Thursday, October 23, 2008


Houses as old as mine (built in 1894) often did not have any heat ducted to the upstairs. There would be registers in the floor to allow warmth from downstairs to rise. At some point, a furnace was put in the attic, so I have two. Until the swamp cooler was winterized, I couldn't fire up the attic furnace because it's tied in to the same ductwork.

Here's where having two ladders comes in handy. I can climb one to haul the other up to the deck without trying to navigate through the house with it.
I needed to get up there to change the filter. You can see the old and new filters above. Yech. I sprang for the super-duper filter because it's pretty dusty here.

I keep the upstairs thermostat at 58, so it doesn't have to run very often. There's enough residual heat coming up the stairwell and I have lots of quilts. Tonight I'll need them; it's supposed to get down to 25. Brrrr!

I kept the kitchen warm today with a little supplemental heat from the oven – making another batch of roasted tomatoes:
I really liked the ones from the muffin tins in the last batch, so I used two tins this time.

Whipped up a batch of creamed chard, too. Sautee shallots in olive oil and butter, add the chard and cook until it's wilted, then add some heavy cream and let it cook until the cream thickens, stirring frequently.
Serve it with pasta or as a side dish. Yum.

Hope you're staying warm, too!


  1. You hauled one ladder up another ladder?? You are my hero! And here someone was complaining about cleaning the vents and the furnace - all he needed to lug was a vacuum cleaner down the stairs.

    The chard looks yummy!

  2. Thanks for reminding me that I need to change my filter before I turn my furnace on. I'm almost scared to look at the old one...

    Creamed chard looks beautiful. I think I might make it and throw in some French green lentils...

  3. I agree with everyone else... that chard, super yum!

  4. My Grandma's house is 108 years old, no insulation at all!

    The tomatoes and the chard look delicious, I've never tried chard but I think I'm willing to do so.

    I found your blog a month or more ago and have turned in to a daily reader. I enjoy it very much...but I think this is the first time I have left a comment.

    Write on Kitt!

  5. Aren't you industrious? Next you'll tell me your garden is all cleaned up. I should stop making a dent in the couch and do something too.

  6. I love your house! And cheers for keeping the thermostat at 58. If I lived alone I would do that for sure. Unfortunately I live with wimps who like it toasty warm at about 70.

  7. Mmm, I made creamed chard a couple of nights ago. I only had red chard, though, so it ended up looking a bit like it was swimming in Strawberry Quik. If you didn't look too closely, though, it tasted excellent.

  8. I love your home. I'll bet there's much interesting character in the architecture.

  9. Manisha, that seemed the easiest way to do it. Eight-foot ladders are tricky to maneuver!

    Vicki, it gets cold enough there to need a furnace? I like the lentils idea.

    Thanks, mimi!

    Hi Luke! Thanks for visiting. Is your grandma's house brick? Do try chard. If you like spinach, you might like chard even more. I do.

    Betts, the garden is still in situ. That's another big project I am sad to contemplate.

    Thanks, Pam! I do turn it up on occasion, but 68's usually my max. And the thermostat is programmed to turn it back down if I forget to.

    Lisa, that's funny. Bet it tasted fine though!

    Thanks, Joanne! My favorite parts are the window seat and the front porch.

  10. Roasted tomatoes are the best and that creamed swiss chard is looking good!