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Category: Home improvement

Home improvement mavens: Do I do this or do I not?

NOTE: If you’re just here for the politics, you’ll probably want to skip this one. But if your also read Living Freedom for arts & home improvement, I’d appreciate your thoughts. —– This winter, The Wandering Monk and I are tackling the remaining interior home improvement projects. As many as we can, anyhow. With luck, in the next two years everything but the flooring will finally be done. This winter’s projects aren’t big, but they’ll make a big difference. There’s one I may or may not do. It’s been on my mind for a couple of years. One day I…


Merry Christmas from my house to yours

May your days be merry and bright and may your new year be full of light. Christmas Eve is my Christmas, so I’m signing off now. I’ll be back in a few days. Meanwhile, I hope I posted enough blog content over the weekend to keep you going for a while. Now I leave you with some merry, bright, and sunny views taken around Mo Saoirse Hermitage* in the last two days … —– —– Mo Saoirse = My Freedom in Irish Gaelic. Mo Saoirse Hermitage is aka my house, formerly known as Ye Olde Wreck. It’s a wreck no…


Midweek links

  • Dear once-and-future felons: The long-rumored bump-stock ban has become a reality. Turns out Trump is more successful at “gun control” than Obama was. Here’s the skinny and what some folks are doing about it.
  • Now this may be the best anti-theft monkeywrench ever — if you happen to be a NASA engineer with six months to spend on the project. Fabulous video, though. (H/T PT)
  • Here’s some cheery news: 86% of all federal spending is now on autopilot, requiring no authorization from Congress. (Not that those miscreants ever try to cut spending even when annual budgeting requires it of them.) 7 Comments
  • Sitting and knitting and reading and organizing

    Oh, that felt gooooooood. After a quick hop online yesterday morning to approve a few blog comments awaiting moderation, I shut down the computer and spent my Sunday in the pleasant combination of relaxing and being productive. —– All that relaxing took discipline at first. It still shocks me, how seductive the computer is. Never mind the (apparently even more powerful) lure of checking FB likes or seeing how friends are responding to a new Instagram post. Merely knowing that useful information awaits at a click is addictive enough. My task for the last few days has been cleaning up…

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    Pantry in Progress, too

    The Wandering Monk finished his part of the job in the afternoon and this is where we left the pantry-to-be. I’m hugely pleased. Yes, it’s just a plain-vanilla pantry with no fancy features, but it’s going to make it much easier to keep everything organized, easy to find, and (yes, Bear) simpler to rotate. Pat’s original blueprint called for one shelf to be extended to make a desk or a landing spot for newly purchased groceries. I really like that idea and will aim to retrofit a small desk between those 2×2 supports eventually. I’m relieved finally to use those…


    Pantry in progress

    The Wandering Monk had to quit early on Tuesday because the lumberyard ran out of the shelving we needed. Yesterday, while he went off to tend to someone else’s work, I painted, then stashed a few of the more in-the-way items on the shelves. They’re not in their official places; they’re just off my kitchen counter and living room end table, thank heaven. (That straight-on view looks a little kerflotchy, but that’s because the ceiling slopes three inches to the left and that rust-colored ceiling beam (soon to be painted white for less visibility) is placed over a rafter that…


    The return of the Monk and a prepper’s problem

    The Wandering Monk and I (mostly the Monk, as usual) are building a pantry. We started this morning. It was good to see the Monk again; he’s doing much better this season than the last time the days got short and dark. For the last few years most of my food — bulk, freeze-dried, and otherwise — along with related equipment, has been wedged onto two bakers’ racks and a small bookcase at the back of the sunroom, hidden from street view by a shoji screen. The 7 x 2.5-foot space was crammed full. It held a lot, but so…


    More from 1925

    I intended to include this in last night’s post, but it didn’t quite fit. You won’t be surprised to learn that Mssrs. Harris, McHenry & Baker, homebuilders of 1925 disapproved of renting. Sorry, renters but aside from the full page of sentimental and financial arguments they print in the back of their plan book, they go so far as to sniff at you for not exercising your full rights of citizenship. Still, they had a point. To wit: Click to embiggenate if you can’t see the figures, but they’re showing what a household’s “rent-paying habit” (yes, that’s what they call…


    Ideals, aspirations, and advertising

    I don’t indulge in the boxes of freebies the thrift store puts out; they’re usually loaded with junk. But Friday morning, a huge number of the freebies were … art books! Oldish art books, but in good shape; once obviously some painter’s cherished possession. I grabbed seven or eight, and along with them the book on the right, 101 Classic Homes of the Twenties, with floor plans and photographs. 101 Classic Homes is one of those marvelous books Dover does, where they find some quirky, usually artsy, material in the public domain and reprint it. In this case, it’s a…


    Midweek musings

    I got up early this morning and the quality of the moonlight slanting in from the west was so striking it reminded me of that old barbershop quartet song. Orion appeared above the trees, fully visible for the first time this season. Through a trick of the light, it stood alone. While moonlight and mist obscured most stars, Orion was clear and strong. Even the fuzzy “stars” of his sword were visible. Although generally when it comes to the sky I couldn’t tell Cassiopeia from the Perseid meteor shower, I learned to love this constellation when I was a kid…