Monday, December 5, 2016

Christmas House Tour



They've done it for years and years... one of the last bastions of a bygone Era when over the top Christmas Displays were Trendy and competitive for outdoing each other every Holiday Season and Sharing their Labor of Love with their Communities!




The Home on State in Downtown Glendale is one of the only surviving Free Home Tours still in existence that we've made Pilgrimages to for years and years during the Holiday Season.  It became a Holiday Tradition and Ritual that we still eagerly look forward to with Nostalgia and Joy.




Every year they have improved upon and enlarged the Vision for it until it truly rivals any Commercial Displays in existence around the City now.  The Collection of Holiday Props and Decor is Impressive and packs a Wow Factor in the Experiencing of it.   I arrived and Greeted Jack near the Entrance.




Princess T was in Awe and Excited to be making the annual Pilgrimage, yet still a bit leery of Jack Skeleton even tho' he wasn't animated, he was still Scary and a Nightmare Before Christmas to her.   See how she's standing rigid and just out of reach of him!?  *LOL*




I mean this is a LOT of Work and still very much the Labor of Love it always has been for this Man and his Friends to pull off every year in time for the Holidays.  I remember many years ago his Partner passed away and yet he never missed a Season in spite of the tremendous loss, he continued the Legacy they both had made.




That's not easy at the best of times and after substantiating the Loss of a Loved One, I just couldn't imagine putting in all the Work that year.  I know that this Season, with Mom passing so close to the Holidays I barely had the desire nor energy to put up one Christmas Tree and Decor never mind over FIFTY!




So I find it to be Inspiring that he still does it year after year with consistency and to Share it with the Community.   And they come in droves, tho' this Style of Christmas on Steroids has waned from it's heyday in the Seventies and Eighties, peeps still totally dig the last bastions of it still existing into Modern times.




Every Tree has a Theme... every room of the Home and the Exteriors both Front and Back Yards as well have a Story going on.   This Display has always had the most Christmas Trees, nobody rivaled it, not even Commercial Christmas Tree Displays around the City ever came close to matching it.




Back in da day there was an itinerary of Homes around the City we made an Evening long Pilgrimage to... now this is the last of all of those.   Perhaps there are some new ones, but they don't cover them in the Paper or on the News like they used to in order to introduce the Public to them and let you know where they are.




In fact, some areas discouraged it so strongly, mostly for traffic control reasons, that many Homes had to stop for fear of litigation and complaints or pressure from Neighbors.   There used to be an entire Street on Paradise Lane that had the cooperation of several Neighbors doing it together, it was off the hook Amazing... WAS being the key phrase, they haven't done it now for years.




I 'get it', I suppose if you live nearby it can be more of a nuisance than Seasonally Spirited.  I suppose not all Guests are considerate and it would be hard to have a Peaceful Holiday when traffic is constant from Thanksgiving thru Christmas to visit a Neighbor who indulges in this form of Extreme Christmas Joy and Cheer.




Our New Neighborhood really gets into the Christmas Spirit with exterior decor but nobody does Extreme Christmas Decorating and thus we don't get the traffic or foot traffic and parking issues it often creates.  So I'm not surprised it's not common anymore, it had it's downside to be sure.




But the upside is truly Magical... and those who do Extreme Christmas really Give of their Time and their Talents in order to pull this off and Share it.  The countless man hours are mind boggling actually, you almost have to possess an Obsession for Christmas and the Celebrating of it.




And it's Sacrificial... the Expense, both to put it on and to maintain and acquire all of the Displays, the Lights, the Accessories... well, I cannot even Imagine how much is tied up in it!?!   But I can do a conservative tally and tell you it's Expensive and quite the Investment of Resources that's for sure!!!




Especially the larger Displays and the Unique Christmas Trees, spendy!   If you count the individual Ornaments that adds up fast too!   And thousands of Lights and keeping them lit up for a whole Month... Wow, yeah, those meters will be spinning like a Top!!!   But when you see the Eyes of the Children light up, that is truly Priceless!!!




And it's not just the Kiddos that light up and are Enchanted by it all, you should see the expressions of the Adults as well... Childlike Wonder sets in and is clearly evident as they walk thru and behold it all!




It transports you back to your own Childhoods, where the Wonder of it all and the Joy of it all was at it's heightened Sensory Overload!   Remember when you just couldn't wait for Christmas?!   Remember when you could walk down Main Street and see the Window Displays being Created?




This is kinda like THAT... like the Good Old Days when part of the allure was to bring the Magic to Life and bigger than Life actually!   Now it's gone way more Commercialized and all about the Benjamins for sure, but this reminds us of the Sensory Delights of the Season.




And of coarse of the Reason for the Season to begin with... of the Greatest Gift that was Given Freely to Mankind in the form of The Son, Jesus Christ that first Christmas!   Giving to others is and should be what Inspires us most at Christmas and Honoring Him in the best ways possible of our Time, our Resources and our Talents to the World at large.




Yes, it is very Nice when we do it for our own... but when we do it for complete Strangers it takes on a greater Significance in my Mind of Giving in a most Sacrificial way.   A Meaningful way that transcends needing to have a Relationship with someone in order to Bless them.




And isn't that what God is all about... He bestows Blessings with such Sacrifice and Love regardless of and despite whether or not we've chosen to enter into a Relationship with Him.  Or acknowledge Him at all actually... that True Agape Love of all of Mankind.   Giving to all of His Children all of what He has Created for us to Enjoy and be Stewards of!




Some of us take that Seriously and some do not... some Believe and some do not... it's a Free Will Choice to be sure.   But when Love is Unconditional and Pure, it still Gives because that is it's Nature.




And even if it's not Appreciated nor Acknowledge by all it's still Given Freely to all if they choose to Receive it.    I think that is why I so Enjoy such displays of Extreme Christmas, because it embodies the Spirit of the Holidays of Extreme Giving to the entire Community at large whether or not they Receive it in the Spirit it is Given Freely.




It is there FOR them and they can ignore it or Participate and Receive it for their Benefit and Delight.    Having a Relationship with my Lord and Savior is indeed a Benefit and a Delight, I couldn't Imagine not Receiving that Gift that was Freely Given by God Himself at a Great Sacrifice for each of us.




I Reflect upon that throughout the year but especially during the Holiday and Holy Seasons.   And the Meaning of it all I Hope to pass along to build a solid enough Foundation for my Loved Ones that they Receive what is Freely Given as well and not reject it.




That they won't fail to fully Appreciate and Acknowledge what it truly all means.  That they will Joyfully Celebrate it in fact, boldly and without apology or Feeling like they have to be Politically Correct about any of it involving their Faith and Love of God and how they Express it openly or Share it with others!




I personally don't Believe that anyone Expresses their Faith in Love with the Intention to Offend others, I really don't.  If they are being Faithful to what they Believe at their Core and Honoring God their way I Respect that.  I don't take  Offense and it would be Nice is everyone could not be so easily Offended by the Faith Expressed Lovingly and Openly of any Major Religion.




I think that Faith expressed violently and radically has given a black eye to Faith in general and that is truly a Shame and caused much division both in the past and in the present.   It is unfortunate that those instances overshadow the vast majority who Live out their Faith in Peace and in Love, however they choose to Worship.




Whether or not Mankind can ever get to a place where there are not battles over what one Believes or rejects I don't know.   I would Hope for Unity and Harmony regardless of differences because that would be Idyllic wouldn't it?  In a Perfect World.




 Greater Tolerance, Greater Respect and Dignity extended towards one another regardless of what one Believes or doesn't.  Let it be up to God to decide in Judgment individually when our Time comes to stand before Him and account for our Lives and how we walked it out.




I for one wouldn't even want that tremendous weighty responsibility!  So better to leave it in more Capable Hands like God's!   As a mere mortal I'm sure I'd not know the Heart nearly so well... nor the Intentions of the individual so well to Judge fairly, justly and accurately.   And so I try not to Judge at all.




And I openly Celebrate and Acknowledge our Special Holidays and Holy Days along with those who Share the Faith... the Joy... the Wonder... The Gift that it all is!    And those who do so Extremely and Sacrificially, I applaud, for The Gift they are giving to the rest of us.




A Free Gift that I didn't Earn... just like my Salvation.  It was already bought and paid for by another and Freely Given for me to Accept and Enjoy the Benefits of.   This embodies that in a different kind of way to me and so every year I make our Pilgrimage to Receive it for as long as it's Offered.




This one has been Offered for a very long time now, by a mere mortal of a Man who embodies the Spirit of Christmas in a most Extreme way and it truly is a Gift to the Community at large.  I'll be Sad when he can do it no more... but until then, I'll continue making our Annual Pilgrimages to Receive what he is Offering and we didn't have to Earn in any way.




I Thank him and all of his extended Friends and Family that Assist him in pulling this off every year so Superbly... it really is Christmas Magic at it's best!  I do Hope you've Enjoyed Receiving the Christmas House's Gift Virtually my Friends?



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Merry Christmas from the Arizona Desert... Dawn... The Bohemian









7 comments:

  1. OUTSTANDING! Thanks for sharing the pictures and your words! Sending Love!

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    1. Thank You my Friend, so Glad you Enjoyed coming along Virtually! Dawn... The Bohemian

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  2. Wow! I love it when ordinary people do extraordinary personal and beautifully creative things. Folk art at its best.

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    1. I agree, extraordinary personal Creativity is always the best! Glad you enjoyed it too. Dawn... The Bohemian

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  3. Fabulous Christmas House Dawn! Yes these have become far and few between. We used to have a house out in Mesa that did the same thing and did tours...they were getting elderly and stopped doing it but I have fabulous photos to always remember how wonderful it was and how wonderful they were to do it for everyone. I miss that house. There is an entire cul de sac in Mesa and every house is decorated and it is huge thing each year (no inside tours but fabulous outside decorations and I have often wondered if it is a prerequisite to live on this street in case you buy a house there lol because it is there very year every single house). If you ever decide to venture out that way it is at approximately Guadalupe and Extension, just east of Extension. I will be out that way tomorrow night and will try to get you a street name to turn on. I am taking my mom out to see Christmas lights in her neck of the woods in the east valley tomorrow night and then bringing her out to Phoenix Saturday to see what we can find out here for the season. Can you give me the address or cross streets of this house, I would loooooove to take her there, she would go crazy! Thanks so much! Leslie

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    1. That sounds Wonderful... a whole Block! Not familiar with the far East Side but The Son and his Family live in Gilbert so perhaps he might want to join us in trying to locate it on his side of town... all the Grands would Love that. David Chuchla's Santa Christmas House is at 4237 W. State Ave which is just North of Glendale Ave on 43rd Avenue and on the East side of 43rd so stay in the right lane as you cross Glendale and look for the Sign just before you reach State. I agree, your Mom will Love it. Thanks for giving me a heads up on a new attraction on your side of town Leslie! Dawn... The Bohemian

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  4. Hey Dawn! Here is the information for the Christmas cul de sac! It is not far from Gilbert actually so your son will not be far I think unless he is further east. So this neighborhood is approximately Guadalupe and Cherry. Gaudalupe west to Cherry then turn right (north) onto Cherry, go down a couple of blocks and you cannot miss it on the right, the street is called Natal. There is even a park you can park at if need be. Sometimes the street is blocked off and you have to walk it and sometimes you can drive through it. One of the houses even has a backyard tour! Here is a link to east valley Christmas houses including the neighborhood in Gilbert that won the Christmas Decorating show!
    http://www.eastvalleytribune.com/arizona/article_9fa37d5a-
    b5ba-11e6-974b-5f926100cea9.html

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A life touched by God always ends in touching others. - Erwin McManus

I will love the light for it shows me the way, yet I will endure the darkness for it shows me the stars. - Og Mandino (1923-1996)

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