luggage, and tangled Christmas tree lights.”

Today is so bitingly cold I didn’t even bother to go out to chase the red spawn off the deck away from the birdseed. I did watch from the window and thought of ways to discourage it now that I haven’t the hose. The potato gun is still in the top spot, and one of those blaster squirt guns has made the list. My poor birds can’t get at the feeder so I am determined to rid my yard of this vermin.

The weather is cold, dark, damp and ugly and will stay ugly all week as we’ll have rain for the next few days, and winter rain is seldom welcomed. Even running to the car means getting wet and being cold. The roads get icy. Stopping often means sliding. I sometimes slide right by my street as the icy corner is difficult to maneuver.

I hate scraping my windshield. Sometimes the ice is so thick it takes a monumental effort to clear. Two of the best reasons to retire are not having to scrape the windshield or leave in the dark for work.

I remember when we used to decorate the picture window with snowflakes, stars and snowmen. My mother usually bought the kit which had paper stencils and a spray can of fake snow. One of us would hold the stencil while the other sprayed. We’d take turns. It was a popular decoration when I was a kid, and most houses in my neighborhood had snowflakes on their windows.

My father always decorated the bushes in front of our house with strings of lights. The bulbs on those outside strings were huge and bright. We’d watch my dad from the windows and when he was finished, we’d all run outside to see the lights. My house at Christmas was always beautiful to me. Candles with orange bulbs were in the single windows and a five bulb holder was in the picture window. The bases of all those candles were white plastic, and my mother sometimes had to tape the bases to the windowsills so they wouldn’t fall. Every year we’d pull the old yellow tape off before using the new tape.

Darkness was the best time. We’d plug in the outside lights then run to the windows to turn on the bulbs. That was done by hand, turning each bulb until it lit. Christmas always brought light to the darkness.

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8 Comments on ““I’ve learned that you can tell a lot about a person by the way (s)he handles these three things: a rainy day, lost luggage, and tangled Christmas tree lights.””

  1. olof1 Says:

    No snow flakes in our windows, my mother wasn’t fan of washing them away after Christmas 🙂 But we had our electric advenbt candlesticks and our advent stars shining each evening.

    The roads were so slippery this morning that I’m glad I always drive to work very early, I had only a few minutes left until I had to start working when I arrived 🙂 We had above 32F temperatures all night but icy rain fell and covered everything with a thick layer of ice. It was no fun at all to try to scrape away that from the car 🙂 I so long for retirement but I’ll have to wait 15-17 years until I acn do that.

    Have a great day!
    Christer.

    • katry Says:

      Christer,
      My mother loved Christmas and gave us that gift of loving it too. Snowflakes were a part of the season and usually stayed even after Christmas.

      That’s what I mean about icy roads being so dangerous especially if it is dark. I’m glad you took your time. You lived what I wrote about this morning!

  2. Hedley Says:

    Some years ago, I committed to make a tree in the garden aglow with lights, and when I say aglow, I mean Oxford Street, light up the community aglow. So I am up the ladder up the tree for some two hours in inhospitable weather preparing my luminary masterpiece. Mrs MDH swings in to the driveway, lowers the window and is somewhat critical of my efforts.

    Undaunted, I continued until the moment….I plugged the tree in, the lights blazed for 10 seconds and then popped. Whoops, might have blow a fuse. So I changed a fuse tried again and the result was not spectacular.

    I then removed all the lights and slung them in the garbage. Mrs MDH cackled and my involvement with outside lights came to an end.

    • katry Says:

      MDH,
      I do admire your commitment and the second attempt. Mrs. MDH could have been more supportive.

      If you plug too any light sets together, they go out forever. That was the lesson I learned when all the lights on my tree went out. The tree was decorated so it was a difficult task to remove the old and then add the new lights, but I was determined. Now I use a power strip wherever I can. It sits at the back of the tree unseen. Some are strung together but only a few.

  3. Caryn Says:

    Hi Kat,
    I discovered too late that today was bitter cold. I sailed out the door with the dogs this morning wearing a light quilted vest, a baseball hat, a fleece sweater and jeans. I was positive today was just like yesterday. Why not? By the time I got up to the next street I figured out that it was a lot colder than yesterday morning and bits of snow were flying about. The dogs were having fun and not in any hurry to do their important business but I managed to hurry them up and get back home before I froze to death.

    I think there still might be some yellow tape on some of the windowsills here from when my mother taped all the electric candles down. It’s probably been painted over a few times, though. 🙂

    When I was a kid we used to do the snowflake stencils with Glass Wax. After the holidays, we wiped it off and cleaned the windows at the same time. 🙂 I haven’t seen Glass Wax around for many years, now. I like it because you could see that all of it had been removed. No streaks.

    Enjoy the evening.

    • katry Says:

      Hi Caryn,
      I had a list of errands and did none of them. I did bring up some decorations and put them around the house. Tomorrow I have to go to a meeting so I’ll do my errands as well.

      I started out with the plastic ones then got brass so no tape needed now. In my mind’s eye all of the candles have tape that won’t come off.

      Good thing my mother didn’t use Glass Wax as we were saved from window washing.

      Stay warm!

      • Caryn Says:

        My window candles are all battery run with a timer chip so they come on the same time each night and go off 5 hours later. The weight of the batteries keeps them on the window sill and I don’t have to remember to turn them on.

        We only did Glass Wax snowflakes on the front porch windows and it was probably the only time they got cleaned all year. 🙂

      • katry Says:

        Caryn,
        I leave my window lights downstairs on all the time, all year. My street has no streetlights and is very dark. They shine and light the night. I have a new neighbor who now leaves hers on as well.


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