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  • The first recorded date of Christmas being celebrated on December 25th was in 336, during the time of the Roman Emperor Constantine. A few years later, Pope Julius I officially declared that the birth of Jesus would be celebrated on that day.
  • Santa Claus's sleigh is led by eight reindeer: Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Dunder (variously spelled Donder and Donner), and Blixem (variously spelled Blixen and Blitzen), with Rudolph being a 20th-century inclusion.
  • Outdoor Christmas lights on homes evolved from decorating the traditional Christmas tree and house with candles during the Christmas season. Lighting the tree with small candles dates back to the 17th century and originated in Germany before spreading to Eastern Europe.
  • That big, jolly man in the red suit with a white beard didn’t always look that way. Prior to 1931, Santa was depicted as everything from a tall gaunt man to a spooky-looking elf. He has donned a bishop's robe and a Norse huntsman's animal skin. When Civil War cartoonist Thomas Nast drew Santa Claus for Harper's Weekly in 1862, Santa was a small elflike figure who supported the Union. Nast continued to draw Santa for 30 years, changing the color of his coat from tan to the red he’s known for today.
  • Christmas 2018 countdown has already begun. Will you be ready???
  • Why do we love Christmas? It's all about the traditions. In this chaotic world we can miss the "good old days." Christmas reminds us of that time.
mwalz

Why do we do this?

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Sometimes I often ask myself why I go all out for the decorations, and spend all this time & money on what a lot of people think is a waste of time and money.  Yea it's neat to build something that looks cool, but I think we all feel a deeper meaning for it.

My display isn't actually at my house it's at my grandmas. Today when I was over there she said every night a little old lady gets wheeled up in a wheelchair to view the display. Right now I have the yard filled with pumpkins and whatnot. Everyday kids come by to view the display and a lot love to take pictures. Last year while putting up Christmas lights a couple and their son came buy and said how great it is to have something in the neighborhood to get families to go do something together. It got me thinking.

We put up these displays to give back to the community and do bring joy and happiness to anyone who views the display. Sure we like to see our designs come to life in physical form, but I don't think it's exactly abut us. It's about showing the world what we can create to bring joy to others. We all have our own visions and ways of doing displays. At the end of the day, it all comes back to the same basic principle.

I think it's nice to step back and look at it from a different perspective once in a while, it helps me come back to reality a little.

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For me, it's about the smiles on peoples faces as they look at and wander through my display.   Especially the kids.  My wife likes to get pictures of the folks who visit to see the lights, inflatables,  and creations.   We do an open house with hot chocolate and warm spiced cider, serving home made cookies.   It's friendship, smiles and good times together.

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I love being the "rebel" on the block.  I use blow molds and colored lights!  In a sea of white lights and no blow molds my home stands out like a beacon!  I don't do nearly as much as you guys, but it's still very satisfying. 

My neighbors would never have blow molds, but ironically they are the ones who take pictures of their kids standing along side mine every year.  The neighborhood kids love them and my 2 small grandsons love them and that's all that matters.

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Don't we all suffer from a little bit of narcissism? :D I mean, its ok to stand at the end of your yard/driveway/ across the street and marvel at your own creation right? Of course it is, we all pour hours and countless dollars into lights, computer controllers, building props, programming, planning, etc.. so there is no shame in saying you love to see what you can do. I admit part of the thrill is pushing myself, competing against MYSELF. Can I outdo what I did last year? I don't care that a house less than 2 miles way has a fancy display with all pixels while I have a standard LED light show....

BUT that's not the only reason. My family loves it, it gives them even more reason to come visit my house on a more regular basis. My neighbors stop without fail when they see me doing yard work in late oct-early nov and ask if the lights are going up again this year ( OF COURSE!), its for them too. They bring their kids, their friends, their family's and ignore the rest of the world while they listen to Christmas music and watch the blinky flashy lights. Adults become kids, kids dance in the car seats. Its about presenting your "silly talent" for other people to enjoy, spread some cheer. It brings neighborhoods/ communities together and that's a great thing.

This year I have personally decided to take it a step further and will be collecting for charity (hot topic on this site...). Of course 100% will go to the charity (sunshine foundation, in-case you care). If I get $5 great, they have 5 more dollars... I figure if I am can spread joy to people passing the house, why not try to extend that reach...

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