Monday, October 3

Monday morning is here, and the verdict is guilty. Of not getting enough done on the house over the weekend.
The only accomplishment was removing the air conditioner from our living room window. It extended about three feet onto the porch. The enormous beast was GLUED in place in 1987, and we struggled mightly to get it out. Eventually we figured out the trick - to remove the guts from the casing. In the end, we're so pleased with the newly revealed window in the living room...

windows


and the increased space on the porch. All of a sudden, the porch looks spacious and comfortable enough for a bench or some rocking chairs.

porch

As little as we got done, we are planning a BIG project for next weekend: painting the den. D. has a long weekend for First People's Day, so he's paying attention to house projects again. After swatching three paint colors, we ended up choosing a fourth - that we never even swatched. (Yeah, we're dangerous like that.)

paint

It's Homestead Ballroom Gold, one of the Preservation colors of American Traditions. It's a nice camel-ly, golden beige. We love the deep, vibrant colors in the living and dining rooms, but we thought a more mellow color would be appropriate for a TV room/den, where we want to relax at the end of the day.

Buying paint led us back to Lowe's after a month-long absence. It was very pleasant. We ventured into new areas, found items I hadn't previously been able to locate, and just generally enjoyed the experience. I got a super exciting Black and Decker 125-piece Bit Set - woohoo! I'm not sure which came first, but D's enthusiasm for home projects seems to have really increased after our outing.

Autumn has definitely arrived, with chilly temperatures in the house and elaborate scarecrow and pumpkin displays on many porches. The vegetables at the market are shifting to pumpkins and gourds. Long-neck pumpkins seem to be terribly trendy here - is that the case elsewhere? Our grapes on the vine keep getting sweeter and sweeter. Last night, I found in one of my cookbooks a recipe for grape leaves, so I might get adventurous. I'm doing a lot of ambitious and delicious cooking - squash lasagna, squash enchiladas, roasted squash and beets, stuffed squash blossoms, (starting to see a theme?) Indian lime rice, samosas, kale leek soup - and I'm thinking about posting some of the recipes.

Just in the nick of time, it appears that our dripping furnace problem is solved. Don't ask me what they did, because I don't know. In the process, I learned more about our heating and hot water systems. Including a new problem. When the plumber guy was here last Wednesday, I thought I would take the opportunity to ask him to point out the location of our second-floor thermostat. You see, we had been told it was a two-zone boiler, but I'd only found a thermostat on the first floor. Well, he thought he knew where it was - in the basement! But then it wasn't there. We looked at the wiring, which was wonky, and we followed it all around the house. Until we found a second thermostat in the enclosed patio off the back of the first floor. Furnace guy told me that he thought that thermostat controlled the second floor.

thermo

Okay, I have to admit, I knew there was a thermostat in the patio. We haven't spoken much about the patio, because D. and I really don't like it. We want to get rid of it, tear it down. Yes, I have grand plans for making a spa room, a greenhouse, or a screened-in patio (instead of vinyl siding out and faux wood paneling inside). But the reality is we'll probably tear it down. We don't need the space, we do want more green space in the yard, and it ruins the view (and smell) of the second floor back porch. I think the best choice for us is to restore the old, two story, turned wood porch.

So suffice it to say, this is NOT an area we want to heat all winter long. But after further investigation, I think the way the system works is that the old original hot water radiators are all on "Zone One" and controlled by the thermostate in the dining room. And "Zone Two" is just the patio, which I hope we can just turn off and fuggedaboutit.

As the season changes, a woman's thoughts begin to turn to the garden - there's so much that needs to be done and so much more that I want to do and so little time or money to do any of it with. But that didn't stop us from ordering seed garlic - we LOVE garlic. And we especially love garlic chives, the first green bits that pop up in spring. So I'm going to build our first planter this week. I picked up some lumber while we were at Lowe's (I really appreciate the way they cut it for total amateurs like me), and I'm going to hit a garden store for the soil ingredients. I think I'm going to experiement withNo-Till Gardening, and not bother digging up the grass. Instead, I'll just lay a lot of newspaper, then build the bed on top of that.

Lastly, I'm worried about the state of the exterior paint. It's flaking and chipping, leaving wood exposed in many places. Winters here aren't terribly snowy, but will we be okay if we don't repaint before next spring?

4 Comments:

At 2:07 PM, Blogger Kristin said...

We have chipping paint on one side of the house and on the porch. We're going to try to get the porch floor repaired and repainted before winter. Down here, snow is rare, but we get a lot of rain. I'm nervous either way!

 
At 2:10 PM, Blogger D. said...

The egg definitely came first. Duh.

 
At 2:15 PM, Anonymous Stacy said...

But if the egg came first, who sat on it to keep it warm?

I'm firmly in the chicken came first camp.

 
At 2:31 PM, Blogger K. said...

I believe a lizard sat on the egg to keep it warm. But then I'm an evolutionist. Hoorah for Darwin!

 

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