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  • Christmas 2018 countdown has already begun. Will you be ready???
  • Why do we love Christmas? It's all about the traditions. In this chaotic world we can miss the "good old days." Christmas reminds us of that time.
  • The first recorded date of Christmas being celebrated on December 25th was in 336, during the time of the Roman Emperor Constantine. A few years later, Pope Julius I officially declared that the birth of Jesus would be celebrated on that day.
  • Santa Claus's sleigh is led by eight reindeer: Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Dunder (variously spelled Donder and Donner), and Blixem (variously spelled Blixen and Blitzen), with Rudolph being a 20th-century inclusion.
  • Outdoor Christmas lights on homes evolved from decorating the traditional Christmas tree and house with candles during the Christmas season. Lighting the tree with small candles dates back to the 17th century and originated in Germany before spreading to Eastern Europe.
  • That big, jolly man in the red suit with a white beard didn’t always look that way. Prior to 1931, Santa was depicted as everything from a tall gaunt man to a spooky-looking elf. He has donned a bishop's robe and a Norse huntsman's animal skin. When Civil War cartoonist Thomas Nast drew Santa Claus for Harper's Weekly in 1862, Santa was a small elflike figure who supported the Union. Nast continued to draw Santa for 30 years, changing the color of his coat from tan to the red he’s known for today.


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Everything posted by mjs805

  1. This early snow on my blow molds

    I remember that year. Everything was frozen solid. I was afraid that my candy canes and blow molds would crack if I tried to pull them out. Hopefully the rain and warm (Ha, I'm calling 40 degrees warm) later this week will free things up.
  2. -10 here this morning and we have about a foot of snow on the ground. I'm not taking anything down today. We are supposed to get 40s and rain Thursday through Saturday (melt white devil!) so I'm looking at getting most of the stuff off the house, lawn, trees and bushes next Sunday and Monday (MLK Day). Cords are a different story. I will deal with them in March or April. It's not like they are going anywhere. I just like to get the visible stuff down as a courtesy to my neighbors. I don't want to be an eyesore. Who wants to look at Christmas blow molds in February?
  3. Commercial shoot?

    Cool. I'm guessing it will air in the fall. Please keep us posted. I would love to see the finished product.
  4. Commercial shoot?

    I received a comment on my youtube video from someone claiming to be with a commercial production company and wanting to discuss their client using a "decked out holiday house like yours" on their instagram feed. I just ignored it. I don't want to inject business into this. I'm sure there would be a lot of fine print to read through. I'm just in this to entertain the community and raise money for my charity.
  5. What color lighting do you prefer?

    I use red/green/white/blue in my animated display. I think it adds something to the sequencing when one color is shown at any given time. That being said, I don't think your multi show in the video looked cheap. I enjoyed it. It is also the less expensive route for sure. Maybe you could leave the bulk of the display multi and do individual colors on the mega tree. Just a thought. Mike
  6. Merry Christmas Virginia

    I run mine until Jan 5 every year. When I was a kid, my Mom always said you leave the lights on until Little Christmas. I think I just like to put off taking it all down as long as possible.
  7. coro snowflakes!

    Thanks everyone. I looked at the website yesterday. I think the snowflakes are about the only thing they still do for mini lights.
  8. coro snowflakes!

    pjwallen, thanks for bumping this. I may give these a try next year. A few of my Philips rope light snow flakes have failed this year and wrapping new rope light around them is a huge pain. I could see me doing 2 sets, one in cool white and one in blue. Thanks again!
  9. 25,000+ lights on 68 LOR channels. We are located in Lake Carmel, NY.
  10. After Christmas sales

    I was in a Lowes in northern CT today and they were already starting to consolidate the Christmas merchandise and shrink the section down. I think the retailers have figured out that they would rather have bare shelves on the 20th than half full shelves on the 26th. I do miss the days of me and my sons filling multiple carts at Target, bright and early on the 26th.
  11. I started with AL in 2009 and had a great experience up until about 2015. Of course, I was a plug and play user who just ordered show cards from them. I did have a few technical issues early on and Paul and his crew were very responsive. At 200+ channels, you obviously had a much more complex set up and interacted with Paul much more than I did. I did notice a lot of turnover at the company and your post has me thinking that Paul must have been difficult to work for/with. Thankfully, the fun has not been killed for me. I'm on LOR now and very happy with the product.
  12. I converted to LOR this year and have no use for my monster brain. I figured someone on here who is still running AL would like to have a backup. It is actually only two years old. I sent my original MB to AL in 2015 to have the battery replaced and they lost it, so they just sent me a new MB. I know none of the technical stuff, like which version of the software it is running on. All I ask is that you pay the shipping. First response gets it. Mike
  13. It's yours Frank. Send me a shipping address and I will get it out to you. I will let you know the shipping after i ship it and you can send me a check. I'm doing this on the honor system. email me at mjs805@verizon.net. Mike
  14. Who else is behind schedule!?

    I am done. Took last week off and knocked it out. This weekend I will go through the display and troubleshoot any bad lights, ect. It's a good feeling.
  15. FYI, Paul's (the owner) wife had a brain aneurysm in 2015 and has had a difficult recovery. This seemed to coincide with the customer service issues at AL. Not an excuse, but more of an explanation as to what may have caused the problems. I think Paul's problem was that he was a very important part of the day to day operations and when he had to be with his wife, the company suffered. A couple of his former employees have started up Jolt Lighting and have the rights to all of the AL programming, so I'm not sure what kind of deal was cut there. That being said, I converted to LOR this year, in part because I had exhausted the AL song catalogue (I don't have the time to do my own programming), and in part because I feared that I would be left with equipment that was no longer supported if AL should go out of business.
  16. New Tune To Sign

    I like #2.
  17. I have been using Animated Lighting equipment since 2009 and have always been happy with the product. I don't have the time to do my own programming so I have always purchased my show cards from AL, choosing from their list of songs and having them insert a voice-over for the charity for which I take donations. I end up spending a couple of hundred dollars each year for the show cards. I have been considering purchasing the Animation Director software so that I can put the songs in the order I want and insert my voice-over myself. It is my understanding, though, that the software is somewhat antiquated and difficult to work with. I am also getting to the point where I would like some new music and there is nothing left in the AL library that interests me. Last week I got an email from Jolt Lighting, which apparently was started by guys who used to be with AL and have the rights to the AL Library. (Not sure how that works) I've been corresponding with someone at Jolt and he is suggesting that I convert to LOR. I am intrigued by this idea because there are so many songs out there for LOR and because it would be nice to have more control over my show content vs. paying for a set show every year. I told the Jolt representative that converting the existing AL song programming to LOR is a must and he said they can do this. I have always liked the programming from AL, specifically the arch programming. FYI - I currently run 64 channels, 32 of which are dedicated to the arches. So, my question to all of you is, do you think I should go for the conversion or am I setting myself up for problems with the conversion of the equipment or other issues I'm not even thinking of? I look forward to your feedback. Mike
  18. joelnicol, thanks. Drew Hickman is who Jolt referred me to. Did you convert any of the AL programming?
  19. Target 70% Off Christmas

    All the Targets near me had nothing decent left before Christmas. I think they have gotten better at estimating their needs for the Christmas season. It sucks for those of us that look for the after Christmas bargains.
  20. Disney's Osbourne Lights

    My understanding is that Disney originally signed a 10 year deal with Jennings Osborne in 1995 or so and that it was renewed for another 10 years in 2005ish. Word is that now that Jennings has passed, his family is looking to get paid for the next deal. The prior deal had the Osbornes being comped vacations in return for the lights. The time seems right for Disney to cut ties with the Osbornes. There are also rumors that Disney will eventually turn the great light fight into a competition to decorate a section of Disney World. Who knows. That is just what I have heard on some podcasts.
  21. Driveway Arches

    Awesome! Thanks so much for taking the time to do the video. Now all I have to do is convince the wife. Happy New Year!
  22. Driveway Arches

    bigstott, Do you mind sharing a few details on your arches? I am looking to do something similar next year and my driveway is the same width. What is the distance between your arches and what is the total distance front to back? How are they secured into the ground? Rebar? Did you use any guy wires or any other supports? I am concerned about weather issues. I am in the northeast so snow/ice and wind are a concern. Any lessons learned in that regard? Thanks in advance for any input. Anybody else with knowledge/advice, please feel free to chime in. Mike