Monday, December 12, 2011

Advent Journal Day 13 - December 13, 2011

I find it amazing that we are already at the 13th day of December.  Christmas is but a short 12 days away.  I am glad that I have set aside some time to work on this journal, it gives me a brief moment to reflect on Christmas's past and present.  Thank you for your thoughtful comments about this journal. I enjoy seeing your own journal entries!
Today's journal entry revolves around Christmas lights.
Did you know in it's original form, Christmas lights on a tree dates back to the 17th century?  Candles used to be glued to tree branches with melted wax or pinned to the branch to hold them in place.  Candleholders became available as early as 1890 and by 1914, lanterns and globes were used to hold the candles.
In 1882, Edward Johnson lit up the first tree using electric lights.  He used 80 lights.  He was also the inventor of the string of electric lights, that later became mass produced.  (Johnson worked as vice president of Thomas Edison's electric company.)  Edison was a mastermind at publicity and marketed the lights to the press.  Even though most Americans couldn't afford the electric lights, the White House, under Grover Cleveland ordered one in 1895.

Some people look at Christmas lights and see wonder, bold colors twinkling steadily in the darkness.  Why are they so enjoyable?  
Could it be because December is the month with the darkest days and Christmas lights tend to glow brighter in the dark?
Could it be that children see Christmas lights and know that Santa isn't far behind?
Or is it something optimistic inside us that sees the brilliant colors and reacts with pleasure?  What do you think?
 Day 13 Advent Journal 12.13.11
Today's Prompt: Write a short blurb about why Christmas lights make you smile.
Here is my journal entry for 12.13.  I wrote:
Christmas lights make me smile because they are so colorful, warm and peaceful. As a child, our neighbor, Joe Fasullo created intricate and brilliant Christmas light displays in his sprawling front yard.  I remember hearing his deep smoker’s cough as he strung the lights around his home.  He had a giant Santa’s head to the side of his front door and long hedges that wore flashing colorful lights for the entire month of December.  My grandmother’s living room overlooked Joe’s front yard and we found it to exciting and gorgeous each year.
As an older child, we found the Christmas lights at LaSallette to be spectacular.  Ashley and I went last year and braved the cold to see the thousands of lights telling the Christmas story across the small mountain.
At home, Jon’s family always sat in front of the tree in the dark room, watching the Christmas lights flash.  We adopted this tradition with our girls and now, they look forward to this as well.


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