Christmas decorating in America has evolved over the years. We have taken many different traditions from various countries and made them our own. The way we decorate our trees, string lights, and celebrate Christmas in general have become almost an art form in America. Although Christmas is considered a Christian holiday, many non-Christians celebrate Christmas as well.
Christmas Tree Lights
For instance, candles used to be used as Christmas lights on Christmas trees. Buckets of water were often placed by the tree in case of fire. Using real candles for decorating became a real fire hazard. The invention of the electric light changed the way we decorated. Soon strings of lights replaced candles. Today, however, battery operated lights and candles have become popular. They tend to be a bit more expensive, but as time goes on, the prices will drop. They are also much more safe to use than real candles. You can string them in your tree or use the battery candle sticks. Many churches now use flameless battery candles in their church services because of the ease of using them. There is no fire hazard and they are easy to store.
Americans have a tradition of passing ornaments down through generations. It brings back fond childhood memories every year when they start decorating the tree. Every year a new ornament may be bought and added to the collection. Often when a couple is married, they start their own ornament collection. People give wedding ornaments, baby ornaments, and other various ornaments to new families. Decorating the tree is often the highlight of the season because the Christmas tree has become the center of many American homes Christmas display. Many families go and choose a tree together or put up their artificial tree. They have family time and decorate the tree together. Many memories are made and shared when putting up the Christmas tree.
Artificial Christmas Wreaths and Garlands
Another tradition is garlands and wreaths. In the early days, live holly and ivy were used as decoration. Popcorn and cranberries were often strung together. Today though, many Americans use artificial wreaths and garland for their decoration. The artificial variety is a much more popular choice because it can be cheaper and used for many years to come. Artificial garlands can be put almost anywhere from stair banisters to outside light poles. Often wreaths are placed on doors as a welcoming sign.
Outdoor Christmas Decorations
Decorating the outside of one’s house has become a huge tradition in America. From lights, to Nativity scenes, to animated snowmen, the choices are endless. Many Americans put up Christmas lights around their house, trees and walkways. An outdoor Nativity set is a popular choice for American display. Others choose snowmen or nutcrackers for decoration. Some neighborhoods have competitions for the best decorated yards. Churches usually put up large Nativity scenes in observance of Jesus Christ’s birth. Businesses decorate for the season too. Decoration of the outside of buildings with large bows and ribbons, wreaths, garlands, and lights are very common.
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