Some people think I'm crazy but I love Christmas. I would decorate in July if the family would let me. We have so many family traditions that go with Christmas. It is such an exciting time with our family. I have so many wonderful Christmas memories. Mostly importantly it is a time where we celebrate the birth of my Savior Jesus Christ. If he had not come, we couldn't be saved. Life would be so much different. We would have to offer sacrifices and such to atone for our sins, now we just have to ask for forgiveness, he has done the hard part for us and for that I'm so thankful.
We might not start in July with decorating but do start in October. In fact, we are starting today. Mom has taken the week off and we will start putting up lights. What? Lights in October? Yes, when you put up 60,000 lights or more you got to get started, especially when we only have one free weekend before we turn them on for the season.
My grandpa started decorating for Christmas when I was very little (maybe before, I'm not sure what year it started). One year in particular as I remember the story, he put up only a cross with lights on it lighting it up. A man drove by that night, he was planning to end his life that very night. He came back though. He told my grandpa he saw that cross on the way to kill himself and realized he was making a bad choice. He knew God loved him. To this day, the cross still remains in our yard with our decorations. We have added many other things but the cross still stands. It is tattered, a little rotten but it still stands.
I remember so many nights of sitting out with my grandpa watching my parents work as he would tell them higher or lower with the lights to line them up straight around the trees. We would sit and drink our hot chocolate and talk. Some nights he would dress up as Santa and we would dress up as his elves. Some nights we would just sit out by his outdoor fireplace and watch the cars go by.
I remember one of the last times my grandpa saw the lights. It was the last Christmas he was with us. He had been so sick he could only watch us work from his window but he got so much joy from seeing us carry on. This particular moment though someone was driving him to the doctor, I was working on putting something up. He rolled down the window to look at everything and I saw a tear in his eye. It meant so much to him that we were carrying on for him. I get tears in my eyes just thinking about it now. I miss him so much. He won't physically be here this Christmas with us but he won't be forgotten. We will carry on in his memory.