Friday, January 17, 2003

Wherein I confess to hating winter more than anything

Before I get started here, I need to comment on my last entry. I think I was really harsh on Little Miss NO the other day. I want people to know that I don't HATE this child, I wrote from passion and frustration. Yesterday I went to drop Geoff off and we walked past the room just so I could say hi to all "My Kids." I made sure to really say hi to her and give her love. She blew me kisses and didn't say no once. She even took my hand and wanted me to come into the room and read.

I feel guilty today about how I felt about her the other day. She is actually really sweet. She's very helpful. She wants to be the teacher and give out the projects and help the children get up on things. There is a supportive streak and a giving heart in that kid. I would like to say I'm going to actively support that in her as often as I can.

News of my dislike of this child has spread through the staff, and I'm heartily afraid her grandmother, who teaches in the three-year old room, hates me. I don't want her to. And I am afraid of this woman, so I don't dare say a damn thing. Meh.

On to the actual Journal Entry. First of all --

Have you been following Mary Ann's Antarctic Journals? Here's Aaron and Amber, one of the other field engineers, after they fashioned a McGuyver-esque drill head out of an aluminum can.

All I gotta say is -- the boy looks happy.

I still can't believe my buddy is on the bottom of the globe. Damn.

Secondly, the title of today's entry involves me and ice, continuing the theme from Aaron's involvement in ice. Only his may be a lot more fun than mine.

As you know, we currently have 8 billion feet of snow on the ground... and on our roof.

Our gutters are filled with snow and ice. The fascia boards on the side of the house in one location have decided to wick all the melting water in the universe into the building. Water is seeping in all over the place.

Two nights ago at about 1am, Doug woke up and sat in bed for a while... he heard the dropping. The dripping. The dripping...

He put the light on and got me up (because he can't see well) and we saw that the cedar walls of our closet and the acoustic ceiling inside the closet were wicking the water to a dumping point - the frame of the sliding door.

We opened the sliding door and moved a mess of stuff out of the way. The water was dripping from two locations, so we put a pot under the drip with an old T-shirt in it to absorb the noise, and resigned ourselves to go back to bed.

Yesterday, the water was dripping steadily. I moved more stuff out of the closet and it's wide open and airy, so hopefully the carpeting and everything in there which is getting damp will not be stinky. I was standing at the kitchen sink yesterday doing dishes when I suddenly felt drops on my arm. The window frame above the kitchen sink is soaked, and the venetian blinds were wicking the water down the vertical cords, resulting in two points of steady drip. I positioned plants under the drips, which was good for the plants, but I'm pissed that the leaking is spreading in that direction. God. I'm going to be so pissed, SO pissed, if the water wicks through the insulation out into the middle of the dining area where we've replaced the ceiling (even though we still haven't plastered/joint compounded and finished the damn thing).

Some ice melt, a pitch fork, an industrial space heater, and then some serious water proof paint and caulk for where the fascia board inserts into the blue trim would be my solution.

The blue trim is the wall that our closet is on, and right where that arrow is pointing on my doctored picture is the entry point. We've had this problem a few times before, and every winter I say "Damn, we have to take those gutters OFF and totally waterproof that entire damn area."

But. We have yet to do this.

When we first moved into the house, I was in the bedroom and water was dripping onto my bed. We had JUST had a roof installed by our friend Todd, and I was pissed, thinking ... there is NO way this roof is leaking, it's brand new! I climbed up there (yes, I was pregnant, about 7 months) and looked all over in the pouring rain and slush for an entry point. I brought a shovel. I shoveled the roof (it's a long and flat slightly angled surface so the water runs down it and off behind my bedroom). When Todd put up the roof, he put up new facia boards and then gutters on top of them, but we never painted them. He told us they were weather treated and were all set, we could paint the trim later if we wanted, painting around the gutters, but that any additional water proofing wouldn't be an issue.

I think he lied.

I called him and he came over, put a patch right over where my bed is under the roof. The water wouldn't stop, and between the two of us we finally figured out that the facia board he put up was absorbing the water, and the insulation inside the house was wicking the water like an oil lantern wick until it could travel no further. So he and I spent the afternoon cleaning out the gutters.

Doug removed the downspout attachment to the gutters (the little curvy part) because the bulk of the problem wasn't the gutters themselves but the downspout.

The downspout would freeze solid because the north face of our house never gets enough sun to keep them warm and the water flowing. Taking the downspout attachment off meant that the gutters could easily be drained with some ice melt and that little hole could then freely spew the liquid. We haven't had a problem in a long time, but this is a lot of ice and snow, and frankly, I'm kicking myself for our having not installed heaters on them or just taking them off the house all together.

Stupid Fucking Gutters.

So I'm on drip patrol. I'm in all the exterior facing rooms of the house looking for drips. Our bedroom and the bathroom currently don't have ceilings, we didn't make it to those rooms yet, so I'm going to reach up and in and make sure the insulation is not touching the facia on the inside of the wall, and hope that this makes a difference.

God. I hate winter.

So, how's by you?

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