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» Thursday, December 24, 2009C is for (Before) Christmas Chores
I had an interrupted night, so slept in a bit this morning. Then it was time to do some necessary things: cleaned a bit in the master bathroom, and dusted and cleaned the shelf next to the jacuzzi tub so that a permanent place could be made for the space heater. The day started out with a milky sunshine trying to peer through growing clouds and the sparrows and chickadees and titmice quarreling around the feeder, but it grew cloudier as the hours progressed. Instead of getting snow for Christmas, we're having rain and possible high winds. Oh...joy.
I also figured out what was wrong with the light string out on the deck. We bought it after Christmas last year, when it was about a dollar, a long string of C-9 bulbs. We were planning to attach it permanently, but in the meantime just strung it from the rails so James would have light in the yard when he walked Willow at night. I found a gadget in Hobby Lobby that would allow us to turn the lights on and off with a remote from across the room, so James could turn the lights on before he went out. One of the bulbs shattered at the very end when I put it up, but the lights still went on...for a while. When they quit working I figured that bulb just needed replacing.
Nope, that wasn't it. The string must have gone bad. It wasn't the remote device, either; I'd plugged it directly into the fixture outside to test it.
So today when I was out there I pulled off the string, thinking I would take it down to the garage and see if the squirrel had chewed on it or something. But it came on when I plugged it in inside. But not outside.
Well, duh. I bet some rain got into the broken bulb and the GFI switch clicked off. Once I reset the switch the lights worked fine. Unfortunately, the distance from the deck to the gate meant the lights didn't help James with the combination lock, which was half the reason for putting them up there. So I re-strung the lights across the yard to the gate; it was just long enough for three of them to come over the gate and hang down near the lock. There. In fact, he says now it's almost too bright!
Cleaned the other bathroom, refilled the bird feeders before the rain started, and we've also collected the trash to go out on Saturday instead of tomorrow. In the meantime I watched "Merry Christmas, Bogg" (Voyagers!) and had started The Waltons' "The Best Christmas" when James walked in: they let him out early. We finished with Christmas 1936 on Waltons Mountain, and then watched Arthur's Perfect Christmas, which would be perfect if it wasn't for the songs...LOL. Loved Arthur's clumsy Uncle Fred ("Where does your brother work?" "In a china shop.") and the digs at repetitive toy commercials and Christmas shopping.
We had turkey thighs and stuffing for Christmas Eve dinner, with all of us at table, even Schuyler. Willow was quite attentive to our plates, but didn't harass us, which means she got rewarded with samples. She's looking very fetching for Christmas in a cute little red, white, and green scarf that was on a snowman I repurposed as a winter decoration.