Saturday, February 14, 2009

Well, we haven't posted in a while but not for lack of incidents. Mostly it's because my day job has taken all my time and energy so the only things going on have been the things going wrong.

We've had plumbing that wouldn't drain - even after running the auger through it, and feeding it digestive microbes for a week; the oven went into overdrive, wherein the only way to stop it on it's quest to reach the surface temperature of the sun was cutting the power at the breaker.

I'm in the process of working out what to plant this year, after last year's experiments. The ollas worked well for the small areas they covered, so I'll probably be getting many more of those as I convert the patches of grass to garden.

It's been very cold this winter, so thankfully we got the first phase of the attic insulation in before the cold arrived. We still have about two thirds of the attic to cover, but while the cotton insulation is so much easier to work with than the fiberglass, it's also more expensive, so that's going to have to be done in stages.

Here we have the original insulation, as it extends under the attic "floor" (the boards around the trapdoor), I think it is as old as the house...

... that's actually one of the deeper areas. We're supposed to have R38 in this area - I'm not sure what thin, dirty fiberglass-and-mouse-dropping, insulation counts as, but that's not it.

The insulation arrives...

... there were nine of these blocks, each containing eight pieces. The trapdoor was big enough to carry two up at a time. It took a while to get them all up into the attic. There's some irony in the recycled denim, ecofriendly insulation coming in non-recyclable plastic wraps.

Several hours of lifting later, we have a pile in the attic.

Installing the new insulation wasn't bad. Removing the dirty old stuff first was a lot less fun. Almost to the point where I was seriously considering paying someone else to do it.

Those three little strips were two hours of hot, unpleasant work, in a face mask and long sleeves to keep the fiberglass dust out. Next time I do it while it's grey and cold out - the attic gets warm even in late autumn if there's any sun.