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I have had workers here for 2 or 3 weeks now trying to catch my house up on all the repairs and chores we have put off for too many years. The attic over the (attached) garage had the ceiling insulated today. The rest of the house is warmer already. I wanted better pictures of the front yard now that it is finished, but it's pointless now since all you can see is snow.

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I started laying pavers in our front yard yesterday. My DW doesn't like walking in the grass from the car to the front steps, so we're getting about a dozen pavers that look like cobblestone, each pa

The appointment with the osteo went very well. He looked, listened and paid attention and when I had questions, he answered them. And when I asked him if he saw the root cause he immediately said,

Good morning! Little Jude came ahead of his scheduled c-section date and arrived yesterday! He is so incredibly wonderful, sweet baby slept in peoples arms all day long yesterday.

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For the first time in several years, I drove a car to work this morning. The only problem is that it was covered in a layer of ice. I know it was 25 degrees this morning, but with clear skies and low humidity, I can't figure out where it came from. I poured hot water on the windshield and front windows so I could see out of the car, but the mirrors and back window were useless. If my bike wasn't in the shop I would have just rubbed the ice off of the windshield and seat after cranking her up. Hopefully I'll have her back by tomorrow. :p

When we first moved in, our A/C was unable to cool the house below 95, so when I looked in the shed and saw at least half a dozen dust covered space heaters in the back, I had a bad feeling about this winter. My suspicion was correct- the A/C can't keep up with the cold either. When I got home yesterday, it was 56 degrees inside the house with the heat on. I set the thermostat to 88, yet despite running all night, it barely got above 50 until this afternoon. I'm glad we don't have consistently cold days between November and March, but it will be interesting when we do get them.

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Jeremy, I WISH it was 50!!!! The past few nights it has been in the negative numbers. Last night -11! My new car battery completely drained I had to get another one. Wait a minute......ice in Florida? :O

Holly, what scale are the Mary Engelbreit paperdolls? I see a ton of them on Pinterest. Yea my mother did the same thing to my huge collection of paper dolls.

I wish I had them now! I have seen the Dover sets. They had some Native American ones in the tourist shop down in town. I haven't seen those products in a long time. It would be fun to build a "Paper Doll House"!

What other kinds of paper dolls do you collect? I remember Betsy McCall dolls. I had a Shirley Temple book and I can't remember what all else I had.

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Roxy, I never had Mary Engelbreit paperdolls, so I'm no help. I measured the Lettie Lane family because they looked close and Dad is 6" and Mom is 5.5". And yes, we get ice in FL. The winter after my family moved to West Palm Beach in 1948 we had snow (a few flakes); we also had a few flakes of snow the winter we moved back to FKL in January 1980.

Jeremy, when we were looking at this house the man who lived here told us the A/C didn't work, it ran all the time and didn't cool the house. During our pre-close inspection DH pulled the filter out and, as suspected, it had dust and pet hair so thick light couldn't shine through (the people who lived here had two cats, two kids and a dog in the house), so we took measurements and on the way back after the closing we picked up some new filters. The A/C works perfectly now. In our old house we put in an A/C with a heat pump, nd heat pumps don't work well in extreme cold.

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Jeremy, the space heaters that look like small radiators and are filled with oil work great and don't eat up alot of electricity. Since it's been 18 degrees some mornings here in TN, I put one in a central location in the house and it works really well. We also have an electric fireplace that warms up the living room when we need it. It doesn't take much to warm us up--we set the heat at 59 at night and 67 during the day. We're great unless the electricity shuts off....well, then it's snuggle time! LOL!

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I changed the filter last week, so I suspect it's the single unit A/C system that's the culprit. It was nice and warm outside today, so it isn't an issue until the next cold front rolls in. The heaters in the shed are the ones that look like vintage water heaters. They're just like the Krysnbon set, only with an electrical cord. I may have to see if I can get them cleaned up and possibly put them to use. We also have a fire place, but I don't think it's been inspected. Even if it has been, fire places send 90% of the heat up the flue and eventually pull what remaining heat that was in the house, out too.

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Home from a gala dinner and program in honor of the retiring president of Xavier University of New Orleans. Dr. Norman Francis is retiring after 47 years at the helm, in which time the university has grown considerably. Educator, activist, recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom ... an amazing leader. Met several of Lloyd's former students. Warmed the cockles of my heart to see how happy they were to see him. :)

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Last night was "Gallery Night" in which the city of Pensacola closes off Palafox Street to vehicular traffic between Garden and Main Streets and all the shops and restaurants are open, local craft people and food vendors set up booths along the street, and the local radio stations have music booming; add in al the individual musicians and bands playing along the sidewalks and the balconies of the buildings and the street performers and I feel transported back to a Medieval Faire. In addition to the usual assortments of people there was a sizable contingent of brand new Marine PFCs roaming around in uniform, as well as some Navy folks on liberty and some visitors from Eglin AFB.

Lawanda, I'm glad you had a safe trip; that was one heckuva LONG drive!

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A couple of pics and questions...

We finally got started today punching window pieces out. On about half the pieces, sections of either the front or back layers came loose. Mostly the back layer. We've been glueing them back in place best we can. Question is, is this necessary or should we just plug the gaps with putty or spackle?

Me and Susan punching out pieces.

Betty supervises the whole operation.
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Your choice, depending on how you want to finish them. The Glencroft I built had the same issue and I was staining all the wood trim, doors and half timbering, so I carefully saved all the bits of laminae and glued them back together. With trims I paint I just slather on the spackling compound and go back and sand everything pretty and smooth when it's dry. I do wait until after I've assembled the shell and decorated before I install windows and doors; otherwise Id have nasty, messy acetate inserts.

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We're thinking of paint for the outside and stain on the inside for the windows. So, do you pretty much spackle and sand all surfaces? Will stain work on spackled surfaces?

No, I only spackle what I'm going to paint. Stain doesn't work through glue or anything else but bare wood in my experience. I haven't even gotten stain to work on "stainable" wood putty.

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If you need to Spackle or glue the inside trim yet want it to appear stained, consider painting it brown and giving it a faux finish to make it look like wood. Working in miniature, you'll learn all sorts of new techniques to make things appear to be something else. :D

If you're going to do a stained floor, it's a good idea to stain the wood before gluing it in place to avoid tiny glue spots where stain won't stick to glue.

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I think I just about died. I was in the kitchen baking and I heard a scratching noise coming from the cabinet under the sink. I had absolutely no idea what it was, so I went over to investigate. I opened the cabinet door and guess what I found? A RAT! I only got a quick glimpse of its face but that was enough for me! I don't know how I am going to sleep tonight knowing there is a rat in the house. I keep imagining it running over my face as I sleep! Eww.

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Ewwww ... mice are bad enough, but if I came across a rat in the house, I think I'd sleep in a motel until the exterminator could show me its dead, dead body. I hope you don't hear any more scratchings in the night.

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I would block the cabinet door closed and head out to a super Wally World for some rat-sized traps, bait them with peanut butter and set them and shovea t least one into that cabinet before I went to bed!

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Blocking the cabinet door might make you feel better, but I doubt the rat entered the cabinet that way. More likely came through the tiny space around the pipes. Those and any other openings need to be blocked with steel wool to prevent more unwanted visitors.

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Don't like to use poison; they crawl off and die in laces that are impossible to get to, and the stink is horrendous! Then there was the AM in Jacksonville and I opened the cupboard door to get my electric skillet out, and as I lifted it a pygmy rattler stuck its head out and hissed at me. I dropped the skillet right back own and slammed the cupboard door and yelled for DH, who came in armed with a shovel; when he opened the cupboard door the skillet's edge had landed on the snake's head and it was dead. While nonvenomous snakes don't upset me (I don't like any of them in the house), venomous ones do freak me out, especially at close quarters

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I blocked up the entry point a mouse used to get into our house with Great Stuff, an insulating foam sealant. I found a tiny hole under a clapboard just above our concrete foundation. It led into our garage, from where the mouse was able to get into the rest of the house. I just sprayed the stuff to fill the hole from the outside, then filled the access hole from the garage into the basement. The expanding insulating foam is easy to use and expands like crazy to fill gaps.

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A friend warned me about using poison. Apparently she had a couple mice living in her house and she set out poison to kill them. A couple days later there was a horrible stench coming from her bedroom wall and she had to hire someone to remove the dead bodies!

Poison is also a no-no for me due to pets. I'd be worried one of the cats would find it and accidentally eat it.

I'm going to pick up some regular traps from Home Depot!

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