Let There Be Light
There are 17 lights in my yard. They’re old and their appearance has deteriorated. Their original black glossy finish lost its sheen a long time ago, the glass is hazy, and the screws are rusted. Many of them are crooked and don’t work—possibly because of dead bulbs.
Their condition reflects the age of the house. And at times I feel as if they are tired—as if their life has come to an end.
Light fixtures aren’t cheap and it’s not easy to replace parts of an old item, especially an outdated one. We all know how companies rush build in obsolescence into products. For the customer, there is always the pressure to buy the newest generation. Out with the old and in with the new. Without this concept businesses wouldn’t make enough money and the landfills would be less full.
The other morning, I wrote my blog and then went to Home Depot to get four cans of glossy black spray paint and three packs of screws. Upon my return, I unscrewed each of the lights and removed their metal tops. I brushed off the dirt with a dry, clean paintbrush and placed the pieces facing down, next to each other, on a flattened cardboard box. I followed the instructions on the can and carefully sprayed one side of the fixture. I took the new screws and stuck them on the outside of a tall Styrofoam cup so that I could easily spray them in black. I then collected all 17 glass pieces and soaked them in hot, soapy water.
Next, I painted the fixture rods, which I didn’t take apart. I even was mindful of the space, protecting the floor by placing a drop cloth around each one of them.
By the time I finished painting the rods and cleaning the glass pieces, the paint on the top pieces was dry enough to turn them upside down.
I sprayed the topside of the fixtures and let them dry for two hours.
In the meantime, I replaced all the light bulbs with new ones and dried the glass pieces.
I waited another hour and reassembled the parts. I switched the lights on, and just as it says in Genesis 1:3--And God said, Let there be light: and there was light.
Well, I’m not God, but I think I deserve some credit for this project and for the money I saved. Instead of hundreds, I spent less than $70.
There are many ways to make old things new.
Do you have any projects to share?