Enjoying the General Splendor of the Holidays

11:42 AM

The holiday season is something that I look forward to with excitement and a tad bit of dread.  The sheer mention of picking out a Christmas tree can cause me to cringe without even realizing I'm doing so.  The reason you ask?  Well it's because choosing the right tree is so difficult here in Hawai'i and because I've had some pretty tricky times setting up Christmas trees.  In Hawai'i there are several places with Matson crates full of trees but they're not as readily available these days as the economy has been steadily declining and the prices of trees are on the rise.

I come from a home of super picky Christmas tree lovers.  My mom was very detailed and specific on what kind of tree we had growing up and it's rubbed off on me I suppose.  Since I live with them because the cost of living here is so high, I have to accomodate the overall census and preferences of the household.  Big tree it is!!  Anyhow, there are so many different varieties of Christmas trees.  I prefer Douglas fir because the branches are stiffer and can more easily support the weight of all the ornaments I feel the need to adorn my tree with.  Last year I chose a tree that looked great at the shop but when I got it home, NOTHING worked to keep it from leaning.  Even a wire to the ceiling didn't do the trick.  It eventually fell on me one night, cutting my hand up terribly and I ended up ripping the tree down and got a new one.  Found out that tree's trunk was terribly crooked but that because of the fullness of the branches and their lengths, it appeared straight even though it wasn't.

Now that you have a grasp on why I tend to slightly dread the holidays, let me tell you why I LOVE them.  Christmas for me is a joyous celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ.  He's the reason for the season and the core of our celebration on Christmas.  I would be remiss however, if I didn't also admit that the reason I love this time of year is because of all the lights and presents.  As a child, it was such a treat to go and sit on Santa's lap and tell him my Christmas wish.  I always loved driving through the city looking at all the lights glowing and twinkling in contrast to the dark of night.  

One of my favorite things to do is stay up late and just lay on the couch and look at the glowing, colorful and sparkling Christmas tree.  Whether you celebrate Christmas or not, I'm sure you can agree that the lights, adornments and general splendor of the season are a beautiful sight to see.

I am really looking forward to baking with my son and making decorations for the house with him.  It's so much fun to watch children create something they are so proud of and see the joy in their eyes as they hang up their decorations.  An added bonus for me is that usually the weather here in Hawai'i gets cooler and it's a nice contrast from the normally muggy, hot and humid weather that we are used to.  Not that I'm complaining, but I rather enjoy crisp 60 degree nights and cool 70 degree days instead of the 90+ degree weather we had this summer. It gets so hot and stifling at times!

I was playing with my camera the other night taking bokeh (out of focus) photos of Christmas lights and my favorite ornaments.  I love how the lights glow warmly at night picking up all of the color and sparkle from the Christmas tree illuminating my living room. 

How do you decorate your trees?  What do you do for the holidays?  Do you have any ideas for decorating your home for the holidays?  Do you have any traditions or tasty recipes?  Share your experiences, tips and ideas in the comments below.  

Here are more pictures of my favorite bokeh shots and ornaments. 

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