Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Partially Lit

No Deed Ever Goes Smoothly

What is is about jobs around the house and barn that always makes them filled with drama?

I put the lights up on the front porch--lighted garlands around the pillars, a green spot light, and a lighted wreath on the door. Plugged everything in and...nothing. Checked the switch inside--on. Checked the fuse box in the basement--OK. Something has gone wrong with the outside outlet on the porch.

I will not try to fix electrical stuff.  I can rewire a lamp and do the wiring on my horse trailer, but house wiring repairs--Nope. My Dad was an electrical engineer and did all the electrical work around the house as easy as anything. He did the plumbing work and carpentry work too. I cannot aspire to his heights, although I am willing to tackle a few tasks.

But electrical? Nope!

So, what to do? There is an electrical outlet in the basement by the basement window at the side of the house. I already had the window fixed to things could be pulled through it. So, I hooked up an extension cord from the basement to the front porch where I put a surge protector so I could connect several cords.

That left how to turn the lights on and off. Needless to say, I didn't want to have to hike up and down the basement stairs to unplug things. Nor was I too keen on having to go out to the porch to trip the surge protector all the time. And, while an automatic timer was an option, I'm not too keen on losing control of when the lights go on, especially since I sometimes like them to stay on longer or shorter depending on what's going on here.

Enter the remote control device. I had one here already, but there was another good brand on sale at Target when I visited today--in search of red bows.  I've hooked it up and even from the living room upstairs it seems to work a treat. So I can now turn the outside lights on and off with the touch of a button! Too cool for words.

Tomorrow is going to be another nice day weatherwise, so I hope to finish up the garlands and bows along the fence--probably add the lights, decorate the barn, and put some more lights on my little tree. Then I am all set.

For ideas about wrapping presents. I have, for the second time, come up with what I think's a really good one. I am using the fabric reusable shopping bags they sell in the markets. I had to do a bit of searching, but I found some very pretty green ones and some lovely red ones that don't have huge advertising images on them. instead they have nice, attractive trees.  I simply put the unwrapped present inside, add a bit of tissue paper, some ribbon, and the tag.  They look pretty, they're practical, they save a lot of work wrapping, and they save all that wrapping paper.

Meanwhile, the Boys are just hanging out. I did get a good buy on bagged apples yesterday, so each horse got one for dinner.  When I shop, I count how many apples are in a 5 pound bag and usually it's only 11. Since I have 3 horses, that never divides evenly. However, these apples were a bit smaller and there were more than a dozen in each bag. So, it still might not divide perfectly, but I do get at least three sets of treats out of each bag before I have to start cutting something up to share.

I am a bit obsessive, I fear, about making sure that the treats are always given equally to each horse. Sometimes Toby does get the biggest carrot, but never two if everyone else has only one.  I guess even if my Boys are not altruistic or fair with each other, I can set a good example.

After all, isn't that what a "parent" is supposed to do?


  1. We always make sure our herd has equal treats too. I don't think they can count but I wouldn't put it past them.

    Good idea with the gift wrapping. Wish it would work for me, I spent the entire day wrapping presents for family and four grandkids.

    Sounds like your house is really coming along and must look very festive. Never thought about a remote for the lights. You are full of great ideas this year that I'll keep in mind.

  2. Smiling! I just knew you'd decorate and light up so there was no point discussing it. The remote is a great addition.

  3. Photo please ^-^
    We are spending Christmas at my MIL, so I cannot bother to be anything up.
    Christmas is not my favourite season. It should be relaxing, but in fact is lots of work and stress, for not much fun.

    I really do not like it. I prefer New Year's eve ... much better!!!