Monday, 15 April 2013


...more arrivals from Amazon

Made with BambooPaper

Sleep ? Who needs sleep ?

Despite being neither worried nor excited about the prospect of returning to work I found it next to impossible to get to sleep last night.

Blogging in my lunch break, stopping myself from working through.

I've been quite pleased with just how quickly I have dealt with the 202 emails in my work email inbox - I now have this down to a respectable 50. This is entirely down to use of my favourite key on the keyboard. Delete. I enjoy it so much that I probably look like a demented pink cyberman repeating the word 'delete' over and over again, and with each email consigned to the great virtual trashcan in the cloud, I look more and more mad.

Several people have commented favourably about my haircut, which always makes me feel nice. You should always compliment a girl about her hair. Just because I'm not a girl doesn't mean I don't like it being noticed.

After dispatching many emails to electronic Valhalla I collected the stats data from the last two weeks. I need to know where I am, how my team are doing. Very much a numbers person. I then of course enter them into a spreadsheet.

My boss has been very complimentary to me as well today, remarking on how well my team are doing against the rest of our work area. This is nice to know. It is certainly one of the best return from holidays I've had. Just have to keep in check that little bit at the back of my head that sits there asking the question 'what's going to come and slap me in the face tomorrow'. Historically. If there are major problems or issues they come to light on day + 1 after return from holiday. In english that means the second day back.

I will just have to wait and see.

Sunday, 14 April 2013

Less time is more time.

Cunning revelation last night. Because my daughter was playing minecraft on my computer up to the point that the parental controls kicked in, and blocked her internet connection and then logged her out, she got to see the time at which it would next allow her access. (That being 7am).

Knowing that today would be her last day of holiday before going back to school, I wanted to make sure that she got a decent night's sleep and got up at a good time - so that getting up tomorrow for school wouldn't be such a shock.

Curtailing her computer access at 9pm and insisting that she go to bed at Ten PM seems to have worked exceptionally well. What I hadn't counted upon was Chloe making good her realisation that the computer's access would be reopened at Seven AM, so was surprised to say the least when she woke me up at 7:30 saying that she wanted to have a shower.

I stayed awake as well, making good of the early morning. The same principle of course working for me, as I also return from my holiday tomorrow morning. Back to the grindstone. I'm not so much dreading it, as unbothered by it. Disinterested I think would cover it. What I do there, pays the bills, keeps the roof over my head, affords the things that I want to be able to do with my time instead.

My Mum asked me today if I would look after my Nephews Tuesday evening, while her and my Sister go out for some exercise thing. All easy enough, and knowing that the boys will be thoroughly absorbed in some form of device or another, I can get on with some writing in a distraction free environment. Ironic really, that the quiet of the flat be more distracting than a house with two pre-teenage boys.

Like when I was writing the nanowriomo novel, I found that I was able to get down about twelve-hundred words during my lunch break, and therefore be more motivated to continue on when I left work in the evening. I also made considerable progress when I went to Costa.

Maybe instead of asking Sharon to drop me home after work, I will instead ask her to let me out at the high street and I will go along to Costa and get some work done there.

Saturday, 13 April 2013

Cleaning all done

My life is SOOOOO rock'n'roll that I don't know where to begin. Having cleaned the flat, in preparedness of the arrival of Chloe The Mess Maker. and feeling good about myself for doing it, I set off to collect her. Only to miss the train that would have gotten me to meet her on time, so had to take a taxi instead.

Dammit with me and time.

blogging away on ipad, with borrowed keyboard from iMac,

I mentioned in my last entry, that I had bought a new case for my ipad, that matched the one for my kindle..

They're by Tecknet. I got them both from Amazon. The kindle's one I got at the same time I bought the Paperwhite, wanting something other than dull and boring black, and not really liking any of the other options. The blue was more bleuggghh, the pink was too shouty (even for me) and the green was never seriously under consideration. As for the yellow, well I know my limitations.
Matching gadget cases. Sequins to follow.... (joking)

 The iPad case has the nifty function of being able to hold the iPad in a 'sitty-uppy' position. (my description, not theirs).

The quality of both is really nice, and I like the finish. Proper stitching at the seams and stuff. Gives me the faith that both will last.

Need to get my clean on.

Saturday. Last two days before I return to work from my holiday.

I've had Chloe to stay most of the week, but she went home Thursday. She is, however staying tonight. I know that might sound strange and maybe even make little or no sense, but hey. That's life.

Just sitting on the sofa, having some breakfast of fake Shreddies (with demerara on top of course), cup of coffee and glass of orange juice. Trying to fight off Twilight, who seems to want to come and shred my left elbow in an effort to get me to stroke her.

No TV. Nice and peaceful, just the sound of the washing machine rumbling away in the background, the clickety clack of the keys on the iMac's keyboard that I'm using to write this on my ipad.

Okay, the reason the TV isn't on may have something to do with the BT Vision box stopping working since I have now cancelled the package and moved my telephone and broadband to someone else. There's been a few hiccups with the router or the broadband dropping out a couple of times, and I'm also keeping an eye on how fast the service is. I wanted to save money, but I don't want to do that at the expense of the broadband connection making my online life hell. When I say hell, I may be being a tad over dramatic. After all, it's not like it's the end of the world if I have to wait three milliseconds for a web page to load instead of one, is it ?

Scroll down one the page has finished loading then. I am currently looking around for a set-top box to replace the BT Vision box thingy, and have asked myself, how important is the ability to record TV these days ? Almost everything is on catchup TV, or available on Netflix or Love Film. This leads me in the direction of a 'smart' set-top box. One that will allow me to connect to the internet and to use on demand functions from 4od, BBC, ITV etc. It gets to the point where I could spend anything between about £30 (for a plain freeview box) to about £300, (for a freeview HD recorder with smart functions).

Starts to look like its worth buying a new TV with those features built in. All of these things I would rather not be buying at the moment. I don't want to be putting more large purchases on my credit card(s), and I'm not convinced that I actually spend that much time in front of the TV anyway.

So I spend hundreds of pounds buying something that I only use occasionally ? I think I'd rather spend the money on a Dyson.

what could possibly require such padding ? 
The light bulb in the en-suite gave out several weeks ago, and in a fit of efficiency, having waited said number of weeks to do anything about it, I ordered the special bulb off the internet on Wednesday (or Thursday, it's not important). Anyhoo. It arrived yesterday.

bubble-wrap supplies for next 300 years............. 
An anonymous brown box, surrounded with industrial sized bubble-wrap. Inside, was.. well, the light bulb and.. more bubble-wrap. I now had a replacement light bulb, and enough bubble-wrap to recreate at least three of the monsters from Tom Baker's era of Dr Who.

Despite my moaning above about not spending money I don't have, I have been on a mini spending spree lately, but I consider the light bulb a necessity rather than a luxury. I have also bought some new toys for the cats to play with, and those I will show when they arrive, no doubt with their truck load of bubble-wrap or polystyrene.

I have done little editing of my nanowrimo book whilst I've been off. I think I did some on the first day of the previous week I'd had off (I had the week before Easter off, went back to work one week and then off again). I need to be more disciplined.

There are too many distractions.

Another that I have also recently taken steps to limit is Facebook. I have actually gone so far as to remove the app from my ipad (I'm annoyed I can't actually remove it from my phone. Seems it's a default app or something). I have found that I'm not now wasting time endlessly looking through the comments of comments or inane minutia of other people's boring lives. I have gotten just so fed up with some of the bigoted short sighted rubbish that some people put on there. I want to argue with them, or correct them, but lets face it. You can't argue with stupid.

I am getting annoyed with my mobile phone too. It's just so slow, and doesn't seem that responsive anymore. This may of course have one of two causes, that either as it's getting older and more full of apps (even though I don't download any), it's overworked processor and limited storage capacity are getting stuck in the mud. Or it may be that it simply has never really recovered from being dropped in the washing up that time.

Being a bit-geek, I am already considering two courses of action here. I know that my contract does not expire until August / November, sometime, but after checking on Three's website I can upgrade in July at no extra cost, or I can upgrade early and pay a fee. Anyway, the two courses of action ? Well, I am looking at the new Blackberry's coming out, the ones with keyboards (don't even get me started on the point of a blackberry without a freaking keyboard), or something older, that isn't a smart phone at all. A candybar phone that just maybe takes pictures, does text and phone calls. That's it. Since I've got my ipad, and I do take it lots of places with me (reminds me I must show the new case I bought for it, that matches the one for my kindle paperwhite), and this means that I don't use the phone that much anymore for internetting. I may have previously trawled through facebook etc, but I just don't like working from it that much, compared to how easy to use and responsive the ipad is.

Do I get really rebellious, and get rid of my mobile phone altogether ? People would think I've gone mad.