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Chris's Random Ramblings

Thu, 15 Nov 2007 - We bought a house! (in Adelaide)

Kelly and I have been thinking about moving back to Adelaide some time in the future, and have been looking at houses on the websites for a while. Something that fits in pretty well with what we want came up recently, and we put in an offer which was accepted. The house is in Hectorville, within walking distance of both my parents and brother's house.

We plan on renting out the place for a couple of years, then knock it down and build our dream house before moving back. We've been reading a lot of books on sustainable houses, and hope to get a good solar passive design. I think it should be possible to end up with a house that needs no artificial heating in winter and little cooling in summer. We're off to see an architect who specialises in sustainable house design next week for some advice and feedback on our very rough house design.

Mon, 06 Aug 2007 - Real Estate Listings

Adverts for houses generally have the number of bedrooms, number of bathrooms and maybe the size of the land. In some places in Australia they have energy efficiency ratings. But what they really need is a rating for the fastest broadband connection you could get to the property.

It would be much better than the current method of searching for a house based on the distance from the telephone exchange and websites like adsl2exchanges.com.au .

Tue, 05 Oct 2004 - Book space galore Had a very productive long weekend and I think I've now tripled the amount of bookshelf space in my house. My house turned into a bit of a workshop during the week, but everything is now cleaned up and I can start unpacking some of the boxes of books I have in the cupboards. While I was away at work during the week my parents also put up a small shed in my backyard. At last, I no longer have to store my lawnmower in the spare room :-)
Sat, 25 Sep 2004 - Home Improvement My parents arrived Friday, up from Adelaide visiting for a couple of weeks. So its time for the yearly home and garden improvement session. Nothing much happens the rest of the year, mostly due to apathy and laziness on my part.

As it happens a new bed frame arrived about the same time they did. So they got to participate in the assembly. Lucky they were around as it was a little more complex than I had thought. The benefit for them was that this time around they won't have to sleep on the mattress on the floor.

The two big projects for their visit are to put up a garden shed and to build a floor to ceiling bookshelf in my study, turning it into a little library. It doesn't seem to matter how many bookshelves I have, I'm always running out of space. A giant bookshelf running the length of the wall should keep me going for a few more years.

Spent a lot of time Saturday visiting hardware stores to get various bits and pieces. Also went shopping for a new dining table and light fittings for the dining area and my bedroom. Generally speaking I'm too indecisive when shopping by myself and it was good to get some other opinions.

A few hours of gardening later, and my backyard is already looking better. It turns out that a few of the plants that I thought had died during the winter were only pretending. And a few green bits that I thought were weeds are actually the bulbs I had planted in winter, and are just starting to flower. Lucky I've been too lazy to do any weeding lately.

Sun, 19 Sep 2004 - Dehydrated Mulch Getting enough mulch for my garden has in the past been rather annoying. The only access to the garden is through my house and I don't have a front garden, so I can't get it delivered by trailer. But normally it takes several trips to the garden centre in my car. I was wandering around a hardware store and discovered dehydrated mulch. Comes in a nice small block, but when water is added is equivalent to a 60 litre bag. What will they think to dehydrate next!
Fri, 17 Sep 2004 - Exploding Light Bulb The glass bit of the light bulb in my bedroom decided to separate itself from the metal plug part last night. Luckily my bed is underneath it so it didn't shatter into lots of pieces. Was really quite cool, though I was stuck with the problem of how to remove the metal plug from the socket with nothing except rather sharp bits of glass to hold onto. Decided to leave that operation till the morning when I'd be a little more awake and actually remember to turn off the power at the fuse box.

Mon, 18 Aug 2003 - Squeak no more For a few months now there has been this strange squeaking noise in my house. I thought it might have been something in the ducted gas heating system, but never managed to track it down, though it seemed to be occurring more frequently lately. When a friend was visiting the other night he pointed out it was actually my smoke alarm complaining about being low on battery power. Lucky too, as it was starting to get really really annoying. In retrospect if it made 2 or 3 squeaks in a row rather than just one, it would make it much easier to identify and track down.