Monday, September 28, 2009

You Light Up My Life

No, this is not a tribute to Debbie Boone's 1977 hit, although I was a big fan of that song at the time. I had the 45 and the sheet music - wow, how old am I?? And, for the record, this is not a photo of my 45 - by the time I was a sophisticated high schooler, I had moved on and, therefore, have no idea where my record ended up.

What is lighting up my life currently is garden lighting. Now that the days are getting shorter and, despite my best efforts at Year Round Interest, my garden will soon be a bit blah, I'm very glad we installed low voltage lighting a few years ago. If you haven't tried it, you must! The low voltage system is a way for non-professionals to add lighting in the garden. Here's a peak at lights that line a walkway leading to the side of our house / basement:

This is a small light that gives off a subtle, cozy glow. (Don't you love the way it illuminates that weed?) Installing a low voltage system is an easy Saturday project - you'll need the lights plus a transformer. Details on figuring out the specifics can be found in this great article from Popular Mechanics. Basically a wire runs from the transformer into your garden and you clip each light into the wire - because it's low voltage you don't need an electrician. Experts seem to agree that you may not be happy long term with inexpensive lights, so check around before purchasing. We have good quality lights and an inexpensive transformer and have had no problems in 5 years - ours come on at dusk and remain on all night and we haven't even replaced any bulbs! We have replaced the transformer once ($35ish at Home Depot). When the transformed is replaced, you don't need to redo the wire/light connections, simply connect the existing wire to the new transformer.

I'm headed outside to look at the lights and try to get this song out of my head . . .

You light up my days,
And fill my nights with song
It can't be wrong . . .

1 comment:

  1. I love outdoor lighting...especially the new solar lights. The glow is so warm and welcoming. And even weeds look good!

    Jane (Artfully Graced)


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