Posts tagged 'Personal'

Managing Personal Expectations

Last week we rearranged the bedrooms in our house.

The big bedroom, which did have our double bed and a cot in it, became the kid's bedroom with 2 single beds in it. The middle sized bedroom, which did contain a futon and general storage, became the

As I ...

Phone on Strike

Last night, while I was cooking dinner, my phone died on me. There was no warning, there was plenty of battery but I turned the screen off, put it in my pocket and when I tried to use it again a couple of minutes later it was completely unresponsive.

I ...

Hills and Trailers

Today was the first day back at nursery for the boys. The last few trips to nursery we used the car. As a result it was my first time cycling the boy home in several weeks.

Perhaps it was overindulgence over the holidays. Perhaps I didn't do enough other ...

Jack of All Trades

After posting yesterday's post, I thought further about it and though I don't need to know much more about electricity, I do know more and want to learn more. I like learning, particularly about different subjects.

My background as a chemical engineer has given me a good understanding ...

We Have a Pizza Oven

As a Christmas gift to each other, we have gotten ourselves an uuni3 pizza oven.

Pizza oven with door off showing internal flames
Hot stuff
Pizza oven with door off showing internal flames
Hot stuff

This afternoon we fired it up and gave it a test run. This involved assembling the oven, seasoning it (giving it a half hour blast at full heat), before letting ...

DIY and Kids

After yesterday's solitary walk, I got to spend some more time with myself today. The rest of the family went for a cycle into town to collect a parcel and do some shopping.

This gave me a chance to do some DIY projects I had wanted to get on ...

Long Walks

Thanks to bad planning on my part, my car spent last night in the garage having had its MOT and service.

So to collect it this morning, I had to walk for about an hour to get there. It was a lovely experience, walking in the frosty air and listening ...


I have just read an article that has caused me to re-evaluate what I think I know about a topic. While the article didn't tell me anything particularly new, it did present things that I did already know in a different way and with the opposite 'advice' or strategy ...

Mid Week Night Out

I forgot what these were left like.

Probably ought to leave it long enough to forget again..


Today, after work, I had to drive over to Denny to collect something. Previous journeys over there have taken 20 minutes. Previous journeys were not done at rush hour.

Today's journey took 40 minutes and reminded me why I am glad my commute is so short and can be ...

Guaranteed Health

Work have been offering free health checks including height, weight, blood pressure, cholesterol and blood glucose levels. At the end we were provided with heart risk scores, a 10 year risk and a 2 year risk1.

My 10 year figure was 2.3%2 and my initial reaction was ...

Book It

When you meet friends that you haven't seen in a long time, a common comment is something along the lines of "we should do this more often".

A month ago, rather than just saying it, we booked a date in our calendars. These things can get moved, but once ...

Happy Thanksgiving

Considering everyone else in my house has an American passport, we haven't really done anything for Thanksgiving. But I would still like to take the opportunity to state what I am thankful for.

I am thankful for life, the universe and everything.

This was the answer that I gave ...

Bullying Bosses

In one of my previous jobs, I did not particularly get on with one of my supervisors. This is not that surprising and to be honest, it would probably be surprising if I had gotten on with every supervisor I have encountered.

This particular supervisor was not my direct line ...

Post Pension Workshop Calculations

After yesterday's pension workshop, I spent some time at lunchtime collecting the various information about the different pension funds and calculating how much I might have at retirement.

It is an interesting exercise, but at the same time, inflation, investment returns, the government ruled and regulations will all change ...

Pension Workshop

I got to attend a pensions workshop provided by my work today. The presenter confirmed that for people my age, the state pension is probably a mirage. They may say that I can retire and collect the state pension at 68, that will definitely keep getting moved and possibly removed ...

After Dinner Comedians

I have now attended tree InstMC dinners, and I have yet to have truly enjoyed any of the after dinner comedians. Sure every one managed to get at least one laugh out of me, but at the end of the half hour, I don't think I have had one ...

Cot Death

Last night's InstMC dinner raised funds on behalf of the Scottish Cot Death Trust and included a personal speech by one of the trustees. The speech was very emotional and stirred some of my earliest memories. I had intended to write this post last year but found it too ...

Drinking Habbits

I will be attending the InstMC Dinner tonight, as the guest of Honeywell. This will be an evening of free drinks and dinner and a good chance to have fun with other folk from industry. It will be the first time I have had a drink in a while.

In ...

One Idiot Can Spoil a Day

Earlier this week, I cycled from work into Falkirk town centre. After the journey, I was asked how the trip went and my first reaction was that it was horrible. But then I caught myself.

Most of the trip went fine. It was just one particular part that spoilt it ...

Ending Inactivity

After my post where I sketched out the idea of Disastrous Dinners I noticed that I have been very inactive with my IChemE membership.

I am supposedly still on the IChemE Scottish Members Group committee, however I don't think I have done anything to help in the last year ...

Wanted: A Good Jacket with Pockets

When out at the shops today, I tried to find a new jacket to replace my current one. My main issue with my current jacket is that it is water resistant but it doesn't hold up to heavy rain. It is also not particularly warm if I am standing ...

Picking Pumpkins

Today we went to a farm for pumpkin picking. I had envisioned going into a field where the pumpkins were being grown and picking them fresh from the stock. Of course this wouldn't have worked with the number of participants.

Instead you picked your pumpkin from a whole field ...

Painting and Disasters

Today has been a day of DIY, mostly painting in the downstairs toilet. This was a good opportunity to catch up on podcasts and I spent most of the time catching up with the DisasterCast back catalogue.

I don't have much to add except that I found it an ...

Social Media

Apparently there have been a lot of posts on social media about people leaving social media1. For the last two years I have effectively been off social media. I did so quietly without any posting about it at the time but I do want to record my thoughts on ...

Getting Technologically Old

For many years, I have wondered about the process of getting old and watching technology progress and being unable to keep up. As someone who has always loved and been interested in technology, I found it difficult to believe that I will, one day, be unable to keep up and ...

90 Days

So my daily posting streak lasted 90 days.

Last night when I got home, we ended up doing the evening routine in a different order and we swapped over who did the various tasks. As a result, I completely forgot about writing and publishing a post. Annoyingly I have been ...

Thursday Night Fever

Well I found out why I had lost my energy. Right after posting last night's entry, I crawled into bed feeling very cold.

For the next four hours I was curled up and feeling cold despite my body temperature being particularly high. Then about 11pm, the fever broke and ...


I seem to have lost all of my energy. I had a fair amount last week but this week I seem to have virtually non left.

So if anyone knows where I have left it, please let me know.


Helpful Truck

On my way home from work, I noticed the slogan on the side of one of the fuel trucks:

A white fuel tanker with gray text on the side.
Fuel Tanker
A white fuel tanker with gray text on the side.
Fuel Tanker

The slogan reads:

I'm delivering fuel to your local filling station...
... to save you collecting it from the refinery

Thanks for the help, but considering ...

Relief at Last

Over a year ago now, the sistern on our downstairs toilet started to leak. There was a crack in the casing so I isolated the water supply and we made do with the upstairs toilet until we could get it replaced.

Then my second son was born and we never ...

Writing While Angry

I have been attempting to write a letter of complaint to Aer Lingus about our return flight for the past three nights. It is a very difficult task.

On one hand I want to be as polite and respectful as possible, making my point in a prompt and professional manner ...

Language Trouble

Every time I visit the United States, I make the same mistake. This time it was when I was asked if I wanted chips or salad with my burger.

I automatically assumed the waitress was talking about, what everyone around here calls french fries. Of course what actually arrived at ...

HackerX Invitation

Over the last couple of weeks I have had a several emails inviting me to a hackerX event in Edinburgh. These are advertised as "an invite-only recruiting event for developers". 

Yesterday I emailed them back informing them that I wasn't a programmer or developer but in fact a chemical ...

Three in Three

In the last three weeks I have completed three lunchtime runs. Today's was the fastest of them but not as fast as I was running last May or last year1. One of the reasons for the slow run may have been the warm and humid conditions 2 but ...

The Magic of a Nap

Sometimes things seem bad1
Today was one of those days
All was good post nap.


  1. feel free to substitute a similar word that ryhmes with nap

And Relax

So in the week before going on holiday I have had to deal with:

  • A broken washing machine
  • A damaged front tyre
  • An "urgent recall" notice from my car manufacturer

This afternoon was the point where all these problems were sorted and there was nothing else for me to do ...

First Run Post Summer Break

I went for my first run since my early summer break today. I have been very poor with my running since leaving university and never gotten into a consistent training routine. The only thing I have been consistent with is that I take a break from running from some point ...

Not Beaten This Time!

Last time we hosted a picnic party I failed to post that day, breaking my streak1.

Not today. Today I am posting no matter what!


  1. Ok my streak was only 2 days at that point but that is not the point

31 Days

This is the 31st post I have made in as many days. One full month of posting something every day.

I am not sure how much longer I will be able to keep this up but in any case it has been a good run. I have managed to write ...

Dyslexia and Me - Today

These posts cover how dyslexia has, and continues to, influence my life.


My performance at school started to improve once I started getting the targeted support. It also helped that in secondary school, classes were more interested in my knowledge ...

Dyslexia and Me - Cycling Metaphor

These posts cover how dyslexia has, and continues to, influence my life.


My previous post finished with the conundrum my primary school teacher had: They knew that I knew the answers but was not completing the school work on time. Most of my primary school ...

Dyslexia and Me - Past

These posts cover how dyslexia has, and continues to, influence my life.

I have been meaning to write these for some time but never quite managed to get the ideas out of my head and onto the screen before.

I am dyslexic and I really struggled at primary school. I ...

Life as a Workplace Nomad

For the last week, I have been a workplace nomad.

We were kicked out of our office. All of our stuff had been placed into storage boxes and I have had to live out of one laptop bag.

Initially I wasn't too bothered by the lack of proper desk ...

Why am I doing this

If you are following using an RSS feed or look back at the dates published articles, you will notice that historically I have managed short bursts of relativity frequent blog posts, followed by long periods of silence.

Recently I have started trying to post something, anything, daily.

The main reason ...

Tourist in My Home Town

My brother-in-law and his wife were visiting this weekend, mostly to see their nephews but they also wanted to see some of the local tourist attractions in the area which they hadn't yet visited.

It was an opportunity for us to spend time as a family and also go ...

Afraid of a Few Drops of Rain

Once an engine attached to a train
Was afraid of a few drops of rain
It went into a tunnel
And squeaked through its funnel
And wouldn't come out again

The sad story of Henry, Rev. W. Awdry

The route I use to cycle to work goes under the ...

We Have (More) Grass!

The stones a0t the bottom of our garden have now been replaced by grass.

A freshly laid lawn
New Grass
A freshly laid lawn
New Grass

So now we have more room for the kids to play on. And of course more to cut.

Two Parties, Similar Outcome

Last weekend we hosted a BBQ picnic and had lots of friends over. It was a great day but I felt like I spent the whole time rushing about checking on folk and checking on the kids. I never really felt like I had a proper catch up with folk ...

Out of context

I have just had the uncomfortable experience of running into someone who I didn't recognize out of context. They clearly knew who I was (greeted me by name) but my brain just completely failed to make the connection.

I am used to not remembering people's names and having ...