Stringing lights in the backyard

108 and counting

The weekend before the wedding was a hot one as pictured above in Adie’s iPhone screenshot. Sacramento experienced highs in the 108’s and even in our usually cool cinderblock house it was sweltering.


Here’s Loki expertly shows us how we all felt in our un-air conditioned house. Sooo hot!


I took the week before the wedding off to finish my projects, run errands and try to stay sane. I was hoping to get all the big craft projects done on Saturday so I could focus on the smaller finishing items during the week.


108 and counting

My self-titled “craft slave” Adie braved the heat and spent the day with me finalizing those monster projects. First we tackled the final glass etching (!!!). We had done this project in two batches since I didn’t have a final guest count when I first ordered. So on Saturday morning, we spent some time finishing the last few glasses. It was a momentous occasion.


With the glasses done, it was time for quality control. Given this was a handmade project, we admit we had some etching disasters. Adie and I critiqued at each glass and then put it into one of our five categories: lovely, ok, passable, freak and superfreak.


We only wanted to hand out the lovely, ok & passable glasses so we crossed our fingers, counted glasses and miraculously had just enough.

108 and counting

I should also mention, we had a secret category for the etchings with elongated ears like a fox. We figured only certain people would appreciate them so we set them aside as well with a special double post-it marking.


Once we had divided the glasses, we washed all the glasses one more time in the dishwasher to make sure they were spotless then packed them away. The Freak & Super Freak categories were also packed as an emergency stash.

Custom Wine Labels

With the glasses done, we turned our attention to label removal. You can read about the whole process here. We got the majority of the bottled done as well and then called it a night.



My uncle Terry had spent the last two weeks painting my parents’ house and garage. The house looked great with Terry’s professional touch, but after all that painting there was a lot of clean up to do.

108 and counting

I spent the day weeding the DG and bricks of all those annoying self starters. My parents started cleaning out the side yard of furniture and odds and ends. Our plan was to clean it of pretty much everything so we maximized the space. Luckily, on the other side of the house we had space to store it all.

108 and counting

Nate and Jeremy started with the backdrop. Our plan was to attach four queen size flat sheets as the back piece to our colorful backdrop (more on that later). After reviewing how each sheet would attach to the frame, they screwed in a bottom part of the frame and fixed the top so it was all ready to go for Friday.


108 and counting

Earlier in the week, Adie and my Mom had measured the lighting path (Adie’s schematic above) so we could purchase enough light strands for the whole space. We bought 14 strands of Frosted Globe Lights from Target. At $10 a pop, they were an inexpensive option and looked great.

108 and counting

To get the lights up, the first step was attaching galvanized clothesline wire (6 gauge) to each post and the garage. They attached the wire with a screw in the top of each post and pulled them tight.

108 and counting

Next the lights went up. The strings had built-in clips so it was just a matter of attaching them to the wire. We had a few bulb casualties, but just switched those out with another extra strand. (Note to self: buy more bulbs to replace the missing ones!)

108 and counting

These bistro style lights provide the perfect amount of light for dining and dancing. They are built to use outside but a warning for anyone else thinking of purchasing – you cannot string more than seven units together without the fuse going out. So we had two power sources to connect to all the lights.

108 and counting

Here’s the finished look later that evening. I love how the light bounces off the pool. So pretty and festive!


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