We have ours up. This year it is a table sized tree with vintage style colored bulbs and red and white bows. There are already a few things under the tree - my daughter Samantha always does her shopping on Black Friday and mails early. Not me. I am still finishing up on a few projects. I'll be finishing my shopping today and still have one project to do before I can ship. I generally come in on time but never early. When my kids were young I had their shopping done the first week of December, mainly because the most popular toys would sell out if I waited longer. Now that I am not worried about that I sometimes have knitted gifts drying on Christmas Eve.
As usual, I am calming my holiday anxieties by watching Christmas movies on the Hallmark Channel. I (sort of) ran out of Hallmark movies last night and checked out what was playing on Lifetime. Turns out there is a significant difference. Hallmark holiday movies take place in small towns with slightly older (to really older) characters - usually of an age to have children in the photogenic school-age to young teen ages. Lots of dead spouses, more than I would have thought statistically likely. Lifetime seems to be going for a younger crowd with glittery parties and romance among the never-married late twenties age group. Lots of outdoor snow scenes on Hallmark, lots of dancing and parties at Lifetime. Sweaters and caps on Hallmark, cocktail dresses on Lifetime. Both channels go with a female centered story. Take your pick. The premium channels have a different selection, with big budgets centered on a more male point of view. The Hallmark bride married Santa Claus; the star of the HBO story IS Santa Claus.