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The Great Light Debate

Updated: Dec 3, 2019

As a very young child, my family's tree was adorned with multi-colored lights. Sometime in the early 80s, that all changed. Every light went all white. I grew up into adulthood decorating with only white lights. My sons were raised with only white Christmas lights. Their dad had no preference so I was free to light it up all white. Upon marrying hub, the debate began.


He liked multi-colored, I liked white. He asked what I had against the colored lights, to which I had no answer. If you know me well, you know I love color! I have never shied away from any hue, and have bold choices on my walls, wardrobe, and in my decor. But when it came to Christmas decorating, I only used white lights. In my past, I'd even called multi-colored lights tacky. Shame on me! I don't know why I'd developed such an aversion to the electric strands of color, but I had. Compromise was inevitable.


I began by putting the colored lights on one tree in the bedroom, leaving all the others pure as snow. That seemed to satisfy him, and didn't interfere with my tradition of all white lights. Then, the lights began to die as they tend to over time, and I replaced the bedroom tree with a mix of color and white lights because that's what I had and didn't want to buy more. To my surprise, I loved it! The combination was magical. Who knew? I felt a part of my childhood return. It was whimsical and fun!


I still have a couple of trees with only white lights that I love, but have now converted three to the multi-colored/white combination. I've added retro colored lights to the outside of the house as well. Call me tacky, it won't bother me. I've embraced color in my Christmas. In mid life, I'm welcoming back the childhood sense of wonder that it brings. Some would say I've gone to the dark side, but it's not dark at all. It's full of beauty, joy, and color!


Compromise was the key. Instead of only one of us getting our way, combining our preferences actually created something we loved even more. It reminded me of the pie scene from the movie "Radio". When asked if he would like strawberry or apple pie, the main character replied, "Both." I feel you Radio! In the great light debate, I'm choosing BOTH!


What is your light preference? What influenced that choice? Have you made changes as you've grown older? No judgement here, I love it all.


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Living room tree all lit up and ready for ornaments!


The tree that started it all, now in the man cave.





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