House St. Clair

Sunday, August 31, 2008

Life is Cruel

Friday, May 11, 2007

Book Recommendation

The Walls Around Us: The Thinking Person's Guide to How a House Works by David Owen.

I've actually had this book for two years now, and it has sat on my shelves since I picked it up at a rummage sale. Now, I'm regretting that I didn't read it as soon as I bought it. What an interesting and informative book! I am really enjoying it.

He actually has another book out that I'm going to have to put on my list--unless, of course, I find it at a rummage sale too.

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Monday, February 26, 2007

House Dreams

Last night, in between my dream that will end up a YA novel if I have my way, I had a dream about my house. I was steaming wallpaper off one of the walls upstairs, when I came across some words scratched into the plaster. Unfortunately, in the light of morning I can't remember the names and dates, but I do remember that according to the writing on the wall, my house was a lot older than we had suspected. Like, Civil War instead of turn of the century. Like, one of the articles was about how Grant (That's Ulysses) had spent the night in my house. (He lived in my town when he was a child, so that's not impossible in the dreamworld, I guess.)

Also on the wall were newspaper clippings that someone had decoupaged under the layers of wallpaper. They all concerned my house, or, rather, the house I thought it was in the dream. (I'm pretty sure my house was never a carnival attraction, for example, but I guess you never know.) And as I read them, or skimmed them, of course I found myself drifting back through time until I was in the past.

I'm pretty sure my house never had a dome on top of it, too, so it wasn't really my house that I was dreaming about. But even though the details aren't cooperating and letting me remember them, it was an interesting dream.

I'm going to blame it on my missing closet. :)

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Sunday, February 25, 2007


Unlike most old houses, my house--at least upstairs--has closets. It also has built-in wardrobes in two bedrooms. One bedroom is even lucky enough to have a closet and a built-in wardrobe.

But the weird thing is that my bedroom doesn't have an original closet. Or, at least, not one that I've been able to find evidence of. Instead, I get a whopping huge built-in wardrobe and nothing else.

So why doesn't my bedroom have a closet if the other three do?

My bedroom is part of the 'addition', somewhere between 1912 and 1920. And that would make sense if my office was also closetless, but the POs combined the closet from the bedroom that adjoins my office to make a secret passageway closet that joins both rooms.

In between my bedroom and my office is the upstairs bathroom, but as far as we can tell, it's the original bathroom to the house. (Or, at least to that part of the house; there was an outhouse too.) Since I'm assuming that all three rooms were added at the same time (that makes sense, after all) then it doesn't make sense to think that the bathroom--or a portion of it--was once my room's closet.

Any suggestions as to why my bedroom wouldn't have a closet?

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Saturday, February 24, 2007

The Honeysuckle Vine from Hell... is GONE!

April 2006:

Two weeks ago:


Okay, that's not the best picture in the world, but you get the idea. It's supposed to rain tomorrow, so I thought I'd do it now while it was sunny, despite the fact that it's still cold outside. Still, I'd rather be out in 28 degree weather than 6 degree weather!

If it wants to grow back, that's fine, but the majority was dead and it needed to be cut down.

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Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Mom's Brilliant Idea

So on Sunday, after the 6 1/2 inches of snow earlier in the week, Mom and I went to Kroger. On our way, I told her about the low humidity in the house--something that hadn't happened last year. We were hovering right around 25%, our sinuses were screaming, and the amount of static in the house was truly terrifying (to the cats.)

I thought it was weird because I have hot water heat, and usually that takes care of the humidity. But not this time. So Mom had a great idea to up the humidity a bit by putting teapots full of water on the radiators; they will warm up and evaporate, and voila! More humidity.

I just happened to have enough metal teapots for most of the radiators, too. (That way if the cats happen to knock them down, they won't break.) And so far so good; we're hovering at 40% at the moment. Of course the humidity is higher outside too, but still. I think it didn't hurt to put the teapots on the radiator anyway. :)

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Saturday, February 10, 2007

There's a hole in my ceiling, dear liza, dear liza

Well, a crack, at least, and quite a large one.

See, in my formal dining room there was a leak at one point where the water blew up under the flashing of the front porch and onto the bay window. (I'll try to take pictures tomorrow.) This leaked once last winter--my Dad cleaned out my downspout and the gutter and all has been well since then.

Tonight, on a quest for a roll of tape (which I thought I had left in the dining room), I walked in to chaos. My Night-Blooming Cereus was on the floor and one of the ceiling tiles was beneath it.

The strange thing is that the Cereus is on the other end of the conservatory portion of the dining room, away from those particular ceiling tiles. Weird.

Luckily, it didn't end up with much damage; I'll have to cut off and plant the pieces that snapped. But the ceiling tile split in half, and was wet as well, although the ceiling itself and the ceiling tiles around it were dry. So I'm hoping the leak hasn't returned, and the wetness on the rug and the ceiling tile was from the plant. We'll see.

I'm not sure when it happened, since I haven't been in the dining room since Monday. But I would have thought we would have heard the crash--it had to be loud!

So I got my ladder, felt the ceiling tiles, felt no wetness at all, then decided that I might as well pull a couple more down while I was at it. And I found out I was right--when they put the 'dropped' ceiling in, they didn't really drop the ceiling. It's about an inch lower than the regular ceiling, which is painted that pussywillow purple color that used to be so popular way back when. There are boards stretched across the whole thing, which much have taken forever to put up. And everything is screwed in, too. It looks so lovely. (NOT!)

So anyway, I guess I'll have to clean up tomorrow, since I'm not going to clean it up tonight. Just what I wanted to do! *sigh*

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