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Day 4 of 12 Days of Articles: Holiday Lights

The most magical sight of the holidays is the array of lights strung up differently and uniquely on every house and in each yard. Driving through town goes from boring, to a show of twinkling lights, catching eyes from behind car windows. My neighborhood, shows off its creativity in decorating every Christmas season.

Decorating with your family or friends is a great way to get into the holiday cheer. There’s nothing quite like the way every house look dressed up for the season.

House decorating is a popular tradition. Every year families take out the old boxes of decorations and after hours of dedication, homes are lit up for the season. An old tale told to children about christmas lights is that they are put up so Santa Clause can locate their house easier, but the history of Holiday lights has a lot more to it.

According to HighContryLights.com, the origin of the lights come from multiple histories. Some say Christmas lights originated from pagans that worshipped the sun. During the winter solstice, they would put up candles and bonfires to  help the sun return with its “warmth and light”.  Now in the 21st century, with inventions like LED lights, there’s no need to light a ton of candles.

There are certain traditions that other religions don’t follow, but putting up lights are a common part of decor that isn’t stuck to one specific religion or culture. String lights are usually assumed as a symbol of just Christmas. But a lot of other holidays in December use them too. For example, during Hanukkah,  a Jewish holiday, blue and white lights are often put up as a sign of “Divinity” because it’s the color of the sky and sea. In some Christian houses, white lights are common to symbolize purity. “The light” in general is perceived as a sign of taking away darkness or warding away evil in most religions. The beauty of strung up lights captures the eyes of decorators everywhere. Even if you are not generally religious.

But whether you just put some strings of lights up, or use giant inflatable snowman and reindeer, you are a part of the community. Peyton Webster, a holiday decoration enthusiast says, “The best part of seeing neighborhoods lit up is knowing everyone has had fun celebrating.” “It’s cool to see how everyone decorates differently.” Says her sister Emma Liscomb. Every year they participate in decorating with family. However, some people don’t decorate and celebrate using string lights. According to a Instagram poll for Woodland students, 8 percent of students do not decorate for the season. On the contrary, 92 percent do.

Lights and winter decor honestly just add to the community sense in every neighborhood. The bonding that comes with the tradition just brings the season to life and, in my opinion, is the best part of the Holiday season.

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