Saturday, January 31, 2009


It hasn't been fun living with windows from 1938. To begin with, the glass was single paned and did nothing to keep the heat out on a hot day, or to keep the heat in on a cold day. Another problem was the cracked and peeling glazing. The third problem would have been the cracked glass. And last, but definitely not least, was the painted glass. Yes, you read that right. The previous owners PAINTED some of the panes in order to maintain some privacy from their neighbors. WTH?! Had they never heard of curtains?

Here are some examples of the original windows:

Lovely bird decal in the living room

One out of THREE painted windows on the north side of the house. This one is in the bathroom

Cracked glass in the back room

Gross window screens

Peeling glazing (paint) on the front bay

We replaced them with vinyl Simonton windows. In some rooms we can crank it open like a door (a casement window). In others, they are double hung so we can pull down the top part for ventilation. And they all open towards you (like an oven door) for cleaning. Awesome. We got the "perimeter" style, which really matches the lights we originally got from Lowe's.

One of the windows. You can really see the perimeter style here.

Men at work

The final result:

We would like to thank Westlake Windows and Door for doing a fantastic job.

If you would like to see all 69 pictures of the window process, click here.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Composts and Gardens

So, we have been wanting to make a garden and a compost bin. If you don't already know, composting is a great way to reduce your trash and to make great soil for your garden. Basically, it is a bunch of natural stuff that decomposes and breaks down over time. We throw leaf litter and produce scraps in there, as well as any plants we are throwing out and coffee grounds. It is pretty neat to watch the pile reduce.

To find out what types of things you can throw into your compost bin, click here Composting 101

Here is our raised bed garden. We have put down tarp in there to act as a barrier from weeds and underground pests.

We got some seeds and started seedlings in the house. We have: mesclun, basil, eggplant, romaine lettuce, broccoli, swiss chard, jalapeno peppers, and bell peppers.

Here is a picture of the mini greenhouse:

Here are the little sprouts. The swiss chard is in the background with the red stalks, and the broccoli and romaine is in the foreground.

Pretty cool, eh?