A week off (by )

I took last week off of work, to recuperate from the house moving and to spend some time setting up my workshop. That sounds like more house moving, but it's without deadlines, and it's taking time to sort out my own space the way I like it. So it's relaxing and settling! I did a few other things, too. I chose the Half Term week for my holiday, as no work AND no school runs would mean I didn't need to get up in the mornings, and so I could spend more time with our children. Sarah's teenaged (well, 12 and 14) cousins visited for half term, too, and were eager to help out with interesting DIY projects!

  • We laid concrete in the fireplace, to bring the base level with the rest of the floor so we can tile it to make a nice hearth. We mixed the concrete by hand, and leveled and tamped it into the space, then checked back on it over the next few days until it was hard.

  • We laid mortar along a messy and dirt-accumulating crevice in the workshop floor, to level it. This was fairly similar to the laying of concrete, except using sand rather than all-in ballast as the aggregrate.

  • Painted most of the workshop floor with the special concrete floor paint I bought from the excellent and helpful Bailey Paints. We can't paint over the bit we laid mortar on until it's cured sufficiently, which will take a few months, so that bit can wait.

  • Constructed and arranged the furniture in the workshop. Shelving had to be assembled, and my famous double-deck electronics desk put back together!

  • Mounted my tool board on the workshop wall. It's happy in its new home.

  • Mounted and wired in the Caffreys sign. Years and years ago Sarah and I, with my friend Matthew, witnessed a pub being redecorated, and the illuminated Caffreys sign was being chucked into a skip. We asked if we could take it, and it's followed us ever since then, being used as a rather unweildy novelty lamp; now we have a place we can mount it properly to the wall, so it's mounted on the outside of my workshop, with the cable run properly through the wall so it can be plugged in inside.

  • Mounted and wired in the router, power strip, switch and UPS. We have a nice new cupboard under the stairs, built for us by Sarah's brother David. I've mounted the "core network" devices directly to the inside wall of the cupboard, and will mount one of my patch panels there when I run CAT5 to sockets around the house (and a trunk to the workshop, where my second patch panel will be installed in the comms cabinet - when it's bolted to the wall; we bought the bolts for that, but didn't get around to it).

  • Gone climbing (with Jean and Sarah's cousins) at The Warehouse in Gloucester, which has excellent facilities for children and young folks. Everyone had a good time.

  • Worked more on my scripts to migrate the massive amount of data from my current hosting setup, love.warhead.org.uk, to the new hardware. Love currently runs on a pair of servers, fear and infatuation, whose responsibilities will be taken over by one, just called love. This will be a simpler and more reliable setup, which will be easier to migrate in future, and will (touch wood) crash less. Oh, and it gives us much more disk space.

The love migration scripts were about the only stuff I did with computers all week. I'd have liked to have done more (I have some Ugarit, R7RS, and Chicken Scheme TODOs), but the presence of teenagers who would get bored if they didn't have exciting DIY tasks to do meant I focussed on things I could do with them. This isn't a problem, as in only one week I couldn't do ALL my projects; even focussing on DIY, we didn't get it all done 🙂

However, I think I need to take time off to relax like this more often. Mainly because, despite not needing to be up in the morning, I kept waking up at around 6am and not being able to get back to sleep. And once I woke up from a nightmare that I was neglecting all my responsibilities and everyone who depended upon me was being let down. These are not healthy signs...

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