It may have been November 9th, but it felt like as good a time as any to decorate for Christmas.  I didn't realize people would take it so personally.  I'm not waging war on Thanksgiving, but if you make me pick sides I'm going with the jolly ol' elf.

We used to decorate the weekend after Thanksgiving.  I did it as a kid.  I did it once I became a dad.  It just always happened that way.  Over the years I've held to a strict timeline of when decorations for certain holidays should go up and how long they should stay up.

This is the picture that started it all. Logan chilling out with a book by the fire. Little did I know the tree on the left side would start a war on Thanksgiving. Photo (obviously) by me.

My wife has broken down that timeline over the years, with Halloween decorations going up the weekend after Labor Day and other holiday wreaths staying on the door for far longer than is customary.  I'd object each time, but you try to contain the excitement of a wife and small children around any holiday and you come out a loser either way.  If you give in, your house is decorated like a pumpkin when football season hasn't even started.  If you successfully object to the decorations you're suddenly and permanently Scrooge McDuck.

How could you possibly say no to these faces at Christmas? They wanted a tree. They got 2 trees. Photo by Erica Garrett

The rationale for decorating this early for Christmas seemed solid enough.  Decorating the weekend after Thanksgiving has gotten more and more difficult because we usually end up on the road at one relative's house or another, getting back late in the weekend completely exhausted.  It's hard to get into the jolly spirit when all you want is a nap and five minutes of peace and quiet.

We'll be on the road this year, as well.  Thanksgiving is once again less than a month away from Christmas.  I enjoy having Christmas decorations up (it gives me a chance to be merry, ie. drinking hard liquor in nog form), and the thought of such a short turnaround to taking them down just bummed me out.

As busy as my weekends can be, I had no idea whether this past weekend would be the last time I'd see my wife and children during daylight hours on a weekend day.  I figured I had to take advantage of the downtime and get something accomplished.  It never occurred to me the date on which I was putting up the two Christmas trees and countless other decorations and knick-knacks.

The 9th day of November, a full six-and-a-half weeks before the big day.  That's almost two full months when you consider I won't take the trees down until 2015 has arrived.  I never thought once about hiding the Christmas tree from the picture of Logan reading by the fire.  I had no shame in the matter.

Once I hit the "post" button on Facebook, the criticism came fast & furious.  My brother was the first to bring it up.  Friends and family followed.  One of the few people to stick up for me was my mother-in-law, and she's usually my biggest heckler on Facebook.  I knew I was in trouble.

Only one thing would allow me to save face at this point:  Turning it into a radio bit and write a website article about it.  If you've made it this far in the article I've more than succeeded in justifying what I'm now seeing as somewhat insane.



Just remember, I'm not starting a war against Thanksgiving, but if you make me choose I'm going with Christmas.  On Christmas you get gifts, you get a feast AND you can start drinking before sunrise because, after all, it's a holiday!  I'm going with St. Nick every time.  I'll give Thanksgiving its due, and I'll be thankful for family & friends.  Secretly, however, I'm just counting the days until Christmas like a 5-year-old version of Jamie.