Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Breakfast Time

Breakfast like you've never seen it before, Danish Bacon, courtesy of Alpha from Brit Pulse


Extra Long Weekend

Debbie's not been feeling well over the last few days but she's struggled on through the long weekend and Lollypop had 'the' operation on Friday morning, we were amazed that after dropping him off at 8.30am, we were able to pick him up again at 2pm. He was very pleased to see us but still heavily sedated and he hardly moved at all until late evening when he managed to wander around a little.


While Lolly was at the vets, we went out and bought some fish for the new aquarium, first half a dozen as planned, tiny little high fin platys, then we went on to another place for a look round and ended up with a couple more to keep them company.

On Saturday, Lolly was back to normal, bounding about like an idiot at 7am wanting to go outside lol. We stayed in all morning to make sure he was OK and Yorkshire Water were supposed to be coming out to sort out our pressure problem. They never turned up and a quick phone call revealed that they had mistakenly put us down for tomorrow. Not very chuffed and in need of a lift so we headed over to a bigger aquatic centre about 15 miles away. They had a huge selection of all the favourites and a few more we'd never heard off, including bumble bee gobies which we think look fantastic. We came back from there with a few more fish to add to our growing aquarium population.

On Sunday, the guy turned up to sort out the water as promised and just turning the mains stop tap on and off flushed out the problem, what ever it was. We now have running rather than trickling water once again.

We took Dad out for dinner on later on at a new place that's just been built along side the 'yet to be built' by-pass near Dodworth, Barnsley. It was lovely and the carvary was great, as was the minty ice-cream for afters! We just chilled for the rest of the afternoon and evening with Debbie really not feeling too good.

Yesterday we went garden tool shopping and purchased, more tree trimming tools, a stretchy hosepipe, a rake and a spade with a view to getting to work on the garden again during the afternoon. But before that, we called in at a local aquarium centre that Dad has mentioned, it was only advertised on yell.com as a koi carp dealer so we hadn't considered this place but it turns out they've got a decent selection of tropical fish and the couple running the place appeared to be committed to the welfare of the fish. Obviously we couldn't leave without buying anything and supporting our local dealer so more fish headed some with us.


The number off fish in the aquarium now is shall we say, more than there should be at this stage according to the textbooks but we are monitoring everything closely and changing a little water frequently to make sure they all get through the next few weeks.

Still not feeling very well, Debbie slept for most of the afternoon while I got to working on cutting down the branches in to smaller pieces for taking to the tip. After tea, Debbie, determined not to be left out, joined me outside to rip out more of the ivy from the flower beds, just spending half an hour on it before calling it a day. Unfortunately, Debbie felt even worse later and was up all night being sick, it must be some king of stomach bug. Anyway I've insisted she stays at home today, curled up on the sofa trying to count how many fish there are now in the aquarium!


Thursday, August 25, 2005

Brit Pulse

There's a brand new forum on the block called Brit Pulse. A warm welcome is guaranteed by the friendly bunch that have already joined this week old forum, so why not put the kettle on, sign up and settle down for a good old fashioned chin wag.

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Under Pressure

Or not as seems to be the case. Our cold water pressure went right down on Sunday night. The only reason we can think of is that air might have got into the system when filling up the aquarium on Sunday with the tap being turned on and off over a couple of hours.

I rang the water board and they confirmed that there is no work going on nearby and suggested turning the stop-cock off and on a few times with the kitchen tap turned on. It took a phone call to the former owners to find it, in the dining room, silly me was looking in the kitchen lol. We found it boxed in the corner and I had to remove a section of plywood to get to it.

We tried turning it off an on a few times but it didn't work, we tried the sink tap in bathroom upstairs and that was as bad. The bath tap was fine and ran for ages with the water off, so that must be coming from a tank. The loo cistern isn't filling up very quickly so that is affected, however, with the sink tap just trickling out water, it sprang to life when I flushed the loo, opposite to what I was expecting.

We'll try some more experiments tonight, the former owner said running the cold water in the bath should sort it out, can't see why but we'll give that a try.

We'll probably get home to find Yorkshire Water vans on our street trying to find out why half the local reservoir disappeared overnight lol.


Tuesday, August 23, 2005

The Mist Is Clearing

The new aquarium has been up and running for just over a day now and the mist is almost gone, by Friday it should be crystal clear ready for the new inhabitants.


There are so many different tropical fish we want to get and with the size of the tank, we should be able to accommodate between sixty and seventy in total. We've been reading up on starting out with a new aquarium and we can't put in too many in to start with, it has to complete cycles, which in terms that I understand is that the aquarium has to be able to deal with the ammonia produced by the fish and seventy fish using a brand new aquarium as a lavatory won't do them any good lol.


We've got a good idea of what we want but we're going to have choose which fish to get in the first week. With us adding the chemicals to get the bacteria going we should be able to start with a decent number of fish, maybe twenty or so and then add more each week. Of the ones we're wanting, Zebra Danios, Platy, White Clouds and Cherry Barbs appear to be the best tropical fish to start out with.


Monday, August 22, 2005

Lovely Warm Weekend

As promised here are a few snaps taken over the weekend……


Grandma and Lucy enjoying the lovely weekend weather.


My Aunties Scottie, called Benny getting on famously with Lucy and Lollypop.


Grandma and Lucy watching us crack on with the tree.


Cowgirl Lucy baking in the midday sun…. yea hah!


Down comes the tree, branch by branch.


What on earth are we going to do with all this then?


Aquariums and Trees

As with most busy weekends, not everything goes to plan and it turned out to be a lot more busy that we thought! Up bright an early on Saturday we got the shopping in for the barbecue before Debbie's appointment at the hairdressers. Debbie trudged home while I put the shopping away and she wasn't impressed at all with her new hair style, exactly the same as it was before! Needless to say, neither of will be going back there, I sorted out Debbie's fringe and she looks gorgeous :-)

Then, for the high point of the weekend, we set of to Sheffield to look round this huge aquarium centre. We were very disappointed when we did eventually find it, it wasn't that big, looked a bit of a dive and didn't have all that much to offer. Plan B came in to action as we set of to a place called Viscum in Barnburgh near Doncaster, we've been before and it's not the cheapest place but it's clean, tidy with a huge selection of equipment and fish and the friendly staff really know their stuff. We got a beautiful aquarium and everything to go with it from fish and plant friendly chemicals to plants and rocks.

Back at the ranch, we had just enough time to put the cabinet together, get the tank on top and put in all the sand. Debbie went to pick up friends for the barbecue while I finished off and got the barbecue started. We had a great evening, so much more chilled than the week before, I even had time to fill up the aquarium and it was looking great until someone pointed out that it was leaking! So there I was, bailing out as fast as I could in the wee small hours lol.

I took the aquarium back on Sunday morning, which they said they would exchange without question but wanted to see the leak in action as they don't get many of them. In the daylight we could see a gap in the seal near the top which was causing the problem. Anyway, they got me sorted out with a new one and I got that home safely, we just managed to get that on top of the cabinet and filled with sand again before Dad arrived for an afternoons tree felling.

Dad took charge and was up the ladder in no time, branches were being flung to the ground faster than I could trim them lol. My Auntie and Uncle brought Grandma over for a couple of hours, they all loved the our house and garden and Grandma had Lucy on her knee all afternoon lol. We called it a day at tea time, there are just a couple of branches at the top left to come down before we can start with the trunk. Debbie took loads of pictures through the afternoon but we've not had chance to load them yet, we'll get some posted tonight or tomorrow.

While we were hard at work in the garden Debbie was hard at work in the kitchen preparing tea and also managed to fill the aquarium and get the filter going. After a gorgeous cottage pie dinner, we got chance to look at the aquarium and it was looking pretty darn good already.


Later in the evening we got all the plants in and switched on the lights, the water is still a little milky at the moment from all the sand but that is starting to clear now. We just sat there for an hour, watching the plants swaying in the current :-)

Only four days at work now, we're off on Friday, Lolly is going to have his bits seen to and we're off to pick out our new tropical fish, poor Lolly!


Friday, August 19, 2005

Fun Packed Weekend On The Way

We've got loads to do this weekend, I'm not sure how we're going to fit it all in and we'll probably be ready for another weekend by Sunday evening lol.

We've got another BBQ to organise tomorrow, at least this time the weather looks favourable and we won't have as many people to run about after. Debbie's getting her hair cut tomorrow, all this hot weather is taking it's toll, even mine needs cutting, half an inch is just too long lol. Dad's coming round for Sunday dinner and to help us chop down the tree. We'll have a new bird table to put up which will hopefully get some custom over the autumn and winter months.

The best thing of all will be going to get our new aquarium, Debbie love's tropical fish and can spend hours looking round any aquarium centre. We've had to wait until now to get a fish tank of our own because we didn't have enough space before. We need one with a sturdy base and surround to keep the three amigos at bay and we don't won't an over exited Lolly knocking anything over.

It's years since either of us has kept tropical fish, I wonder if things have changed, any technological advances in filterization and the like? I used to use and old credit card to scrape the inside of the glass lol. We've already got an idea of the fish we would like, a large shoal of neons, a few guppies, glowlites, a couple of small angel fish and some sucky things that clean the glass instead of me! Just a short list to start with, although I'm sure the list will grow longer by the minute when we get there lol.


Thursday, August 18, 2005

New Dining Room Ornament


I think we may have been foolish to think that we'd be having fancy plates, ornements and stuff on the dining room unit lol.


Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Recording The Heat

During the house move something happened to our thermometer sensor, it stopped talking to the thermometer and any attempt to make them speak to each other over the weekend just resulted in a lot of beeping, both from the thermometer and from me.

I can't live without knowing how hot it is outside, or more to the point, how cold it is in winter, so yesterday I went out and bought a new one which looks a little bit more reliable than the old one. I had it on in the office yesterday and we reached 30.9c by home time, too warm by far.


It was horrible overnight, 22c in the house when we went to bed but was dropping outside, this morning, it was down to 14c outside and managed to fall a whole half a degree inside to 21.5c, no wonder we got little sleep! Today looks like it's going to be hotter, I can't wait to start recording temperatures of -2c again :-)


New Beds

Lucy and Lolly were treated to new beds at the weekend, the tiled kitchen floor is proving to be too cold for Lucy, even with a couple of thick blankets.


Lucy loves the new pillow we got for the living room, it's a hard choice for her now, sneak on the sofa while no-one's watching or get snuggled up here lol.


Both Lucy and Lolly love the new bed in the kitchen, we don't have to ask them twice when we're leaving the house ..... well maybe sometimes lol.


It's not only the dogs that love the new beds, here's Eric and Misty exercising their right of vacant possession lol.


Tuesday, August 16, 2005

One Branch Leads To Another

The plan was to get one of the wardrobes built last night but as is usually the case, after a long day at work, we sacked the idea. We let the cats out after tea which we were a little apprehensive about after Toddy going awol for two hours on Friday, only to turn up with two other cats ..... tart lol. They were fine though and all came running when we shook the biscuit box, apart from Misty that is. He was next door again and while he did actually manage to get on the fence this time, he was wobbling all over the place and wouldn't jump down so I had to rescue him lmao!


Wandering round the garden, I got the sudden urge to start hacking so out came the secateurs and the hacksaw. We both had a couple of hours stripping the tree and the surrounding bushes and made a lovely pile of rubbish in the middle of the garden lol.


There is still a whole lot of tree to come down, Dad is coming on Sunday to help us finish the job off. The branches we but down last week are drying out nicely next to the green house, we'll be investing in one of those wheel barrows where the tub comes off to load in the car, then we can get all the leaves and branches down to the recycling site.


I'd better not have too much to drink on Saturday night, I've got to climb up inside here and get these higher branches down!


Monday, August 15, 2005

First Sign Of Winter

I've been perusing my old Yorkshire Snowman blog to see when I first posted a picture of snow in Europe last year. Not until October, today we've got snow in Austria, Switzerland and Italy, not bad for August!


Here's a webcam shot from Rudolfshutte in Austria.

Picture source: http://www.weissee.at

Lovely British Weather

Things weren't looking too good on Saturday morning, we we're out shopping for BBQ stuff until midday and it rained the whole time. With the fridge loaded with fresh meat and a pile of beer to drool over, we set about putting up the gazebo. The rain wasn't for stopping and we both got thoroughly soaked while we struggled with the cover in the blustery wind. Ringing wet through, I then set of to pick up Dad and little Brother, the sky looked like it might be clearing and by the time I got to Dad's there was even a hint of sunshine. Sadly, Grandma wasn't going to be able to make it so my Aunt and Uncle will bring her over as soon as she's feeling up to it.

Just as we set of back home the rain started again and kept on going until about 3.30pm which just about gave me enough time to put the BBQ together and get it lit. The rain stayed away for the rest of the day and the event was a roaring successes with the music playing and the drinks flowing. However, after running round like blue arsed flies from dawn till dusk, we'll not be doing anything on that scale again in hurry! We've got a few friends coming round for a BBQ next Saturday but it should a little bit more manageable this time lol.

On Sunday, we we're undecided on whether to go and order our new bed and do some other shopping or stay indoors and do nothing. Not being able to shake off the hangover, doing nothing seemed like the best option! After snoozing all afternoon, we got all the left over meat on the grill at tea time and had a lovely early evening munching and drinking champagne in the garden.

We've still got the wardrobes and drawers to set up, we'll try and get those done this week and then sometime over the weekend we're off shopping for a fish tank which we'll get set up straight away ready for us to go and get some tropical fish the weekend after.


Friday, August 12, 2005

Rain, Rain, Go Away.......

The plans for the family BBQ are going well, we've not got much further than planning though with 24 hours to go lol. One thing that doesn't appear to be going to plan is the weather, the forecast at the moment is for thundery showers to be passing through at just the wrong time. Hopefully the showers will arrive and depart early leaving us with broken skies for early evening.

We'll get the gazebo put up just in case though which should keep everyone dry, I'm not sure what to do about the BBQ though, would it be safe under a cotton parasol? Would a BBQ be safe in my hands anyway? As long as the fence doesn't burn down in Men Behaving Badly style, we'll be fine.

We had a phone call from Dad this morning, Grandma has taken fall again and needed stitches, luckily she's doing alright but she's quite confused at the moment, hopefully she'll be well enough to visit us tomorrow.


No Comment

I learned over at Dreaming Neko this morning that Haloscan comments now only last for 4 months unless we pay up for a premium account. I've checked and all our comments back in January following our wedding have disappeared, pleased I am not! I've checked on the Haloscan and the information is hidden away in the members faq.

Luckily we kept Blogger comments going as well so we haven't lost every comment but people do seem to prefer to comment on Haloscan so we've lost most of them.

Well, we're not being held to ransom and as soon as I have the time, the Haloscan system will be no more on this blog. If you would like to leave a comment today, please use Blogger comments, otherwise it might be gone by tea time!


Thursday, August 11, 2005

Colours In The Rain

Just after we had the downpour on Tuesday evening, Debbie ran in to get the camera and took some pictures of the flowers still covered in rain drops....




There must be over fifty pasion flowers circling the old tree stump and running along the fence.


I think this fuchsia flower had closed for the evening due to all the rain lol.


We love the contrasting and varied colours of the fuchsia's in the garden, it's also one of the few flowers we've been able to grow successfully in the past.


Not sure what this flower is called but like everything else on Tuesday evening, including us, it got a dam good soaking!


Picnic Tables & Trees

We've got loads of old bits of wood and cardboard boxes that need to go to the tip but we're not going to get chance before our BBQ on Saturday so the first job when we got home was to hide it all in one of the sheds lol. Next up was the picnic table which came with a bucket load of nuts, bolts and screws, it's times like this we're glad we invested in an electric drill/screwdriver or I would have still been there now.


It went together OK but there are still a few braces to fit under the seats which we had to leave because Big Brother was starting.

We've got a real Christmas Tree in the garden but it's been planted too close to another tree, or it could be the other way around. What ever happened, the Christmas Tree seems to be loosing out and is looking a little bit lop sided.


We're in a bit of a dilemma as to what to do with them, we really want to keep the fir tree but it would be a shame to cut down the other one as that's nice too. Maybe we should keep them both and put fairy lights around the two of them in December.


There is no dilemma over this beast though, even with half of the tree already lopped off, it's still far too big for our garden and it blocks out the sun from the flowers at the top end for much of the day. We'll be a bit busy over the next couple of weekends but it's not going to escape this lumberjack, it's days are numbered!


Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Snow Down Under

Apparently, for the first time in 50 years, it's snowing in Melbourne!. I knew I'd get away with mentioning snow in August lol.


Building In The Rain

Things didn't go exactly to plan yesterday, we were supposed to be setting up the bench and picnic table last night but half way through putting the bench seat together the heavens opened. There we were, nuts and bolts everywhere with Debbie myself and the bench hiding under a parasol lol. Worse still, the beers we had on the go were getting watered down!


The rain did eventually stop and we managed to get it finished but it wasn't long before the rain was back so we abandoned the picnic table as that will also need varnishing.

The Three Amigos were out with us, at least they were when it wasn't raining, as soon as a few spots started to fall they all flew back inside. It's the first time they've experienced rain, apart from chasing the drops on the window.


Eric still stays quite close, being the youngest he's still wary of anything strange and at the moment everything is new for him. He does love it outside though, of the three of them, he's the one screaming the loudest to be let out at tea time.

We got BT Yahoo Broadband back yesterday and at no extra charge they've upgraded us from 512KB to 1MB, although when we connect, it does say connected at 2MB but don't tell anyone!