Hanging Christmas lights with help from the pros

TAMPA, Fl. - Are you a little ‘bah, humbug’ about untangling all those Christmas lights that still need to come down from the attic?  A little on the ‘Grinch’ side when thinking about all of the free time you’ll be donating to this annual ritual?  Well, here’s some news to make your heart grow three sizes. 

If you’re not into putting up holiday lights, there are actually companies to do it for you.  Surely, Clark Griswold would have avoided a few headaches if he had gone with a professional light installer.

“We come to the rescue. They can do the first level, but when they get to the second or third level, they don’t want to mess with it,” said Carlos Bernot of Xmas Lights Install.

Bernot says they’re in the middle of a busy installing season. He gets calls from people who want fairly simple light jobs done,  to very elaborate ones, and everything in between.  Carlos says some people begin their own light jobs, and change their minds in the middle of it. He recalls one client who called.

“He went up about six feet and goes, ‘I can’t go any higher. So he’s hanging there waiting for us to go get him,” said Bernot.

If you’re determined to do it yourself, here are a few tips.

  • Distribute the light strands to several different outlets. Loading up one will cause a short.
  • Pick one color for the home and then add colorful accents on things like bushes and trees.
  • Avoid blue, bright colors work best.


Pets and the Holidays

Don’t get so distracted with the lights that you forget about Fido during these holidays. Pets can get into plenty of trouble with all the festivities, especially in terms of what they eat. With all the rich foods around, you may be tempted to slip your pet some table food. But Veterinary experts say that’s a bad idea.

John Gicking is a critical care specialist withBlue Pearl Veterinary Partners in Tampa. He sees plenty of sick pets, as a result of being fed dangerous foods.Gicking says stay with the food your pet eats on a regular basis.

“Those couple of bites of rich ham or turkey, those can make an animal really sick and they end up in a place like this for a really long time,” said Gicking.

These rich foods can cause pet-related emergencies such as gastrointestinal irritations, vomiting and diarrhea, and pancreitis.

Dangerous foods for pets include:

  • Ham and turkey
  • Artificial sweetner
  • Fatty or spicy foods
  • Macadamia nuts

You can also keep your pet safe by sealing garbage bags and taking the trash out regularly. Keep poinsettias away from your pet, as they are poisonous, and watch for open doors during this holiday season, when pets may have more opportunity to slip outside.

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