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Light the Night – But Just a Little

November 29, 2017   By Jessica Yourko in Reduce The Use

A timer for your holiday lights will help you more effectively manage your display.

Growing up, my favorite time of year was Christmas.  It still is.

We start decorating early. As the last witch is safely placed in her storage container, the first tree is being stood up in the den. 

Some might say I skip Thanksgiving, but they would be wrong. I celebrate Thanksgiving.  I ate enough food last week to last me until Christmas. Turkey, green beans, yams, and about 27 different kinds of casseroles were on the menu. Now tell me, would Thanksgiving really be Thanksgiving without a casserole? 

As a child, on Thanksgiving afternoon we started decking our halls. My grandmother would remind us that we didn’t need to put up too many lights. Her philosophy was the more lights you put up, the more your electric bill goes up. In some ways, that was true. 

She also believed that at Christmas, everyone paid for everyone else’s Christmas lights. She thought the electric company had a bucket where all Christmas light energy usage amounts were stored and then after the holidays, each customer was billed their fair share. While she couldn’t be more wrong, no amount of convincing her that she only had to pay for what she used was going to change her mind. 

Lucky for us, the ones who still insist on decorating every year, there are a few things we can do to keep our usage down and our holidays bright. Consider these before you light the night this year:

    • Choose LED lights over incandescent lights. Incandescent lights not only use more energy but put off more heat into your home.
    • Use an automatic timer to turn your lighting displays on and off.
    • Use extension cords* in hidden areas to lengthen your strands.
      *Follow manufacturer’s guidelines.

    My grandmother always wanted us to be stingy with our Christmas lights, but now we don’t have to be.