Dimmer.

I’ve been removing our home automation systems in preparation for the move to the desert this weekend. We’re slowly getting used to using light switches again; for the past 3 1/2 years our Philips Hue lights and motion sensors have turned on the lights where we need them.

The system is slowly being safely packed to be taken down to the new house.

After putting in new GE LED bulbs in the fixtures I noticed the dining room table lamp would not come on if the living room lights (the switches are next to each other) were dimmed down. I found this quite weird, since they’re two distinctly separate switches. I could replicate the issue easily: turn the dining room light off, turn the living room lights to the lowest dimmer setting, turn the dining room light on and nothing would happen until I turned the dimmed lights up a little bit. Then the dining room light would come out as well.

A wiring nightmare, right? No!

It turns out the GE LED bulb in the dining room light was supersensitive to the voltage variations from the dimmer, even though the light bulb wasn’t being controlled by the dimmer switch. I swapped out the bulb with another LED bulb and everything worked fine. So then I put the GE bulb in a two-bulb fixture in the bathroom far away from any dimmer switches and turned on the light.

The GE bulb noticeably lags in coming on compared to the other light.

There’s something up with that bulb, so I removed it and put another bulb in its place.

I’m happy I didn’t have to get into a wiring project tonight. We’re just that much closer to moving out on Monday.

Dibs.

The City of Chicago announced today crews will be going through the streets and picking up anything left out for “dibs”.

If you’re not familiar with the practice, here in Chicago, after a big snowfall folks will dig their car out and then leave lawn furniture, old coolers, saw horses, whatever they can get their hands on, to call dibs on their parking spot. We don’t park in the street so I’ve never experienced this first hand, but legend goes, if you call dibs on your spot and someone else parks there, all hell can break loose. I’ve read stories of people smashing out car windows, keying the offending car, etc., because they didn’t respect “dibs”.

I guess the fact that dibs is being called on a public, taxpayer funded street, is besides the point.

Again, I’ve never had to deal with people calling dibs, I just get to play witness, but from I’m not a fan. What happened to helping your neighbor?

After this latest winter storm I can tell you too many Chicagoans are ignoring their civic responsibilities of shoveling the walk in front of their homes. I shudder to think what happens when you get cars into the mix.

Snow.

After a week of bitter cold it’s nice to be able to stand outside in a reasonable layer of cold and enjoy a few moments of winter. My husband and I went for a ride on the prairie while the realtor hosted an Open House at the condo. The Open House proved to be fruitful. There was plenty of interest and we are under contract with the next owners of our current home.

I’ve excited about this. While the purchase of the house in Tucson was not dependent on the sale, it makes things a lot easier for our move. The timeline is coming together nicely. We’ll have plenty of time to get situated in Tucson before the intense summer heat kicks in.

In the meanwhile, I’ll enjoy some snow in the Prairie State.

Thank You.

We used to ride the CTA ‘L’ quite a bit, but since the pandemic became a thing, riding public transportation has really happened a lot for us.

I miss it.

With an ‘L’ stop right outside the building, it’s very convenient when going to visit the rest of the family or doing pretty much anything in the city. When the trains were crowded I would always enjoy watching other people, though admittedly it could be a little dicey on certain lines from time to time.

One habit I developed when we moved to Chicago was always thanking the train operator on our way out, if we were close enough to the front so they could hear us. I admire these hard working people a lot; they keep the trains on time, they work in all sorts of weather conditions, and they have to deal with a lot of weird people on their train. The operator is always pleasant in their response.

This makes me smile.

Snow.

It’s our first big snow storm of the winter here in Chicago. I walked the neighborhood this afternoon. There’s around eight inches of snow on the ground in our area. It doesn’t really slow things down in our fine city.

I am happy I don’t have to shovel it.

2021.

I am really looking forward to these signs in the neighborhood being replaced for the 2021 season. With everything going on with the pandemic in 2020, the relevant versions were never installed and looking at the 2019 season signs was just a reminder that life was way out of balance.

Let’s hope they put the 2021 signs up and soon! Though honestly, they usually go up in March.

Leftovers.

So either the movie production company left the Christmas decorations up or the folks on the street that was used for the movie set wanted to make a splash of their own. Either way, the decorations are still up and they’re quite lovely.

Decorate.

Lincoln Square here in Chicago always does it up nice for the holidays. Even if the streets aren’t as bustling as usual for the holiday season, it’s still quite pretty to look at.

Pink.

The neighbors down the street have opted to go with a pink motif for their holiday decorating. There’s a part of me that’s wondering if this associated with the Christmas movie being filmed in the neighborhood, as this house is just a couple of houses down from the house their using as a film set. (Hence the cone on the street).

This was taken at 5:00 PM in the afternoon and it is quite striking. I don’t really think of this color as being all that Christmas-y, but it is certainly festive.