In case you were wondering…

This is what 30 pairs of balloons looks like.


Don’t worry… I will also be blowing up 30 more pairs of white ones.

We are going to be making a balloon arch… Unless it all goes wrong, in which case we will just be making a mess.

Anyway… Onward and upward! B-)


Marimo Completed

This morning I gave up waiting and decided to make it up today.

I took all my bits and, using all the stones, had a go to see which I liked. In the end it was the pebbles I liked. I put them all in the tub and removed some till I was happy.


In the end I got to here. It’s roughly 1/3 medium to 2/3 water. I have no idea if that is aesthetically good or not but I am happy with it, if you choose to give it a try then you will likely go with something else.


I then added the two Marimo and put the lid on.

I took the extra stones back outside and then took the completed Marimo bowl upstairs to the bathroom.


It will sit in the sunlight for a couple of days so that the bubbles disperse. Once it has settled down again I will move it to my room. It may be a North facing window but its actually not so bad. It gets a fair bit of diffused light.

BTW… If anyone wants more info there is a great channel on YouTube that has lots of vids on the subject. Wendi Phan

Washing Machine Blues

Ok… This is one is all on me. It appears I’m a bit of an idiot.

We don’t use fabric softeners… Or rather we don’t any more. We haven’t actually used them for a few years. But we did have a brief lapse when we first got the washing machine we have now. We used it once, maybe twice. Seriously we still have the near full bottle and it now resembles something akin to bad yoghurt. I didn’t even realise fabric softener had a BBE date.

For the past few days I have been wondering where the strange smell has been coming from in our kitchen. Had the cat thrown up? Had something fallen between the cupboards and gone off? No… And No.

I was putting a wash on and I got a whiff of the strange smell. When I opened up the draw I saw, and smelled, this. Ugh. B-(


Not nice. I also need to point out that I have no idea when the last time that draw was even opened. We use liquid detergent you put straight in the tub.
Normally when our machine starts it does a kind of a… Purge? It will blast some water through and then push it out. I though it was to clean the pipes and the bottom of the drum to remove any old water that had been left from last time… Great idea, no? So I naturally thought it would clear out the draw too…. Or something like that. Well, no.

So now I need to learn how to clean the draws of washing machines.

At least I now know where the smell was coming from!

Mini Marimo Me’s!

About 4 years ago I bought a Marino moss ball for my fish tank. It did really well and, well… By accident I managed to break it and turn one ball into two! *rolls eyes*


Fast forward to today and I seem to have found that my two Marimo balls have now had kids… I’m not sure this is how it’s supposed to happen in moss ball procreation, but I’m not going to argue… B-)


Everyone, say hello to Kael’Thas. That’s my daughters Red-tailed Shark that managed to photo bombed me on just about all the shots that came out roughly in focus. B-)

I’m considering taking the two smaller ones out of the tank and putting them in special bowls just for them and treat them like house plants, which is closer to what they actually are, rather than tank ornaments and filters.

Marimo make great pets too. Kinda. You move them around, talk to them… You can even take them outside and teach them to play catch! Or maybe you can play catch with them? Either way fun can be had with them.

Imagine a softer, wetter pet rock… except these grow over time while pet rocks don’t. B-)

Carpet brushes?

For a long time I have been getting annoyed by the fact that I can’t ever really get the sheddings from a certain member of our household out of the carpets. I do, of course, mean exhibit A…


She is a long haired Turkish Van… She despises being brushed so she sheds everywhere. Our normal vacuum cleaner tries it’s best but it simply can’t get all the cat hair up. So a couple of weeks ago I bought a carpet brush. Honestly I didn’t think it would work.

The day I bought it I gave it a try. I’m not going to lie… It was good but not as good as I had hoped. As it turns out I had been using it wrong… Colour me surprised!

The brush I bought is only a carpet brush, not a carpet rake… I have been looking up carpet rakes for how to use it. *le sigh*

So yesterday I had another go with it with the new technique, to see how it went… SO MUCH BETTER!!!

After giving it a vacuum I then used the brush.


You can see the line of fur that the vacuum just didn’t get up. The worst thing is that I can’t tell the difference between the brushed and the as-of-yet brushed bit!
And yet so much came out… It also managed to get out a couple of bits of walked in crud too. Very happy with that.


In the end, after a single run I got this lot out. Not only that but it feels a lot fluffier underfoot. It’s only a short fibre rug but it has really made a difference!

This was only a cheaper brush. It’s this, if you were wondering… I’m going to try it on a few of the actual carpets in the house, see if it does as well on those as the rug.

Because this did so well I may upgrade to an actual carpet rake in time, maybe when this one wears out. Well… It’s better than shaving the cat! B-)

And It Goes On… And On

I swear I should rename this account to ‘Shit that goes down at work’…

So… Today’s fiasco? Well…. Go grab a cup of tea, kids. Sit yourselves down and let Uncle Kal tell you the grand story of the latest shit-show. >.>

This Friday evening, and I go to my first shift of the week, check my email and find out that our department head, who we oh-so-rarely see, has forwarded us all an email from HR telling us that we need to take our holiday entitlement or we will lose them.

You see, we are currently on short, fixed term contracts as this is only a pilot scheme. Ok… Fair enough. But nobody mentioned that we need to have taken our holidays before each fixed term was done. So now we all have to take our holidays, although we can carry over a small amount at our managers discretion, which he has allowed. >.>

So now, for the next 3 weeks till the end of September, which is when this contract finishes, ALL the staff have to use up their holidays. So I am off next weekend… Whether I like it or not. *sigh*
So we have to fit in all those holidays, even though we are short staffed and can’t really afford to have people off…

The worse part? Yes, there is a worse part…

There is overtime available to cover the holidays.
(╯°□°)╯︵ ┻━┻




Her name isn’t Rio…

…But she may well dance upon the sands. B-)

Morning, folks! As I sit here typing this, it is 5:26am on a dark, slightly soggy, Friday morning and I have just come back from dropping the wife off at Leeds/Bradford airport so she can catch a flight to Rio… And I couldn’t be more proud. B-)

You see, she is off to the Paralympics. No, not as an athlete or a spectator, although she will no doubt be watching a fair amount of it too, but as a media person. How awesome is that?! She will be a part of the media team, those peeps that do the twitter, instagram, facebook, yada, yada, yada… All those. She is one of the unsung heroes that keeps everyone else up to date on what is going on.

For those of you that don’t know what the Paralympics are…. Read this!!!

My family is a big supporter of para-sports. For a while the wife was the manager of a sledge hockey team here in the UK and our daughter is a part of a local wheelchair basketball team. No, she isn’t an actual wheelchair user, she just plays it for fun. Although, side note, she knows a couple of the athletes heading to the paralympics. Another awesome thing! B-)

Not going to lie though. I don’t join in. I’m a supporter of the paralympics in as much as it is a thing… And it should be a thing, but I have no love for sports at all. I just don’t get it. And that’s fine. I don’t have to share the joy of sports to be proud of those that do enjoy it and actively help others enjoy it.

Anyway… This is really just a fluff piece to tell my wife that I love her and I’m oh so very proud of her. B-)

If you are interested and would like to know the schedule for the paralympics… Click here!

Oh, and Go Team GB!
(Other teams exist but GB is the best, so there!)