Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Fun with fiberglass

We've mapped the human genome, so why haven't we come up with a better way to insulate a house than wrapping it in fuzzy blankets of fiberglass?

Spent a truly hideous day yesterday installing insulation in the ceiling of our remodeled rooms. We were supposed to have a sub-contractor do this, but our builder suggested we do it ourselves. Building codes here require R-38 insulation in ceilings It's like stuffing a g.d. Futon into your ceiling joists. That's a slight exaggeration, but believe me, it's thick and unweildy and surprisingly heavy. I suppose I should just be grateful that we don't live in Maine, where they probably make you use R-600. We had to put on uncomfortable protective gear, including horribly uncomfortable breathing masks and goggles, and still the fiberglass got on our wrists and all over J's neck.

And you can't just jam it up there. You have to cut channels through it so it neatly surrounds your plumbing and electrical. You can't have air pockets. Never mind that prior to renovation, there was no insulation up there at all-- now we're fussing about freaking air pockets!

Now we're both slightly itchy. And speaking of itchy, one of Mad Scientist's friends tossed some poison ivy leaves down that back of his shirt. Oh, ha ha! What a funny, funny joke! MS is horribly allergic to poison ivy. Right now, his back is covered with tiny, fluid filled blisters. In about a week, he'll look like a sailor in the British navy, circa 1812, who's just gotten a taste of the cat 'o nine tails. I'm almost inclined to call the kid's mother, but I don't think he was being deliberately malicious, and I hate to be one of those mothers who complains to other mothers about their children.
I have no fun renovation photos to share. There's not an exciting visual difference between insulated walls and non-insulated. But I'll share a picture of my Siberian Irises. That's the new part of the house, off to the side.

Also, a picture of my dog, Sancho, who does a hilarious imitation of a human when he sits on the couch. He does this all the time: scoots his little bottom onto the seat and leaves his front legs on the floor. Maybe he thinks we'll let him sit on the furniture if he looks as human as possible.

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