my azimuth is gemini


Why, thanks for asking! Hmmm, what did I do this weekend… well, let’s put it in list form:

1. Went to Rural Vermont. Tessa, Lucy and I went to visit her family near Brattleboro, which is a pretty awesome place. The Lulubeans and I made our first pumpkin pie, mostly because that’s what I’ve called her since she was born, and well, because pie is good for you:


When it rained, we were stuck inside, so we decided to work on our letters. When Lucy pointed to a ladder making a bunch of H’s, we decided to go through the whole house and spell her name with pictures. The rules? You couldn’t move anything, and you couldn’t use existing letters on posters or anything. I gotta say, the Y was much harder to find than you’d think:


But it was so fun we decided to do Mommy’s name as well:


2. Heated Up Our Farmhouse. Because I’m a spaz and I hate our baseboard hot-water heaters, I decided to give Tessa an early Xmas present: I got the existing plankboard in our bedroom ripped out, and put electric radiant heat under it. Then topped it with engineered wood featuring a thin layer of cherry wood on top… and I have to say, it looks pretty cool.


Radiant heat is an odd feeling; the air doesn’t get that kind of dry warmness about it, but the room is 70 degrees regardless. The best part is walking around on it with bare feet, which was unthinkable past October around here. Using engineered wood isn’t as efficient as tile, but a tile bedroom here would look ridiculous – and besides, since the house is solar, the electricity is free. If you’ve never felt a radiant heat floor, I highly recommend it.

3. Heated Up Art. By taking out the baseboard heaters, it meant Lucy’s room next door no longer had functioning radiators, but the problem was solved with these awesome porcelain wall-mounted Eco-Heaters, which toast up your room using 75% less electricity. They’re awesome – they don’t get too hot to burn small kids, and you can paint them any color you want. So I let Lucy paint hers:




4. Aimed the Satellite Dish. Getting satellite TV is one of those things that can be done without any visit from any company as long as you know a couple of things and aren’t afraid of picking up your own bootstraps. Just do this:

• buy a DVR (like these that come with more memory than the ones at Best Buy)

• get a satellite dish on eBay (I got a DirecTV HD 5 LNB dish with all the connectors shipped in two days for, like, 70 bucks)

• look up which way to aim your satellite… there are three elements to aiming your dish: the elevation (how high to point it), the azimuth (which direction to point it), and the skew (how much you turn the dish like a steering wheel)

• aim it, bolt it down, string the coax inside to your DVR, call DirecTV to activate it, and then WATCH THE HEELS IN HIGH-DEF FROM THE MIDDLE OF NOWHERE!


0 thoughts on “my azimuth is gemini

  1. monheric

    I got to hang out with a friend who is miraculously working back from a near-fatal stroke two years ago – she’s up and walking and an inspiration.
    Seeing the great NC map on your wall reminds me to recommend Asheville if you haven’t been that way yet – a little pocket of funky/hippy/new age/liberalistas surrounded by mountains. Blue Ridge Parkway, wow!

  2. Annie H.

    I’m in a fit of elation seeing Lulu’s painting–such an echo of one of my own timeless pieces (still preserved in a frame at Mom’s) featuring the exact same crooked rainbow/stick figure/high line of sky…so interesting how the imagination establishes itself with inexplicable similarity across so much time and space.
    I miss you all, is the undercurrent of all this…
    Because I have been blabbing about my 40th birthday party on New Year’s Eve for so long to so many people (you commenters are ALL welcome, btw! If you are local CH/Carrboro, or will be around here on NYE, message me at hushpuppymix at yahoo! I would seriously love to meet/see you!) I can’t really undo it at this point, and will have to miss the gathering at the farm. However, I’m still planning on LA in early Spring. Don’t give up on me.

  3. cullen

    Yeah, excellent NC map awall. Us western North Carolinians loves our topographic relief.
    Hope your cornucopiae overFLOWeth and I too look forward to your trad’nal carving family pic.
    Speaking of mtn. boys, no thoughts on last nite’s precariously won #600 for ‘ol Roy?

  4. kjf

    ok so i am walking around my house all day looking for a K somewhere! (but a ceiling fan is great for a Y)
    and jje – thank you for that book recommendation!

  5. emma

    Gawd! You did all that and I couldn’t even find time to take down Thanksgiving decorations and put up a Christmas tree. Very impressive.
    Annie – I hope you have a great 40th bday party. I hope it is as good as mine was and I’ll bet you could get the same great lead singer I had at mine to perform at yours. I have heard you have an in with him.


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