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Poor taste outdoor Christmas decor?


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I am wondering if you think this is in poor taste and could come off as a remark or statement on the neighbors. The neighbors lovingly work for pretty much all of November, on the weekends, putting up nice decorations. This year, they have two reindeer in the yard, the kind that light up-not blow up. The ones that in daylight look like they were made from wood sticks and during the night, they look pretty lit up, in white lights. Then the trees and bushes have white lights. Then there are some large ornaments hanging from the main big tree. And a nice wreath hanging up on the front most window. They also have garland with lights trimming their archway to their front door. It looks so nice. I have always told my husband I would like to put something up that looks nice like that too. He always says too much work. 

Then this year, as I pointed it out to him over the weekend, he said we can try. I was going to go to the store to get the stuff and he wanted to go along. I told him he did not have to, but he said he knows I like his opinion. We get there and he ends up seeing a blow up "Elf" blow up thing. It shows Wil Ferrell from the scene where he says "Santa is coming!" and has big excitement and proceeds to put tons of decorations up. He was thrilled and insisted we buy it. https://www.target.com/p/warner-bros-photorealistic-excited-buddy-the-elf-inflatable-christmas-decoration/-/A-54474538?ref=tgt_adv_XS000000&AFID=google_pla_df_free_online&CPNG=Seasonal&adgroup=51-4&ref=tgt_adv_XS000000&AFID=bing_pla_df&fndsrc=tgtao&DFA=71700000012709138&CPNG=PLA_Seasonal%2BShopping&adgroup=SC_Seasonal&LID=700000001230728&LNM=PRODUCT_GROUP&network=s&device=c&location=&targetid=pla-4584963492922637&ds_rl=1246978&ds_rl=1247068&ds_rl=1248099&msclkid=3fe9ed0de15f181ba463b2b6119ea658&gclid=3fe9ed0de15f181ba463b2b6119ea658&gclsrc=3p.ds

Then we come home and he puts it up right away in front of the house and he is laughing and so happy with himself. So now, if you come down this street, you see our house with only this and then across the street, tons of lights and such at the neighbors. And of course, it looks like Buddy the Elf is looking at the lights across the street.

OK..I LIKE these neighbors. I feel like what my husband has put up is not only tacky, but easily could be taken as a statement on our behalf on the neighbors decorations. What do you think?

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If I was the neighbor this wouldn't even enter my mind.  I haven't ever seen the movie.  And even if I had it just wouldn't come to my mind.  But if I had seen and thought about that part, it would be an appreciated thing for my house.  But honestly this isn't anything people are going to think about.  One person's decorations are not a bad thing to someone else.  It is just great to have lots of houses with lots of decorations up.  Seems so joyful and cheerful.  Put up all the decorations, especially this year!

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I don't see anything different between this decoration and many other blow-up lawn ornaments. If you like Elf and Will Ferrell, then why not? My dh used to buy those blow-up Christmas decorations. They never survive long, though, IME. They get damaged or blow over, or what have you. Let your dh enjoy this experience while he can. 

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I wouldn't think yours was a negative commentary on the neighbors' decor.  If I noticed Buddy looking at the lights across the street, I'd probably laugh and think it was very appropriate.

Did you only buy the one blow-up decoration?  You wrote that you wanted "nice" decorations like the neighbors have.  It's okay to have both!  I think it would make Buddy's delight even more enjoyable if you had a bunch of other traditional decorations, too.  And, when Buddy doesn't blow up anymore, you'd still have them. The blow-up ones don't last forever....  

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I would have never made that kind of connection.  If the neighbors do, I think they are way too sensitive.

Personally I'm not into the blow-up decorations, but a lot of people like them.  If it increases anyone's holiday cheer, then it's a win.  🙂

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Even if it is seen as a statement on you neighbors decorations it is a flattering statement.  It says, 'I love your decorations.'  I might actually think it was intentional if I were to see it assuming Buddy really is the only decoration.  But I don't think most people would think anything of it.  

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I think Buddy is fine...but that wouldn't negate my plans of more decorations! Go get some more lights.

As far as tacky decorations in general: I totally am in the whatever-floats-your-boat camp (barring reindeer in s3xy-time positions).  The more decorations, the merrier. I mean, cars don't stop to enjoy/gawk at tastefully decorated homes, right?

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I bought my DD a blow up dragon for Halloween because she wanted to decorate, and she plans to put it out with a scarf and surrounded by gift boxes later this week (she was born on Thanksgiving, and has a rule of no Christmas before her birthday, because it's bad enough to have to share with one holiday, let alone two!).  I figure this is the year to decorate the outdoors. We also have a wreath of snakes (plastic) which comes out for Halloween and stays out for Christmas :).  

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It seems to me that you went to the store because you had a certain look in mind for your yard, and you not only didn't get that, you got something that (at best) you don't particularly like.  I think that the problem isn't whether we think this particular item is in poor taste, it's whether you think it is and are embarrassed by it.  If so, it should come down.  Regardless, you should be sure to add decorations that make you happy.

Edited by EKS
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I thought you were going to say the decorations were hunters ready to take out the reindeer or something. *That* would be in poor taste. Buddy the Elf is happy and excited about Christmas, so it looks like he's super excited about the decorations across the street. I don't think the neighbors would take that decoration in a negative way. I'm personally not a fan of the blow up decorations, but I don't care if my neighbors put them up.

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1 hour ago, EKS said:

It seems to me that you went to the store because you had a certain look in mind for your yard, and you not only didn't get that, you got something that (at best) you don't particularly like.  I think that the problem isn't whether we think this particular item is in poor taste, it's whether you think it is and are embarrassed by it.  If so, it should come down.  Regardless, you should be sure to add decorations that make you happy.

We still don’t get to do the stuff I like. Last year, he hated everything I liked too. He always hates my ideas.

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4 minutes ago, Janeway said:

We still don’t get to do the stuff I like. Last year, he hated everything I liked too. He always hates my ideas.

Unfortunately this sounds more like a marriage problem than a Christmas decoration problem.

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6 minutes ago, Janeway said:

We still don’t get to do the stuff I like. Last year, he hated everything I liked too. He always hates my ideas.

It sounds like the two of you don't like the same things, so just do what you want. Select things you don't need his help with and do it yourself. 

4 minutes ago, Janeway said:

Last year, I saw it lamp post like you see in Narnia I thought it would be nice with some of those woodland creatures like the person has across the street. I I don’t think they had the woodland creatures last year.

Go get it! You can always get the lamp posts. Narnia can be in one section of the yard, Elf in another, lol. 

Edited by katilac
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I forgot to say that I don't think the neighbors would be offended at Buddy, it's actually pretty funny if you take it that way, but that doesn't mean you shouldn't get what you want. He got what he wanted, and he's not even the one who wanted outdoor decorations! 

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5 minutes ago, EKS said:

Unfortunately this sounds more like a marriage problem than a Christmas decoration problem.

I am the kind of person that who likes shows like Star Trek and This is Us and Full House and he hates all those shows but loves Seinfeld and The Godfather. We are just so opposite. I was OK with going along with the buddy thing because I was thinking about the movie a Christmas Story and figured it would be his tacky thing but not mine. But then after the fact I start looking and wondering if the neighbors could take it is offensive.

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I think that it would be good to go back to the store and also get something you like, with or without him along, and put it up.

A singular thing can look like a reaction, or not.

Here’s a classic reaction one.  The Grinch rises out of a chimney, swivels to point at the offending house, and stays there for a moment before dropping down again.  Over and over.  https://www.voanews.com/archive/grinch-replaces-california-christmas-light-display

 

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We were going to hire a company to put up Christmas lights for us and after a little research founds that rates start at $1400 to $1600 with the average around about $2500. So we won’t be doing that! I think I am just going to let my dgs pick a few things he likes and get them.

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My opinion is:

It sounds like your neighbor has a pretty display, and the giant blow-up elf is tacky.

I'd rather have the leg lamp.

I'd probably keep the curtains closed and suffer through it instead of ruining DH's joy.

I'd feel bad for the neighbors who can't enjoy their own decorations from their own front window without having to view the elf-monstrosity.

ymmv

Edited by Amy in NH
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I can't imagine the across-the-street neighbors seeing your decor as a swipe at them. If it's facing out from your house (facing the street), well, that's how people put up decorations.

Tacky is in the eye of the beholder. I dislike most blowup decor items and prefer more low-key lights, wreaths, etc. But I am not the arbiter of proper Christmas decor. I do know that neither my husband nor I would get something the other disliked, or that our kids (while they live at home) dislike. 

If my across-the-street neighbor put up something I didn't like, I'd just have to deal with it. But I wouldn't think it was aimed at me; I would just think we had different taste. 

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On 11/23/2020 at 2:44 PM, Janeway said:

We still don’t get to do the stuff I like. Last year, he hated everything I liked too. He always hates my ideas.

Only a hyper-sensitive, irrational neighbor would make themselves the motivation for your outdoor festive display. People put up on their property what they want for Christmas lights and it's none of the other neighbors' business.

I'm not completely sure what's going on with your relationship dynamic but here's what I'm seeing (granted, from the sidelines.)   You said, "I have always told my husband I would like to put something up that looks nice like that too. He always says too much work. Then this year, as I pointed it out to him over the weekend, he said we can try. I was going to go to the store to get the stuff and he wanted to go along. I told him he did not have to, but he said he knows I like his opinion."

Do you like his opinion? 
If you do, then did he offer his opinion because you always or usually ask for it or was it given unsolicited?
If you don't, did you correct his misunderstanding for the sake of honestly and clarity? 
Does he often steamroll to get his way? 
Is he prone to being socially unaware that his enthusiasm isn't always shared by everyone else?
When he insisted on buying it did you push back?
Did you clearly state your honest opinion of the Buddy the Elf lawn ornament in a reasonable way? 
Did he minimize, argue with,  or ignore you when you told him the truth directly in no uncertain terms?
It's not only OK, it's important for you to tell the truth in a reasonable way. He should listen to you and negotiate with you respectfully.

His behavior seems really obnoxious to me. You told him you wanted lights like those twice. You said you were going to get them. When he wanted to come you said he didn't have to.  To be fair, that was an unclear signal if you didn't want him to come along. He said he knows you like his opinion, which is a weird thing to say out loud even if it's true.

You can take turns doing lawn ornament styles each year like we do with the tree at my house, but I don't think it's fair for him to go first this year.  It was your idea and you were headed to the store to implement your idea.  He can put up Buddy next year.

I have 3 daughters.  We all have very different ideas about what color scheme and theme the Christmas tree should have, so we take turns each year rotating between who is still at home.  I used to give the kid whose year it was $20 to spend on the decor of her choosing until we had plenty to choose from.  Then I bought wrapping paper that coordinated with it. We've had blue and silver with penguins and snowmen; black, white, silver and blush pink; red, greens, creams, and browns; silver and gold; rainbow colors with a traditional Korean gown on the angel doll wired to the tree; and silver and gold.  As things accumulated we stopped buying new and picked color schemes from our supply of tree decor and wrapping paper.  As kids move out they can take a few ornaments that mean the most to them and scrounge leftovers from my bins for their own trees in their own homes after whoever has chosen the theme has put up their preferred decorations.

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47 minutes ago, Homeschool Mom in AZ said:

Only a hyper-sensitive, irrational neighbor would make themselves the motivation for your outdoor festive display. People put up on their property what they want for Christmas lights and it's none of the other neighbors' business.

I'm not completely sure what's going on with your relationship dynamic but here's what I'm seeing (granted, from the sidelines.)   You said, "I have always told my husband I would like to put something up that looks nice like that too. He always says too much work. Then this year, as I pointed it out to him over the weekend, he said we can try. I was going to go to the store to get the stuff and he wanted to go along. I told him he did not have to, but he said he knows I like his opinion."

Do you like his opinion? 
If you do, then did he offer his opinion because you always or usually ask for it or was it given unsolicited?
If you don't, did you correct his misunderstanding for the sake of honestly and clarity? 
Does he often steamroll to get his way? 
Is he prone to being socially unaware that his enthusiasm isn't always shared by everyone else?
When he insisted on buying it did you push back?
Did you clearly state your honest opinion of the Buddy the Elf lawn ornament in a reasonable way? 
Did he minimize, argue with,  or ignore you when you told him the truth directly in no uncertain terms?
It's not only OK, it's important for you to tell the truth in a reasonable way. He should listen to you and negotiate with you respectfully.

His behavior seems really obnoxious to me. You told him you wanted lights like those twice. You said you were going to get them. When he wanted to come you said he didn't have to.  To be fair, that was an unclear signal if you didn't want him to come along. He said he knows you like his opinion, which is a weird thing to say out loud even if it's true.

You can take turns doing lawn ornament styles each year like we do with the tree at my house, but I don't think it's fair for him to go first this year.  It was your idea and you were headed to the store to implement your idea.  He can put up Buddy next year.

I have 3 daughters.  We all have very different ideas about what color scheme and theme the Christmas tree should have, so we take turns each year rotating between who is still at home.  I used to give the kid whose year it was $20 to spend on the decor of her choosing until we had plenty to choose from.  Then I bought wrapping paper that coordinated with it. We've had blue and silver with penguins and snowmen; black, white, silver and blush pink; red, greens, creams, and browns; silver and gold; rainbow colors with a traditional Korean gown on the angel doll wired to the tree; and silver and gold.  As things accumulated we stopped buying new and picked color schemes from our supply of tree decor and wrapping paper.  As kids move out they can take a few ornaments that mean the most to them and scrounge leftovers from my bins for their own trees in their own homes after whoever has chosen the theme has put up their preferred decorations.

OR she could have just done it herself years ago?

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7 hours ago, KungFuPanda said:

OR she could have just done it herself years ago?

Yes, that might be true too. 

I was reacting to the way it played out as she described it. And he did say they "could try" this year after she told him what she wanted to do.  Then it was entirely derailed to something he wants.

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