Another Rant

Well, having finished my recent energy efficiency makeover, I have worked this week on a floor tiling job and yet another of my bugbears has turned up once again.

So, you are busily laying down tiles on the floor. You have made loads of cuts, carefully worked out the angles and generally made a pretty good job. You come to the last box of tiles and you discover they are completely different to the ones you have already laid.

Read more: Another Rant

Keep Off My Patch

This week I have been thinking more and more about the credit crunch and how it seems to be affecting everyone but me. I really don't get it. How is it that I have managed to buy a house, do it up and rent it out, get as many clients as I can handle and have enough money to survive fairly comfortably?

Then there are other people who seem to be struggling every way they turn. They are under threat of redundancy, their pay is frozen, they are working longer hours for less pay, they are stressed out and can no longer make ends meet.

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Yes - I am a Moaner

So just as the weather changes, so does my health. One cold day and I have caught a bloomin cold. I am sitting here sniffling and wishing I didn't have to work this week. I guess the typical Autumn cold is just one of those things to be expected when the weather changes, but it doesn't make it any easier to put up with.

Yes, I agree, I am a moaner! Claire agrees with you too...

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Pretty Chaotic

Talk about an Indian Summer! We certainly cannot complain about the weather over this last few days – but we have every right to complain about the pretty dismal summer. But hey – we live in Britain, what do we expect?

Good weather does put me in a good mood and I have needed that this week. I am still working on the really expensive kitchen. You will remember that a couple of week ago the lady of the house was a bit annoyed about the fact her kitchen was in disarray when she had a party planned. It turned out that she went to a restaurant instead.

So that was fine – but the issue I am now having is that progress is still too slow. The thing is that they are having every electrical gadget imaginable in this kitchen as well as a central island which is both plumbed and has electrical points.

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Lady of the House Gets a Bit Shirty

Been working on the mega-expensive kitchen this week. Because of the money they are spending on it and the need for it to be perfect (not that my work isn't perfect anyway) I have been taking my time. I refuse to be hurried and if the clients want to get a good job done they need to accept that.

However, the lady of the house is getting a little shirty that I haven't achieved more. It has only been a week and a bit! I have ripped out the old kitchen and that was hard work. I have reorganized the plumbing and done all the lighting, sockets and switches. In my opinion that is pretty good going. This week I will be re-plastering the ceiling and starting to put the cabinets in.

I always make sure that I leave clients with running water and I install a little sink unit for them to use while I am gone over a weekend. But this isn't quite good enough for this lady. On Friday afternoon last week she tells me that they are having visitors over during the weekend and had hoped to have at least a minimum kitchen set-up to feed and water them!

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In the Dog House

Ever had that feeling like getting up and going to work was the best thing ever invented? Yep, me too. This week has been welcome relief from the joys of a week off on holiday with two kids and a wife with an axe to grind...

Yes, I suppose I should have just enjoyed a week sitting by the pool and making the most of the organised activities for the kids. But relaxation was hardly the word for it. For one thing the weather was chilly to say the least and rain featured pretty heavily. The indoor pool was teaming with feral children and the smell of chlorine was enough to give you migraines.

So I spent much of my day sitting by the bar. This did not go down too well with the Missus who felt that holidays are family time and that I should be doing outings and watching them splash about in the pool. She put me in the doghouse for the whole week and it was torture.

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The Stress of a Deadline

It has been a case of all hands to the deck this week to get all of my work finished before we head off on our holiday on Friday afternoon. Considering that “all hands” means “my hands”, it will be a close thing to get it all done. I have to admit that I don't deal with the stress of a deadline like this too well.

There is nothing worse than feeling like you are doing things in a half-arsed way, just because you don't have the time to do them properly. On my list of things still to do I have electrical testing and certificate issue, skirting boards, silicon sealing, building and attaching a bathroom cupboard and all the extras like toilet roll holders, heated radiator (plumbing has been done already) and light fittings.

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If It Will Save Me Money, I’m All For It

As promised, we are back to normal this week. Work has been going along pretty well and nothing much to report there. At home I have been working hard over the last weekend and in the evenings to improve our home as far as energy usage is concerned.

Claire got a bit of a bee in her bonnet about it and started hassling me at the end of last winter. She pointed out that the bedrooms were always freezing and that there is a definite breeze coming from our front door. Add to that the fact that our double glazing has seen better days and it was becoming clear that something needed to be done.

Read more: If It Will Save Me Money, I’m All For It

Communities Rally to Offer Trade and DIY Skills

Well, I certainly can't let the biggest news of the week pass me by. The riots...what can I say? Lots of things spring to mind, but they aren't repeatable here. Needless to say, I have been pretty disappointed by these so-called young men and women (although it has to be pointed out that it appears to be mostly men). What has this world come to?

So lets look at all the arguments. Kids in this country have been left to kick around doing nothing for too long. They are bored out of their brains, they have no one to tell them what to do because their parents don't seem to care and they have no money and little prospect of a job. Can hardly blame them for taking the belongings of other hard working people - do you catch my sarcastic tone?

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What a Bodger

I have to say that I have surpassed even my own expectations with my last kitchen. I managed to get it done in just 10 days. I worked late (ish) nights, early mornings and one and a half days over the weekend, but I completed it. To be fair it was just a basic off the shelf kitchen, vinyl floors and normal sized tiles. But it has to be some sort of record for me!

Why – you may ask, have I felt the need to get this one done so quick? Well, Claire has booked us a break away for the end of the school holidays. One which I was in the dark about until she sprang it on me. Of course, I hadn't really considered having time off during the school holidays, so I have had to juggle my time and move things forward a bit.

This week I have started a bathroom which should take me more or less up to the time we head off. However, if things carry on like they have started, I may need to work a few more weekends!

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