CHRISTMAS DECS PHASE II

12311185_748263211995177_5509285921051494176_n

Into the weekend, only 13 more driving days to the Christmas break, and the last of the outside displays MUST get finished before Winter arrives in all it’s glory!

We have had yet another nonsense visit from the “woman” at the Chamber of Commerce who truly does NOT have a clue when it comes to organizing the Christmas Lights Competition. After last year’s debacle she was going to do the same thing again having annoyed everybody in the town by letting the kids from the High School be the judges !!!!  Personally if that is the case I would rather have nothing to do with it .

What’s left to do? Well the Maple Tree needs to be trimmed to give me access to get cables and lights up and running, the leaves from said tree need the “blower” treatment to reveal the gold colored “wake” rocks, Goofy needs a bit of “Velcro” on his tummy as the high winds swept him overboard last year.

On Scuffy the boat, hooks along the side need Brenda’s touch while I need to construct shelving for “Santa’s Presents” and all the moving Santakins  who work that section.

Two NEW movers are here and  while old Santa drives the boat Santa Jnr and his NEW wife are learning their trade as this year’s helpers (his wife is excellent on gingerbread men!)

As the week got underway, the New Arrivals of Santa Jnr & Wife were delivered and de-boxed only to be replaced by a “Blackcat”

DSCN2473

Very pleased with these two

DSCN2470

Yes, Midnight is in the box!

Brenda’s birthday arrived on Tuesday and her mini gifts all made it along with a repeat (at her request) of the Chocolate Ganache that we had for our wedding anniversary.

DSCN2466

We arrived at the weekend with Scuffy and the Maple Tree still to do and more festive work in the office and yoga room.

Upstairs the dec boxes are put back in the loft and all the Maple Tree and Scuffy boxes are wheel barrowed over to the corner of the lawn. All 3 ladders surround the tree.

DSCN2472

DSCN2471

New shoots and unwanted branches are cut back, and after a serious senior moment when the leaf blower refused to work and the master decorator was at his wits end, a bright bulb lit up the east as I remembered the circuits I was plugged into were on timers!!…. and of course they were in the OFF position!

The leaves were blown away, Goofy got the Velcro touch, and yet more checking of lights. With 3 ladders on the go a fair number of ornaments and lights were secured in the tree but by nightfall there was still a lot to do.

Monday and the bitter cold is here. I don’t mind the cold but the wind chills me to the very marrow. One hour is spent searching for the wire cutters and I eventually find them UNDER one of the red boxes ……. don’t ask!

Not enough progress this morning and this manifests itself over night as after 4 hours I’m wide awake and can’t get back to sleep as these bloody decorations are now stressing me out.

Now 0520 Tuesday morning and hopefully although cold at 16F with any luck I might get the maple tree finished this morning. Close but no cigar, the temp continued going down and by the time I got to work it was down to 9F and only 18F on the way home. Some good progress this morning and I finish up with only one string of meteor lights left to put up before connecting all the cables.

Now I suddenly have a cold and now I can’t sleep, never mind I need to get these lights finished!!! Back from the morning runs and I get the last string of lights up and now start linking up the  connectors  in the hope everything will work as planned.

DSCN2482

The high winds are a nightmare for the outside decs but no major disasters so far.  Cables are connected and all the lights checked one more time to make sure they are plugged in to something … anything! ……. final tests look good and only one string of meteor lights may not be working.

Home at 1800, wind still vicious, but the lights look good other than the suspect line. Firewood chopped, dogs walked and time for a Hallmark movie.

DSCN2477

The Maple Tree has now officially joined the 2017 display so now I’m left with Scuffy, the Lazer light show in the trees, a couple of extra spot lights to find …… and maybe that little something extra for the Cozy Comfort sign area and Waterfalls ?

The winds were horrendous overnight and 3 sets of step ladders have been blown over. Warmer this morning and a lot less windy so time to get out there and attempt to fix that last string of meteor lights. There were 3 sets of 8 lights and I had to fit a plug on each set of 8 rather than have a continuous string. Its done! Scuffy tomorrow.

Pool on Saturday afternoon and 24 players and I win my way through the first 4 rounds so I’m back in the money and finish in a respectable 3rd.

Sunday and its Scuffy time and a lot of work gets done but the task is not finished although I do get the extra spotlights set up along with the Laser lights for the big trees.

DSCN2486

New spots

DSCN2481

Lasers in

Back from the morning runs and now only 7.5 driving days to go! Coffee and dogs first then out to the boat and start wiring up. Wire all the gifts in, now the 4 Santakins, fit Darth in place and connect the 2 new Santa and Mrs Claus along with the 3 spotlights. First sets of red lights around the hull.

DSCN2478

Crew ready to embark

DSCN2483

Music while I work

DSCN2484

First sets of reds in

Tuesday, and I’m too tired to do anything! I will perhaps take a few daylight shots of what is done so far.

Wednesday and another sleepless night and nothing gets done so I now have to see a Doctor on Thursday.

Thursday and after the Doctor’s visit yet more antibiotics and some mucus remover!

Friday, a much nicer day and I’m back on the task. A major round of repairs after another very windy night. Some stabilizers for the “Santas” and now more hooks on the hull and the red and white lights are finished and once again I’m out of time. A couple of visits from a school girl and the local sheriff who says he parks his car opposite the display to catch speeders and enjoy all the lights.

Back home from the afternoon run at 6 p.m. only to find some idiot has driven over the corner of the lawn and collided with the huge rockery stone and nearly destroyed the Lasers! More repairs for Saturday morning!!!

DSCN2490

Can you believe it ?  A clown with a travel trailer tries to turn in front of the house!!!   Yes, he was caught on the security cam

Last items to add for today are the front blue water lights, the rear yellow wake lights on the gold rocks and a last collection of Darth and the “blue” cherry tree and the LED’s around the Cozy sign. Then it will just be minor details outside and my office garland downstairs.

Work begins, and I WILL finish everything by Sunday! My starter for 10 is to repair the damage caused by the idiot with the travel trailer, some people should NOT be allowed behind the wheel of anything.

DSCN2491

Bloody halfwit !

DSCN2493

All repaired

DSCN2492

Laser Cabins built

Repairs complete, and  time for the Laser Cabins to keep the snow out. Now onto final wiring for Scuffy with warm white lights up the wake and 4 sets of blue water lights on the rocks with a shimmering effect.

DSCN2494

Wake lights on the gold rocks

DSCN2496

Blue lights down the starboard

DSCN2497

Bit more water on the port

DSCN2495

DSCN2498

Last checks on the Crew

Wiring complete, and time for Saturday pool. 19 players today and I battle my way through with 5 wins to the final and a guaranteed 2nd place or better. 2 very good games in the final but I lose both and end up in 2nd position again.

Well its Sunday night and I’m done!  Yes, it only took 4 weeks to do and I’m pleased with the overall result. Next article will reveal all the lights in their glory.

 

TONY DOWN

 

TURKEY WEEK & CHRISTMAS DECS

664a9c37868fb500f0489d8fd92dbf8c_thanksgiving-recess-clipart-clipartxtras-thanksgiving-week-clipart_561-251

A full week off school and now I need to get into full swing with all my Christmas lighting and displays. This ritual, although enjoyable, takes longer and longer every year.

Sunday cracks off with a redo of the two major figurines that are out on the balcony. I thought they needed some extra lights as the originals, some 12 years old, seemed to be on the dim side. 150 new lights per unit later I’m done!!

DSCN2457

150 new lights later

DSCN2456

Another 150 here

Monday and the job starts in earnest with everything to be brought down from the workshop loft and tested before layout can begin. However, before that all the shade garden cushions need to be put in the boiler  room and stacked for the winter, and once the Christmas lights are done then the Gazebo needs to join them.

Outside the clematis restraints have been removed for the lights that go up the poles. Hoses rewound and branches from the last bout of high winds put in the trash.

Despite putting everything away in good order with the increasing volume of stuff its difficult to remember where it all goes. The brain is trying to recall where it all went  and after 3 days of repair and thinking I’m moving along.

A rebuild on a twinkling star took a fair time but is now functional and extra deer for the waterfall were constructed and mounted on their stands and should survive the blizzards to come! The old polar bear had to have some repairs and now all the major items are laid out in the center bed. Just cables and lights for that sector and then on to front of house.

DSCN2460

More repairs

DSCN2459

The herd gets bigger

Its been way too cold and windy to even think of a ride but I did manage to change the troublesome tube on the Roubaix and maybe this morning I’ll do the Giant MTB tires now that I have the bike repair stand functional.

Wednesday, repairs completed (I hope) and front bed layout in full swing. A quick visit to Walmart and a few more lights replace the 1200 or so that are now beyond use! Cables everywhere and it comes together as dusk arrives ……. not too bad, just one little fir tree that needs some lights.

DSCN2461

DSCN2462

The NEW Santa with Darth

Thanksgiving Day, and while tradition says Brenda will be hard at it preparing the delicious feast I will be outside dealing with front of house lighting. If I can complete this then I will be pretty much on schedule. Remaining sectors are; Rose Bed, the Balcony, Maple tree and Scuffy.

DSCN2446

Chef in full “cook” mode

DSCN2448

“Here’s a pumpkin pie I made earlier”

23915887_10212824056409194_3206266131789574143_n

A helping hand from me!

DSCN2451

DSCN2450

DSCN2454

Yumeeeee!!!

The Center Bed gets finished with all the passengers in the sleigh and the clear lights on the last fir tree. The lights go up the 5 poles out front but the Christmas cocktails are kicking in and work up a ladder is not a good idea. Eat and be thankful!

DSCN2447

Friday and the weather continues up in the 60’s so make the most of it as it will surely change. Today is  all the household decorations that are up in the loft which Brenda will dive into as I try to finish the front of the house.

Brenda not feeling too good this morning and my dizziness is not helping and becoming very worrying. Several hours spent rectifying lights and eventually the lower section of front of house is complete. Some of the boxes are brought down from the loft so I can get on with the balcony section on Saturday morning. Yet MORE lights to repair.

Seems the lights are not working on the expensive Balsam Tree so after much, and I mean much frustration, Brenda rips all the lights off the tree and replaces them with another 1200 ……. and sends Balsam a snotogram of epic proportions!!! ………. however, we now have the 2017 tree completed and it looks very good.

DSCN2476

A lot of hard work!

By Sunday evening I have ALL front of house completed save for the last shooting star which also now needs rewiring! Monday and now I find one section of ice lights out so after replacing those, the last shooting star is hauled up and checked. Timers are now fitted and tested.

Just when I thought I was done the “Shivering Polar Bear” lights are starting to fail so they get replaced before I really start losing it. Now its Friday and I actually manage to rewire the Rose Bed and connect it into the display.

Only the Maple Tree and Scuffy to finish 2017. This MUST be completed by Sunday night as the weather is turning wormy from then on, but it is December after all.

 

TONY DOWN