Bubble Lights

Thursday, December 13, 2001


My childhood memories begin and end around the Christmas tree, as it was far more than a symbol of family traditions or personal style. 

Sparking my imagination, decorated trees were pure holiday fantasy. 

It's the lights that made Christmas trees special for me.  The memory of the lights remain shiny and bright, so much so that they still glow in my mind's eye.  

I grew up in the 1950's, so we didn't have the little twinkling, bright white lights of today. Through eyes of those who come after me, those big, old-fashioned white, blue, green, and red lights that I grew up with might look oddly retro, even vintage. 

I especially remember those magnificent bubble lights. Click here if you have no clue what I'm talking about.  Loving those lights as I did, I did a bit of research on those lighted, colored glass tubes that bubbled as the light heated up. 

"Bubble lights, invented in the late 1930s by Carl Otis, who worked for Montgomery Ward, were the first innovation in Christmas lights since the early 20th century. They were based on the use of methylene chloride that would boil or ``bubble,'' and introduced as ``Bubble-lites'' by NOMA Lites in 1945. They did not become popular until the mid-1950s." ~ Source

These were only sold for about ten years, and so are very rare today.  Bubble lights from the 1940s can sell for $100 a set. Recently another American company has begun to market bubble lights again.

After everyone had gone to bed, I'd gently push the presents under the tree aside and lie under the tree branches, next to that wimpy red and green metal stand. I'd admire the ornaments from the bottom up, wonders that ranged from the sublime to the absurd, from fragile and glittering indented glass balls to clunky kid-made "creations." 

I'd lie there in my chenille bathrobe, entranced, mesmerized and transfixed by those bubbling lights, only to fall asleep amongst the fallen needles, immersed in that wonderful evergreen scent.  

Sometime in the night, Dad would scoop me up in his arms and carry me to bed, because I'd wake up in the morning in my bed, snug and warm, and never a word would be said about my night wandering.


"Life is a Gift."

Praying for Cia,
Author Unknown

P.S.  If you would like to share a portion of yourself with words, in response to this journal entry, you may do it here.  

 "The only gift is a portion of thyself..."
Ralph Waldo Emerson


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This web journal was created on a September Morn, 
September 29, 2001
September Morn 2001