Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for the ‘Other’ Category

November 22, 2012
Thanksgiving Day in America

John O’Donohue was an Irish poet and philosopher. He was interviewed by Krista Tippett on NPR/American Public Media. I heard part of the interview this morning. Listening to him was inspiring so I’ve posted the link to the podcast on my Twitter feed:  https://twitter.com/designhouse9. You can also find it in the right hand sidebar.

Have a beautiful and bountiful day today.

.

Read Full Post »

Weekly Photo Challenge: Unfocused
May 4, 2012

My first thought when I saw the word for this week’s challenge was “Oh, no”.  The author of the challenge said we’d curse or cheer this theme. I sat and considered the topic, contemplating what blurry photo might fill the bill.

It was then I had my eureka moment. A photo I had taken just this morning was sure to be absolutely perfect! I pulled it up on my computer screen for a look. Alas, it was in focus despite having been taken with my cell phone while driving 42 miles an hour down the road. Who’d have thought that would be the case? Not me I can tell you. (Here’s the link to see that photo: Antique Car and a Penny-Farthing post.)

I started sifting through the archives. I came across quite a few unfocused photos that I had decided not to trash (yet). This one showing the cover of Diane Keaton’s book is one of them. I love Diane Keaton. She’s got great style. She’s smart. She’s funny. She’s talented. I had snapped this photo as a reminder to myself to get the book.

As I looked at the photo more closely, I noticed the patch of red in the upper left and the reflective quality on the right. I wasn’t attempting to capture those elements. I do, however, like what they bring to this unfocused photograph. It’s a bit like Diane Keaton—unexpected and appealing.

###

Want to participate in the Weekly Photo Challenge? Visit The Daily Post.

.

Read Full Post »

Cool Finds and
Supporting the Home Team

If you like to support companies producing products in America, here’s a site that lists the products that are made here. Products include kitchen appliances, laundry machines, bed and bath, lawn and garden, home decor, artisan handcrafts, baby gear, toys, tools, and more.

Still Made in USA.com

I believe some of the companies sell both American and foreign products, or products that share production in two countries. I have a friend who recently had water damage in her condo. Her rugs were ruined. I came across this one that reminds me of the main rug she had in her living room with its black background and colorful floral motif.

Wayfair.com

Perhaps she can find a replacement rug or two at the Wayfair site.
.

This pillow is adorable for dog lovers. It was designed by Maine artist, author, and illustrator Dahlov Ipcar. They’re made by hand in Kashmir and filled with 100% poly that’s made in the USA. These come in limited quantities and will not be duplicated. Crafted of wool thread on cotton.

ClassicRug.com

.

Here’s the Grate Wall of Fire I came across. The site reads:

The “Grate Wall of Fire” high-efficiency fireplace grate makes smoke-free, self-feeding fires with exceptional warmth and radiant heat output a reality. Overall fireplace efficiency is dramatically increased when using this ingenious fireplace grate. The pleasing appearance and hefty construction of our quality grates will enhance the beauty and functionality of any fireplace or hearth.
.
And a side view that visually explains the concept:

.
Fascinating, eh? Clients and friends who own homes with fireplaces will no doubt find this of interest. I can’t vouch for how well it works, but if I had a fireplace of my own I would definitely research it to learn more.
.

I’ve always loved artisan made things. A browse through the Handcraft Artisan section displays a wide selection of artful items that are far more unique than the mass-produced goods made elsewhere and shipped here.

Here’s their page that outlines some reasons why we might wish to consider purchasing items made here in America: Why Care Where Things Are Made?

Have fun exploring these American-made products and companies. Let me know what else you come across that looks as unique as the Grate Wall of Fire.

###

.

Read Full Post »

~~~

Read Full Post »

Energy Efficiency: Pick Upgrades that (Actually) Drive Down Costs

By: Lisa Kaplan Gordon

Published: November 3, 2011

The award winning energy efficient Devonshire ...

Image via Wikipedia

The award-winning energy-efficient Devonshire building
.

A new study says home owners won’t see their utility bills drop until they’ve conducted four or more energy upgrades. Here are projects that will give you the greatest bang for your energy buck.

I’ve long suspected that saving energy is like saving calories: Small measures add up, until a Thanksgiving pecan pie — or a dazzling holiday light display — wrecks a year’s worth of small though consistent efforts.

Evidently I’m right, according to a new study claiming that doing a couple of small, energy-saving measures actually increase utility bills. And that a home owner must perform at least four energy upgrades before their utility bill drops.

Look for this logo when considering your new r...

Image via Wikipedia

The 450-page study, conducted by the eco-curious Shelton Group, found that energy-efficient home owners think they should replace water heaters and install a higher-efficiency HVAC system, though they actually replace windows and add insulation.

We think they’re half right: Adding insulation, especially in the attic, is a low-cost way to reduce utility bills. But replacing windows requires a huge upfront cost, which you probably won’t live long enough to earn back.

To see net-net savings — in your lifetime — select upgrades that reduce energy consumption by 5% and require modest initial investments. We suggest:

  • Seal and insulate ductwork through unfinished and unheated areas, such as the attic, garage, and crawl spaces.
  • Install a programmable thermostat so you don’t overheat your house when you’re away or asleep.
  • Seal air leaks around windows, doors, attic access, and recessed lights.

How many energy-efficient improvements did you make last year? Did you see a drop or increase in your utility bills?

~~~

Read Full Post »

Photos of the Day
January 1, 2012

Yesterday I wrote a post about LED lamps and trees. Today I offer photos of untrimmed, misshapen, evergreen trees that I captured after dark.

These trees stand clumped together inside a circular drive green space with light from the building shining upon them. They are not particularly attractive in and of themselves. Nor are they attractive in their planted mass. Still, their contrast against the lighter grass and the dark skies make them stand out in the artificially lit night environment. They were begging to be noticed for a change. I saw them, and how beautiful they were as part of the larger picture.

I was hesitant to write about trees (and light) for two consecutive days here. Would anyone care about trees, besides my friend Charlie who loves trees? Would fellow photographers find something beautiful and/or artistic in these pictures?

Then again, it’s the start of a new year, a time when people make resolutions and think about changes (growth) for themselves. Trees are all about growth and spreading themselves via their root systems, their trunks, their branches, their leaves, and whatever fruit, nut and/or flower they may grow. In this regard, another post about trees seems perfectly natural.

Let there be light in 2012. Let there be growth in 2012. May you grow tall and strong with stunning ability to sway and dance with the wind. May you be fruitful in all your endeavors. May you blossom with joy all through the year. May you be ever “green”.

There is beauty all around us. Sometimes, you simply need to take another look in a different light.

Blessings,

Kate

~~~

Read Full Post »

Photos of the Day
December 24, 2011



Is time on your mind today? One of the things I love about this time of year is all the decorations with light. It adds so much to our shorter days. The clock(s) in the photos above are in Chicago along Michigan Avenue. They provide light year round. I took these in July. May your days and nights be merry and bright.

~~~

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »