Tag: diy

Sunday Column (87)

Now this week passed quickly again. Mainly of course because I was off on Friday. If you can call it being off, as I sat at home watching the boy whilst sorting out some business, and my wife doing some DIY. I love this kind of sharing arrangement.

It was a good week. Whilst unfortunately some meetings had to be cancelled, one happened in a lovely restaurant in Fitzrovia, the Roka on Charlotte Street. Not only did they serve great Sushi but tender beef, pork, fish etc. One of the most amazing places I have been out to eat for a long time.

You must have read by now what my thoughts are on Colin. There are weeks I cannot get enough cuddles from the wee man, and would love to spend more time with him. But someone has to be the bread winner I guess. What I cannot believe at the moment is that this year has passed so quickly. I mentioned that last week already, but 2 more months to go until Christmas. And in 3 months, we will have to start the process of bringing up a child all over again. I can tell you that I am much more looking forward to it this time! Guess it is because I kind of know what expects me (I think anyway…).

The guy who laid our kitchen floor tiles came back to grout the tiles again. However, just after one day, the grout has holes in it again. The shit quality this person is delivering starts to really annoy me. I should have not paid him. He keeps coming back, apologizing and whilst he genuinely is a nice guy, the work he did – uneven tiles in the kitchen and bad grouting – just stinks. I don’t want to pay someone to do a shit job. So I called him again and maybe he should just do it all over again. He offered, and maybe that is what needs to be done. Whilst I could live with uneven tiles (they are acceptable although they shouldn’t be), I cannot live with grout which I think won’t last. Enough of a rant. He did the grouting again on Friday for the 4th time, and now I hope this is the end of it.

Anyhow, we managed to paint bits and pieces, including 2 walls in the kids’ room, then Jen did the butterfly from the hungry caterpillar book, and the loo door too. I sealed off the window in the kitchen, and tried to fix some doors. Fun all around. A DIY GTD weekend πŸ™‚

Alrighty, have a fantastic week.

Sunday Column (47)

Hello together,

You might have noticed that I haven’t written a blog post this week. The reason is fairly simple. It was my first week in my new job, and there is lots and lots of work todo. But I am loving it, and guess that is the main thing πŸ™‚

But of course there is more to life than work. Colin started turning himself back on his back after being on his front. He hasn’t quite mastered it yet but he is improving. Also, he started grabbing everything and gets more and more curious. He is sitting up now too and only sometimes falls over. I cannot believe he is over 7 months already!

Hansel, our lovely ginger cat, cut his foot and had to get stitches. Hence we had to keep both cats inside and they figured out how to open the living room door to get upstairs. So every night we got two visitors that (sometimes) quietly just sneak in and sleep on our bed. How sweet πŸ™‚ As a result we put a proper door handle and lock on the door so that the cats cannot sneak upstairs anymore. DIY skills par excellence πŸ™‚

So a real family life is going on. I worked from home on Wednesday because of the snow. SouthEastern cancelled most trains to London and it was a nightmare. A friend got stuck for 2 hours on the train, so I am glad I stayed home. I still don’t believe that in the year of 2010 5 inches of snow (or less in this case) bring a country to a standstill.

It is melting now. I wouldn’t go as far that spring is coming but we had a few days above zero, with today even being around 10 degrees. I don’t mind the cold if I could do what I normally do, e.g. go to work or go shopping. Shopping delivery slots have been booked out all week πŸ™

The weekend was great. I had to catch up on some work related stuff but managed to get Hansel to the vet. We also had our neighbours around for coffee and biscuits. We managed to replace a few glasses we broke (I broke πŸ˜‰ ), and I fixed the above mentioned door handle to the living room door.

Just a normal week with the family and work.

Sunday Column (45)

Happy New Year!

Tomorrow I start my new job and I am very excited about it. What is it I am going to do?
I will launch a German company into the UK market. The company is a technology service provider that connects to ad exchanges in order to optimise the bought media based on the clients’ KPIs. Using the potential of display advertising with the effectiveness of search marketing. I am very excited to tell you all more about media optimisation and a new field of online and digital marketing shortly!

However, a quick review of the week. After a very nice Christmas, my mother in law left us on Sunday. And, after a few days of drinking and eating, I decided to detox. Not like I normally would by not eating for 3 days and only having fruit and vegetable juices, but at least no alcohol for three days. I gave up coffee for 2.5 days but got a headache and thought I’d rather have one. But, I also focused on food that helped my body to rejuvenate, e.g. fresh vegetables and lots of orange juice.

My wife was an absolute star this week and re-sealed most of our windows and doors. The sealant had come loose over the years and we decided it was time to renew it. Also, the cats chew some off. Since she doesn’t trust in my DIY skills (I wonder why ;-)), I spent most of the day with the boy whilst she was doing the job. And a good job she did. Thank you so much.

We spent New Year’s Eve with our old neighbours who recently moved down the road. We had a lovely cheese fondue and a few glasses of wine, cognac, whisky and Martinis. A wonderful night which lasted into the early morning.

I don’t need to outline how I felt on New Year’s day? Just as every year on the 1st of January πŸ™‚ Knackered! Not even too hungover, but with Colin we had to get up as usual, no lie in. A long walk to feed the ducks with the left over bread from the fondue and an early night sorted me out fine.

The weekend passed quickly. I tried to enjoy the time I had with Colin, knowing that I won’t see him that often as I had done in the last few weeks. As much as I enjoyed being off work, not only do I have to get back to work for financial reasons, it is time to kick start the new year with the next step in my career. And, I am very excited to make this company work and grow in the UK. One of the biggest challenges I had yet.

Have a good start back to work! An early morning Tai Chi session in the park sorted me out fine. May you have a mind like water and find, as Anthony Robbins said, stay guard to the door of your mind. This way you are in control of your life.

Love and Kindness.

Update in pictures

I thought I relax your eyes from reading about my life with some lovely pictures πŸ™‚

Now, let me explain all of them a bit:

1) That is the first dead mouse our lovely kittens brought home.

2) You remember we are renovating. We managed to paint half the stairs today, so fingers crossed we finish them tomorrow.

3) Our strawberries and real Scottish Thistle.

4) I was writing about my veggies a couple times before, they are growing like mad now.

5) Back last summer we planted wine. It is coming along fine now. Along with the dill next to it and I can spot a ginger tail πŸ™‚

6) and 7) is a view over our “end of garden fence” to show you what it looks like. Allotments in Beckenham.

8) My wife Jenny…..in front of our wee house and with a wee man inside her πŸ˜‰

9) This is our dining room. We finally turned it 90 degrees and removed the old dirty Ikea carpet we got for our old flat.

Sunday Column (7) – Happy Easter

Easter Holidays πŸ™‚

What an exciting week we had. After last weekend’s DIY efforts this week passed very quickly.

Not much excitement. I met a good friend for lunch whose partner is about to give birth – so it was good to meet up with someone who understands exactly in which situation I am in…and vice versa. So fingers crossed everything goes well, they are about 6 weeks ahead of us and by the time I write this, there might already be another baby born! Good Luck!

I had a day off on Thursday. Hurray. Besides watching a movie, going to the gym and doing the shopping, not much happened. Social night with the Tai Chi club and a Tesco that was busier than at Christmas. Horrendous. Glad I got it all done though. We had another scan of baby Ballueder and everything is fine. He is developing well and looks cute πŸ™‚

Friday we met our neighbours. They have 2 cats, a 9 months old daughter and live close to us, as neighbours do. Sounds familiar? They seem to be just one year ahead of us. It was a great afternoon with some great German wheat beer, and some vino. Shame the weather wasn’t as great, otherwise a BBQ would have been a perfect round up. Next time.

Saturday I finally finished taking about half a centimeter off the door to the kid’s room. My hand was in agony and I didn’t make it to the gym. Never thought it would be that difficult to take “a bit off a door”. Even used a saw. Crazy but finally finished. One thing less on our DIY list.

On Saturday night we went to see Kate Rusby in the Cadogan Hall. Kate was brilliant and joined by Donald Grant and the Red Skies String Ensemble to perform exciting new arrangements of Kate Rusby classics. She also played some new songs of her latest album Awkward Annie. My wife is a great fan and I really enjoy listening to her too.

Sunday morning started with another long gym session and 6K on the elliptical machine. Wow, now I am all knackered and will sleep for a while before preparing the Sunday roast: corn fed chicken with a special Ballueder marinade with roast vegetables. Yummy.

So, have a happy Easter Sunday.


Sunday Column (4)

Now in my 4th week writing my Sunday column, I am thinking more and more back on what I have done each week.

I think this week was stress free but I am not sure. I got new insoles to cure my shin splints but when I went to the gym on Saturday, I still got the old pain. Hopefully it is just a period of getting used to the insoles and things will sort itself out. I would love to do a 10 K run and who knows, even a marathon. However, to do that I need no pain πŸ™

Wednesday was a busy day. I met an old client from Germany. That was great. She is very interested in coaching and therefore we had lots to talk about. It was good speaking to her and figuring out what needs and wants people have – I haven’t had such an interesting, in depth conversation for a while. Very interesting.

The rest of the week went rather quickly. Honestly, not much happened. Work was busy, but I don’t really want to speak about work. Things are progressing. So it is good.

Yesterday I spent the whole day sorting out my veggies. Will post some pictures later this week. We had our first BBQ on our new BBQ which was delivered squint but I guess it will do the job.

wooden BBQ

Today my wife is painting the hall and stairs, so hopefully we finish the hall this week. However, we also got some laminate to put down in 2 weeks or so – that is for the landing. So overall, our DIY efforts taking shape.

Have a good week.

DIY – Renovating part 1

I think I mentioned it before. My wife is “nesting” and we are looking into turning our house into our home.

Part one was the hall. My wife painted and then started sanding the floor with a small sander she had. Not a good idea, took too long. So we hired a bigger one last weekend and I did the floors downstairs in the hall and she did the hand rail. Now, the cleaning of this fine dust was the worst thing!

Done and dusted (literally) now and we live with a hall that needs varnishing still and a carped down the middle of the stairs which still needs painting.

Upstairs we aim for laminate flooring for

a) the landing where you get laminate looking like real wood, and
b) the bathroom. There are clever solutions out there now where laminate looks like ceramic floors.

So I am quite impressed of what we can do and now I am eager to get it done. My wife plans to do some of the painting and varnishing as I am not patient enough to do a good job. However, I will try my luck with the laminate upstairs. If it goes well… who knows, I might be doing the living room soon.

Here are some pictures.