Author Topic: Phil Skips Stones Across the Pond of Life  (Read 93971 times)

Offline Phillip Dampier

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Re: Phil Skips Stones Across the Pond of Life
« Reply #80 on: November 19, 2007, 03:30:15 pm »
And now here is the backyard, such as that is (the house, built in 1940, had the rear addition built in two stages in the 1950s and mid-1980s, evident by the ridiculous "wet bar" in the huge kitchen here -- since neither John or I drink, it's now a cocoa and tea nook), as most of our open yard space is in the front. Note the homage to John Twist with my ratty, falling down wooden fence that the carpenter ants have been consuming.  We never got around to replacing it this year.

That fallen down plastic lawn chair is my statement about how one reacts to getting a near-$14,000 bill to replace the entire roof.  This is a big house, and it's now becoming a four week project, but it's still scary money.

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Offline Phillip Dampier

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Re: Phil Skips Stones Across the Pond of Life
« Reply #81 on: November 19, 2007, 03:45:10 pm »
And now a few random shots.  In picture one, check out the leaves still on the trees bordering us from our neighbors.  I spent yesterday raking and blowing the yard and it's becoming clear we'll still be raking in December.  Picture two and three shows the view up and down our street, eastbound and then west.  The year BBM came out, the entire street was torn up and dug out, replaced from the soil level up, which created a year of chaos, dust, and one-way driving.  It looks better now though. 
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Offline Phillip Dampier

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Re: Phil Skips Stones Across the Pond of Life
« Reply #82 on: November 19, 2007, 03:48:39 pm »
And finally, leaves leaves leaves....  A full-resolution picture of the latter picture is also available.  Western New York is big on maple trees and also produces maple syrup.



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Offline Phillip Dampier

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Re: Phil Skips Stones Across the Pond of Life
« Reply #83 on: November 19, 2007, 03:57:54 pm »
so are you expecting to save a ton in fuel bills this winter to offset the pinch of the reroofing?  It"s a beautiful house by the way...!

Probably not too much.  The insulation under the roofing was done well.  The problem was, we had the original roof circa 1940 up there (cedar shakes which are hand dipped in tar and then coated in tiny stones - a major fire hazard and now required to be torn off if roof work is done), plus an additional two layers of standard, now worn shingles.  We also had a bad ice dam and some water leaks in John's office last winter because water was getting in over by the dormer on the third floor.  It all had to come off, and I replaced them with GAF Architectural 50-year shingles (by the way, the price difference between 30 and 50 year shingles turned out to be $400(!)... everyone contemplating a roof replacement or shingle work should always price check 50 year shingles, which cost only a fraction more than 30 year shingles when you price the whole contract.)  Around this area, because of the huge snowfall (120 inches on average per winter), a 50-year roof really lasts around 40, which is long enough for me not to have to do it again.

Western NY utility rates for natural gas and electric are obscene.  Our gas and electric bill averages between $260-350 a month here, depending on the season.  We are on the budget billing for gas which keeps payments stable.  We had a $500 natural gas bill one month during the 2004-2005 winter!  We also have the old school steam heat/radiator system, which is hardly energy efficient.  A programmable thermostat with a sensible temperature reduction at night during the winter and regular boiler maintenance paid for itself in a matter of months in savings.

And thanks to everyone for the nice comments.  I'm glad to share with you some pics of where all of this stuff came together to create this place.
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Offline Penthesilea

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Re: Phil Skips Stones Across the Pond of Life
« Reply #84 on: November 19, 2007, 04:10:22 pm »
Your house is beautiful. It's cute (yes, houses can be cute in my book) from the front, but even more so from the back. Love the glass doors and the terrace.

And dang, I'm really happy we have only one tree in the backyard  :laugh:. Enough leaves fo me.

Quote
I'm glad to share with you some pics of where all of this stuff came together to create this place.

Thanks for sharing and describing where BetterMost is put together. It's cool to actually see the place and picture you behind the glass doors.  8)

Offline Ellemeno

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Re: Phil Skips Stones Across the Pond of Life
« Reply #85 on: November 19, 2007, 04:13:48 pm »
Quote
Around this area, because of the huge snowfall (120 inches on average per winter), a 50-year roof really lasts around 40, which is long enough for me not to have to do it again.


What do you mean?  That brings us to your 80th birthday party, don't it?  That backyard looks perfect for a Brokie get-together.  Lovely house, yard and trees.  It's great you both have offices in your home.  My partner and I do too, but now that I have a laptop, the recliner in my living room tends to be my office.  :)


Offline Shakesthecoffecan

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Re: Phil Skips Stones Across the Pond of Life
« Reply #86 on: November 19, 2007, 04:17:44 pm »
Gawd, a 50 year roof! We only recently got 30 year shingles here.
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Offline ifyoucantfixit

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Re: Phil Skips Stones Across the Pond of Life
« Reply #87 on: November 19, 2007, 04:44:34 pm »


        Philip, your home is beautiful..It looks so friendly and comfortable.  I am very familiar with the fall leaf thing.
My whole yard is covered.  I like the windows and dormers on your house.  And I love the slice of life photos..
I always like looking at pictures where it looks like the people there, just stepped inside, and we get to see how they
were just before...I may be a voyeur.  Oh well sorry.



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Offline Brokeback_Dev

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Re: Phil Skips Stones Across the Pond of Life
« Reply #88 on: November 19, 2007, 07:24:08 pm »
Hi Phillip.  I dont make it over here too often..  Awesome pics.  I saw a tree yesterday with ORANGE leaves.  It was so cool..  On in a million.   :)

Offline Kelda

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Re: Phil Skips Stones Across the Pond of Life
« Reply #89 on: November 19, 2007, 07:24:45 pm »
Phillip - I think im going to use your leaves as my wallpaper - and lovely to see where you live - I'm with Chrissi - that house is cute!
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