If you're an East Bay resident with kids, it's pretty hard to avoid going to Alameda's Christmas Tree Lane at some point or another. It's like trying to avoid seeing "Avatar" or that video where the cat puts the baby to sleep.
We went for the first time this week, and the kids loved it. (Well, Elliot loved it. Alice just sat in her stroller and gurgled contentedly.)
Christmas Tree Lane is a block of Thompson Avenue where every house is decorated — many to an insane degree. I've heard it's part of their neighborhood association that you have to go bananas at Christmastime. (I assume they let people do Hanukkah decorations too, though I didn't see much evidence of that.)
A lot of the displays involved animatronics, and one even had lights that were synchronized with the soundtrack to "The Nightmare Before Christmas."
One of Elliot's favorites was a Santa that would hide inside a tree and then pop out to ambush onlookers. I called him Viet Cong Santa.
I preferred the Tintin display. It's still hard to believe we've reached a point where Tintin is this mainstream in America.
The Grinch, Peanuts characters and the Muppets also were featured prominently. Elliot didn't recognize any of them.
However, he was thrilled when he saw this one. "APPLE!"
It's amazing that a company logo can elicit so much excitement from a 3-year-old.