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7/9/12

Cross Breezes Don't Cut It When It's 110 At The In-Town Ramshackle...


It is hot.
Hot hot hot hot.

Thanks to my late diagnosed asthma which I don't think is really asthma, we're not going back and forth as we thought this summer between our off grid passive solar prefab home and The In-Town Ramshackle, but staaaaaaaaaaying in Deltaville, on the water. It's so hot there's nothing else to do but get in the water, and eat.


Luscious Figs
Quarter ripe figs. Seriously, just pick the ripe ones, ok? I cut off the very ends, fyi; the chickens love them. Drizzle with (real, local, not Chinese-imported-pollen-removed-freak) honey. Top with your favorite savory: here, prosciutto, or balsamic drizzled, or goat cheese... or all! Roast / broil on a baking sheet until you can smell it all crisping and oozing and being all luscious.

Nekkid Coleslaw
1 medium cabbage, shredded thin
1 large mild onion, shredded thin and minced
lots of honey drizzled over the cabbage
glugs of a great but mild vinegar
glugs of good olive oil
lots of sea salt sprinkled, to taste

Toss... toss really well. It should be sweet, yet tangy, yet you can still taste the cabbage.
Set aside a day or two then toss more before serving. Sometimes less is more.

We're still figuring things out at the In-Town Ramshackle.
What can I say? Even the best intentions and plans, once you start living them, sometimes don't fit.

This old 1800s farm house has great passive solar cross breeze functionality. I have always argued for function and just getting over the fact that summer is hot- "ACCLIMATE yourself!" I chastised. Heck, I never think of air conditioning unless it's over 98. And then? "Jump in the water if it's hot."
In the city I argue, "Your office building is not supposed to be 50 degrees in August! It is BAD for you to be living at 60 in 90 degree days!"

But how does that compete with 110 degree days? My asthma kicked in. I caved, and got an air conditioning unit. Sure, it's set to 80. But these 100+ days are not historically natural to Virginia... and this summer-loving, heat-embracing Virginia Gal now knows what Arizona and Texas have long explained: 110 DEGREES IS NOT FUN! Even on the water.
Re-Thinking The Ramshackle
We thought at least the bedrooms were well laid out; now they have switched, and morphed- the "Boy's Room" is now the Children's Room; the "Girl's Room" is now Our Room, "Our Room" is now Another Parlor With A Fold Out Bed. 

Because we can't decide how we're actually using the living space, we now have not one,
not two,

not three,

but four living rooms.

It doesn't make sense.
I'm too irritated by the heat and bad internet connection to do any deep design thinking this week.
The dogs are fighting. The children are whining. The chickens are.. oh, whoops, I forgot to close the coop.

Welcome to The Dog Days Of Summer... and: In The South.
At least all this heat and irritability is rediscovered in winter as sweet jam...
and pickles...
Making jam, with a conference call.

But in the meantime, it's HOT.
Thank goodness there's water...

Funky Nautical
Here's a friend's mod 1970s House That's A Ship. It is located right on the edge of the channel. So you're playing on the beach and just FEET AWAY large vessels pass... it's crazy cool.
Check it out:

I love the sleeping porch... and the tucked bedrooms, how the lot/ one end of the house to the other end goes from wooded to open, exposed, extremely sunny beach.

Also, last week I mentioned that architecture should not just encompass passive solar / energy efficiency / the building but also food.  This week I'd like to mention that even when we purchase better functioning / energy efficient appliances / tools, it's important to challenge oneself to conserve even more and further reduce consumption.  And that includes air conditioning. Never set below 80.

Acting Green vs. Buying Green 

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