Let there be lights!

Our inside and outside fixtures arrived today.  Only one was broken, which was not bad!  We found these on line.  The fixtures are made in the USA, all parts are from the states, and they were a reasonable price.
Funny thing, when I called the company I talked to a man named John.  He is the owner and assured me all the pieces, from the wire to the screws to the glass, are made in the states.  Kind of like it when the owner of the company answers the telephone.
We liked the prices too.....much less  than similar products we found on line.  Hopefully they turn out to be quality products.
The exterior walls were foamed and filled this week.  We have 2 x 6 construction, so our exterior walls should be at an R-24 or so, hopefully this will keep us extra warm.
When we first had the idea of building, I wanted a home with some solar, wind or geothermal options that would reduce our energy use, and reduce our negative impact on the environment.  Then I learned how expensive it was.
Most people will look at payback periods.  But when you hit the mid 60s, payback periods tend to have a different meaning.  It may take 10 years to pay back a solar system....that means I'd be 75 or so to recoup my investment.  Did I mention how initially expensive it was?
So, I opted for smaller steps.  We have 2 x 6 walls, which make the home easier to heat and cool.  We have high energy efficient windows.  Gas fireplace is pilotless.  All the appliances are Energy Star certified.  High efficiency washing machine.  High efficiency two stage furnace.  And an on demand water heater.
Would I have liked the solar powered heating and air conditioning unit?  Yes, but financing the $24,000  unit was not a possibility.
I know there are some tax incentives, but the units have to be paid for now.
And I don't mean to get political, but here it goes.  We, as a nation, need to find a way to make solar and wind power affordable for individuals like us, and you.   Not giant wind turbines in the yard, but smaller roof mounted units.  (Google Jay Leno's garage for an idea of what I mean.)  We need to design and build houses that use less energy.
We are a nation that has always risen to a scientific challenge: the atomic bomb, a man on the moon, the space shuttles, the Mars rover....all of these because as a nation we dared to dream the impossible.
We can do the same with energy.  We need to find a way to make it affordable and practical for people like me, and you.
Anyway, here are some photo updates.
Hope you like them.

We included some doo dads to give the house character

front of the garage....

Our shipment of lights...plus a bag of bubble wrap.  Still have my Jimmy Buffet leis!!
One exterior light.....hope it's not too big
That white box is our on demand water heater.

Walls are insulated....drywall appears to be next.


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