You know you have a problem with Christmas decorations when a deciding factor in buying a new house is whether or not it has the appropriate yard space to display your decorations. Before my husband and I purchased our new home several months ago, he agonized over this detail. He’d say, “How will I choose what to put up each year? It’s such a waste. SUCH a waste to not be able to show them all off… especially the bear.”


Yes, The Bear. More on that later.


When we finally did buy a house, our new three-car-garage was stuffed to the brim with boxes of Christmas decorations, including our growing wood piece collection. The collection is so large, our new neighbors even commented, “Wow – we thought y’all moved here for more space!” What a great first impression. Our toddler was running and screaming through their yard as they likely concluded we were hoarders.


Alas, there is not room this year to set up all of our decorations. Including the more than 30-piece wood set. And it shames me to say I contributed to our hoard. Ever since I met my husband, a Baylor alumnus and certified Baylor “super fan,” he has fantasized about buying a wood piece decoration depicting Santa Clause riding a giant brown bear. The brown bear would be raised up on its haunches, and Santa’s hand would be in the shape of the Baylor bear claw, the university’s hand signal.


My response? I always thought it was an antic to get me riled up. Until Christmas 2018. He had worn me down enough to get me through the doors of that small, south Texas shop owned by a particularly skilled artisan capable of realizing this horrible Santa-bear monstrosity. I went in with my mind made up.


But it turns out I can be bought. After purchasing an 11-piece wooden nativity set, we ordered The Bear. And even though our new yard is small, chances are The Bear will find a spot every year.


Carrie Taylor is an editor and mother of three.

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