Friday, June 26, 2009

An Announcement

We learned on Father's Day that we are now expecting our 11th child. We think the due date is probably mid-February.

Our New Porch

I've been putting off blogging about the new porch because I wanted to post pictures after it's all done. Well, I wanted to update what's going on and that's been a HUGE project around here.

I believe I posted some pics a while back of the porch. The big project has been putting a roof on that porch. It's not done yet, so I'm not going to go take pics yet. But trust me, it's lookin' good.

This roof allows us to eat breakfast without the sun blinding us in the morning.

It gives us shade to sit in outside where there's nearly always a nice breeze, even though the temps have been over 100 every day for too long now.

It adds to our "living space" by quite a bit.

When it rains, we won't have to close out the cooler air to keep the water out of the house.

It makes the house look a lot more like a house and less like a big box.

Roger's going to have a place to hang fans outside giving us even more of a breeze. And his sister, Ronda, makes these really cool pulls to hang on the end of the chain and she gave us a bunch of them for our fans. I'll be sure to share pics of those once the project is complete. She is very creative and artistic and these are just fantastic looking. I can't wait to hang them up.

Laundry Update

We've been a little busy lately. I caught up with all that laundry. Bought a new washer and that helped a lot. I think front loaders are just not made for people who do 3 large loads a day of really dirty laundry including diapers. I got one of the last two regular top loaders in Abilene. I wanted one that uses real water and rinses away the dirt. Apparently before long you won't be able to buy one anymore. For most families that may not be an issue. They say these new high efficiency things will save you up to 54% of the energy and up to 46% of the water. So I did the math.

I figured since I do each load 3 times to get it almost clean, then I need to multiply my energy and water use by 3. If I am saving 54%, then I am using 46%. If I am saving 46%, then I am using 54%.

46% x 3 = 138%
54% x 3 = 162%

Since both of those numbers add up to more than 100%, my savings have become actually HIGHER costs, not savings. Plus, our clothes were wearing out faster and still not clean after those 3 washings. So we had added expenses there. With my new "low efficiency" washer, I can even wash diapers without any trouble.

And get this, I got the same size tub as my front loader, but now I have the big post thingy in the middle so it should hold less. But it holds more. Turns out they use different standards of measurement for high efficiency machines. I don't get it enough to explain it, but it's sort of like they get extra credit for size because they are more efficient. Seems like just a lie to convince us all it's a good thing to me. Anyway, what I do know is that I am using the same laundry bags with my new washer as I did for my front loader and when I put a "load" into the new washer, there's still room for me to run around the house and gather up some of the stragglers I find laying around. Pretty cool.

So the rest of you enjoy your high efficiency machines. I'll enjoy my "old-fashioned" top loader that uses water and be glad I didn't have to revert so far back in technology that I'm using that washboard we once bought at an antique store. (I was getting a little worried there.)

Friday, June 05, 2009

Vacation Aftermath

I was going to blog some details about our vacation. We've just returned from a fantastic trip across country and back again. But the details will have to wait. I'm kinda busy. More laundry was added after this picture was taken. :-(