Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

We dried out from the storm, mostly. There is still water being pumped out of the basement and it has been raining most of the week so I assume it's going to be awhile before we are completely dry. The roof cap was replaced and hopefully we came up with a better idea to keep it secure (we are beginning to run out of options!).

Yesterday was Thanksgiving and although I tried to be happy it was not a very good day for me. We have had a rough year and it's beginning to wear on me. I'm trying to be positive for the kids but it's hard to put on a happy face when your crying on the inside. I promised the kids we would put the small Christmas tree up in the den tomorrow. Let's hope when I wake up I can snap out of it and make it a fun day for them. I hope you all had a happy Thanksgiving!!!

Friday, November 13, 2009

The wind blew, the roof flew and the tide came in!

For those of you who don't live on the East Coast we had one hum-dinger of a storm Thursday! Hurricane Ida blew her way up the eastern seaboard and decided to kick ass and take names along the way. The day was pretty uneventful for us until after dinner; then holy crap the shit hit the fan! The tide came in, the winds picked up, we had one huge gust, the power went out and then it happened. All of the inside doors blew shut, humm that doesn't sound right..... better go check. Oh look, I can see the sky through the ceiling! We have an access hole on the third floor (why anyone would willingly go on the roof is beyond me!) and the cap had been sucked off. This, unfortunately, has happened before. The last time it happened the cap landed in our neighbor's yard, this time it was still on our roof. Matt looked at me and said there was "No way in hell I'm going out there now!" so he went to the basement for a tarp. When he came back I asked him where the tarp was. "We have another problem, the basement is flooding" good thing we have a sump pump and generator (that we had never used before). So Matt and I went to the leaky shed and proceeded to read the directions on how to use it. Let me suggest that you have gone over this procedure at least once before you actually have to stand in the rain and wind with a flashlight trying to figure out how to use a generator. We decided that we really didn't need to follow the "suggested" safety tips (you know, don't sand in the rain while operating, do not use in an enclosed area, do not use a patched extension cord, etc...). We got the thing (death trap) started and the sump in the basement started pumping the water out. Then we went up to the attic and got the roof patched until he can retrieve the cap, which hopefully will be in one piece. The power was only out for about 3 hours so we didn't have to worry about having enough gas to keep the thing going for an extended period of time.

Not too bad, it could have been much worse. In fact the neighborhood less than a mile from our house was inundated by the Elizabeth River. Olde Towne is prone to flooding but I've lived here my entire life and I don't remember it ever flooding this bad. The crazy thing is we were actually warned about the amount of water that would come at high tide and the city offered free parking in their parking garages but since it has never flooded this bad before people were totally caught off guard.

Here are some pictures our friend Peter Youngblood took (you can see the front of his boat in one of the pictures).

An apartment building:

A parking lot:

That's Peter's house to the left of the picture:

We drove down there tonight and most, if not all, of the water has receded. We do expect flooding living in a coastal community, but the magnitude of water was amazing.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Cast Iron Radiator Humidifiers

I love my radiators, it's one of the things that will not change as long as we own the house. I'm not sure when they were added (originally the house was heated by eight coal burning fireplaces) but I'm glad they are here now. There's no blowing air (because really, do I need more dust in the air?), they're great for drying rain coats and when I'm really cold I can sit on them and warm up in no time!

One of the disadvantages of radiant heat is; it really dries the air out. For years I have been searching for ceramic radiator humidifiers like my Aunt Ute has. She brought them over from Germany when she married my Uncle. I searched the Internet but only found those ugly metal things that you clip onto radiators. This was the basic idea but they were so ugly I couldn't bring myself to buy them! Last year I was searching again when Ta-Da!!!!! I found Tullula's Treasures. She had a similar story and luckily for us she worked in ceramics and decided to make (and sell) her own. This is the second year I have used them and, not only do they look beautiful, they do a great job of adding moisture to the air.

I recommend these to anyone who has the same problem. Check out her website for more information:


Kitchen close up:

Front Parlor:

Dinning Room:
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