CHRISTMAS DECORATIONS LEAVE UP OR PUT UP AGAIN
jeanniejeanniejeannie.co.uk BLOG Saturday 9th January 2021
THOUGHT FOR THE DAY
Why Leaving Your Christmas Lights Up Is The Ultimate Mood Boost At The Moment.
We are all looking for ways to cheer ourselves up as we enter Lockdown 3.0. We are all peed off with last year and at the moment there is no let up. The screw is being forever tightened.
Some are suggesting to cheer us up we should leave our Christmas decorations up. May be like us it’s too late, you’ve already taken them down. Well put ‘em up again. Now there’s a laugh for a start.
There’s a lot on the internet about leaving Christmas decorations up. Let’s reflect on it. (Inspired by a base article from Adam Bloodworth and English Heritage and extensively added to.)
There are few sadder moments than taking the Christmas decorations down – and frankly, why should we right now when they could cheer us for another month or two?
That’s the sentiment going round on social media where a select group of us have confidently devised a plan to rid themselves of lockdown misery: sod tradition, let’s leave the lights up.
Our parents and grandparents might insist the tree comes down by Epiphany on January 6, but for many, including this writer, that date has always felt arbitrary. So, this year, I’m experimenting.
It’s January 7 and my tree is still up. So is my boss’s. She proudly displayed it on Zoom calls. It disappeared yesterday, but only just off camera, she now admits, where it can keep cheering her up, without jarring our colleagues.
The idea even has religious approval. An English Heritage boss wrote this week for the Catholic magazine, The Tablet, that he and the organisation endorsed the idea of keeping seasonal lights switched on till Candlemas (February 2).
Here are three more people resisting tradition with sparkly lights into 2021.
‘It’s a nice way to cut through the lockdown gloom’
Anna Harrington, 29, postdoctoral research assistant, Leicester
“I usually take my tree down on January 6, at the last ‘traditional’ moment. I had started ‘undecorating’ some of the other Christmas stuff on Monday evening when we turned on the PM’s speech and then I thought leaving the tree up a little longer would be nice way to cut through the lockdown gloom.
“I live in Leicester, so it’s been a long nine months with little lifting of restrictions, but it felt heavier knowing it was nationwide. The more I thought about it, the better an idea it seemed!
“My boyfriend and I live in a small flat, and while we’re lucky to be able to work from home, it means we spend all our time in one room. Turning the tree lights on at the end of the work day is our way to up the cosy factor and mentally switch gears.
“Plus, it’s an artificial tree, so there’s no expiry date on it! I took off the more explicitly Christmassy baubles (angels, stars, anything with a Santa hat), so it’s almost more like a twinkly fake plant. My boyfriend laughed when I suggested it, and then said something along the lines of ‘yeah, why not, go for it.’ We’re very much focusing on the cosy rather than festive vibes.
“It seemed like lots of people put their trees up in November to fight against the 2020 blues. This is kind of the same thing, just on the other side of Christmas!”
‘My husband thinks I’m mad’
SJ Smallpage, front-line nurse based in Kempsey, Worcestershire
“I’m a front line nurse and worked right from March up until Christmas – it’s been a long hard flog. I’m so enjoying Christmas now and it’s bringing light and joy into this recent lockdown. I refuse to take it down!!
“Let me enjoy my twinkly lights for just a bit longer. My husband thinks I’m mad – but this isn’t a new concept to him. Each year I get to be myself and go a little crazy. I volunteer at the greatest festival in the world – Glastonbury. But this year it’s cancelled and I’ve been so sad. So, my husband is cool with the tree staying, really. He would do anything to bring a smile to my face.
“My decorations are so beautiful. I particularly love my Glasto-bauble! But the lights are magical too. Sitting in the evening watching the twinkly lights makes me smile. Christmas is a special time of new life, bringing light into the darkness, and we are certainly living in darkness right now.
“I’m going to look forward to Candlemas – hopefully having got my jab for the vaccine and looking forward to a safer, brighter world.”
‘It’s cheerful in this particularly bleak midwinter.’
Anonymous HuffPost reader
Their Christmas lights being left up.
“I like to wait until Christmas Eve to put up a tree. So, it’s only right to leave them up a bit longer. I typically leave mine up to Martin Luther King Day (January 18), St. Valentine’s (February 14) or St. Patrick’s (March 18) – but never till Ash Wednesday. I live alone, so there’s no resistance. In more normal years, grandchildren love the decorations and miss it when I take down the tree.
“Sitting in the darkened room with the lights on seems quite contemplative. This year the tree has lights only – a compromise due to time. The absence of ornaments feels a bit odd, but it has been an odd year.
“It looks quite cheerful while sitting on the sofa having a scotch and cheerful from outside, too – a good thing in this particularly bleak midwinter.”
AND ONE FINAL OPINION
Leave up Christmas decorations and keep the halls decked with boughs of holly until February to bring cheer in the dark winter months, English Heritage has said.
The charity is appealing to the public to follow the traditions of their medieval ancestors and leave festive decorations up until Candlemas on February 2.
Candlemas, which has the full name the Feast of the Purification of the Blessed Virgin Mary, was the official end of Christmas in medieval England.
It consisted of great feasts and the blessing of candles that were to be used in churches in the coming year.
Experts at English Heritage say evidence that Christmas decorations were kept up until the evening before Candlemas is well documented, with many churches today displaying Christmas cribs until February 2.
Dr Michael Carter, senior properties historian at English Heritage, said: “In the Middle Ages, houses would be decorated with greenery for the Christmas season on Christmas Eve day.
“The feast of Christmas started at around 4 pm on Christmas Eve afternoon and continued until the Epiphany on 6 January.
“But contrary to popular belief, the Christmas season actually continues right through to Candlemas on 2 February so there’s no real reason why you should take your decorations down earlier.
“The tradition that it is bad luck to keep decorations up after Twelfth Night and the Epiphany is a modern invention, although it may derive from the medieval notion that decorations left up after Candlemas eve would become possessed by goblins.
“I’m of the opinion that, after the year we’ve all had, we certainly deserve to keep the Christmas cheer going a little longer.”
In the 16th century, Yuletide celebrations began on Hallowe’en and continued until Candlemas – meaning festivities lasted for almost a quarter of a year.
Amanda Holden plans to leave her Christmas decorations up until February – “like the Queen”.
Sharing a picture of herself drinking a glass of red perched on the side of hotub in a red swimsuit, Amanda revealed her plan to fans.
The Britain’s Got Talent host, 49, explained: “The Queen doesn’t take her decorations down until Candlemas.
“After last nights news (4th January 3rd Lockdown) – I think we may have a huge argument for keeping them up.”
In the backdrop of her picture was a large Christmas tree, twinkling with lights and topped with a star.
The Queen traditionally leaves up her decorations – although not her trees – until February 6 at her Scottish estate of Sandringham, where she usually spends the festive period.
The date marks the anniversary of her father’s death. The then Princess Elizabeth became queen when King George VI passed away on 6 February 1952 at Sandringham House.
TOP TEN OF THE DAY
“I Wouldn’t Want To Drink That Beverage” Names
- Pee Cola – Soda in Ghana.
- California Pine Whizz – Soda in South Africa.
- Pipi – Orangade in Yugoslavia.
- Kolic – Mineral water, in Japan.
- Zit – Soft drink in Greece.
- Gag – Soft drink in France
- Deepresso Coffee – Coffee drink in Japan.
- Libido – Soda in China.
- Hellena Fart- Fruit drink in Poland.
- Johnnie Worker Red Labial Old Scotch Whiskey – Whiskey in China.
DON’T FORGET TO LAUGH EVERYDAY
INSPIRATIONAL QUOTE FOR THE DAY
“Economics is like the Dutch language – I’m told it makes sense, but I have my doubts.”
— John Oliver
Happiness is…Christmas decorations being left up until Candlemas – 2nd February.
GRANDAD’S ONE LINER JOKE OF THE DAY
My mom said that if I don’t get off my computer and do my homework, she’ll slam my head on the keyboard, but I think she’s jokinfjreoiwjrtwe4to8rkljreun8f4ny84c8y4t58lym4wthylmhawt4mylt4amlathnatyn
A time to take down Christmas decorations on 12th night (6th January)…A time to take Christmas decorations down at Candlemas (2nd February)
©2021 Phil M Robinson