Two Winter Poems

Winter Poem by Anonymous

It’s winter in Wisconsin & the gentle breezes blow,
seventy miles an hour at 35 below.

Oh, how I love Wisconsin, where the snow’s up to your butt,
& you take a breath of winter & your nose gets frozen shut.

Yes, the weather here is wonderful so I guess I’ll hang around.
I could never leave Wisconsin cuz I’m frozen to the ground.

Windowfrost
Winter Haiku by George Trudeau

Old Man Winter knocks,
etching icy window ferns.
Tropical dream blooms.

Preventing Ice Dams

How do ice dams occur?  They start when attic heat melts the snow next to the roofing.  The water then flows to the eaves, where it freezes and forms the ice dam.  As the process continues, the water/ice backs up under the roofing, causing damage.  Ice dams are common on houses with moderate roof slopes, limited insulation, and little ventilation.

Ice dams do not occur on unheated buildings, so the idea is to have a cold roof.  How to do this?  Make sure you have adequate ceiling and/or roof insulation and air flow in and out of the attic.

Insulation:  Ceiling or roof insulation of R-38 or more is the best.  Any gaps in the ceiling around wires, pipes, chimneys, etc. should be sealed before insulating.

Ventilation:  Most attics need about a square inch of ventilation for each square foot of ceiling, and vent areas should be placed low and high.  Plastic or cardboard air chutes can be installed between rafters near the soffit to prevent the insulation from blocking the air flow.

Temporary and Emergency Measures:  You can remove the snow with a "roof rake."  Don’t chop the ice or use a torch to get rid of the snow, you could damage the roof.  You can also use water from a garden hose or heater cables to make channels through the ice dam.

Of course, see your contractor for more detailed information and make sure you educate yourself before tackling any of these to avoid damaging your roof.  With snow and ice melting and refreezing this time of year, it’s a good idea to check it out!

Thanks to Inspeca-Homes, St. Paul.

Super Target or Neighborhood Store?

Target_carts_2 I admit it!  I was looking forward to the convenience of having a Super Target near by.  I was driving to Target and Rainbow every week anyway.  I might as well cut down on the mileage.

However, the new Super Target has been nothing but a disappointment.  It’s the most poorly run Target I’ve seen.  The don’t carry all the products that other Target’s carry, and they’re out of stock for half the items they do carry.  Every time I go, I leave more frustrated.

Then my friend said, "Why are you surprised?  It’s not a grocery store.  It’s a convenience store." 

Huh?  No it’s not.  They have lot’s of great stuff.  Right?  Well maybe not.  Now every time I go, I compare it to a convenience store.  He’s right.  It’s just bigger.  They have some food, but not everything you need.  They have some clothes, but not everything you need.  They have car supplies and sporting goods, but only the very basics.  And they have every possible salty or sweet snack that you don’t need in abundance.  It’s a convenience store.

Only it’s way more convenient to go to Oxendale’s. 

Sorry neighborhood stores.  I strayed.  But I’m back now.  I’ll leave my trips to Target for when I need cheap soda for a party.  If they have it in stock!