Just like in 2009, I yet again made a 2010 Year in Review book for KRN Photography and it arrived last week. And, just like in 2009, I'm extremely happy with the end result for 2010. Have a look:
This is a great way to chronicle the entire year in a nice, compact format that's easy for folks to check out. Be sure to flip through it the next time you stop by the house!
Funny story: I again used Blurb to create and print the book, and like I said above, the end result was amazing. However, there was one little hiccup during this order. I got the book in the mail, checked out the top notch quality of the cover, only to be surprised when I opened it up. Staring back at me were not my photos, but the photos of the lovely Patrice and Luis who apparently got married last August in Dover, DE! Huh? Turns out there was some mistake during the printing where my cover got mixed up with Patrice and Luis' pages.
Looks like a great day and a fun wedding...unfortunately, I have no idea who these people are!
It sure did make for a funny story...and the good folks at Blurb overnighted me a replacement and refunded me the entire cost of the book for my troubles. So I ended up getting a $109 book for free! Anyone interested in a free copy of Patrice and Luis' photos with my cover on them? Anyone?
Hot air wasn't the problem....it was how dry the hot air was! So dry in fact that you couldn't turn on a light switch in our house without taking 220volts to the finger! It was painful just to walk around the house at night and turn things off.
The forced hot air was so bad that it actually dried out our kitchen table and caused it to splinter right down the middle of one of the boards. I guess that can happen when you take wood that is 300+ years old and bring it inside of a house with forced hot air after all that time! [thankfully our table guy is making us a new top...and he's double checking the moisture content to make sure this doesn't happen again!]
We figured we'd take things another step forward and try to add some moisture back into the air with a whole house humidifier. We looked at the do-it-yourself, Home Depot options, and then found out that for a few hundered bucks our neighbor, who is an HVAC contractor, would be able to install a large-scale version for us. He'd deal with all the ductwork, plumbing and electrical connections. Sounded good to me!
Hot air passes over a filter that is filled with water and then picks up that moisture before distributing the air throughout the house. It's made a huge difference already and this humidified air actually feels warmer than regular air straight out of the duct.
A few weekends ago Kelly and I went with Patrick and Kristin to do a bit of salvage/antique shopping. We hit up 3 great spots in the city and had a blast. We weren't looking for anything to specific, but if we found some pieces we liked were would have certainly snatched them up. We did have our eyes open for some stained glass to hang in our entry foyer as well as a buffet/console table for our kitchen. No luck on either of those, however.
Up first on the trip was a small store in the Port Richmond area called ReStore. This place had a few levels filled with everyday items that had been salvaged from older homes. Lots of doors, shutters, sinks, and that sort of stuff. Kel and I are now thinking about getting an old door to replace the modern looking one that leads out to our family room. So I think we'll be heading back to this place at some point! One of the coolest things in the store was the staircase that lead up to the owners private residence on the 3rd floor. It's entirely made of steel and cost her about $10,000. Worth every penny if you ask me! I bet a lot of people don't like the fact that there's no railing and the risers are open.
Stop #2 was not too far away at a place called Provenance "Old Soul Architectural Salvage". This was a huge industrial warehouse filled with interesting things for buildings that have been demolished all over the city. They have everything from bathtubs to granite columns to massive chadeliers that were taken out of churches. Pat and Kris did get some cool metal stars here to hang on thier walls at home.
After this we went to the Architectural Antiques Exchange. This place was high-end all the way. Everything was extremely expensive and we could tell right away it was not the place for us. Hell, they were selling fully enclosed bar rooms for thousands and thousands of dollars. Even some simple stained glass pieces were $750+.
This last photo here of the Brownie camera was actually snagged at a local antiques store near our house. Since we've finally ordered a couch, loveseat and chair for our living room we're starting to think about how to decorate that room. We'll probably hang a number of photos as well as use the digital frame I got for Christmas. We also want to get a few old cameras to have around as well. So this was the first of hopefully a few. Bob-dog is going to provide an old Polaroid or two as well!
Anyway, the one common theme in all three of these places? A sever lack of heat! They're all in old buildings and warehouses that leak like sieves so they just can't afford to heat them. So if you go in the winter months, wear a good coat!
Our final stop in the city was the several block-long strectch of Pine Street called Antique Row. What a dissapointment this was. Only a handfull of shops, not the 12 they advertise, and they were all horrible. Don't waste your time down here.
After checking out these places in Philly we stopped at a custom stained glass shop in Merchantville, NJ called NTS Glass Works. After talking with the guy there we learned that for only a few hundered bucks he could custom make us a stained glass piece to use in our house. We could design it however we wanted and also control what colors were used. Seemed like a win-win for us. We save money over buying an antique that might not be exactly what we want, and we get the design it exactly as we wish. So we're probably going to work bath and forth with him to come up with a design in the next few weeks. Should be a fun process!
Our final stop of the day was at a store called The Painted Cottage. We had already visited this place once a few months and gotten a great piece that we're using as a TV stand in our bedroom. We figured a stop there could help us land this buffet thing we wanted for the kitchen. They didn't really have anything that worked for us, but the owner told us that as long as we didn't mind waiting, they have a carpenter in house who could build us exactly what we wanted using reclaimed wood. So now I have to sketch up some ideas and have him give us a price to see if this make sense.
All in all it was a great day and it's always fun to explore new spots in town. I especially like getting a glimpse into the built worlds past by looking at some of these salaveged pieces. As one of the shop-keepers told us, "nothing is made in America anymore, so we need to hold on to this stuff and make sure it doens't end up in a dump somewhere". Very true.
I know the box says for ages 5-13, but that doesn't stop me from putting a few choice Lego sets on my Christmas list each year.
First up was a heavy-duty dump truck, complete with a couple boulders. [Full discolosure, I already had the front-end loader]
Next up was a tanker truck and gas pump.
And lastly, one of the coolest Lego sets around, the wind turbine and wind turbine transport truck. I didn't get this one for Christmas, but I found it for sale online a few days later and just had to snag it! The wind turbine works great and it's huge...nearly 22" tall. That's pretty big in the Lego world.
This past Saturday night Kel and I didn't feel like cooking so we decided to check out a great take out place not far from our house, called Severino. It's a take-out only type set-up that is chalk-full with amazing pastas, cheeses, breads, olives, and delicious salads.
We got some lobster raviolis, tomato cream sauce, grilled veggies and a couple rolls. All of that for $22 bucks...you can't go wrong with that!
Everything tasted great and we'll definitely be going back here on nights we don't feel like cooking!
My folks were in town this past weekend to celebrate Christmas with us [two weeks late, better late than never] and we made a trip over to Longwood Gardensin Pennsylvania [not to be confused with Windsa Gahdens in Norwood, for those who ride the MBTA] to check out the final weekend of their Christmas display.
We had to forge through a few inches of snow [also known as a major winter storm in these parts] to get there, but it was well worth it. The weather was a bit nippy so we spent most of our time inside the main conservatory. They keep it about 65 degrees in there so it was perfect!
Definitely want to go back in the Spring at some point...and bring my "good" camera with me!