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Ramblings Below are 10 entries, after skipping 10 most recent ones in the "johnrw" journal:

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February 8th, 2007
08:59 pm

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Communications
While we haven't found the modem cables yet - and switching our broadband could take a couple of weeks we thought we had a telephone. Read more...Collapse )

Sometimes things work out for the best.

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08:56 pm

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Welcome to the energy inefficient house.
Well we got the keys on Friday and spent the weekend cleaning and painting the ceilings white (originally a dense mid blue which took at least two coats of brilliant white to hide). I spent an educational day exploring the wiring and lighting setup (the former owner was a professional electrician - Glad he never did any work for me!) A detailed description followsCollapse )
Now for the good news, it is double glazed - mostly - for some reason known only to God the back bedroom is single glazed. The gas central heating radiators have thermostatic valves.

Things to do
1, Replace the light bulbs with energy efficient ones (replacing the dimmer switches as needed. Already done in the hall and landing; Bedroom and Lounge next on the list, also the cabinet work lights (there were new low wattage mini fluorescent lights in the garden shed will be fitting those soon!)
2, Remodel the bathroom lights to something less tropical.
3, Slightly further out, clear out and properly insulate the attic, and arrange reasonable loft storage.

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08:53 pm

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Moving
Life is terribly hectic at the moment. We're part way into moving into our new house - and discovering various pluses and minuses more in a seperate post.

As we're half way between homes we don't have all our bits in one place And of course the modem cables to gain a dial up connection are currently missing and this post is courtesy of an unknown neighbour's generously wide open wireless network ~(there are actually five such wireless hotspots within range only two of which have any kind of security).

You don't realise quite how much 'stuff' you collect until you have to move it!

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February 5th, 2007
02:01 pm

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Moving
Ok we're now moving house! fortunately it doesn't require a one day massive heave - which is good because there are several things which need doing before/ as we settle in. The sellor was a professional electrician of the sort who add things to his own home that he wouldn't (or oughtn't) countenance in any other circumstance!

Also both gas and electric are on prepayment meters with next to nothing on either, and we can't use the top up cards are they are registered to him! New cards are - hopefully- in the post We can't get the meters changed for at least a fortnight and even then it's do one then do the other otherwise the supplier charges a £75 fee to convert!

The upside is that I can retain my existing phone number and the transfer will take place in about an hour, the downside is that the Broadband is a seperate munit and I can't ask them to transfer until after the phone has been changed over, then it could be p to ten days of Dialup until we get broadband back.

Service will be erratic for a while.

Take care

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January 28th, 2007
10:28 am

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spring and gardens
There's no way I could be described as a gardener. But I came across this
http://publicspace.ca/gardeners.htm and it sounds a better plan than yet more municipal concrete It's also one of Terry Pratchett's 'Anticrimes' alongside breaking and decorating (as practised by the tv makeover shows).

Go forth

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January 19th, 2007
06:37 pm

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It's been windy few days, but from the news, we've come out of this with minimal damage, One gust blew a section of roof off one of the dutch barns (complete with timber beams) but it missed our power cables. a couple of decent timbers and four large roofing sheets and a day or so and we should be as good as new - well nearly!

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January 15th, 2007
06:14 pm

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Life and people
There are all sorts of people, obvious I know, but there is a point.

For many years now I have had an arrangement with a local department store to retouch/repair where economic furniture about which they had a complaint (sometimes the manufacturer would replace the item). In recent times the amount of minor faults seems to have been increasing and several of the well known mid range firms (i.e. not MFI!) have been taken over/amalgamated, moved production offshore or switched to design only with the actual construction being farmed out to Thailand or, increasingly, China. DetailsCollapse )

Without seeing it I can't be sure, but I've handled furniture of the same design and it's probably something curable with a few light passes with a decent wax and a soft cloth, and for this I am to do a round trip of twenty to thirty miles!

Ah well I'll find out tomorrow.

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January 1st, 2007
06:31 pm

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Communications
The farm was outside of ADSL range of the local exchange until fairly recently,Read more...Collapse )

This is new enough to us that several things strike me which a lot now take for granted like using the net as another extension to a local computer's data resources. Particularly since the always on nature of the connection means that you open up Firefox (or other browser) and submit your search term and get an answer back almost before you;ve finished framing the question. the speed of any download, I downloaded Open Office ~(approx 80Mb) in little over an hour.

And yet people don't stay satisfied for long, a near neigbour was bemoaning the paltry state of local broadband compared to the 8Mb or better available in the local city areas. and broadband of any description only reached us less than two years ago!

I means come on the ADSL link may be a 'paltry' 582Kbps downstream but it's better than ten times the best that dial up could offer. I know we live in an information age but bemoaning ADSL while living in the countryside when the solution (move next door to the exchange)exists is definitely a case of wanting his cake and eating it!

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December 24th, 2006
07:20 pm

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The infamous Dolls house
As I've mentioned previously I was asked to make a dolls house for A feature in the Daily Mail.

The article is available online on the Daily Mail website
Article here

Unfortunately a picture of the dolls house didn't make it into the piece and if you blink you'll miss any reference to me!

A happy Christmas to all!

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December 21st, 2006
08:07 pm

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Of Dolls houses,
Ok I mentioned that I'd been asked to make a dolls house for a newspaper feature. Well Igot an email from the feature's writer. The feature should be in this weekend's paper however due to assorted factors it doesn't actually appear!
further detailsCollapse )

So for those who wanted to see part of what I've been up too I can only say "Not this time." I've got some pictures but they're not currently up anywhere. This is definitely another reason to do something with my website!

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