Twas the night before Halloween, when all through the house
Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse.
The Halloween Costumes were hung by the door with care
In hopes that Alek's Halloween Decorations would be there.
When out on the lawn there arose such a clatter,
I sprang from the bed to see what was the matter.
Away to the window I flew like a flash,
Tore open the shutters and threw up the sash.
The moon on the breast of the new-fallen snow
Gave the lustre of mid-day to objects below.
When, what to my wondering eyes should appear,
But Witches, Skeletons, Pumpkins, Grim Reapers, Frankenstein, SpongeBob, and Homer Simpson - D'OH! ;-)
With such as zany display, so lively and quick,
I knew in a moment it must be Alek's Controllable Halloween Decorations for Celiac Disease.
And then, in a twinkling, I saw the Internet control the house
The continuous turning ON and OFF of each little light and giant inflatables.
Alek spoke not a word, but went straight to his work,
Making sure the webcams stayed online and X10 controls operational
Ensuring the laptop chat-room stayed family friendly to bazillions of people around the world.
Plus passing out treats to all who came to his door.
As the night grew to a close, Alek sat back in his chair
The webcams and X10 controls started to cool
And as the display shut down for another fun year, I heard him exclaim
"Happy Halloween to all, and to all a good-night!"
In 2001, my sister got married and gave everyone at her wedding reception a nifty present - tree seedlings. I planted a couple, but only one survived ... and after 10 years, it's about ten feet tall. However, I "goofed" by planting it too close to some other trees ... and now that it has grown, they are all crowding each other. It would make a fine Christmas tree, but we don't do 'em anymore (surprising, 'eh?!? ;-) but I didn't want to see it go to waste.
My wife asked around at her workplace and WendyR
said they had a good home for the tree ... so the next night, her husband
Leif showed up with a real (STIHL baby!) chainsaw to cut it down -
mouseover image to see him fire it up - RRRRUUUUMMMM!!!
While I held the tree, Leif made a clean cut at the base in about 10 seconds - note smoke from chainsaw.
I've asked Leif and Wendy to send us a picture of what it looks like decorated at their house.
Since I had some of the Christmas Decorations in the front yard, I turned those on and here's an image from the new webcam - click here to watch a time-lapse video of us cutting the tree.
I enlisted my son Dirk to take this picture - he was a real trooper standing on top of the ladder in the cold.
Mouseover image to see closeup of me with my Green Buddy
And here's a side view of Santa skiing down the roof toward the setting sun.
Picture taken on December 20th near midnight with no moon but a LOT of light from the neighbor's display.
Same settings except 251 second exposure as seen by the longer star streaks.
Using the 400nm near-UV flashlight to light up the display - mouseover image to see shorter exposure which highlights the flourescing - would be cool to do at Halloween! ;-)