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Showing posts from September, 2013

Killin' Time - And A Sneak Peek (Kinda)

Here at 173 we're in the middle of a pretty big project.  I thought about doing the "progression" style posts to show the project as we go, but then I thought it might have a bigger impact to wait 'til it's done.  At the same time I'm sitting in a hotel room, hoping to the high heavens there's no bed bugs, and "itching" (the limits of my humor are endless) to post something!  So here's a little something:
This is a shot of the outside of the house at the beginning of the summer, there's a few things to notice...
ONE:  The Foundation Might be hard to see in this pic, but there was a good bit of mildew, soil and grime.  A few weeks back I took my neighbor's power washer to it...much improved! TWO:  The Shingles I recently posted about the shingles, my (weird) attachment to them and the fact that it was time for a change.  Also, if you notice, everything from the porch down is brown.  Well, that's the change that's happening rig…

Lowes, Hertz (Pun Intended) and a Little Support

A quick word of advice...if you own a home, and you have a pickup truck - keep it!  I had one of these...


Then I had one of these...

Now I have one of these...

And the other day I had to get some plywood and boards and bring it home in one of these...

And I won't get into it here, but Lowes no longer has people who deal with their vehicle rentals, it's done through a kiosk from Hertz.  Suffice to say, four hours, two broke-down trucks, AAA (triple A), and many calls later...I had seven sheets of plywood and seven boards home.  If you have a pickup truck - keep it!  If gas goes to $10 a gallon - keep it.  If you have to work a second job, skip meals three days a week, and someone in your house has to go barefoot - whatever it takes - keep your pickup truck!
Okay, rant over.  Half of a day off from work was lost, and a perfect weather day at that, but I still managed to get a little done.  Along one side of the house is an old sidewalk.  It's a little odd because it's re…

New Pages Added to the 173 Blog Site

Geeze, I keep forgetting to mention that pages have been added to the 173 blog site!


The first page is a list of links to various "how-to" videos or websites that I've found useful.  None of these, as yet, are my creation, and I really have no plan to get into that because there are already tons of excellent resources out there!

Speaking of resources, the second page is a list of links to local and internet resources I have or will find useful.

I'll be adding to these pages over time, so be sure to check them out from time-to-time!

Of Wisteria and Wobblies

So, while I was ever-so-reluctantly removing the shingles from the porch the other day I found a couple things, one horrifying (okay - a bit over dramatically stated) and the other...fun and interesting (at least to me!).  Here we go...
Kinda freaky isn't it?  That would be wisteria.  We planted it outside the porch a number of years ago.  It was beautiful, and lush, and invasive!  When we replaced all the windows on the front porch, I seized the opportunity (and excuse) to cut it down.  I mean really - that stuff actually gave me nightmares!  On more than one occasion I dreamed of the seen and unseen destruction the wisteria was wreaking on 173.  I'd been hinting at lopping it off for a few years, then I got my chance.  That was a year or two ago and we still get wisteria growing out of random spots in the yard!  Now I take down some shingles and my wisteria hysteria (see what I did there?) are validated!  Anyway, that was the "horrifying" discovery. MUCH more inter…

Bittersweet Changes

173 is a work in progress...of that, there is no doubt.  I like to think that these changes are for the best...in our own best interest, in the interest of improving our neighborhood, and certainly in the best interest of the house itself.  Some changes are made because they have to be, like when we put new windows and floor in the basement.  As it turns out, good ol' 173 is as solid as a house gets, so the number of gotta-do changes have been limited mostly to general maintenance.  Most of the projects here have been wanna-do.  Updates, aesthetic changes, and just sheer matters of taste and preference.
I'm a bit sentimental (I know, you're wondering where this is going...so am I, kinda).  I'm the kind of sentimentalist that, when my parents re-sided their house, mom called me to break the news.  Thaaat's right - break the news!  They were going to let me just arrive one day and see this huge change, but mom got to worrying that it might be a bit much for me becau…

Older (Blog) Posts Repaired

After the last post, a reader (Old House Lover) was kind enough to point out that some of the pictures from older posts were missing.  I went back through and tried to recreate (reinsert?) the pictures the way they were.

Oh, if anyone knows how to allow comments to be seen at the bottom of posts on Blogger, drop me a line!  Thanks!

Odds, Ends and Portents!

Over the last couple years I've learned that most people reading this blog do so either via email, through a blog aggregator or from an RSS feeder.  Ha!  I read that sentence and it almost sounds like I know what I'm saying!  The point is that likely few people actually go to my little Blogger site.  If you do however, you'll likely notice some changes... The main header of the page went from this:


To this:

Now, if you know me at all, and I realize most of you don't, you know that I make changes like this for a reason...it's definitely not arbitrary.  The fact is, the change in the look of the blog is a portent of things to come under way at ol'173!  So stay tuned!
Also, the primary purpose of the blog is so that we here at 173 can keep track of when things were done, what was used, etc, etc, etc, ad infinitum.  That being said - here's a couple very minor projects done the last few days.
The other day I was walking out of the house and noticed this:

How di…

Seeking Balance

When last we met, the shutters were up and we were all happy and the townsfolk danced around the cherry tree.  It was all so lovely.  Buuuut.  Then I do that guy thing...stand back and admire the work.  Yup, i did just that, admired the work for a couple days, then something started bugging me.  And this is it:


After a couple days of standing back and admiring, driving by, staring, admiring some more and then a bit more staring...I realized something was missing.  Sound familiar?  With the shutters up above, the lower half of the house looked out of balance somehow.  Of course that bank of windows off the dining room (we simply refer to it as "the bumpout") wouldn't fit shutters, or even look okay if they did, but that area seemed the likely culprit.
So after a few days of hemmin' and hawin', I decided to take the plunge.  Because the aluminum framing around the window has been there for many years now, I had to scrub to make sure I got all the chalk off. After …