LA MESA, Calif. (KGTV) - Chris Ostwald spends months planning and setting up his home's elaborate Christmas light display every year.
"It relaxes me," Ostwald says of the hours of work he puts in. "I love how it looks. I love being outside. And now that I have kids, I love how excited they get."
Ostwald begins working on the display right after Halloween. His first job is pulling everything out of a storage shed that he rents specifically to house the decorations.
"He disappears for a couple of months," says Hillary Ostwald, Chris' wife. "I call myself a Christmas light widow starting in November because he spends all weekends, sun up to sundown, putting up the lights and perfecting it all."
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The display includes thousands of lights, dozens of oversized candy cane and gift box decorations, a Grinch, reindeer pulling a sleigh on the roof, and, of course, Santa Claus.
It also has additional electrical sources to make sure the lights stay on.
"I have four, 20-amp, dedicated circuit breakers just for the lights," explains Ostwald. "So I have 80 amps for the lights, which I've been told by some electricians that would run a whole house."
Ostwald adds to the display every year, often outspending the budget he and his wife agree on. But he says it's all worth it when he sees the faces of his kids and neighbors every night.
"His love for Christmas lights is awesome," says Hillary.
"I know there are a lot of people that do more lights," Ostwald says. "But I think I do mine pretty classy."