Midge Linscott loves to decorate for the holidays.
All holidays. Any holiday.
She always has.
So at the beginning of October, she got all her Halloween decorations out — the witches with the glowing eyes, the Frankenstein that sings “Monster Mash,” and all the little ghosts and goblins you can think of.
And don’t forget Iggy, the skeleton imprisoned in a cage. Wearing black-and-white striped prisoner garb, he screams and yells (“Didn’t your mom ever teach you it’s not polite to stare?”), and even tries to break free of the cage, menacing eyes glowing bright blood red.
But there’s nothing really scary and it’s all in good fun.
She’s decorated for the holidays for as long as she can remember, from when her sons were little to now. It’s a tradition she happily carries on each year.
“We used to take the kids. We didn’t buy costumes for them. I’d ask them what they wanted to be. Want to be a hobo? I’d dress them like a hobo. Carnival worker? I’ll take care of it. My husband would say, ‘You be in charge of the boys.’
“All I had was boys,” she said with a laugh. She even found a costume for the 1-year-old: She put a mustache on him and little hat.
“And that’s how he went trick-or-treating.”
Christmas was big in her house, too. Artificial trees? Are you kidding?
She did her best to make sure her boys had good Christmases, she said.
She was born in Mannington and lived out of state several times. But they moved back to Fairmont and she attended Miller School.
Now she lives in an apartment complex and makes it her job to decorate the hallways for whatever holiday it happens to be.
If it’s on the calendar, she’s got decorations for it.
When she first moved in, she asked what they did for the holidays.
Nothing? Well, she’d take care of that. And she has.
“I think I do a pretty good job,” she said. “I enjoy doing it. It gives me a great feeling to know I’m doing something everyone else is going to see and talk about it. I love to decorate.
“I did the multipurpose room for our Halloween party coming up.”
Fall and Halloween share some decorations, she said. Orange leaves, pumpkins, seasonal things like that. But when it gets closer to trick-or-treat time, down go the falling leaves and up go the witches and black cats and the otherworldly like.
But she doesn’t do spiders. There was a large spider (only a fake decoration, fortunately) that nearly gave her a heart attack, she said. Remember: Nothing too scary for her.
Other than that, “I love to decorate with everything, even bugs. I like characters that are funny. The ones that make noises and their eyes light up, like Iggy.”
She adds to her decoration treasures when the holiday is over, when things are on sale.
She’s got a holiday symphony of little animal figurines that sing Christmas carols, like the mouse that warbles “We Wish You a Merry Christmas.”
“I push each one separately and get them all singing,” she said with a smile. “It’s a whole chorus there.
“These little things ... anything that makes you smile, that brings a smile to your face, no matter how bad your day is. You see something like that and it all goes away. That makes it all worthwhile.
“It’s no trouble for me.”
She also bakes theme cakes for birthdays, weddings and other special events, she said. Just another way to put a smile on your face. She likes to bake cakes and other goodies for friends and neighbors.
“It makes me feel real good. It keeps me happy. It comes out of my heart, from here.”
She made a surprise birthday cake for a friend.
“He had tears in his eyes. ‘You don’t have to do that,’ he said. But yeah, I did. I do a lot of things for my friends and it doesn’t cost anything, you know. It costs me money to do it, but it doesn’t cost anything to give it away.
“You give people a part of you as a gift.
“And that becomes a tradition. Whatever I do comes back around and you do the same thing for somebody else.”
Her boys are grown now, but her family is always within reach. Old photos of relatives line the wall and shelves. It’s good to have family close by.
Hallways, bulletin boards, windows, walls, doors — she loves to spread holiday cheer wherever she can. Her Thanksgiving decorations are waiting in a nearby plastic tote to come out, with all that red and green next in line for Christmas.
“Christmas is a special holiday,” she said her mother always told her. “And it doesn’t have anything to do with gifts. It’s the birth of Christ. And you think of that when Christmas comes. He didn’t have anything for Christmas.”
Email Debra Minor Wilson at email@example.com.
Midge Linscott loves to decorate for the holidays.
- Local News
Children with disabilities enjoy hunting for Easter eggs: PHOTOS
Thousands of brightly colored plastic eggs lined the halls at the Disability Action Center (DAC) at 102 Benoni Ave. in Fairmont Saturday.
There were eggs on tables and doorknobs, in the gym and on the handrails. There were eggs for everyone.
Sanders seeks ‘second chance at life’: VIDEO
For more than half of his life, Morris Morrison has had to visit his father at the Mount Olive Correctional Facility.
That’s where holidays, like today, have been spent. Birthdays. That’s where letters, gifts and photographs are addressed to. That’s the postmark on Christmas cards and other correspondence Charles “Chuckie” Sanders sends to family and friends. And it’s been that way for 20 years.
McKinley, Gainer are candidates for Congress
Those who will represent their respective parties on the general election ballot for the 1st Congressional District have already been decided.
It is one of the few partisan races that will not need to be decided by the Tuesday, May 13 primary election as there are only one Republican and one Democrat vying for the seat.
‘Winter burn’ hits some state plants
A harsh winter has caused some plants to be burned.
West Virginia University Extension experts call this damage “winter burn.” It can be found on boxwood plants, a common but non-native plant in West Virginia.
East Dale student, loyal to twin brother, promotes autism awareness
Erin Pride, 12, is a sixth-grader at East Dale Elementary School.
She likes to play basketball, is a Girl Scout and just started learning the clarinet for school band.
This Christmas, she received a rubber band bracelet loom. Rubber brand bracelets are very popular, and she started making bracelets and trading them at school.
Tuesday deadline for voter registration
The deadline for new voters to register before the May 13 primary is fast approaching.
Residents have until 4:30 p.m. on Tuesday to go to a government office, such as the county clerk’s office or the DMV, and fill out a voter registration card.
Swimming Challenge available for children with autism
The Corridor Chapter of the Autism Society of West Virginia (AS-WV) and the YMCA of Clarksburg will be sponsoring the second annual Swimming Challenge for children affected by autism.
The swimming challenge gives children with autism the opportunity to attend swimming lessons and work on their swimming skills one-on-one.
CASA Superhero 5K set for April 26
The second annual CASA Superhero 5K will be held April 26 in Fairmont.
The event is at East Marion (Wave Pool) Park and is an annual fundraiser for CASA programs in Harrison, Marion, Monongalia and Preston counties.
Fun, prizes mark annual event at Curtisville Lake
An annual family fishing event begins at 9:30 a.m. today.
The Marion County Parks and Recreation Commission and the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources are having the annual Family Fishing Day. The event will take place today at Curtisville Lake, with registration beginning at 9:30 a.m. and prizes being given away at 10:30 a.m.
Police: Shooting of boy accidental
A boy remains in critical condition after being shot more than a week ago, and police officials are now saying the incident was accidental in nature.
On Wednesday, April 9, at 7:52 p.m., police were dispatched to a Fairmont residence after an 11-year-old boy sustained a gunshot wound inside the home.
- More Local News Headlines
- Children with disabilities enjoy hunting for Easter eggs: PHOTOS