December 10th, 2012

krazy koati

Sleigh bells in the air

We did get our Christmas tree last week, and it went right up almost effortlessly thanks to the drilled spike down the center hole. Great work, isn't it? Of course, that left decorating the tree to be done. We'd let it sit a couple days for the branches to spread out and to see how it looked and to give our pet rabbit the chance to eat all the branches off. (We stopped him before this, but he still spends most of the day staring at it and licking his lips.)

Unfortunately we got stalled in stringing lights by finding not one, not two, not three, but four strands of lights, including the ones to be used outdoors, had burned out. We'd been waiting until other work was done first and this meant that while Monday was an almost suspiciously warm and pleasant day, we weren't able to use it to decorate outdoors, as by the time I got back from the hardware store with more lights and a light tester we'd lost the daylight.

Wednesday wasn't a bad day, though, and we strung up the lights with me making only one stupid mistake. bunny_hugger said to string up the lights with the end on top of one shrub, and I thought she meant the prong end. She didn't, so we had to work out an extension cord to go up that way. (Maybe it'll reduce the number of ground fault incidents in rain or snow.) She also got a timer for the outdoor lights, the old-fashioned kind where you raise a pin to have the light left off for a half-hour block and lower it to have the light turned on. This seemed initially to be broken, but it turned out all the pins were lowered, which is why we couldn't lower them more.

Finally, though, we got to putting ornaments up on trees. bunny_hugger has many, of many species. I have only a few, since most of the ornaments I'd hung in past years were properly my parents', but they're of sentimental value. One's a Snoopy-as-a-reindeer that must date to the 70s, before Charles Schulz's family started setting standards for what could qualify as a Peanuts merchandise item. It's got these weird spindly antlers and pieces of fluff in odd places so that while bunny_hugger was not actively horrified by it, she didn't quite believe it was Snoopy either. Another was a little plush angel doll made by an aunt (an actual sister of my mother, for a freak event) the year of my birth. It's got homemade charm in that early 70s fashion.

bunny_hugger's ornaments are much more and more elaborate, with collections of several distinct themes, and couldn't all be put on at once; it gave us the chance to make this something we do over multiple days. She's a really wonderful person for decorating and I'm happy about that.

Trivia: Rhode Island's first Italian parish was the Holy Gost Parish, established in 1889 in Providence. Source: Rhode Island: A History, William G McLoughlin.

Currently Reading: Michigan Curiosities, Colleen Burcar. So for the Keweenaw Snow Thermometer (measuring the season's accumulated fall) ``originally a pulley would raise the bar on a daily basis. But even the pulley grew tired of the cold, often freezing in mid-action'' so now they only do it once, at the end of the snow season.