Trent has started a feature this year known as the Weekly Smile. I thought I’d join in, but I wanted to keep it separate from other happiness and gratitude blogs, and make this a little different. So I decide to make my weekly smile about something that may not be as significant in the overall scheme of things as the items I post about what’s going on in my life. Rather, I will select things that bring an unexpected smile just because they are unexpected. They don’t have to have a long ranging effect on my life. They just have to be.
So here is my first weekly smile.
It might be unexpected, but for me, this week’s smile is about Christmas lights. I know, I know, you all think I’m crazy. Christmas has been over for a few weeks, and even if you celebrate the entire Christmas season, Epiphany is also in the past. And if you go in the stores, Valentine’s Day rules the roost. But hear me out!
- After six years in Taiwan, the Christmas lights here in Michigan were magical. Yes, I know that many people had them out way too early. Though, aside from the commercial aspect, there is something about having a holiday season, particularly if your family is more likely to be together for Thanksgiving than for Christmas, so I’m a little more tolerant of early decorators than I used to be: IN HOMES. So seeing lights this year was part of feeling like I really am back home.
- I had an exchange student from Japan visiting for a week at Thanksgiving. (NOTE TO SELF: put together a post about Yumi’s visit.) She was totally taken by our evening drives through the neighborhoods as more and more lights kept popping up each night. I realized, seeing things through her eyes, that with the amount of work people put in with their lights and outdoor decorations, no wonder they do it early. Let’s share this light for a while. Which brings me to three.
- Last night, I was driving home, and several people still have Christmas lights out. It made me smile. I was grateful to these people for having their lights out. I don’t care if it’s intentional, or they are just waiting for things to warm up before taking them down, or they haven’t had time to do it yet. I don’t care. What I do care about is that in this wintery season of snow, wind, and not much to look forward to, these lights warm me. I can feel them push away the edges of my depression and moodiness that can threaten at this time of year. I can imagine the people in those houses holding on to a little holiday togetherness, even if it’s only in my own mind. Those lights give me a sense of hope. And I like that. It makes me smile.
This post is also part of JusJoJan, for day #15.