Water and a Watery Fourth

I owe some sort of life update or something, probably.

We’ve been having a fairly fun time with the house recently. A few weeks ago we had a super heavy storm that happened to coincide with a planned dinner trip… so of course I got stuck halfway between home and Squirrel Hill when the rain and wind started, and got utterly soaked everywhere. Dinner itself was also generally mediocre, so I wasn’t in a great mood when I got home.

Not to be outdone, I went into the basement to sit for a bit, and was greeted by the sound of dripping water… it was water coming from under the walls in the (unfinished) furnace room, running into the drain. Okay, I guess that’s weird, but whatever. A short while later, there’s dripping from the other (finished) side of the basement, into the drains near the laundry. And lo and behold, there is water coming from there. And everywhere. And the entire space under the stairs and under the router is flooded. Yay our basement is flooded!

So we spent the rest of the night vacuuming up water (hooray for owning a shopvac?), and then had Stanley Steemer come out the next day to assess the damage. Ended up having them pull out and discard the carpet pad, and clean and dry the carpet itself. We still need to have someone come by to install a new carpet pad and re-stretch the carpet, also.

The Fourth of July was a pretty nice affair this year. We went to the pool, and then had some people over afterward to sit in the backyard… so of course it starts to storm again. Enough rain that parts of the basement got more water in them, again, although not nearly as badly as last time. And enough wind that we lose power, for nearly 8 hours. So we had pizza and wine by candlelight, indoors, and it was a surprisingly nice evening anyway. Still, I can’t help but feel like the power loss and more basement water was an appropriate way to celebrate the fourth this year, given the way the country has been going this past year.

Not much else has been happening in life, but with adventures like that, I’m not sure I’d want much else to.

Life

Uh, wow. It’s been three months since I last posted. So much for posting at least once a month…

In the home repair department, we successfully replaced our old bathroom ceiling fan. We are quite proud of ourselves!

Downtown flooded a bit in March, thanks to the excessive rain we’ve been having. We missed the worst of it, but caught some of the mess.

Life has otherwise just been full of board games and rock climbing.



With luck, it won’t be another three months before I post again…

Dryer, Water, Gingerbread

Our dryer adventures have concluded with a successful self repair, after an appliance service quoted $180 for someone to come out. We ended up not quite having to take the entire dryer apart… instead, we were able to glue the new seal on while the drum was sitting mostly in place (which meant we didn’t have to unhook any of the belts… huzzah).

The repair was completed just in time for the huge water main servicing our area to break, leaving us with minimal (and contaminated) water, foiling my plans to deal with all the laundry stacking up. Instead, we went out to investigate, and found some impressive remnants of the breakage.


Other than that, life has been going. I’m officially done with work for the year. After we got reasonable water back, I spent most of my first day off (Monday) doing 6 loads of laundry while sitting and playing Persona 5 in the basement to make sure the dryer didn’t catch fire. It seems to have worked properly, which is good.

Persona 5, by the way, is a pretty amazing game. I think the visual novel/relationship elements are integrated really well with the RPG elements. I’ve been kind of obsessed with it, and hoping to finish up the fifth palace soon!

Our neighbors had an ugly sweater party with gingerbread house making, so I tried my hand at making a gingerbread house. It didn’t turn out too badly, I think?





In any case, Christmas soon approaches, which will be nice. I’ve updated my photo journal given the free time I’ve been having. It’s nice having time off to catch up on errands and chores.

New Year, PWSA, LJ sadness

It’s a new year. Yay. life’s photo journal and stats pages have been brought up to date. (Also the new daily photo project continues, which I’m honestly surprised by.)

The PWSA continues to be incompetent. We’ve had repeated billing problems where they bill incorrectly based on a correct meter reading. (For example, a meter reading of “18” bills us for 18,000 gallons of usage, instead of subtracting from the previous month’s reading of “17” and billing us for 1,000 gallons of usage.) This issue seems to be getting harder and harder to resolve each time, culminating in this month where I went down to the service center in person, and ended up with a rude supervisor and a submitted (paper) letter that apparently schedules a formal meeting with an appeals board…? That’s still ongoing, so yay for incompetent public departments.
Seriously, this issue has stressed me out so much that there have been multiple days where I feel like we should just sell the house and rent again to not have to deal with them.
Blargh.

In other depressing news, Livejournal apparently recently moved their servers to Russia, which is causing an exodus of users from it to Dreamwidth. This makes me sad for a lot of reasons.
I’ve previously talked about how I hate social media and miss long-form writing. Livejournal was my first real “community” (before Facebook really took off as a way to share life updates). I got to know so many people better through LJ. That community has been mostly dead for years, but the few remaining people on it will probably move away now as well.
Also going through and deleting all of the posts reminded me of how much people used to interact, on a deeper level than just “liking” your photo of breakfast or whatever. We used to really engage with people. Stupid social media.

I’ve mentioned before that I like having control of my data (it’s why I use WordPress installed on webserver that I pay for). So in a lot of ways, I feel vindicated that I use this (and syndicate over to LJ) instead of primarily using LJ. On the other hand, LJ’s fine-grained access controls were particularly useful for things I didn’t think I should be posting publicly. So I’ve had to go through today and delete hundreds of posts of things I hadn’t posted publicly in this journal. I guess that’s no guarantee that the data is gone (they probably have backups), but at least it makes me feel better about it.

Anyway, yay for friends and board games and rock band?

Adventures in decks

The deck was originally thought to be a weekend, or maybe a week project. We’re into the third week now and still have only finished the posts and railings. So it turns out it’s actually really hard to find 72 hours rain-free in Pittsburgh in the summer, and also scrubbing and sanding a deck (particularly all the little wooden posts) takes much longer than you’d expect. I think overall the deck scrubbing took 27 man hours, and sanding and staining doing 1/5 of the deck takes about 10 man hours. Assuming you can find the consecutive days of sun to do it.

We also had some fun… the first staining we did was on a weekend that called for no rain. But of course a cloud comes in from nowhere and drops a small amount of rain just as we put the first coat of stain on the railing. It turns out this causes little white spots to be permanently stuck in the stain. They’re fortunately a bit less visible now, and we applied a second layer of stain over it that seems to be doing fine.
Also, I spent Sunday morning sanding and staining some deck, only for the rain to come sooner than expected (overnight and Monday morning). But I guess ~12 hours was enough time for the stain to dry enough to be waterproof, because it survived the rain without visible problems, which I’m hoping means it’s fine.

It’s supposed to be dry now through Thursday, so hopefully we can sand the floor itself Wednesday evening, stain it early Thursday morning, and be okay for the rain coming Friday. That’ll be all of the functional part done.

Not much else happens in life. We had a work-from-home party last week where some people came over and we all worked together in the same room and got lunch together. It was a nice change from the usual working alone.

Russell was also around last week (For work), and there was rock banding and late night fooding. (No softball, unfortunately, as it was cancelled for the entire week due to field issues.)

Yay for life and things.