Candles are in every window here. I've heard that the lighted candle in the window was put there to welcome Mary and Joseph as they sought shelter in vain on that first Christmas Eve. So now we welcome travelers through this tradition of the candles in the window.
I think that this practice dates back to the 1800's in America. I remember going as a child to Williamsburg, Virginia to see candles in every window. I've read that the real candles were placed in a bowl of water at the base to try to avoid fire.
We like to light the real candles in the house on Christmas Eve. It is symbolic for us of the real meaning of this holiday.
The other candles that are in the window are the Julstake type from Sweden. I thought that seeing these in every window when I was in Sweden really was beautiful. My friends in Sweden told me that they leave the candles up during much of January to give light and an air of festivity during the darkest days of winter. I found these candles in a store in Gamla Stan and brought several home.
No matter what light that you have in your house, I hope that you carry the light of Christmas in your heart. Have a peaceful Christmas Eve.