The overpowering scent of hot cinnamon hit a good 10 feet before I walked through the entrance, which was impressive because one would expect the cold air to limit the range of wafting. What with the mounds of faux greenery and the jingle bells, on top of the Christmasey! Cinnamon! Fragrance! (which is what I imagine reindeer farts smell like), I felt like I'd walked into Santa's barn. But this wasn't the off-season home of Dasher and Dancer, no. This! This was...Michaels. Where Creativity Happens™ and custom framing is always 50% off.
(Question: If something is perpetually on sale, doesn't that make the sale price, like, the price?)
I had a mission, which one always should when entering a store where 95% of the merchandise is smaller than a breadbox, but I was waylaid by all the sparkle.
I wondered if my Christmas Spirit was strong enough to purchase the woodcut "Believe" (in red, embellished with glitter). Although I felt compelled to purchase a felted snowman-head ornament, somehow I made it past the display without putting one in my basket. It's a miracle I resisted the bedazzled tower candles and mini Christmas trees made out of fuchsia feathers. Finally I had made it to the garland section, where I was tasked with finding a suitable coronal for the mantel, as well as a roughly 640-foot length of faux evergreen for festooning our front porch.
We have actually never decorated the exterior of our home; although this is our third Christmas in it, it's the first holiday season when decorating outside has made sense. Three years ago, I was seven months pregnant and unable to 1) help Noah hang lights, or 2) strongarm him into doing it alone. Last year I wasn't quite as enthusiastic as years past, plus Ethan was a little suspicious of the whole charade...
...so I figured, why bother?
Having retrieved the aforementioned garlands (after a couple consultations via cell phone), as well as the corresponding amount of white non-twinkling lights, I braved the throngs yet again in an attempt to reach the registers. You guys, Michaels (Where Creativity Happens™) attracts a motley crew. I haven't seen so many appliqued holiday sweaters since 1994. I was in line behind a woman who spent over $200 on various and sundry crap. Do you know how much $200 can buy you in a store where 95% of the merchandise is smaller than a breadbox? More importantly, do you know how long it takes to check out someone who is purchasing more than $200 worth of items smaller than a breadbox? A LONG TIME.
It was all worth it, however, when a couple of days after The Festooning, I noticed that three other homes on our street had copied our Festoonination and wrapped their porch columns with garlands. I've always wanted to be a trendsetter.