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Monday, December 8

Outdoor Christmas Tree Lights- and the inappropriate laughter they can sometimes produce

There is a good and proper way to drive oneself crazy during the holidays. Attempt outdoor lighting.

Yes ma’am, there’s nothing quite like it.

When will we learn that only God should hang things very high in the air? I somehow imagine when the great star in the east decorated the first Christmas sky, the hanging of it did not involve roof clips.

Nor did it involve humans I love hanging from ropes and ladders extended just a little too far.

And yes, my mother did teach me better. And yes, she did tell me horror stories about people who have in fact fallen and “broken every bone in their body” just so their house can look a little more Chevy Chase-ish.

Really, I do slightly blame Chevy for the great light fiasco of Christmas ’08. That movie he did made men everywhere laugh with the Tim the Tool man growl over lights on a house.

So, it started when my man bought outdoor lights last year at the after Christmas sale at the Home Depot.

Lesson number one, if a store still has lights after Christmas, there may be a reason no other human was interested in them.

So, while I was out of town speaking this past Friday, Art and the girls pulled their little lighting treasures from the attic and set out to give our neighbors something to talk about.

And talk they did. I’m sure of it.

Because after 12 hours of blood, sweat and tears, the switch was thrown.

Y’all the lights were blue. BLUE! Which is perfectly fine if you wanted blue lights- if you bought blue lights- if you were delighted by blue lights. Which was not the case with us.

Imagine the olden days of K-Mart when the special of the day was announced and the blue light started flashing. Oh yes, I loved me some blue light specials.

BUT I DO NOT LOVE ME SOME BLUE LIGHTS ON MY HOUSE!

Seriously, the boxes said they were “white lights.”

And to really make matters worse, two of the strands were in fact that soft, whitish, yellow glow we were going after. Tacky does not even begin to describe the situation.

Having the true meaning of Christmas tucked within my heart, I just softly whispered to my hard working family when I returned home, “well, I do love creativity.” Oh I lie.

There may have been some serious inappropriate laughter and inquiring when those lights would in fact be taken down right this minute. And don’t you think I was bossing him either. I was not. He detested the blue lights worse than me.

So, off to the Home Depot my hubs went to return last year’s after Christmas sale lights that are blue but supposed to be white.

That was a complete and utterly joyous time for both my husband and the salesclerks that helped him, I am sure.

And please let the record clearly state here that I was not the one who wanted the lights.

I have been perfectly happy with a non-lit house for the 16 years we’ve been married. But then we had people. And those people grew. They grew into people with opinions and great desires for houses that light up.

So the Daddy cub in my man, could not disappoint.

The second round of lights brought home literally made me fall to the kitchen floor and exclaim out loud, “slay me dead people, slay me dead.”

Ya’all I thought it was a joke. It wasn’t.

This new batch of lights had dancing snowflakes that flashed as if a Reggi Band was playing close by. I tried to be mature and say it was fine.

But the word “fine” would not, could not, pass from my lips. I could not imagine my next 15 Christmases with Reggi snowflakes dancing outside my window. Not even Chevi would have been okay with that.

And if by some chance, you have the dancing snowflake lights, I heart you. I just can’t come visit right now because my issues with motion sickness and inappropriate laughter prove to be a bad combination.

So, back to the Home Depot the family went.

Oh can you imagine the look on those sales girl’s faces. “That light dude that returned the after Christmas sale lights from last year earlier. Yea. He’s back and currently approaching check out lane number 7 with what appears to be another RE-TURN. Manager needed ASAP.”

You’ll be happy to know, that my local Home Depot is well stocked with blue lights and dancing snowflake lights in case you are in need. Because that sweet store, did in fact let my hubs return everything.

And you’ll be even happier to know that Art is not easily defeated. After his third attempt, we now have beautiful white icicle lights twinkling all about the roof line of our home.

It turns out that if you buy lights for the outside of your house and you don’t want them to have a strange blue glow… you must avoid any boxes that have 3 little letters printed beside the words “white lights.” These bad and stressful letters are “L-E-D.”

If you see L-E-D and you like blue lights, knock yourself out and buy them. Home Depot would thank you.

If you are not fond of combining blue with all other things red, white and green- save yourselves from Christmas light torture and do not buy LED lights.

The end.

Not really…

As if this post weren’t long enough all ready… I do
have a few little announcements.


1. Speaking of blue light specials, K-Mart is in fact running a cyber Monday sale today with free shipping on all orders over $29. Cool.

2. If you haven’t had the chance to peruse the Cool Christmas GiveAway links yet, oh you must. There are some really FAB gifts!

Rumor has it that one of our bloggy friends who likes to wear wrinkled shirts (hint, hint) is giving away airfare and accommodations to Houston for the P31 Girls’ Night Out event.

3. Today, I am giving away my two marriage books, “Capture His Heart” and “Capture Her Heart.” I got inspired to do this from all the comments left this weekend.

I’ll draw today’s winner from all comments on today’s post that encourage my man with his amazing lighting abilities. I’ll announce both the winner from this weekend’s drawing and this one- tomorrow.

From my home to yours, may your Christmas be merry and BRIGHT!

Discussion

  1. 51

    Hang in there, Art. My hubby put up the outside lights a couple of weeks early because he was having shoulder surgery. At least you weren’t in an arm sling trying to do it!

    I’d love your books, Lysa. But rest assured, I will end up buying them even if I don’t win!

  2. 52

    Way to go Art! Your house looks beautiful and your kids will always remember this, and the lesson you taught them about trying until you get it right!

    Thanks for the smiles today Lysa. :) And thanks for your wonderful give-aways.

    ~Heather
    kobie55@hotmail.com

  3. 53

    i’m sure it looks great–blue lights or not. my husband went all chevy chase this year too. i took some pictures of the end result and we were looking at them and my son said, “i love our house.” he’s four and it was so worth it!

  4. 54

    Art–Are you going to be impossible to live with after all these props from all these ladies?? I don’t think so–because you are a good man. Oh no, there’s another one!! Stay strong!

  5. 55

    I think the blue lights with the flashing snow flakes would have made the Tacky Tour. (We have a tacky tour here in VA…do you?)

    Anyway – Merry Christmas and I’d love to be entered in your drawing.

    I really crossing my fingers to win the plane ride to Houston to come see you! HAPPY NEW YEAR TO ME!

  6. 56

    what a good chuckle; thank you. though I have yet to try hanging CHRISTmas lights on my house, I have managed to climb on my roof to trim the tops of a couple trees that we getting too tall in the front of our house. The trimming went well. The getting down from the roof proved to be a bit more of a problem… the ladder was beyond my foot’s reach! The roof was too hot to sit on let alone trying to lie on my stomach to reach further with my legs… it was crazy. I really thought I may have been stuck up there for hours and hours until I could capture the attention of a neighbor, but somehow I managed. How? I don’t actually remember… a little too traumatizing perhaps :) Props to you Art for all your work and perseverance.

  7. 57

    As painful as this sounds for you, thank you for the inappropriately seeming laughs you gave me! My brother is obsessed with decorating for Christmas so I’ve definitely witnessed such occasions as you describe. Props to your hubbie for not giving up!!

  8. 58

    your husband’s tenacity deserves a tremendous reward…

  9. 59

    Your husband is a great guy to go through all that trouble.

    Deb

  10. 60

    Those are gorgeous! Your husband is so sweet and patient. Thanks for the funny Christmas story this morning.

  11. 61
    Anonymous says:

    Lysa,
    You have a good man there. God has truly blessed you. It’s pretty amazing and quite funny what our men have to endure to please us women. I hear ya sister, I would have sent the dude back to the store as well. Our men really should be praised!!! Amen!

  12. 62
    Anonymous says:

    Lysa,
    What is it with children and the need for outdoor lights? I too had a son who talked his Dad into blue (my sons favorite color) Christmas lights. However, we only had them for one year.Because of the extreme cold mixed with lots of snow, by the next year all the blue paint had fallen off and now they are white! Kudos to Art, your house is beautiful!

  13. 63
    Anonymous says:

    What a great laugh! Thanks for sharing! And my, hasn’t God blessed you with an amazing husband who would continue on until it was “right”.. in your eyes. That is LOVE!! I thank God for the blessing of our husbands who can actually once in a while go along with our “expectations” and show us love unconditional. What a great God we serve to bless us so!
    Happy Lights!!

    Miriam in NC
    mirmckinstry@skybest.com

  14. 64

    There’s been a smile on my face from the start to the finish of this post.
    You guys are hilarious.

    However I love the end result. Great job Art. Good lesson for all of us in perseverance.
    I can tell you my hubby wouldn’t go back more than one. You have a treasure Lysa.

    Blessings,
    Vickie

  15. 65

    Wow! What a persistent, diligent, sweet guy to go through so much trouble and work to please his kids! (Hey, Art, do you give lessons? Our three-year-old informed me on the way home from preschool today that we needed to get some outside lights since they make Santa happy, and you know we’ve gotta please him! I’ve never done outside lights before!)

    The house is beautiful!

    Amy

  16. 66

    Lysa,
    I can’t possibly imagine how in the world your hubby got those lights all the way up on the peak of the house…. and pretty heroic to take the blue ones down and go get more, and again! WOW!

    The house looks beautiful… and thank you so much for the great laugh!
    Love in Him,
    Heather

  17. 67

    Lysa,
    We all got a good laugh this past Sunday when Pastor Rob made the announcement of the delemma one of our family members was having with “blue lights” on the house. What a trooper Art is to do it not once but twice with the returns. My hubby can’t stand waiting in lines, that is my job he says. hahaha. This year my son even tried getting me on the ladder to put the lights on the house and I put my foot down. I buy them, I make sure they work year after year, there is no earthly way I am climbing a ladder to hang them. Hopefully and prayfully Art would never ask you to do that!!!
    Your house looks beautiful!!! Way to go ART!
    Thanks for the laugh, I needed it today.
    Lots of love
    Liz

  18. 68
    Anonymous says:

    Love the lights, you house looks great. We don’t do outside lights any more, my hubby will only do them after dark (he can tell their placement better). Since being diagnosed with night blindness, I’m no help, so we decorate inside only. Art’s a real trooper, I can tell you are proud. Love your blog and your books.

    Kim

    kimdillon@vernay.com

  19. 69

    This must have been “Christmas Light Story” weekend! While Jim and Joshua put most of our outside lights up the weekend after Thanksgiving, they finished up on this past Saturday while Brie and I were at a Christmas tea.

    During that time, one of our neighbors literally fell off his roof after missing his step on the ladder and then hanging from the rain spout. Amazingly, he walked away from that fall and then went back up on the roof to finish hanging lights.

    Shortly thereafter, Jim was hanging lights at the top of a tree in our front yard and the ladder started falling…Joshua quickly grabbed it and saved Daddy’s life!

    Christmas light drama! Oh my! What our men don’t do for the outside lights!

    Your home looks beautiful, inviting and BRIGHT!

  20. 70

    What a great quality in a man – perseverance! Your house looks lovely!

  21. 71

    your house looks gorgeous!!
    last year while 10 months prego. I decided I would surprise my husband. I brought out the lights nad spent hours with numb cold hands untangling them and wrapping them aroudn the railing on our front porch, only to find out, the outdoor plug does not work

  22. 72

    your house looks gorgeous!!
    last year while 10 months prego. I decided I would surprise my husband. I brought out the lights nad spent hours with numb cold hands untangling them and wrapping them aroudn the railing on our front porch, only to find out, the outdoor plug does not work

  23. 73

    L.O.L. that’s hysterical! I love house lights, even though my dear hubby has had to rehang ours three times in 10 days due to wind gnomes. They need to be fixed again today, but I am not saying a word, just enjoying what I’ve got.

    Cheers to Art for making the effort. Don’t you just love them even more for all the sweet things they do that you KNOW are not their first choice of activity for a given moment (or weekend)?

  24. 74

    What a man! I love the spirit of not giving up. You are blessed to have a fantastic husband!

    Blessings,
    Cazandra

  25. 75

    Well, I must say that I have great admiration for any man who will brave the heights of that roof line to please his wife! Kudos! :)

  26. 76

    My hubby is currently outside fixing our first and hopefully our only light blunder this year. He hung our lights from last year only to find that after hanging them, half of them went out! What a gift we have in such loving husbands!!

  27. 77

    Art is da man! Way to go for not giving up! Bless your hearts. I cannot imagine. I love the pic. Great giveaways, too!

  28. 78

    i think your hubby did a fabulous job, especially considering having to get up on the roof of a 2-story house, coming down and then having to go back up and come back down…then go back up! GREAT JOB HUBSTER!

  29. 79

    Lysa,
    Consider yourself blessed, my young ones are still trying to guilt their dad into putting our Christmas decorations outside (and we don’t even have any that go onto the house just into the yard) and they have won yet. Though maybe its the 6 inches of snow we got since Thanksgiving that’s stopping him.

  30. 80

    Art did a great job! It looks like it was worth the drama. Plus, you’ll have a funny story for years to come. We don’t do lights at our house anymore. The first year we were married I was so excited about the lights my dad had passed down to me. My husband was outside working away and then he called me out to see the results…we had lights all piled onto ONE bush! Now, we have 3 huge trees, a few small ones, and lots of bushes, but my parents had only given me enough lights for one bush. Oh well, I’m sure the neighbors got a good laugh. And so did we!

  31. 81
    Joyfulsister says:

    ROFL~~Ahhh *U* R 2 Funny Lysa.. I really needed this today..The simplicity of a bright star that shone so bright when Christ was born.. gets lost in those updated lights that also give me motion sickness and anxiety just watching them move in ways Elvis could not touch. So for me I sit ever so calm amongst my white lights that just sit there in it’s purity and stillness. Praise the Lord for them I say!!

    Do I hear an Amen!!! lol

    Hugz Lorie

  32. 82

    Love the story-to funny! Right now I would be happy to have any lights on my house. lol DH promised when we owned our own home we would have them. However, it is hard to be to upset with him since I came home from work today to a clean house, all the laundry washed, folded and put away. :)

  33. 83
    Anonymous says:

    Lysa, I laughed out loud and then had to share it with David! You certainly can give a visual with words. Art you are the MAN. Kathie

  34. 84

    I just think it is awesome that your man will put up the lights. MY hunka hunka burning love will have nothing… I will say it again… nothing to do with pretty light hanging…blue, white, dancing, or otherwise…. but he is very complimentary and has great ideas of how to make it easier. LOL

    SO reward your man for the sweet light hanging efforts. :-)

  35. 85

    Too funny! If only we could get TLC to start a reality show starring your family. :-)

    Can’t believe I don’t have copies of your books yet, but would love to be in on the drawing.

    Sweet blessings,
    Amy (whowangus(at)yahoo.com)

  36. 86

    This post was so funny! Just what I needed to read! And I must say I’m impressed with the patience of your husband! Way to go, Art! Your hanging job looks great! The house looks nice now. And I have to admit, Lysa, (sigh) that I actually do like blue lights!

  37. 87
    Chris A. Jackson, MI says:

    The blue lights used to be my fves… but the real blue ones, not the LED’s…. I am new to your blog and I am glad I have stopped by.

  38. 88

    My husband would say, “Give that man a Klondike bar.” Really now…he totally loves that commercial where the man actually listens to what his wife is saying about someone, keeps up with her story, and can even reply to her. (hmmm…is he laughing cause he thinks I talk a lot, like he himself has earned a Klondike bar for listening to me…hmmmm) :)

    Three trips to Home Depot and now a “nice, sparkly, white with no blue and no dancing snowflakes” home…give that man a Klondike bar. :)

    (On a side note, I do confess we own dancing snowflakes, but praise God they come with a no dancing option. And my precious children have no clue, nor will they any time soon, that reggae dancing is an option!) :)
    Blessings!
    K :)

  39. 89

    Wow your house looks stunning with the lights. Hubby says he is going to do the lights (remains to be seen =) But I too love me some lights.

  40. 90

    All that I can say is I believe your man has captured your heart, AND the hearts of said children in the house for all of his efforts!!! The other thing I was going to say is PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE CAN I BE PICKED, I REALLY NEED THOSE BOOKS!!! Okay, how’s that for a desperate plea!!!???? God bless your icicles!!! :-)

  41. 91

    Too funny and too cute! I laughed outloud. Your hubbie sounds like he’s a real blessing… and what patience!

    Loved the snow angels. They disappear all too quickly…

    Blessings to you and your family this Christmas!

  42. 92

    I love the initiative and surprise he was going for! Aren’t you thankful for Home Depot’s generous return policy otherwise you could have won the neigborhood’s tackiest decoration contest.

  43. 93

    I laughed aloud when I read this, then read it to my hubby who also laughed aloud! We live about 10 miles out from town. less than a mile from our house on the road we use every day is a new house that has…LED lights! I know because they are blue! We laughed again as we drove by it because it made both of us think of this blog. Thanks for tickling our funny bones!