First Snow of the season

In Our Life on November 22, 2010 by troyh

There were snow flurries yesterday but some of it stuck this morning. Havana doesn’t have school on Mondays, but the Vashon School District is delayed 2 hours, which means Hudson’s preschool was canceled. This is the first school closure our kids have ever had.

First snow


Thanksgiving deliveries

In Our Life on November 18, 2010 by troyh Tagged:

We took the 10:10a ferry, made a couple stops including one at The Beer Junction where I picked up some great winter beers — the fall/winter beer season seems to get better every year! We went to the Schuchart/Dow office, saw Doug and Katie and dropped off Thanksgiving gifts for them and Jim, and then went to the house to check on the progress and drop off Thanksgiving gifts for the guys there.

Plumbing has begun

More windows are boarded up so from the outside it looks like it’s a condemned house and it’s dark inside. Plumbing and electrical rough-in work has begun, the basement floor etching was being done and they were still working on the attic structural work. The attic work will take at least another week and the plumbing and electrical work should be finished the week after Thanksgiving. That’s when I can do the low-voltage work.

On the way home, we stopped at Talarico’s to get pizza for dinner. Mark recommended the place and said the pizzas are large. He wasn’t kidding, I’ve never seen a bigger pizza! I couldn’t even fit the box through the door to our house without angling it.



In Our Life on November 18, 2010 by troyh

I didn’t like that Obama bailed-out General Motors and thought it’d be a mistake, but it turns out that it was smart. Not only is GM profitable again, very profitable even, and today had a new successful IPO. American taxpayers have been paid-back for half the investment and the rest is sure to be repaid too. Obama and GM want the Federal Government out as soon as possible because it’s a conflict of interest to have the government be invested in a corporation, but it’s hard to argue that Obama hasn’t been the best GM CEO in many decades. I’m glad I was wrong. Good job and good luck, GM.


Hudson Ale

In Our Life on November 17, 2010 by troyh

Reading beer blogs, I discovered that the New Jersey Beer Co just made a new beer called Hudson Ale. Technically, it’s called “Hudson Pale Ale”, but close enough. They beat us to it, we planned one day to make a beer and call it “Hudson Ale” because Hudson, our son, has a middle name of “Ale”, which was a rejected first name. I own the domain name just for this purpose. I emailed the brewery asking if I could get a t-shirt or glass or something with this label.

Hudson Ale


Neighbor's Open House

In Our Life on November 11, 2010 by troyh Tagged:

A neighbor in Seattle just finished their kitchen remodel and the builder had an open house to show it off. Gay also had an OB/GYN appointment today, so it was a convenient time to go into Seattle. The doctor visit was uneventful as usual (which is always good news), we went to the house to check on the progress and to nail a few electrical boxes to the studs where we want the outlets for TVs to go (hidden behind the TVs).

Sauna & Bathroom

The basement bathroom, sauna and gym are all framed so the basement is done with framing. The plumbers were there starting the plumbing rough-in and the bathtubs for the guest bath and both kids’ baths were there waiting to go in.
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Low-voltage wiring

In Our Life on November 10, 2010 by troyh Tagged:

After dealing with bids from electricians to do the low-voltage work in the house, I’ve decided I’m going to do it myself. I had to buy all the Cat6 and speaker wire and it arrived today:

Low-voltage cables

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Octane Fitness Err 3

In Our Life on November 6, 2010 by troyh

Googling for “Octane Fitness Err 3” doesn’t provide much help, so I’m writing this to get it into Google to provide more info…

We bought an Octane Fitness elliptical machine almost 4 years ago. It’s a great machine and we love it. A year ago it started showing “Err 3” on the display after being used when the Cool Down program finished. We could still use it, we just had to hit the Clear button and it was fine. I couldn’t find much of anything about this online so we called the dealer where we bought it. They concluded that it needed a new right stride motor — the motor that adjusts the length of the running stride. Octane shipped them a new one for free and we paid the $125 or so for their repair man to come over and install it. That fixed it for a while. It started doing it again a few months later so Octane thought it was one of the logic boards that was failing. They shipped them a new one of those and we paid the $125 or so for the guy to install that.

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My 41st Birthday

In Our Life on November 1, 2010 by troyh

As of today, I’ve made 41 trips around the sun. I hope I get a lot more. Gay made me birthday dinner, as usual, and got a ton of nice beers for me to pick from while she cooked. Knowing I’d have wine with dinner, I took it easy and had Sierra Nevada’s 2010 Celebration Ale, one of my favorite winter beers.

41st Birthday dinner

Summary of my 41st year:

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In Our Life on October 31, 2010 by troyh

Trick-or-treating is not very good on Vashon, so we took the kids to the new house for their first Halloween. Seattle is supposed to be the best city in the country for trick-or-treating, lucky kids. Havana was a mermaid and Hudson was a shark. We drove around Capitol Hill to see all the decorated houses. Havana pointed out every house with jack-o-lanterns out: “Pumpkins!”

1st Halloween

We’d been hearing about 18th and 19th Avenues, which really put on a show. The streets were blocked-off to cars, but the streets were filling up even before dark and the houses we could see were elaborately decorated. It wasn’t advisable to bring young kids to those streets because it was too scary, so we stayed on our street. Most of the houses on our street were decorated but it was more low-key.

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Basement concrete

In Our Life on October 31, 2010 by troyh Tagged:

Before the kids went trick-or-treating, we went in the house to see the basement floor. It can be walked-on now, but will be curing for a couple weeks. After that, they’re going to lightly acid wash it to expose some of the aggregate.


New concrete in theater


Concrete is curing

This week they hooked the old boiler back up to get some heat in the house, so the radiators were on for the first time since we inspected it and the first time we’ve been in it while it was heated. It was nice and the radiators, as expected, are not too hot to touch.

The radiant heat in the basement floor isn’t yet hooked-up, but they said they’d connect it to the boiler and use the heat to help the concrete floor cure. So hopefully we can walk on it barefoot to test out how that feels.

We sent mail to the neighbors offering the wood from the trees we cut down and told Schuchart/Dow’s people they could take it too. I was surprised to find that all of it had been taken! We were going to post an ad on Craigslist for free firewood and let people haul it away for us, but we didn’t want to have a bunch of free-stuff-scavengers coming over at all hours of the day.