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How to install window boxes in a wooden window sill in a brick house.

15 May

I love window boxes and always wanted to put some up, but never quite perfected the installation (due to having a brick house). But last year, I sussed it! I got some large hooks and eyes, some black chain, and some light-weight window boxes.

Close up of hook and eye

Close up of hook and eye

I installed the hook in the sill, attached the chain to the eye, and hey presto — window boxes full of p

window box empty

Jerome inspecting my handiwork.

Jerome inspecting my handiwork.

Ta da -- the finished project

Ta da — the finished project


19 Apr

Spring has been really late in New England this year. But it is coming. Trees are starting to bloom all around the neighborhood. In my own little garden, the star magnolia and azalea (in pots) are coming to life, and that means everything else will soon follow.

After all the bombs and lockdowns and craziness of this awful week, it’s nice to just look at some flowers and admire Nature.

Star magnolia

Star magnolia

Back garden

Back garden



Pipes and bubbles

5 Apr

Here is the condition that the old pipes were in:

Some of the old pipes.

Some of the old pipes.

You see the need for change.

Here are some rather intriguing bubbles on the wall outside the butler’s pantry where the major water damage happened:

Water bubbles on wallpaper (painted over last year) behind butler's pantry.

Water bubbles on wallpaper (painted over last year) behind butler’s pantry.

Am hoping these dry out over the next few days. They’re coming back on Monday to do the wall and ceiling repair. The thing I hate the most about home improvement projects is when the weekend comes and no work happens, so I clean the house, then Monday comes and it’s filthy all over again. Sigh.


Nemo blizzard

9 Feb

I am so over winter.

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Draft dodgers

21 Oct

You may have noticed that I haven’t really posted anything here in some time. That’s because I haven’t been doing any house projects. I’m working like a fiend right now (saving up for heating oil bills) and the only decorative thing I’ve been doing is needlepointing.

How some ever, last weekend a couple of friends came over and we had a little sewing group to work on creating draft dodgers — those rolls of fabric filled with (in this case) kitty litter that you put on your windows and doors to try to keep the drafts out (see heating oil).

I managed to make four — enough for the two windows in the parlor. I have all the sewing gear and kitty litter sitting there and am hoping to get up the gumption to do more soon-ish. The parlor and dining room are by far the coldest rooms in the house, so getting those done is my first priority. I hope to sew two for all the windows in the house (22 windows, so 44 dodgers) plus some for some of the closed off rooms’ doors this fall/winter. We’ll see how that goes.

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Blue on blue

18 Aug

I often have tunes pop into my head and become associated with people or situations or things. Right now, I’ve got Bobby Vinton’s “Blue on Blue” running through my mind. “Mood Indigo” is my back fence theme song. I’m all about blue.

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I just had the canopy over the door fixed and painted and a touch up painting of the windows on the 2nd floor (aka “Parlor Level”). The guy did a great job. He mentioned that there were a lot of spiders. Ick. I’ll definitely be hiring him for other handyman projects. Really good work, really neat, and a nice guy.

So now I have the nicest stoop in the hood! My pictures are not so great, but fear not, dear readers, I have just ordered an iPhone (finally joining the smart-phone world) and it has an 8 mpx camera (as opposed to my 4 mpx camera — which was pretty fancy in 2006, okay?). So I should be able to take better pictures soon and upload them without all these wires and things.

Embassy Style

21 Jul

There used to be a flag pole mount in the window over the front door, but I think it must have come out when the new storm windows were installed. One of the 1975 photos shows an American flag flying over the front door, and I remember the flag pole mount being there when I first moved in (I tried to put a pole that was too small in it, and then abandoned the whole flag thing when it didn’t fit).

But now with my nice blue stoop, I wanted to fly Old Glory. Never one to do things by half measures, I decided to install two poles, so I could fly the American flag plus others. I’ve got the English flag flying right now in celebration of the Queen’s Jubilee. I’ve also had the French flag up for Bastille Day, and have an Olympics flag coming soon. I figured if I have long-term guests from other countries, I’ll fly their national flag, too.

It looks like an embassy (which also kind of reminds me of the house next to the Royal Tennenbaums), and I love it!

On a how-to note: I installed the two surface mount pole brackets in the granite sill by first drilling pilot holes with a masonry bit, then using concrete anchors and screws. I went through two complete battery charges per bracket mounting. It was hard, slow work. I tried those blue masonry screws first, but they were useless, so a neighbor showed me the correct method. Those babies aren’t going anywhere — they are SOLID.