2008 Updates
Sunday, 19 October 2008

After getting a late start for this year, things are starting to move around here...

Since I didn't know if the house was going to be under construction this season, I postponed many of my September and October preparations.  Now that I know that the 'show will go on', I've been scrambling to get things done.  I'm starting to catch up with things now, and at the moment I'm only about 10 days behind where I was last year.  With Thanksgiving late this year, and a bit of determination, everything should be done in time.

This past week, I tested and repaired the strobe lights.  Usually I have to repair approximately 10% of them every year, typically because of water intrusion.  Two seasons ago, I decided to experiment and drill weep holes to allow water to evaporate/escape.  None of those needed to be repaired for 2007, so last season I drilled holes in ALL the strobes.  This year only 1 strobe needed a quick repair (a bad solder joint by yours truly).  I definitely recommend that people drill holes in their strobes.

With the weather being so nice today, I decided to work outside in the workshop.  I pulled all the inflatables out of the bins and ensured they were still working.  The snowglobe needs a couple of new light bulbs.  I spent hours (between last year and this year) trying to find the darn zipper.  FINALLY I found it.  

After that, I started redoing my megatree bundles.  Every year I throw out about 90% of my blue lights since they fade so bad. 

On the indoor front, the sequencing of this year's 3 new songs is complete.  The new songs are 'We need a Little Christmas' from the musical 'Mame', 'The Greatest Time of Year' by Aly & AJ, and 'Last Christmas' by DJ Allstars.  I still have to re-do all the old songs from last year since I've added some new controllers this year (more on that below).

There is a TON of new additions to this year's display.  I guess I'm making up for the lack of new stuff last year!

  • NEW:  I designed and created 38 new wooden cutouts for this year.  You can see pictures of them in the 2008 photo album.  I have another 18 designed that will have to wait for next year!  With all these new additions, I may not put out some of my older cutouts to make room.
  • NEW:  3 inflatables.  These are the inflatables I picked up late last year that needed to be repaired.  You can read more about them in the DIY section about 'repairing inflatables'.
  • NEW:  3 light controllers for 48 additional channels.  That makes the total now 128. 
  • REPLACED:  The arches that ran along the driveway are being replaced with candy-canes similar to the ones that line the walkway.  The arches were horrible to store.
  • NEW:  15 new strobe lights for the front flower beds and the bushes on either side of the garage.
  • NEW:  3 spiral trees which will be grouped with the small 'mini' trees for some interesting chasing effects.