It was not to be broken under any circumstances.
No one ever broke it so I don't know what the consequences of such contemptible behavior would have been. But the mere thought of the possible consequence placed fear in the heart of every child in the house.
The Christmas decorations DO NOT come out until AFTER Thanksgiving. No lights, no tree, no tinsel, no cloth elves, no ivy. NOTHING.
So on Thanksgiving night or the day that we got home from Aunty Doo's house, all the cornucopias, waxed fruit, paper turkeys, color leaves, and anything that was orange, brown or gold was vanquished to their appropriate boxes.
In their place came boxes full of plastic ivy, wreaths, Santa Claus(es), spun glass, Nativity scenes, bright colored lights, ornaments, tinsel garlands, and tree things.
What an incredible collection of Christmas Kitsch as has never before or since existed.
It took the rest of the long weekend to get it all up.
It was so bright outside that I could find my way to my house on a dark, Tule fog night just by the glow!
So, every year that I have had my own home, I have judiciously followed the rule. Even in the years where I had to do all the work.
The house would be strewn with real pine wreaths covered in bows and beads and tinsel and flowers. Every flat surface would be covered in a themed cacophony of kitsch. One table was all porcelain Santas in a field of snow. The next, elves in a musical tableau. One a religious nightmare of tin and hay.
AND THE TREE!
Covered in ornaments of all shapes and sizes. Paper, glass, wood. Commercial, handmade, and heirlooms. Lights-some years large, some years small. Some years white, some years multicolored. Some years had strings of bubble lights or penguins, or chili peppers. Ever inch covered.
Then there was the year of the shaving cream........I would rather not talk about that one.
But always, ALWAYS after Thanksgiving.
Well, until yesterday.
I went into the "storage" area under our house. And I saw them. Four giant and three not so giant plastic tubs labeled "Christmas".
And I thought to myself, "Hmmm, I will need those on Friday. I can get them out today."
And then I opened one.
Because if I was going to give any of them to Goodwill (which I wanted to do because you can't put seven tubs of kitsch from a 2700 square foot house into a 1600 square foot house) then I should do so before Thanksgiving.
So I started to pull things out.
I tried to figure where they would go in the new house. What would fit and what wouldn't.
So I HAD to take some into the house to see for sure.
And then they had to have the cotton snow around them to see if they would look right.
There it was.
|Lighted ginger bread house|
(P.S.--spouse comes into my office that night and says (very gruffly), "You have to call Mrs. Bread" and I say, "You mean Mrs. Beard?" And he says, "NO! Mrs. Bread. Ginger left the lights on again!" And he leaves. Some one save me! ;-) )