Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Kitchen Faucet

Wow! I am really slacking on the blogging the last couple of months. There really hasn't been much to blog about with the house, but that's just an excuse. There's always something to blog (complain, gripe, etc.) about when you live in an older house!

We did get lots of storm windows finished and installed. At some point I need to do a comparison of our natural gas consumption from last year to this year, and see how much money it might be saving us (assuming that I can find months with comparable temperatures).

The main thing we've done to the house lately was installing a new faucet in the kitchen. We've resigned ourselves to the old "one piece at a time" kitchen remodeling program, where we replace things as they break. It was the faucet's turn a few weeks ago:

It's hard to tell in the picture, but a nice, steady stream of water is shooting out of the faucet and onto the wall behind the sink.

I've replaced faucets before; in our (newer) house on the west side of town, it took me about half an hour to replace the kitchen faucet. Using that as a gauge, I figured I should set aside an entire day to replace the College Hill House faucet. And I was right.

There were no shut-off valves under the sink, and once I traced the lines back far enough, it ended up being easier to shut off the water for the entire house. Then, of course, all of the fittings under the sink were corroded and nearly impossible to break loose.

But with a minimal of swearing and only a few trips to the hardware store, I succeeded in installing some quarter-turn shut-off valves and our shiny new faucet:

I'll try to get some pictures of the storm windows posted over the weekend.

Saturday, March 1, 2008

Senseless Destruction

We've been pretty busy here at College Hill House, but not working on the house. The triplets all had their first ear infections and their first birthday (the former was much less pleasant than the latter, as you might guess). So between comforting crying babies and planning the small-but-exciting first birthday party, I haven't had much time for house blogging.

I don't think I've mentioned this on the blog before, but I have a 1963 Ford Galaxie 500XL out in the garage (and I'm using a very generous definition of "garage" here). Back when we started working on the storm windows, I pulled the Galaxie about halfway out of the garage so that we'd have room behind it to work. Yesterday I tried to back the Galaxie into the garage. It wouldn't run. I'm pretty sure it's just a clogged fuel filter, but in the meantime my dad and I decided to push the Galaxie back into the garage.

This is a heavy car, mind you. And of course the drive slopes down from the garage, so we were pushing it uphill. And one of the tires probably could have used some more air. Basically, it was a rough job. We both had to brace ourselves against my Sportage to get the Galaxie rolling. Once it had moved about a foot or so, things got easier.

And then they got worse.

Here's a picture of the car where it sits now. Can you spot the problem?

It's hard to see there. The garage is dark in the very back. But if you were to walk into the garage, you'd see this when you got to the passenger's door:

My, those windows look awfully close to the back of the car, don't they? Someone must have slipped those behind the car after it was backed in. Surely...

Nope. We were so concerned about whether we would be able to get the behemoth rolling, that we forgot to see if there was anything breakable behind the behemoth. The right-hand exhaust pipe went straight through three panes of glass.

So if someone asks you what it takes to stop a rolling car, you can answer that it takes at least four panes of glass. Probably more.