I have generally greeted that period after Halloween and before, say December 15th, with grudging acceptance. Grudging acceptance of those who would hasten the impending holidays, with lights, trees, Christmas music, ect. . .
It's not like I have had a 'Bah, Humbug' attitude. Not at all. It's just that it has always seemed WAY too early to see holiday decorations sprouting up in early November. After all, once Halloween is in the rear view mirror, there are still nearly 7 weeks before Christmas arrives.
However, this year there is an ever so subtle change brewing somewhere in the inner reaches of this dad's soul. I still think it is too early for the full on holiday barrage of everything red, white, and green. But this year there is a noticeable lack of disdain for those who would hang out the icicle lights right after Halloween or put up the tree the day after Thanksgiving. It is a softening of the spirit that seems to correspond to the multi-faceted softening of the man.
Don't get me wrong. There will be no tree in this house before December 15th. The holiday music will stay on the shelf until then as well and the gift purchasing will most assuredly be last minute as it always seems to be. Rather, It's the spirit of the whole season that seems to have taken a festive new hold in me this year.
Of course, this is in no small part due to the fact that Lukas will be a year and a half old this Christmas, and for the first time will be aware that things are interesting and different around the house. I look forward to sharing all this with him, as well as sharing the spirit of giving that also comes along with all the decorations.
So, to those neighbors planning to decorate with adandon on the morning of Nov 28th, I say "Bring it on!" Just leave the giant, blow-up, holiday themed Scooby Doo in it's box and out of the front yard.