Our new neighbours over the road have gone just that little bit further than most other households with their Christmas decorations – and bear in mind that a lot of houses here are festooned with flashing lights.
They have a decorated tree in the middle of the front garden, and under the kitchen window is some sort of installation involving an illuminated reindeer and other accessories. Maybe its a grotto. Its certainly a bit of a landmark.
Given my own opinion of Christmas I would be expected to heap scorn and ridicule on this sort of behaviour in equal measures, but they are obviously doing it for their young kids who I have to assume love it. Indulging children is something to be encouraged – even I used to dress up in a santa outfit when our lot were still in primary school.
What our neighbours have done looks like it has involved quite a lot of work, as opposed to just going out and buying a pre-fabricated Christmas. I bet the kids helped out as well, which is great. I can remember making paper chains and other Blue Peter-style decorations when I was a kid. I'm sure it didn't have the same 'ideal home' look as buying in a pile of colour co-ordinated designer decorations but its a lot more homely.
Even to an atheistic miserable old git like me the display over the road has a certain appeal. All Christmas decoration looks tacky to me, no matter how expensive or impressive, but I can just about bear the ones which are obviously child-oriented.
When adults with no children in the house swamp the place with flashing lights and tinsel I get a bit worried though. Its behaviour on a par with keeping 8 cats or having an entire room filled with royal souvenirs – including a shrine to Diana.