Is your kitchen the next battleground over the greenhouse gases?

Natural gas has been viewed as a “clean” alternative, but it got that moniker back when the lion’s share of electricity was generated by coal. With coal on the dwindle, there is a new interest in what natural gas leaves behind. For every million BTUs generated by coal, between 214 and 228 pounds of carbon dioxide are released into the atmosphere. While cleaner, natural gas still releases 117 pounds of CO2 while propane releases 139 pounds for each million BTUs. But that’s only part of the natural gas story. Extraction of natural gas can leak as much as 9 percent in methane – a gas 34-times stronger than carbon dioxide at trapping heat over a century and 86-times stronger over 20 years.

For those still smart enough to be following the Paris climate accord, strong reductions in greenhouse gas production are translating into rapid diminishment of gas appliances and home heating use. Europe is looking at gas-based appliances being phased out in the next decade.

Closer to home, Berkley, California, became the first U.S. municipality to ban the installation of new gas lines into new multi-family buildings. And they’re not alone. Over 50 cities and counties in California are looking at similar bans while the state is also looking at the issue. The reason is simple. It’s estimated that a quarter of greenhouse gases produced by a building come from gas appliances and heating.

(more…)

Atmos

Atmos Energy crews continued to work around the clock to restore service and detect potential gas leaks after an explosion Friday killed one and injured four more (Photo by Tom Erickson).

Five days after a home explosion claimed the life of a sixth-grader and sent four of her family members to the hospital, Atmos Energy is still working to ascertain what happened — and to detect leaks throughout two neighborhoods.

Monday, the National Transportation Safety Board was on hand to begin investigating the explosion as well. Residents at the Chapel Creek apartments were evacuated on Sunday, and yesterday more streets were evacuated as more gas leaks were discovered. (more…)

gaston terrace

The Gaston Terrace modern marvel at 7326 Coronado Ave. tops our open houses this week.

Every Thursday, we comb through all that weekend’s open houses to find you the ones you’ve just got to see. The CandysDirt Open Houses of the Week column is your insider’s view of what’s hot right now.

This week, our houses range in price from $330K to $1.195 million. You’ll find the Gaston Terrace modern pictured above, a budget-friendly Claremont cutie, and more. Let us know what you think of our choices, and if you know of any we should feature next week!

(more…)

7243 Casa Loma Front

I always told our kids that, in our family, C’s were not acceptable. This was an A or B house. (Call me an early Tiger Mom!) But I may have to tweak my  House Rules for this angel of a new home at 7243 Casa Loma, in  the C Streets.

Casa Loma dr

(more…)

5638 Gaston Front

When Vlora Alberga bought the home at 5638 Gaston in 2006, she had been living in Dallas just a year, scouring the city for the right home. When she walked inside this stucco clad 1920s Mediterranean revival, the pigeons that had taken roost descended upon her. To say it was a fixer-upper would be a vast understatement.

The first thing she did was renovate the 640-square-foot guest cottage in the backyard, which is an income-producing property with a full bath, full kitchen, and washer and dryer. She moved in and began the long process of restoring the dilapidated home into the incredible property it is today. Surely you’ve driven by and admired the lovely yellow door and beautiful, rolling front lawn.

Since the laborious restoration, Alberga’s home has become a magnet for magazines and home tours, making the cover of Dallas-Fort Worth House and Home in 2008 and the Swiss Avenue Mother’s Day Home Tour the same year, the 2012 D Magazine list of “Most Beautiful Houses in Dallas,” and the 2013 Junius Heights Home Tour. Visitors have always been amazed by this colorful home with engaging details and Alberga’s “French Carribbean” style.

Alberga is not only a pilot, but she’s the first-ever Jamaican pilot for an American airline, and through her work travels and her cultural heritage she has infused this jewel box of a historic home with vibrant color and art. Listing agent Elizabeth Mast Briggs Freeman Sotheby’s International Realty offered me a private tour of the home, and of course I jumped at the chance. There are so many amazing details that you will notice something different everywhere you look. Jump to see more!

(more…)

 

Ovens

Feeling a little short? Bosch now offers a swing door oven so you won’t need to get on your tippy toes to get dinner out.

Sometimes our needs change. What worked for a long time, suddenly isn’t as convenient. For cooks, this often means changing tools to suit new limitations or new recipes. I’ve gathered some nifty new tools from my travels and thought I’d share.

Swing Door Ovens

Traditional drop-down oven doors can get in the way. Trying to pull Thanksgiving turkey out of the oven while bending over a hot oven door puts strain on your back. It’s even worse for those with mobility issues. Enter the side swing oven door, just like your microwave. For decades German ultra-premium manufacturer Gaggenau was the only manufacturer making side swing ovens. Several years ago Gaggenau was acquired by Bosch (along with Thermador, for those keeping score) and innovations have percolated between sister portfolios. These Bosch wall ovens are: (more…)

caveSometimes, the Wednesday WTF is the Wednesday WTF because it’s a crazy ball of lunacy. But sometimes, as in the case of this week’s cave house, it’s because it’s pretty freaking’ cool.

Meet the Beckham Creek Cave Lodge. Tucked into the tiny unincorporated community of Parthenon, Arkansas, and the Little Buffalo River, it currently serves as a private resort that caters to weddings, family reunions, corporate retreats, and the like.

(more…)

Arlington Heights is in Fort Worth - not Arlington

3923 Lafayette Avenue is steps away from great shops, wine bars, restaurants and so much more in Arlington Heights (photos: Trey Freeze Media)

Arlington Heights is not in Arlington.  Nope. Contrary to what you might think, it’s an older neighborhood right in the middle of the Fort Worth Westside.

Situated North of I-30 and South of the famous Camp Bowie Boulevard, Arlington Heights is heavily populated by smaller cottages of charm and character built from the 1920s to the 50s.  That is, until now …

(more…)