one year on

Apr. 3rd, 2013 09:48 pm
woolymonkey: (singe a la licorne)
We've been in the new monkey house a year now.  It still doesn't feel normal - the house is not normal - but it's starting to feel... familiar.  And still good.

It doesn't feel like a whole year, but that may be partly because the cold spring means the garden is nowhere near back round to the same stage it was in when we first arrived.

Celebrated with takeaway from Cafe Naz.  We got delivery from there on our first night, last year when musique_monkey was still ill enough to let htem deliver.  Now he insists on collecting it himself.  Tastes good either way.
woolymonkey: (guitar chimp)
I am dead impressed by spidermonkey's gcse show.

Behind the cut because big pictures are big )
We don't get them back until October because he's been selected for the moderation sample so Edexcel are busy losing thoroughly critiquing and evaluating them as I type.  We have a few spots in mind for various things (though creepy graveyard monster will be banished to spider's room or the games room).  Wondering about the swirly galaxy and skulls one in the kitchen, but would skulls over the dining table put people off their food?


Jul. 16th, 2012 07:07 pm
woolymonkey: (Default)
Spent the day reassembling furniture and unpacking pics and ornaments. People who helped out in the crisis, disassembling and packing, you did a brilliant job. Everything came through unharmed (well, except the one I dropped in the hall). We are grateful all over again.
woolymonkey: (wtf?)
We're getting settled into the new monkey house and musique_monkey is feeling much, much better. This is all very good.

"But what you really want to hear about is cats, isn't it? )

snag #1

Mar. 16th, 2012 05:37 pm
woolymonkey: (Default)
No thanks at all to Fulchers removals.

Yes, they offered the best service and best price when we were getting quotes last week. Yes, they were friendly, helpful and thorough confirming all the details on the phone today and booking us in for the 3rd. Yes, they even offered to bring round the first lot of boxes today so we could start packing over the weekend.

But they blew it when they phoned again at 5pm to say that, actually, very sorry, but now they come to look at it more carefully, it turns out they can't do the 3rd after all. By which time the other removers have closed for the weekend so we can't book anyone.

With any luck one of the other two (Sheppards and Perry) can still fit us in. But just in case, does anyone know any good, or even just adequate removers in the Cambridge area?
woolymonkey: (wtf?)
We just exchanged contracts \o/\o/\o/ :)

Completion is on April 3.

My, that was quick!


Mar. 16th, 2012 11:16 am
woolymonkey: (wtf?)
Yesterday was a frazzly day with solicitors arguing with each other, but today we have got to the point where all we are waiting for is our buyer's deposit to clear. Then we can exchange contracts, maybe today, maybe Monday...

It sounds good, but this is exactly the point at which our previous house sale fell through. Three times.

Putting nervous tension to good use, I have made it to level 3 of the 30 day shred. Yay me!
woolymonkey: (Default)
We are creeping cautiously forwards.
Survey issues resolved - small reduction to cover electrical work: tick
Prices agreed for appliances and curtains: tick
Completion date of 3rd April: tick
Solicitors sorting out small print of clauses and exactly how the money changes hands: pending.
Tortoise out of hibernation and ready to visit [ profile] bugshaw: no, but we know where he is and we have a spade.

Hoping to exchange contracts this week, but of course, it could still all come tumbling down.

Nervously hopeful monkey is hopeful and nervous.
woolymonkey: (Default)
Back from a final visit to what we hope will be the Monkey Mansion. We're all surer than ever that we love it and want to live there. There are only 3 links in the chain (we're the middle). Both houses now 'sold subject to contract' and we're trying to get it all finished by Easter. It can't be that easy, can it? Please keep fingers crossed.
woolymonkey: (Default)
We've accepted an offer on the Monkey House! So the plan is to be out of here and into Monkey Mansion by Easter if we can do it that fast - which everyone seems to want - or after Spider's GCSEs if we miss Easter. Of course there's still a lot that can go wrong but it's amazing how fast things have happened now that they're happening at all.

Will post about Monkey Mansion when/if I believe it's really happening.

In the meantime, we need a good solicitor and surveyor. They need to be fast (for Easter) and thorough because there's a LOT of complicated development due to happen on two sides of Monkey Mansion, and it's a complicated house anyway. If you know anyone good in Cambridge area, please let me know. Thanks.
woolymonkey: (Default)
The monkey house is on the market and has had its first viewer - more due at the weekend. It has never been so clean (and I have never been so behind with my marking).

The monkey school phoned AGAIN to ask why they have no monkey boys in lessons. Told them AGAIN that they are on a SCHOOL TRIP. Is it me, or is it somewhat alarming that the organisation supposedly looking after the monkey boys clearly has NO IDEA where they are?

Scuse capslock--put it down to moving stress.
woolymonkey: (Default)
Yesterday we walked to Girton in the snow to view a house, and fell in love with it.

Today, monkey boys boarded a coach in the snow and drove off to terrorise entertain Parisians for a week with the Monkey Federation Academies Orchestra and Choir. This includes a day at Disneyland singing Happy Songs in One-Part Harmony (i.e. everyone sings pretty much the same thing but not in the same octave). Monkey boys will be in the row of scowling basses at the back. On Wednesday, which is forecast to be -15C in Paris. Luckily they are not brass monkeys, even the brass-playing one. Does anyone know if Disneyland is likely to close rides in that weather? Because if they have to sing Happy Songs without a rollercoaster ride to make up for it, there is going to be trouble...

And big grown-up monkeys put an offer on the house! There is another interested party, but not a cash buyer this time. The vendor wants to move to Scotland fast, so it seems we are now in a race of time rather than money. Where we were planning to put the Monkey House on the market after half term, we are now putting it on today! I have 24 hours to redecorate Squirrel's room and tidy up our clutter. Oh, and it's a heavy marking week. So don't expect to see any monkeys for a while. (Unless, of course, we loose this house too and it all goes quiet again...)

woolymonkey: (Default)
So the leak is fixed and the kitchen ceiling is drying nicely.

The trip to London is postponed to Jan 3rd in hopes it will then be straightforward enough to enjoy as it deserves. Granny and Grandpa Monkey may or may not be on their way here from Exeter, via Birmingham. (Where they hope to hand over Great Grandma Monkey to her youngest son and Christmas in Lancaster.) You can see how any leg of that journey could be blocked by snow, but we're fairly confident they'll be here by Christmas, or earlier (which is even better). If they don't set out today, they'll try tomorrow, or Friday...

Woke up this morning to find all the electric sockets were dead. Speedy detective work by [ profile] musique_monkey  (you can tell he tracks bugs for a living) pinned the problem down to the dishwasher. So now all is working again provided nobody tries to switch the dishwasher on. It's still under warranty and Bosch are coming out on the 29th to fix it. So it's a traditional Christmas round the sink with tea towels for the monkey family. In fact, it would have been much stressier if it had gone at a normal time of year: over the hols there'll be plenty of time and monkeys to get the dishes done.

What'll be the next crisis? Well, Humbug has been eating the birds' bread again, so storms and sudden gusts are probable. Hopefully in the litter tray.

I dreamed we were visiting [ profile] la_marquise_de_  and the marquis, who were running a cat shelter in a house-sized conservatory. All kinds of adorable cats came to see me as I chatted with [ profile] la_marquise_de_ , including one made entirely of bobbly knitting wool, with a neat purled section and two chunky knitting needles attached to its belly fluff. Then a tiny ginger and white cat came and plonked herself in my lap exactly the way that Zil liked to in her old age. In other words, she made it clear I wasn't going anywhere unless I tucked her under my arm and took her along.  [ profile] la_marquise_de_  told me this cat was 45 years old, but apart from rather cloudy eyes, she seemed to be doing fine. I was just wondering how Leicester and Humbug would take to her, and how she'd cope with their bouts of lions'n'wildebeest, when I woke up.

Right. One more assignment to mark, and various bits of monkey homework and shopping to do (all fairly pleasant). Then it's just present wrapping and taking it easy. Phew! (Or is it?)
woolymonkey: (Default)
I've been cleaning inside the kitchen cupboards, and the tops of the cupboards--areas that haven't seen a cleaning cloth since [ profile] musique_monkey put them up 5 years ago. I wouldn't have thought this was how I'd want to spend a free morning when I finally had one, but apparently it was.

Spider has gone back to school feeling better. Let's hope it lasts this time.
woolymonkey: (keyboard)
Flood in cellar: fixed.
It was us. Plumber eventually found a faulty bit of copper pipe under the very middle of the kitchen floor (after he'd taken up most of the rest of the floor). I got quite wet just leaning over to look at the hole.

Spidermonkey's options interview: survived
Head did not bollocks either of us and it looks as though he can probably do his first choices--basically loadsa science plus art and music.  Probably.

Work: frantic
Behind with tutorial prep.  Huge pile of urgent marking arrives at noon tomorrow.  Large urgent translation arrived at 3 today...

Garden: ready for spring
We painted 10 panels of trellis green.  Now we just need Paul to come and fix them to the top of the walls before the plants grow any taller.

Kittens: still cute
They've been exploring the rest of the house and getting trained in helping apes have breakfast, watch TV, answer the doorbell etc.  Have some pics...

desk kitty 1
Humbug being a computer lapcat

zipper 1
Leicester investigating the zip on my jumper

and now...

Feb. 21st, 2010 01:00 pm
woolymonkey: (wtf?)
... the cellar has flooded!

It's probably coming from next door, who are flooded too and doing their best to sort it out, and it's probably covered by insurance once we figure out whose insurance to claim from. So it could be worse. But it's no fun at all :(

Fruitcake is eating intermittedly especially if I go pester her and drag her into human company. She still gives every sign of hating to be around us, but it does seem to lead to her eating more and moving around the house more than she does left to herself. Dr Monkey diagnoses cat depression (on top of the thyroid and whatever other physical problems she has).
woolymonkey: (the wooly)

Nothing exciting really: life has been carrying on pretty smoothly.  But for those who want more detail…



woolymonkey: (squirrel monkeys)
This year we’re trying out a new way to keep in touch, so this is a long post with a year’s worth of Monkey House news for our non-livejournal-using friends and family.  
If you’ve followed the email link and this is your first visit to livejournal, WELL DONE! You can read most of the journal without logging on or having a livejournal account yourself – you can even leave comments. So please browse around and see what you think. If you like it enough to get an account (which is free and harmless) you can get access to more personal posts and to photos we hope to put up soon.

If you think livejournal is a good way to keep in touch, let us know and we’ll do more of it.

Merry Christmas and a Happy 2008 to everyone!

woolymonkey: (squirrel monkeys)
Over three years into the new house, we finally have carpet in two rooms.  It's nice.  No splinters!  One of the lucky rooms belongs to Squirrelmonkey.  He chose bright red carpet, which he says smells like anchovies.  Apparently that's a good thing.
woolymonkey: (keyboard)
Mostly work update.  Will set up filters one day, promise...

On the downside, celebrations of end of Open University marking year were rudely interrupted by The Student Who Sent Me Four Assignments Two Weeks After the Final Deadline.  (There are only 6 compulsory assignments for the whole year!)  He does have considerable "Additional Requirements",  but since he has refused all contact since June, I had kind of assumed he'd dropped out.  I'm glad he got his act together and finished the course, but I could really do without the last-minute extra work.

On the upside, I've been up to my elbows in paint - whle listening to "Rogues Gallery "courtesy of [personal profile] tamaranth - and we now have a mostly green and cream shower room.  This is a big improvement on the previous decor, which combined chipboard, bare plaster, and filth.  (Two years after moving into this house, I'm still looking for a plausible explanation of why one of the previous occupants nailed lumps of blutack to the walls.)

On the weird side, this passage from a recent translation job:
It is possible to massage the urethra carefully, first extruding the penis and inserting the little finger through the rectum. As a rule, this procedure will require the cat to be sedated or anaesthetised.  I think it's "as a rule" that makes it really special. 

This is now officially the most disturbing sentence I've translated, easily displacing this previous winner, which came from a German forensic report.  (It helps if you read it in a B-movie Nazi accent.)
Skin, flesh and bone have very little impact on a bullet travelling at speed.


woolymonkey: (Default)

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