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Posts by Nomama

We're driving through Indianapolis twice, to Wisconsin today and back on Monday, and I'm wondering about good, short, preferably inexpensive eating/playing/general awesomeness stops in Indianapolis. We may go to the Childrens' Museum on the way back, if there's time. Thanks in advance for any ideas/advice.
Arg. Arrrgggghhhhh! Why close the CC accounts? This is a desperate situation and you have no reserves whatsoever. You don't close the account - especially not your oldest account - you give the cards to your accountant with the understanding that they would only be used in emergency. Why? Because if you have some serious trouble right now - you have NO safety margin. In a true emergency you could use the cards to stave off disaster. Like, say, losing your...
Our monthly mortgage payment on a 15-year fixed for a four-bedroom city house is well under $500, less than a tenth of our monthly net. Because the sale price was low, the taxes are reasonable, too. We bought in '95 in a midwestern city that is foolishly underappreciated.
The low-tech way to figure out approximate mileage is to fill the tank to auto shutoff (don't top off), zero out the trip odometer, and drive (try not to mix city and highway miles for more accuracy). Then fill up again to auto shutoff, and divide gallons purchased into miles on the trip odometer. Of course this won't give you feedback on specific behaviors - your RPMS will help with that, though.
Eh, it comes back. I love knowing it's being used, and if you save it too long, the elastic breaks down, it looks shabby, the clothes are out of style... keep it in circulation.
Existing geothermal systems are the way they are because they make sense that way. Trenching the yard by yourself is not exactly simple, either. However - most houses have an "underground cave" in the form of a basement, which can make a difference in temps throughout the house if a whole-house fan is used. Older houses are built to take advantage of natural cooling in a very low-tech, attractive way, too. And we have a lot to learn from traditional cooling methods in...
Also, the car has a moonroof, which is probably the most cooling for drag. I don't have tint on the windows, but DH does, and that makes an amazing difference. Starting with a cool car helps delay the inevitable, too, so I'm actually using the dorky window shade and looking for shady rather than close-in parking.
I'm getting about 30mpg city and *less* highway in a 23/26 '95 Subaru, because it seems the most efficient speed for this car is 40-45, and I have to constantly feed gas on the highway to keep it at that speed (it slows to 45 going downhill, too). In the city, I'm coasting a lot and more importantly, anticipating lights. If I know I'm not going to make it, no gas, just coast up. The only time I accelerate is when I can make the light and avoid sitting at the...
Arg! I wrote a long post in support of Cleveland and lost it. If you'd consider Pgh, Minneapolis, or Louisville, you should look here too. I'm a DC transplant to the west side and love it. We're facing a possible relocation for work and it is just killing us; among other things, our standard of living is going to plummet if we leave. We've been a single (relatively modest) income family for years now, living in a four bedroom house near the beach, able to pay my...
The most affordable organic wool rugs I've found are handwoven Middle Eastern tribal rugs on ebay. These are "lesser" rugs with design problems or defects that would not appeal to collectors/investors but are perfectly fine for home use. Do a little research to be sure you are getting a high enough knot-per-inch count (which varies by rug type) and a softer wool with native plant dyes. The semi-antique ones (25+ years old) are the most likely to have true natural dyes. ...
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