Cody the Airedale Says to Remember Pet and Animal Safety When Decorating for the Holidays

Cody - Santa Claus

Cody – Santa Claus

Hi – it’s Cody the Airedale here. I first want to thank my human mom and dad for helping me to write this article on a topic that’s very important to me and all my other four-legged friends. That topic is a reminder to keep pet and animal safety in mind when decorating for the holidays.

I live with my mom and dad in the Ken-Caryl Ranch Valley. This time of year I have many wild animal friends stop by my house including deer, elk, raccoons, rabbits, red foxes, and coyotes. I know if the electrical cords and light strings are not secured properly, that my friends can trip or become tangled up in them and hurt themselves. If you need to run electrical cords between two shrubs or trees, don’t run the cords above ground but staple them safely to the ground with sod staples. We’ve all seen and heard stories about the inquisitive deer with a plastic pumpkin stuck on his head or a string of lights tangled up in his antlers.

deer tangled in lightsFor dogs like me and cats, interior decorations have their own potential dangers. I was born on December 19th eleven years ago, so I don’t remember too much about my first Christmas except competing with my brothers and sisters for a meal. But by the next Christmas, I sure do remember all those shiny balls on the tree that I could knock to the floor with my tail. My mom and dad quickly learned that my access to the tree should be restricted so that I wouldn’t hurt myself or damage the ornaments.

I’ve been told that cats really like to climb Christmas trees and dogs also might be tempted to jump up at a tree to get a better view. For that reason, trees should be anchored securely so that they do not get knocked over. I’ve been told that cats are also attracted to the shiny tinsel, and this is a very bad thing for both cats and dogs to swallow. Also, if your family has a real tree, make sure that the reservoir containing the water does not become a water dish. Sometimes chemicals are added to help preserve the tree and over time the water can develop bacteria, so make sure that someone in the household covers the reservoir so that it is not used as a water dish.

For any interior lighting or tree lighting, also make sure that the electrical cords are kept safely out of the reach of both puppies and older dogs who like to chew. The result of chewing into a live electrical cord could range between painful and deadly. Artificial and real pine needles, ribbon, bows, and even wrapping paper can become real problems if eaten, so for that reason the floors and carpets should be vacuumed frequently and the home kept tidy.

Also remind your family that the following plants can be harmful to dogs and cats: poinsettias, holly, amaryllis, lilies, and mistletoe. Either decide beforehand not to have these in the home at all or keep them well out of reach of the fur kids in the family. Poinsettias can irritate the stomachs and mouths of both dogs and cats, and some lilies can cause kidney failure in cats. Also, any liquid potpourri should be kept out of the reach of both dogs and cats.

Although food and drink are not part of holiday decorating, they are part of celebrating the holidays. For that reason, please be careful to keep alcoholic drinks, chocolate, grapes, raisins, currants, and fatty meat scraps away from dogs and cats. And, in Colorado and other states that have legalized marijuana, please do not allow your dogs and cats to eat any edible marijuana products.

By following a few simple rules, we can all help to make the holidays safe and enjoyable for both my four-legged and human family and friends.

Cody's signature

 

 

 

 

 

 

Where to Buy Color Lens Covers for Your Landscape Lighting Fixtures

Where to buy color lens coversOver the last 15 years, we’ve been asked repeatedly about the availability of color lens covers for landscape lighting fixtures in general, and for the well lights that Outdoor Lighting Perspectives  of Colorado sells and installs in particular. As you can see in the graphic to the right, we do have color acrylic lens covers for the oval (above ground) well lights and the circular in-ground (flush mounted) well lights. These lenses are designed and manufactured to specifically fit the dimensions of the OLP well lights. The lenses are available in the following colors – amber, blue, green, light blue, purple, red, smoke and yellow.

What options do you have if your spot lights are smaller diameter (say the diameter of MR16 bulbs) or if your well lights have a different configuration than the OLP well lights?

There are two viable options for the owners of non-OLP systems. The first option is to simply lay or tape the OLP color lenses over the aperture of the existing non-OLP fixtures. The important thing to remember is that the lens should never come in contact with the bulb!

The second option is to find your nearest photographic or theatrical supply store, and purchase some rolls or precut squares of color gels that come in any color imaginable. You would then need to secure these gels to the landscape lighting fixtures using heavy-duty rubber bands or all-weather tape. The gels are not as durable as the acrylic lenses so you may need to purchase a new set of gels at the beginning of each holiday season.

Happy lighting and Happy Holidays from Outdoor Lighting Perspectives of Colorado!

Mead Signature

 

 

The Holidays Are a Great Time to Sell a House – Especially If You Add a Little Lighting!

Which  house would you rather purchase?

House & Property w/o Landscape Lighting

House w/o Landscape Lighting

House w/ Landscape Lighting

House w/ Landscape Lighting

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A few Saturday’s ago I heard a local realtor (Rich Petrone) being interviewed on KKZN AM760’s Saturday morning show – The American Real Estate Network – about the advisability of selling a home during the holiday season.  Rich said that the holidays were a fantastic time to sell a house because –

  • there are fewer houses on the market; i.e., less competition
  • there are more motivated buyers seeing different neighborhoods while attending holiday parties and events
  • and last but not least, the houses that are well illuminated by landscape and/or holiday lighting have great curb appeal and look very welcoming

During the last 15 years, our company (Outdoor Lighting Perspectives) has illuminated many homes during the holiday and winter season because the homeowners had already listed or planned to list their home for sale. During this time of year, just about every commuter in the work force is traveling home after dark, and if they’re in the market for a new house, what better time is there to make your house stand out after dark.

Companies who provide staging services and products for home sellers to enhance the interior of homes have been all the rage in recent years. So now is definitely the time to consider exterior lighting staging services – either on a temporary or permanent basis. Lighting a home on a temporary basis is similar to the evening lighting design demonstrations that we perform. The only difference is that these lights would remain on site for several weeks or months, and that the temporary wiring, etc. would be hidden from view.

The other option is to permanently install a basic design of 15 or fewer lights to enhance the primary architectural features of the house to give it curb appeal after dark. This lighting then becomes an additional feature and asset of the home, and it would also provide the new homeowner the opportunity for expanding the lighting system in the future. Lastly, adding a few strings of twinkle lights on trees and shrubs can add to the spirit of the season – and bring even more attention to the home you’re hoping to sell sooner rather than later.

Mead Signature

Celebrate Halloween or Support the Denver Broncos with Orange Lens Covers for Your Landscape Lights

Lighting Effects with Orange Lens Covers

Lighting Effects with Orange Lens Covers

Orange lens covers on your landscaping lighting fixtures make it really easy to support the Denver Broncos or celebrate Halloween – and on the last week of October, you can really do both. Outdoor Lighting Perspectives manufactures special oval and circular orange acrylic lens covers that fit OLP’s above ground and flush-mounted well lights.

Close Up View of Well Light with Orange Lens Cover

Close Up View of Well Light with Orange Lens Cover

Autumn-colored leaves this time of year – or red brick really seem to take on the orange glow of Halloween. It’s always fun to hear the trick and treaters say – “look at all of the orange trees and house.”

The oval color lens covers are roughly 4-15/16″ by 6-15/16″ and are available in amber/orange, blue, green, light blue, purple, red, smoke and yellow. The circular color lens covers are 5-11/16″ outside diameter (4-15/16″ inside diameter) and are available in the same colors as the oval lenses.

COLOR LENS COVERS - CIRCULAR

color lens covers

Many of our current customers who do not have well lights manufactured by Outdoor Lighting Perspectives have found that they can still use these lens covers. They’ve found that they can temporarily tape or secure the color lens covers over the well lights for a special event, holiday, or to support their favorite sports team.

There’s certainly no easier way to decorate outdoors for the holidays than by using color lens covers on your landscape lighting system. And better yet, you won’t have to miss any touchdowns by the Broncos!

Mead Signature

See the Latest LED Landscape and Architectural Lighting Products at the 2013 Denver Home Show

DHS_150NEWCome visit Outdoor Lighting Perspectives of Colorado at the Denver Home Show. We’ll have the latest LED landscape lighting, LED architectural lighting, and Lighting Control Automation(TM) products on display. Also stop by to sign up and take advantage of our exciting show specials that will be in effect through April 30th of this year.

 

  • March 15 – 17, 2013
  • National Western Complex (Denver)
  • Outdoor Lighting Perspectives of Colorado (Booth #2117)
  • Hours
  • Friday (10am – 9pm); Saturday (10am – 9pm); Sunday (10am – 5pm)

Click Here to Obtain $2.00 Off Tickets for the Show

Outdoor Lighting Perspectives of Colorado is a full-service outdoor lighting design, installation and maintenance company for residential, municipal, and commercial projects – and we design and install lighting automation controls as well. Of course we still design and sell low voltage quartz halogen systems, and the great thing about our lighting products is that we can retrofit any of the fixtures we have already installed to LED whenever the homeowner is ready. We are also happy to provide lighting energy audits to show the homeowner how much they could save in electrical costs by converting to LEDs. We are glad to do this for any OLP or non-OLP systems. We also provide turnkey holiday lighting products/services and special event lighting throughout the year.

We look forward to seeing you at the show!

Mead Signature

Can Decorative Holiday Lights Be Used in Outdoor Trees Year Round?

Today is Friday, December 21st – the winter solstice – on which day we will experience the shortest number of daylight hours and the longest number of nighttime hours. It is not surprising that many homeowners and businesses like to keep their decorative holiday lights installed for a longer period of time, especially in trees. Today you will see trees (primarily deciduous) illuminated throughout the year along city streets in shopping and arts districts, at restaurants, and at private residences.

Permanent Tree Lighting

Permanent Tree Lighting

Many people ask whether you can use the same type of lights used at Christmas – and just leave them installed in the trees after the holidays. Many people do use these regular lights, but these lights are not certified for year-round use and are not very well-protected from long-term damage caused by moisture or the sun’s UV rays. Invariably, these lights will begin to fail in six or nine month’s time, and the lights will need to be removed and replaced with new ones.

A much better option is to use professional-grade line or low voltage incandescent or LED mini lights that are permanently sealed and watertight, have IP44-rated coaxial connectors, and are UL and CSA approved.  IP44 is the Ingress Protection rating for a connector that is protected from water spray from all directions; i.e., it is a very good choice for an outdoor installation to be used long term.

One of our first installations using these year-round lights was back in 2001. Our customer’s kitchen window looked out into a dark void between her house and the adjacent property. But in this dark void were two beautiful ornamental trees that were invisible for most of the year in the evenings. We could have uplighted them with our standard low voltage well lights (uplights), but the homeowner decided that she wanted something more decorative and whimsical. So we decided that low voltage incandescent clip lights would create the ambience that she was seeking. Except for minor annual adjustments as the trees have grown over the years, these lights have worked well during the last eleven years until recently. In fact, our one crew is back there today to remove the old lights and install the new. So eleven years has been a pretty good run for this type of decorative lighting.

So here’s to enjoying all of the beautiful lighting – and Happy Holidays from everyone here at Outdoor Lighting Perspectives of Colorado.

Mead's signature

Holiday Lighting Made Easy in Metro-Denver and Along the Colorado Front Range

Residential Christmas Lighting

Fall is in the air and in recent weeks, a few snowflakes as well. Outdoor Lighting Perspectives of Colorado is your full-service design and installation contractor for holiday and Christmas-lighting decorations. We specialize in residential, commercial, and municipal outdoor and holiday lighting projects. In addition, we have the products and materials to provide interior decorating services as well with our full line of wreaths, garlands, decorated trees, bows etc. to make any interior a festive space during the holidays. 

While OLP of Colorado can also do the standard C7 and C9 design treatments (incandescent or LED) that everyone else provides, we like to provide our customers additional options to set their house, business, or community apart from all the rest with truly unique designs and light treatments. Our LightLinks products provide unique designs such as snow flakes, Christmas stockings, bow and swag, etc. to truly highlight your house or business.

For decorating trees, we can light them with LED multi-color starbursts or oversized lighted sculptures that will make them a highlight of your neighborhood. For commercial spaces, we can also provide large lighted sculptures to promote the holiday cheer and make your business a focal point.

Holiday Commercial Sculpture

OLP of Colorado provides full service design, installation, take-down and storage services for our holiday lighting customers. However, if you are a do-it-yourselfer, we can also sell you any product on a retail basis as well.

For more information, please call us at 303/948-9656 or check out our holiday web site.