For me, one of few stress relievers during the holiday season has always been to lay on the living room couch at night in the darkened room and spend some quality time gazing at the Christmas tree. I can lose myself in the reflections of the tree lights off of the glassy sheen of the ornaments. It induces a kind of hazy daydream effect that sort of washes over me, letting my troubles and the not inconsiderable stresses of the holidays float away in the soft glow of the lights. Or at least it used to.
This year I fought the strings of lights for about a half hour before giving up and telling my son to go buy some new ones. He did, only they were the new LED lights. "You and burn them all year Dad and they never get hot and they take about as much electricity to run them as a fart." he promised. OK, they are cost effective, they are safe, but they emit a harsh light that has totally ruined the one sure stress relieverer I had. I tried to lay down on the couch and lose myself in the tree, but those damn lights were burning holes in my eyes.
Oh soft glowing lights, why have you forsaken me?