Confession: I don't want to take my Christmas tree down just yet. Can anyone else in Longview or Tyler, Texas relate?

Look, I admire anyone who is so mentally strong and organized that they know the exact date to take down all their holiday decoration fodder and move on to the serious business of the coming new year. Frankly, I'm weak. At least in this way.

Granted, I have removed the ornaments and décor that is particularly "Christmas-ey" so as to avoid that feeling that I've still sitting in the parking lot of the prom years after it's ended. But, I just get so used to enjoying the little extra bit of sparkle during the darkest and coldest season of the year. And honestly, couldn't we all use a bit more sparkle in our lives?

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Now obviously, it doesn't make sense to have a conifer sitting in your house in spring and summer.

But why can't I just leave it up until the spring equinox? If I do, will you tell on me? I guess there's no one keeping a law book about holiday decorations, as far as I know.

Whenever I take the tree down, I feel a sense of melancholy. As ridiculous as that may sound, it's true. In East Texas, January is usually one of the very coldest months and feels the darkest to me, despite the fact that the solstice has passed and the light grows every day. For anyone who suffers at all from Seasonal Affective Disorder, this can be a real issue.

One friend graciously offered that I go ahead and decorate for Valentine's Day and bedeck it with hearts and whatnot. I'm not sure I could do that, but maybe I'll consider it if it gives me a viable excuse.

But hey, maybe I don't need an excuse at all. Maybe I'll just leave it up. Brazenly. Holiday police "be danged."

How about you: When do you take down your tree?

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