I was recently told that I take Christmas obsession to a level that is a cross between adorable and terrifying. Whether you fall under the category of obsessed, or just happy about the time off for the holidays, Christmas lights make it feel like the holidays, even when it's December and 70 degrees outside.
The displays seem to be more sparse this year, but there is still plenty to look at and enjoy.
Here are some of my favorite holiday stops for 2014:
If you're looking for a festive drive and professionally outfitted homes, Highland Park is your stop. You'll find street after street of beautifully lit homes, and one of my favorite areas is between Armstrong and Preston Road. In addition to the beautiful homes are two large trees decked out in multi-colored lights that are worth a stop all on their own. I may or may not have gotten out of the car, snapped some pictures, then laid under the trees and enjoyed the brief but lovely breeze that made the lights look like they were twinkling.
This is also a great area for any holiday light traditionalists out there. While some homes do include colored lights and outside the box decor, a number of them hold true to Christmas tradition with white lights and real pine garland and wreaths.
If you're looking for a quick but festive stop or a great spot for your holiday family pictures, try Klyde Warren Park, Main Street (Downtown), and West Village. All three locations have gorgeous, beautifully lit trees just begging to be ogled and photographed.
Klyde Warren is known for being pet friendly too, so if you're like me, and your children are of the four-legged, furry persuasion, this will be a fun stop for you as well. Make sure to take a lap around the park and enjoy the lit trees and arches while you're taking a stroll and enjoying the warm December weather.
The Downtown, Main Street Garden tree is always a site to see and another great stop for family, friends, and visitors who may be joining you this holiday season. The City of Dallas has also provided their own version of a photo booth with the continuation of their "Big D" campaign--the Main Street rendition look like giant Christmas ornaments, ready to be photographed with your family and friends.
West Village is known for its tasty restaurants and boutique shopping. I've never been much of a shopper, but the giant Christmas tree at West Village is enough to make me want to stop and soak in the holiday spirit.
Growing up in west Texas, I remember putting up Christmas lights was a family affair. My parents and our neighbors never hired people to put up lights because as my dad liked to say, "Why do you think we all had kids??" Lakewood during the holidays reminds me of home. It's obvious that families and friends climbed on ladders, sweated through the Texas winter, and stapled a sleeve or two to the roof. Some houses were carefully attended to, some look like Christmas cheer puked all over the house, and a few look as though Clark Griswold himself came for a visit. Lakewood is the perfect area for a holiday drive around. And as an added bonus, make sure you stop and check out the gem at the end of Newell street--it's both impressive and hysterical.