charging stations > gas stations

charging station

The electric car charging station at Kirkwood Mountain resort has six Tesla chargers and two by Clipper Creek. This was put in two years ago, and during ski season it's pretty busy.

What's notable is that there isn't a gas station at Kirkwood. There's like a gas pump with one type of gas (which is usually out of order) a 1/2 -mile before you enter the resort and that's it. The next gas station is a good 13 miles away.

Feels like these electric charging stations are the future. Why go to a gas station when you can charge your car at home, at work, or at your destination (like at Target via Volvo). Do have to love the direction where all this is going ->  no more gas, no more gas station visits, and hopefully renewable energy to power your car. Bright future for sure.

 

BMW iX3 concept

Here's the BMW iX3 concept version released today. I'm hoping the designers move towards a sportier/outdoorsy take rather than a people/kid mover. We take our X3 out in the snow, to triathlons, to other races, and we're putting road bikes and other gear in or on top of it.

I read the range will be 250 miles to start but 300-400 mile range would be nice. Who knows what the final specs will really be until it actually starts shipping. Apparently, iX3 will be made from China which makes sense from a demand/volume/production standpoint and China's strategic investments in lithium.

2025 is when we'll do a realistic evaluation to see if the BMW iX3 works for us, that or the Tesla Y. By then, range and features should be really good and hopefully costs will be reasonable/par with current car prices.

tankless water heater redux

Takagi T-H3M-DV-N
Takagi T-H3M-DV-N

The last time I wrote about tankless water heaters was in 2006 and our current water heater is still going strong.

You could say I'm jinxing it but we have a 9 year tank that's 16 years old. We might be able to get another 4 years out of it or it might go within the next year. Probably best to be prepared and still best to wait it out.

The tankless water heater I'm looking at now is the Takagi T-H3M-DV-N. It's a condensing natural gas version with a 0.93 energy factor, 1/2" gas line, 6.6 gallons per minute flow, and a 15 year lifespan/warranty. It's for indoor use and vents via pvc.

What's new(er) in tankless water heater technology is the fact that they're able to use a 1/2" gas line whereas before you might have needed to upgrade to a 3/4" gas line which would've been an expensive retrofit. The condensing feature is new which drives the efficiency to the higher 0.93 energy factor. Also, the use of pvc for venting and then the whole connecting to a network and managing stuff via smartphone (overkill) are also new.

These newer tankless water heater units are now cheaper and also cheaper to install because of what I've mentioned already with no gas line retrofit and pvc venting. Before, cost to install would be $3,000 – $4,000 and now we're looking at under $1,500.

Takagai, Noritz, and Rinnai are brands that folks seem to like.

 

the right color blue

I think our house is the right color blue (Kelly-Moore: Postcard Perfect KM3118-2/#7d9dbc for color but Benjamin Moore paint done via Cydney Ortzow Painting).

We asked if our house was too blue 13 years ago and it might have been without the landscaping and plants. As an aside, I need to put up the American flag again and if we switch out from DirecTV to DirecTV Now, we can take down the satellite dish.

Another aside, based on How many times does the average person move? (11.4 times!) we're on the opposite end of that spectrum. My number is 8 times.

Built in 1924, the house still looks pretty good.

 

no knead bread w/ sonora wheat

no knead bread

This is that no knead bread recipe from the New York Times from Jim Lahey/Mark Bittman. It's stupidly easy to make and if you have some of my bread, you're not allowed to put guacamole on it. F'ing avocado toast, gtfoh.

My only variation is 2 cups of all purpose flour with 1 cup of Sonora wheat flour – get from Eatwell Farm if they have it, otherwise Grist and Toll, or wherever you can find it online. The Sonora wheat makes it a little more interesting and gives it some flavor.

Acme levain bread is like $5. Pizzaiolo's country loaf – which is very good with an almost burnt crust and not quite sourdough flavor – is like $10 and some usual wait time in line. The no knead bread is maybe like $1 worth of flour: it's just flour, salt, instant active yeast, and water (and an oven that can go 500 degrees and a cast iron dutch oven).

Surprisingly easy to make bread and just as good if not better. Now part of my TFL biscuits and skillet corn bread rotation. Next up is dinner rolls and I need to figure those out.

usual dinner list

eatwell farm veggies
fruits and veggies from Eatwell Farm

Usual dinner ideas/running list to mainly keep track of recipes we like and what we're eating:

  • roasted chicken and chicken stock
  • steak frites (hanger steak w/ anchovy butter, arugula, fries)
  • buffalo or turkey burgers w/ fries
  • pasta bolognese (fine, it's spaghetti)
  • beef broccoli
  • pork chops (w/ some vegetable and starch)
  • tonkatsu or chicken katsu
  • shrimp or fish tacos w/ mango salsa (and red salsa)
  • ham and cheese quiche, spinach and mushroom quiche w/ salad
  • lentil and Swiss chard soup (w/ cornbread)

chocolate chip cookies, brownies, and cake etc…

chocolate chip cookies
cookies! photo from Star Tribune

"Go to" and "to try" recipes, I'll keep adding to this list: