9 January 12 


One of my favorite parts of Harpoon House is the siding. Early in the process when developing the initial concept for our house we were really interested in the idea of aging gracefully… And that certain materials, when allowed to show their age, can be extremely long lived with very little maintenance. I’ve been noticing lately that this aging has begun to happen in a very visible way. Read more »

 5 January 12 


News came in today that Harpoon House has been awarded LEED Platinum. Its been a long, long process and its good to be done. Our house went counter to many of the assumptions that LEED for homes takes (heating load too small for mini-split heat pumps, no landscape irrigation), but through a few appeals we were able to proceed. Its exciting that despite the setbacks, and without currently having any power generation, smart design was able win us a Platinum rating.

 6 December 11 

Energy From the Sun

This time of year our upper ecoroof starts looking a little scrappy. It gets a lot of sun and is generally too hot and dry for anything growing up there to be very happy. So recently after talking with some of our neighbors who have been enjoying the benefits of their solar panels, we’ve begun to look into the possibility of installing a small array on our upper roof. Read more »

 28 October 11 

Putting Up / Winding Down

As the season transitions, many weekends have been filled with marathon canning sessions, putting up the last of the season’s bounty, as well as getting the garden prepared for the winter. Other than an early experiment with pickled carrots, this is the first season that I have undertaken pickling and preserving with seriousness, and I’m hooked! Read more »

 23 September 11 

First signs of Fall

Aside from the lower sun and rain in the forecast, there hasn’t been a whole lot of change to indicate that fall is setting in… But there is something in the air, and our ecoroofs seem to know it before everything else. Read more »

 21 September 11 

Library Ladder

At long last we finally have our library ladder for loft access. Read more »

 7 September 11 

Green Appraisal Addendum

Like many people out there, with mortgage rates as low as they are right now, we are looking into refinancing. So I wanted to bring up something that Earth Advantage is doing: In the process of refinancing, buying, or getting a construction loan, banks need to know that what they are lending for is a sound investment so they send out an appraiser to determine what this property or proposed property might be worth. Unfortunately appraisers tend to only look at a handful of standardized metrics for determining the value of a home (size, number of bathrooms, garage, etc… ), and green measures are rarely if ever looked at or given value. Some of this is because of basic lack of education on the appraiser’s side, and some of it is lack of ability to give evidence of value for green measures (for reasons like a lack of comperables). Read more »

 31 July 11 

Garlic is as Good as Ten Mothers

This weekend we harvested our first batch of garlic, and we’re pretty sold on having it as a regular in our garden. Read more »

 18 July 11 


Despite the cool rainy weather, our ecoroofs are telling us that summer may in fact be here. Read more »

 10 June 11 


This time last year, there were portions of our yard that were either completely barren or choked with weeds, and as we get everything into shape we are developing strategies for keeping everything from getting out of control. Read more »

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