Let’s be clear.
I love celebrating events/holidays/seasons – I’m very festive. And like many people, I have a particular storage zone for decorating items in my basement. My metal shelf unit (thank you Home Depot) is crammed with various items that instantly transform our house. Smelly candles, dish towels, vases, serving platters, dried flowers, wreaths, place mats, cups, pot holders, you name it. And they’re all crammed together. Funky jack-o-lanterns sit with Easter bunny candles, and Valentine doilies mingle with red/white/blue streamers. My husband is baffled by the amount of stuff. He always looks warily at the pile, as if to say “Do we REALLY need another trivet in the shape of a candy cane?” No, he wouldn’t say that. He doesn’t know what a trivet is.
But I digress.
Around Halloween, I pull out the ‘ol harvest/pumpkin/fall theme decorations. My three kids are happy with our pumpkins that sit on the front steps, the scarecrow we put out, a fake corn-stalk and some sad-looking mums.
At least I thought they were happy.
They were, until we drove through another neighborhood and saw them. No, not a giant inflatable ghost. Not the cobwebs on the bushes. Not the purple spider on the roof. (Which is SERIOUSLY disturbing)
ORANGE LIGHTS. Orange lights lining the front door, on the trees, on the light post. A magical Halloween wonderland!
“Orange LIGHTS!” 5-year-old Josh yells. “Wow! When are WE putting up orange lights?!”
Fantastic question. When am I going to do this? Ok, let’s be honest. When is my husband going to do this? Is this a thing now? Everyone has to have orange lights like every 6 year old has to play soccer? And what is the orange light etiquette? When do you put them up? Do they stay on each night until Halloween? Only for Halloween night? (seems like too much work for one night) Can you turn them on for Thanksgiving? It’s kind of a harvest-y color. Do you have to wait for a warm day to take them down, and then put up the Christmas lights on the same day? My head was spinning and I frantically searched for an answer.
“Um, I don’t think we have orange lights,” I said to Josh.
“Well, THEY do. Why can’t we get some?” he asks.
Because I’m lazy. Because I don’t want orange lights. Because we already have orange place mats/cups/pumpkins/Oreos/dishes/towels/soap. Because your father is looking at me like there’s-no-way-I’m-putting-up-orange-lights. But my inner mother monologue was not the appropriate response.
“Maybe next year?” I said hopefully. A terrible parental lie (which is different from a real lie. It’s when you don’t want to share the real answer for fear of twenty more unanswerable questions thrown at you)
I won’t do orange lights next year. My clutter corner of seasonal stuff can’t handle it. One of the trivets will have to go. If I do orange lights, then what’s next? Pink lights for the Easter Bunny.