I don't remember anyone in my neighborhood decorating with lights quite like we did. We lived out in the country, but you could see our house for miles. Dad really went all out with the lights, the plastic outside decorations, etc. We had everything from Santa and sleigh up on the roof, the Nativity, Frosty the Snowman, etc. Not to mention all of the strings of lights along the rooftop of the house and garage. I remember one year the lights on the garage were left well until springtime.
I haven't tried to keep up this particular tradition, though I imagine I will when I get grandkids. Right now the only outside lights I use are net lights in the bushes, and I do have a plastic Frosty the Snowman that I inherited a few years ago (see below):
Yes, they gave me Frosty - so I will always know that he's still around.I don't recall people decorating as much outside during the 50s and 60s as they do today. My dad made a star with lights and placed it outside on the chimney but mostly our family decorated the inside of the house.
We probably started decorating when Travis was 2 and cried after watching "Frosty the Snowman" because Frosty had melted. We bought a large snowman and put it outside to show him that Frosty came back and we've been decorating ever since (40+ years). We enjoy decorating outside with lights mainly for the granddaughters.