I began decorating our house for Christmas 21 years ago, each year changing the display as well as adding more to it. My house is located across the street from a retirement home and about 15 years ago, shortly after Christmas as I was taking down the lights, a women stopped to talk. She explained that she worked at the home and wanted to thank me for the annual display. She went on to mention how much it meant to the residents and one individual in particular.
She told me Mrs. Edwards was the house expert on the display and how much joy and anticipation the display bought her each year. Then she went on to say Mrs. Edwards passed away a few days after Christmas and she wanted to thank me for the comfort it brought to her in those final days. For the first time since I began stringing Christmas lights I realized that this was bigger than decorating the house for the family, It meant much, much more.
I look back at that year as the beginning of what has become the largest animated residential display in Virginia and for many who have visited us, a part of their own family's Christmas tradition.
If you would like to support Collingwood Lights donations can be made in the video section.