The Denton FarmPark Horse Train

The Denton FarmPark Horse Train
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The Nativity Season is not too far away! Experience it at the Denton FarmPark!

Nov. 28, 29 & 30

Dec. 4, 5, 6, 7, 11, 12, 13, 14

Dec. 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 26, 27

Ride the Handy Dandy Railroad and see the lights and Nativity movie along the way.

Visit the church and sing carols.

Explore the Service Station, Gingerbread House, our Arts & Crafts exhibits, the General Store, and the Doll Museum.

Take the tram down to visit the Reid Plantation.

Ride the Horse Drawn Wagon Ride.

Make sure to see Santa!

Food available and more!…

Meet our lovely train:

  

 

 

How to Flock an Artificial Christmas tree

How to Flock an Artificial Christmas tree
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From all the ways you could decorate your house and Christmas tree, none screams true winter Christmas as loud as a white flocked Christmas tree.

You can definitely go the easy way and get right from the beginning a white Christmas tree, but what if it’s a colorful Christmas tree you want next year? On the other hand, why not doing it yourself and flock your Christmas tree exactly how you want it?

The easy way- the white spray paint

This is by far the easiest way to flock an artificial Christmas tree. You should avoid it though on a pre-lit Christmas tree (more at Verycozyhome) or decorating your unlit tree with the winter lights.

Easy to do and so convenient, the white spray paint gives a great glow to your tree and 3 to 6 cans of white spray should be enough for most sizes of trees out there. For the extra-special effects, you may also use some food coloring or glitter when you’re done with the white spray paint.

The more branches your tree has, the more is going to take you to finish, and it also depends on how fast you work. Allow your newly spray-painted tree to dry for 8 hours or so before you can proudly install it in the living room.

As the spray-painted flock may catch dust in the air, it’s always a good thing to dust off the flocked Christmas tree before storing it.

Keep in mind to also check the warranty coverage of your tree before starting the flocking. Some solutions (homemade snow, for instance) may void the warranty so you do need to play it safe.

Another way- a good home made mixture

The best part about flocking your Christmas tree at home is that you can do it as much/less as you want. It’s up to you to decide how white your Christmas tree is going to be and this is why so many of us would rather do it home and not get a white Christmas tree off the shelf.

Whether you go with some soap flakes or shaving cream, the most important thing is for you to like the results and to get a perfect looking Christmas tree!

Here’s what you need for this mixture:

  • 3 cups foam shaving cream
  • 1 cup glue (Elmer’s All Purpose is a popular one)
  • 1 table spoon Corn starch

Twelve batches of the mixture should be enough for a 7.5ft. tree, if you’re flocking each branch.

  1. Step 1

Mix all the ingredients we mentioned with a stand mixture. Take your time and mix it for a couple of minutes. You’re done when the stiff peaks form.

  1. Step 2

For the application, it’s always better to start from the bottom of your tree. It’s easier to start with the bottom third first, then put on the second tier to flock and finish with the top on.

Be meticulous and flock carefully every branch, if you want the best results. You simply fill your palms with the fluffy mixture and apply it smoothly into each branch.

The tips:

  • Always wear gloves when applying the mixture. You’re going end up all injured with some little cuts if not wearing protection
  • Don’t hurry up. Take a deep breath and prepare yourself for the next 4-5 hours until you’re all done with the whole tree
  1. Step 3

We come back to the patience again as you need to let the flock to dry for at least 24 hours. Make sure you’re not doing it on 23 December as you may start the Christmas dinner without actually having the tree inside.

The tree is going to look a bit spongy, but nice and definitely not crusty. If you plan to move it, keep in mind that it flakes off. You may very well add all the ornaments as planned, but you only need to be cautious while doing it.

  1. Step 4

This step is only necessary if you have a pre-lit Christmas tree. You may tape off each light with painters tape, but…it’s gonna take forever to do it.

You may also flock over the lights and be done with it. It shouldn’t be difficult to add more lights after the flocking, leaving the flocked ones unplugged.

The bonus

You may also try a non-toxic snow that is permanent, like Bonding Flock. You don’t need any adhesive for it as it’s self-adhesive flocking material. This means it simply stick when you apply water to the flocking process.

Bending Flock is non-toxic, flame-retardant, shake proof, biodegradable, rain and fog resistant. Basically, it’s safe and environmentally friendly.

Here are some useful tips:

  • Lay out a large garage with some brown builder’s paper where you’re going to dry your branches
  • Use a dust mask and begin by misting a branch with plain old water
  • Apply the bonding flock with a shifter on the wet branch
  • Wait for 6-24 hours until it dries completely

The conclusions

There are many options to try on an artificial Christmas tree when it comes to flocking and it’s only you, considering the time and skills, to decide which one works the best for you.

 

How to Power Outdoor Christmas Lights without an Outlet

How to Power Outdoor Christmas Lights without an Outlet
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We all love Christmas, but we all kind of hate all the bills we have to pay. We also love to decorate both the indoor and the outdoors of our residence, which is even worse for anyone, when checking the electricity bill. If only there was at least a way to cut down the spending in the jolly season… 🙂

No, you don’t always have to use an outlet!
Managing some Christmas lights is not that joyful at the end of the season and we’re not talking only about the electricity bill anymore. It’s no picnic to handle all those wires, not to trip in them and to always pay attention to them, especially if you have kids running around all over the place.
Thank God (or new era technology?) for all the good things is giving us these days. We’re not only talking about the batteries, or the solar lights anymore, but about the wireless, the home automation systems that make our lives and our electricity bills so easy to take 🙂

Some tricky tricks
There are many ways to cut down the electricity bill during the winter holidays, and it’s great if you could apply as many as you can. For instance, don’t hesitate to install light sensors and motion sensors on your lights so that you only have light when there’s somebody to notice it and…enjoy it at the same time.
As for the new technology, you may use all kinds of gadgets that use GPS on your phone so that you may switch your Christmas lights off when you leave the house. If that’s too much for you, play it simple with some solar Christmas lights that feature motion sensor so that they light up when you got neighbors coming over. Or intruders, as well 🙂
You may also use timers on your Christmas lights, along the light and the motion sensors. Now that we’ve already decided that you may use battery or solar-powered lights for Christmas this year. The automatic turn on/off for the solar lights is a great feature that spares you the trouble of turning on/off the lights. They simply turn on automatically once the evening has come and do the same early in the morning.

What to look for?
Using solar lights, this Christmas means you’re ready to have fewer wires around the house. As a matter of fact, it’s very likely that you have only some or none at all. You may easily find solar lights that have built-in solar panels, which means no wires whatsoever.
When getting solar lights, you need to check if they can take the winter temperatures and the snow. In addition, it’s not only about the lights per say, but also about the solar panels. They should be weather and waterproof, but also large enough for efficient charging during the day.
Winter times mean less sunlight, which is why you need the solar panels to be larger and exposed so that they get best sunlight during the day. We all know there isn’t much sunlight in the wintertime, so where you’re placing the solar panels is essential.
The batteries should also have a tough build and be weatherproof, for better performance. You want batteries that are rechargeable and hold their charge so the lights run all night long. After all, you did get the solar lights for cutting down all the Christmas spending.
As for the bulbs, it’s a great idea to go with the LED bulbs as they handle the difficult winter temperatures way better than the conventional bulbs. They also handle impact and snow rather well, presenting a longer life span. They light brighter, even though their light is somewhat special.
Let’s not forget the variety fact as you may find all kinds of colors for the LED bulbs. You can go from all white Christmas to fun and playful Christmas just like that.
Look for the Christmas lights that give you the chance to switch between the light modes. After all, there’s no Christmas without some playful lights!
Keep in mind that LEDs are also great because the risk for overheating is minimal, which means they’re safer when you have kids around.

One last tip
There are many ways to have a nice, colorful Christmas, without having to use even one outlet. You may feel like you’re spending the extra buck in the beginning, but, for the long run, you get to really appreciate the solar-powered lights. They should last for more than one winter and you only need to follow some tips when shopping for the first time.
We didn’t mention the part about how easy actually is to install the solar lights. Not to mention the part where you don’t need any electrician either!

How To Install Laser Christmas Lights

How To Install Laser Christmas Lights
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If you don’t know it by now, laser Christmas lights use high powered LED light or a laser that uses a projects the light though a prism. This way, there are hundreds and even thousands of individual lights reflected.

You may shop for laser lights from many places and you should check the wattage or lumens in order to get an idea of how bright your laser lights are going to be. Just to give you a hint: a 5 watts lights should be twice as bright as a light of 2.5 watts.

Some lights come in solid plastic base, other feature a solid brass fixture. The light is what counts the most though so it’s important that you know how much you’re willing to spend also.

Some useful tips

Only getting some bright or colorful laser lights isn’t enough and you need an area to project the lights on. Think of it like when you’re using a flashlight up into the sky. When you have nothing to reflect on, nobody sees that light. The same thing goes for the laser Christmas lights also: you need a “screen” to actually enjoy the lights. You may use some tress, your house or anything to put under the lights during the jolly season.

Keep in mind that, the further you place the light from that “screen”, the dimmer and more dispersed your light is going to be.

As the laser lights are directional, you do need to use more than just one laser Christmas light. You may have a nice effect from just one angle, and get totally disappointed when you see the “screen” from a different direction.

The main rule when installing Christmas laser lights? The more you have, the nicer the visual effect. You almost never want to go with just one or two laser Christmas lights.

The ambient light is essential when installing Christmas laser lights. It’s not as if you find useful or fun to use a flashlight during the day, in direct sunlight. Therefore, it’s best to have complete darkness when using these fun lights. Keep in mind that you also don’t want the laser lights to be the same color as other ambient light. After all, what’s the point of using them in the first place if you’re not able to see them clearly?

How far you place the lights from the “screen” is also essential and it counts for the brightness and the “spread” of the lights. Therefore, you should keep the laser light within 30 to 40 ft. of the projection source. If you go farther than this, you may lose a lot of the impact.

Have the best look of your Christmas

If you decide to use laser Christmas lights, it’s important how you combine the colors also. Some think that green and blue offer the brightest look for your Christmas, whereas red and light blend a bit more with the ambient lights. Therefore, it’s your call which way to go.

Don’t forget that laser lights may damage your eyes if projected directly into your eyes. It’s best to install projectors where they don’t shine directly into your eyes.

Unless you’re not installing solar-powered laser Christmas lights or battery-powered ones, you do need a power source for your lights so you should also keep that in mind.

Even though you may think it’s a good idea, try not to use trees with sparse or little foliage as scree as they have in fact very little area to project on. Always go with a solid surface: pines, fichus, any other dense trees work better.

If you live in a windy area, you shouldn’t worry much about your laser Christmas lights not looking good. A light wind or any other movement of the branches always gives a nice dance to the lights, but this isn’t something that you can actually control.

You do need to have a clear area between the placement of the lights and the “screen”. You lose the effect when some objects stand in the way and that’s something you don’t want to have.

One last thought

Laser Christmas lights are a great and fun way to decorate your residence every year, whereas installing conventional lights may become quite a struggle. You don’t have to think about uneven ground, about having them stand in your way or breaking too easy. The risk of overheating is minimal and they can make a great difference for the good into your electricity bill and Christmas spending.

The more you’re willing to pay, the more you get: various lighting modes, color combinations, durability and tough build.

Sure enough, they may not take the use for several years and lose some of their color overtime, but the downsides are minor when you see the bigger, nicer picture.