The thing I love most about Christmas isn’t what you think. It’s not the trees, it’s not the music, it’s not the food, it’s not even the Christmas spirit. Oh, and it’s not the Chinese food and a movie that my people love so much. It’s Christmas decorations on front lawns, lights dangling from overhangs and blow-up Santas waving to passing cars. Yep, I’ve caved to the commercialism of Christmas. It’s that allure of all things bright and shiny, I tell ya.

Every year, the Daily Freeman prints a map of Kingston, highlighting the best-decorated houses in town. The “Holiday Lights Tour” has been a highlight every December for the Weiss family. Last night, we bundled up, packed in the car and took to the streets. Special thanks go to my mother, who stopped at nearly every lit house along the route so I could go out and snap these photos:

This house had an electronic countdown to Christmas! (Right above the entryway)

Now, this house played Christmas music all night. Definite bonus points right there.

But even better than the music was the illuminated North Pole mailbox that opened and closed all night. That house was a definite win.

Christmas decorations after my own heart. Twenty-seven world championships!

The sign reads "SANTA STOP HERE." I hope he does.

I'm such a sucker for candy cane lights. They make me hungry.

Santa hanging in a tree--mildly sadistic, or artistic license?

The ever-classy simple white lights. Love them.

The ever-classy simple white lights. Love 'em.

The lights this year were alright. We weren’t terribly impressed with much of what we saw (nor the confusing directions in between Broadway and the Strand), but as always, a few houses impressed. Meeting up with friends for drinks at Keegan’s and the Basement brought the weekend to a solid close. On the schedule for this week: lots of gift-wrapping at the mall and a Jewish Christmas with my college roommates in the city. Bring on the Chinese food!