Festive Lights Illuminate The Christmas Season

By Lucy Retterer, Staff Writer

Recall the experience of Americans a few weeks ago: it’s December 1 and the world has experienced a complete turnaround in the two days after Thanksgiving. One day people were carving turkeys and reminiscing over family memories, and the next, every window had a Christmas tree covered with ornaments and shimmering garland. The neighbors have red and white candy cane lights lining their front porch, and the radio is constantly playing “Jingle Bells.” It’s the Christmas season!

Christmas is one of the jolliest times of the year, and putting up lights adds to the spirit. “I love putting up Christmas lights every year,” junior Eli Levine said. “It’s a tradition that brings together my family and it’s something I always look forward to.”

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The Retterer family celebrates the holiday season by adorning their home with exterior lights and yard decorations. (Photo by Lucy Retterer)

Aside from being a fun tradition, lights can also spread Christmas cheer. It can be difficult to manage school work in between Thanksgiving and Christmas break, so for some, seeing bright decorations is a stress reliever. “I think Christmas lights are worth it,” senior Vanessa Lambrou said. “When I’m driving, I always look at the Christmas lights, and they make me smile.”

Though it can be argued that Christmas decorations take away from the true meaning of the holiday, it’s truthfully all up to one’s perception of them. Decorations are put up to create a festive mood, and by the time Christmas actually hits, so many houses are lit up that “you can’t help but smile,” according to junior Faith King. If something makes you feel joyful, can it really be that bad? 

In fact, studies have proven that Christmas decorations are actually beneficial for your health. According to psychoanalyst Steve McKeown, “In a world full of stress and anxiety people like to associate to things that make them happy, and Christmas decorations evoke those strong feelings of the childhood. Decorations are simply an anchor or pathway to those old childhood magical emotions of excitement.” 

Christmas is about returning to our roots and finding joy. Decorations can make us feel nostalgic, which can remind us of our favorite memories. Christmas lights force us to look on the bright side of things and bring merry feelings for the season. 

Some go all out when putting up lights for Christmas, while others may only put up a single wreath and call it a day. In both scenarios, decorations are used to express the feeling of hope that comes along with Christmas. 

Christmas decorations are a staple tradition of the holiday and are important due to the uncanny way they spread joy. They relieve stress, bring back old memories, and evoke a strong sense of delight. Christmas lights illuminate the season every year and deserve to be heralded as one of the best parts of Christmas.

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