When it comes to Christmas, I go all in. Movies, music, decorations, funny sweaters with drunk llamas wearing Santa hats, the whole works! I absolutely love Christmas. The decorations and lights always gets to me, always gets me choked up. Something about the colors and the warm glow of holiday décor just lightens my heart and warms my soul. It’s almost as if it uplifts me to a higher place of consciousness. Sounds crazy? Sure, but it’s the truth. I have always been a super sentimental person. And Christmas is all about sentiment. I love everything Christmas stands for: love, peace, joy, hope, friendship, kindness…
Now SOME people might scoff at this comment. There are a LOT of people in this world who don’t like Christmas, they complain it’s too commercialized and it’s all about spending money and a capitalist holiday, blah blah blah. I’m not here to get into a whole debate about the spirit and meaning of Christmas but I will say I feel sorry for all the cynics out there who dislike or mock Christmas. They’re missing out. Perception is reality and if to you believe Christmas is all about consumerism and losing money then you were TOTALLY missing out on something so wonderful! To me, the joy of Christmas has nothing to do with gifts. It is spending quality time with loves ones, appreciating your blessings and basking in the warm glow and joy of the lights and beautiful decorations. Christmas is all about love for me and it’s a holiday that brings me a lot of joy, so please don’t rain on my parade with the cynicism. If I could, I’d be sending the ghosts of Christmas past, present and future to every cynic to instill the light and joy of Christmas in their hearts. But to each his own, I just hate for anyone to miss out on these beautiful, happy feelings.
I have a lot of Christmas traditions. 1) Christmas movies galore- Muppets Christmas Carol, Home Alone 1 & 2 (personally, I like the second one best), Miracle on 34th Street, White Christmas, Christmas Story, all the Rankin Bass classic holiday movies, It’s a Wonderful Life and of course Hallmark Christmas movies. 2) the Christmas tunes. Yes, it can get repetitive and I’ll admit I’ve had enough of Mariah Carey after only 3 listens of “All I Want for Christmas is You”, but overall I love the music. My favorites are “Carol of the Bells”, Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” and “The Christmas Song” 3) the Philadelphia Orchestra’s Annual Christmas show (absolutely incredible and so incredibly moving) 4) Decorating every square inch of my place with Christmas décor and walking around stores, cities, anywhere just admiring all the beautiful Christmas trees and decorations (London for Christmas definitely had one of the BEST Christmas light displays I’ve ever seen so far) and 5) Going to Longwood Gardens for their epic Christmas light display! This year I couldn’t do #3 due to COVID shutdowns cancelling the show and same with #5. But, no worries, I made due and thankfully we were able to visit Denver Botanic Gardens’ epic Christmas light display. Despite everything going on I am 1000% committed to having a very merry Christmas and making the best of it. Yes, lots of my favorite events are cancelled and I don’t get to celebrate with my friends in Pennsylvania BUT since everything is what you make it, I’m going to make sure this a great Christmas. Our first event of the season… Denver Botanic Gardens! Operation Save Christmas Cheer is in full swing! 🙂
Now, as I stated earlier, we typically visit Longwood Gardens in Pennsylvania for their garden Christmas light spectacle and it’s always fantastic. Especially what they put together in the conservatory with all the trees! Gorgeous! However when it comes to the outdoor light display… I think Denver got them beat! Just my opinion, not trying to offend anyone. What Denver Botanic put together was absolutely stunning. They went with such vibrant colors and whimsical color combinations. I loved it! It was like Lisa Frank had designed a light show, I swear! I am someone who loves color, the more vibrant and rich the better. Color definitely has the power to inspire and uplift. I was totally overwhelmed by the lights. Every square inch, every tree and every bush was drenched in beautiful vivid, sparkling color. It’s amazing to imagine how they got lights to the top of some of those trees! Each garden was also color coordinated. One moment you’re in the Alpine garden with the most lively warm tones of orange, yellow and pink. It gives off a warm glow. I love the warm tones and it’s so unique for the holidays. Then you enter into an icy wonderland of blues and teals amongst the trees like icicles surrounding you on the walkway around the Plains. The Plains are filled with giant Xmas balls as if they fell from a giant Christmas tree. Super fun! But the best spectacle was the Monet Garden. In the water there are giant glowing balls changing colors. From pastel pinks to vibrant, deep blues. Awesome! It looks like magic seeing the reflection of all the lights in the water. You cannot tell where the water ends! The balls of color seem to be floating in the air and moving! Awesome! ,
As we exit the impressionist, whimsical wonderland of the Monet garden we enter a pathway towards the entrance which I have to say I LOVED the color scheme as it combined my two favorite colors- orange and purple! I know, everyone hates orange it seems but it’s my absolutely favorite. And I love the idea of thinking outside the box and putting orange and purple together for a holiday display. Love it! The trees are lined with my favorite hues and it makes me heart happy. This leads you to an epic light and music show on the Lawn. The lawn is completely covered with lights that change color along with the music to the Nutcracker. Changing from lilac, to pink, to aqua, to green. A pastel Christmas! Very nicely done and really fun to watch. the music with the colors and the light… how can your heart not sing and your spirit not be filled with joy? This is the feeling of Christmas, what it’s all about. Feeling lighthearted and joyful. Feeling like a kid again.
I definitely, absolutely recommend if you are in Denver for the holidays to check out the holiday display. Denver Botanic is a must-see destination any time of year and I’ve completely enjoyed this place in spring, summer, autumn and now winter. This place does an absolutely incredible job and I love seeing the artistry and passion the volunteers have put into it to create an uplifting, merry experience for us all. It’s what we all need right now, a reason to be joyful and filled with hope and Denver Botanic.. you totally accomplished that. Thank you! For all you do to bring joy to so many year round, your gardens make my heart and soul so happy 🙂