Why sure.

I haven’t been writing much these days, busy with other stuff. In August, BA and I were traveling in Iceland with a very congenial group. Unfortunately, like many summer travelers, we got Covid. She got sick there, I got sick after we returned home. I think being fully vaccinated helped us in that while we weren’t having much fun, no one had to be hospitalized and we eventually both fully recovered.

What did become clear is that BA’s days of overseas travel are over, and if she can avoid flying, she’d prefer that as well. With her other health issues, in December it was time to move the bedroom down to the main floor of our house. The space for the relocated bedroom began its life as part of an addition 30 years ago, housing a hot tub. The hot tub is long gone. Since then, that space has been an office, a utility and gardening space, and it spent the last 15 years as BA’s weaving room, full of looms, yarn and all the tools associated with that craft.

Clearing out looms and stash took a while, and 4 of the 6 looms have gone to new homes, along with about half of the yarn stash. New furniture in the living room holds her extensive CD collection and equipment, and there’s a lot of yarn boxed in the garage. The space was cleared. A contractor I know was able to fit us in on bad weather days and remove the old kitchen cabinets, sink and countertop that had been repurposed to this utility area and he repaired drywall. I painted and primed, installed a rug on the chilly tile floor, moved the bed downstairs, and assembled an armoire to store BA’s clothes (I’m keeping mine upstairs).

It’s a pretty comfortable room, and so far so good. Until one night when BA couldn’t get back into bed due to the soft mattress surface. So a few weeks ago we got a firmer mattress, which is also thinner. We’re both sleeping better and she’s having an easier time getting in and out of bed. The room is warm, and as it started its life holding a hot tub, there are high windows facing south and west. It’s gonna be hot in there in the summer. We don’t have air conditioning, having cooled fairly well with an evaporative cooler, and this room is some distance from the cold air inlet for the evaporative cooler.

I’ve been thinking about going to a heat pump system, which removes heat from the air and moves it where desired, out of the house in the summer and into the house in the winter. The technology has improved significantly over recent years, getting more effective with air based exchangers, and functioning in colder weather. Thinking that it’s time for AC in this less energy demanding form, and also using less water by giving up the evaporative cooling, I’ve started investigating all of this.

And yes, it’s complicated. Is there room in the basement for the larger heat exchanger unit? yes. Will backup heat be required? maybe.Do I need a new electrical panel? yes. As long as I am reducing or eliminating natural gas usage, is it also time to switch from a gas stove to an induction cooktop? one of these days.

Yikes. So I’ve been talking with vendors, getting information, and one of them came today to check out the house. And in the basement, we noticed that the hot water heater is leaking. Really? So after the heating and A/C guy left, I called my plumber.

The good news is that he was having a quiet afternoon. He came by, checked things out, and yes the 15 year old tank is rusting and leaking, getting ready to die. The really good news is that by evening we should have a new hot water heater installed. I’ll take that.

None of this comes cheap, and as a homeowner, I’m used to that. Originally, there was a plan that BA and I would be joining a group we’ve enjoyed traveling with before to see a total solar eclipse in Australia this spring. After Iceland’s difficulties (covid was just the cherry on top), I canceled our trip. So the budget has room for water heaters and heat pumps and electrical panels and mattresses and armoires and entertainment centers and whatever comes next. I’m fortunate and grateful.

And it’s complicated, and I’m keeping Australia on my bucket list.

10 thoughts on “complicated?

  1. Having just dealt with a repeat gas leak when the house was supposed to be washed in preparation for painting, I would be superbly happy to be able to justify getting rid of all gas in my house! I love my flat-top electric stove (not induction, but similar), and would be quite happy with a heat pump. And to be able to take a trip to Australia on top of all that you are doing would be icing on the cake! Sydney is a wonderful city, as are other parts of the eastern coast, and I’d love to visit the northern and western coasts as well!

    Liked by 1 person

      1. This ws the second leak in this pipe — the riser from the incoming line to house level (12 inches or so) split down the seam. I was lucky to catch it, I think within a day, as I had to move some patio furniture for the painters. This happened just in the midst of complaints about the jump in cost of gas in this area, and at the beginning of our current cold spell!

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Oh my, Stephanie. You can be excused for not writing. You’ve been very busy. On the bright side, you at least got your Iceland trip in, but I can relate to the hard decision not to do overseas travel anymore. The last one wore me out. I have one more scheduled and now my daughter has offered to go with me. I’m very grateful. Lots of luck finishing all your house projects. Sounds like you are very resourceful! I enjoyed reading your details.

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s