Or, their house, rather. Trust me, this is tame in comparison to years past.
Their name isn't really Griswold. I just started calling them that around Halloween time the first year we moved across the street from them. Their house reminded me of something, but I just couldn't put my finger on it....
I remember watching in fascination and horror that first October, as Mr. Griswold perched precariously on his roof line, stringing strands of flashing orange and green lights around each window frame. Lights covered every flat surface of the front of the home.
My mouth was agape as he determinedly staked blue, red, and yellow spot lights on the graves in the front yard, making sure to focus on the spooky skeleton draped across Dracula's headstone.
The blinking skull lights wound around the street lamp next to their driveway about sent me over the edge.
My parents weren't into Halloween, and I spent my early years in a house set so far back in the woods that no one wanted to visit on October 31st. The rest of my childhood was spent in a neighborhood of yuppie McMansions where everyone decorated their front porches with tasteful Autumn leaf wreaths, pumpkins, and the occasional "Boo!" sign on the front door.
So the Griswolds were a bit of a home decor shock to me back in 2003 when T and I moved in. Each October was marked with the sight of Mr. Griswold's busy adornment of his house, and it eventually became a tradition to watch him work and wonder how long it would take him this year.
Last year, Mr. Griswold was later than usual hauling his wares out of the garage. When I told him how much Natalie enjoyed the nightly show, he smiled and said he wasn't sure he was going to do it because his children were off at college. The next night, I grinned to see how excited my girls were when Mr. Griswold's Halloween handiwork lit the neighborhood night sky on L Avenue.
Sarah's post on making your home YOUR haven made me look out the window and think of the Griswolds. Their way of decorating their house might not be my style, but they spent years creating a fun place for their kids to enjoy Halloween and now they offer my kids a nightly show to rival a Pink Floyd concert. I don't cringe anymore when Mr. Griswold clambers up his ladder. I smile in anticipation of the shouts of excitement each night when the lights go up.