I love decorations. When the first Christmas lights go up in (early) fall, I want to complain that we shouldn’t be rushing the season, but I find I love them. Not necessarily the huge inflatable things, or the tacky displays of Santa Claus – who sometimes even appears at the Bethlehem manger Bethlehem on some lawns. But the lights, and the holly wreaths, and bells, and stars, and all those things that say “damn you, winter cold, we’re going to burst your bubble.”

And then, as soon as Christmas is over, I worry that the decorations will go too quickly and we’ll be left with a sense of gloom and shadow and foreboding.

Someone down the hallway took their wreath down yesterday – the 4th of February. I noticed their barren door when I took out the garbage. But coming back from my short journey I noticed they had hung a large glistening heart on the door in its place. I’m guessing it won’t be up too long after Valentine’s Day, but wonder if it will be replaced with some vision of flowers, bunnies, and/or Easter eggs soon after.

When I was a child I loved decorating for various holidays, even though we were never allowed to put things up too early. And I love it still – the sense that, no matter what kinds of negative things may be going on in our world there is always reason to celebrate.