Saturday, October 21, 2017

The Mavericks in Cuba

My fabulous client Ed Friedland is the bass player in the Grammy award winning band The Mavericks. They went to Cuba this year to play with some of the masters of Cuban music and record a special for PBS. Check out Rolling Stone magazine's cool video.

Cracks in Your House

Are you worried about cracks in your walls, foundation or floor? Most houses have some cracks. Here's an article from the 2-10 Home Warranty site that discusses the warning signs of problematic cracks.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Great Home on View Lot in Tucson Mountains


Lovely, spacious, well-built masonry home in the glorious Tucson Mountains. Enjoy the cool air, starry nights and wildlife only 11 minutes from UofA and four minutes from Pima Community College! Great view of the Catalinas. Lots of hiking and biking opportunities close to home. 
Gigantic sunny living room with fireplace and picture window. 
Elegant foyer leads to formal dining room. 
Efficient eat-in country kitchen with oak cabinets, smooth surface countertops, walk-in pantry and work desk. Family room is next to back porch. 
Three bedrooms and two baths, plus a powder room adjacent to the inside laundry room. Ceramic and Saltillo tile throughout. Dual-pane windows. 
Family room is next to indoor laundry with sink. Family room door leads to covered back porch. Well-constructed ramada expands your living and entertaining space to the great outdoors. Abundant storage inside and out. The interactive floor plan is here.
Two car garage plus paved driveway with room for more cars or toys. A large gravel area awaits your ideas for gardening or more storage. Lots of privacy on your 0.39 acre lot. Offered at $275,000.

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Has Equifax Ruined Your Credit?

As you probably know, Equifax allowed the credit data of millions of consumers to be breached. If you want to know whether you were a victim, first you have to give up your right to sue them. 

Someone could be charging stuff in your name as we speak. Here is an interesting article with advice on how to monitor your credit.

Guess I'd better get my free credit report and see whether my identity has been stolen. 

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Ciudad del Alimento

Don't have time for a trip to the lovely and lively country south of the border? Going to Food City is like shopping in Mexico. Norteño music greets you as you enter, and all the signs are in Spanish and English. You can get a piñata or a statue of La Virgen de Guadalupe or a memorial candle. The produce is cheap, but never organic. 

It's really pretty amazing. Many of the customers and cashiers are speaking Spanish. 
You'll find the usual assortment of dulces, principally made of corn syrup, sugar and food coloring. But it's fun to be dazzled by all the colors. 
They even have a health supplement section to counteract the effects of los dulces. 
I was amazed to see giant bags of chia seeds, a staple of my vegetarian diet. I make chocolate chia pudding, flavored the Mexican way with cinnamon and chili powder. It reminded me of how delighted I was to find chia seeds for sale in Pátzcuaro a few years ago. I thought I just got lucky, but the shelves at Food City suggest chia seeds are staple of Mexican cuisine. It's got me hankering to head south again. 

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Free Water

If you have central air conditioning, and you're not harvesting the condensation, you're missing out on free water. Many air conditioners have a condensation line that dumps water out of a pipe right next to the house. Water near the house is a problem for a few reasons. It could cause land subsidence, which could damage your foundation. It can also attract termites and other wood destroying organisms like mildew. 

So grab that water! Buy a garden hose fitting like the one in the photo at a hardware store. Attach a garden hose, and put the other end on a thirsty plant. 

Being the geek that I am, I got to wondering how much water this system produces. A few days ago when the temperature was 95 and the humidity was only 26%, I collected the water from the condensation line in a measuring cup. I was impressed to find I collected 0.7 gallons per hour! 

Someone pointed out that this water doesn't have a lot of minerals in it, which is true, but it also doesn't have the nasty chlorine that comes out of the hose that's attached to the hose bib. It doesn't seem to hurt the plants. Here's my new Mexican Honeysuckle, about to get a nice drink. 

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Staying Cool When It's 107

When you have to wear a fur coat all summer, you look for any opportunity to cool off.