Thursday, October 17, 2002

I was thinking this morning that my first web diary, which I started in 1998, we actually one of the first Uk diaries. When I first went online, I found it very frustrating that nearly all the websites on any subject were American - including most of the family history sites, which were a main interest then. Nowadays, there are lots of UK sites, and nearly all television programmes and radio programmes are supported by a web site.

In 1998, I was using an old Macintosh Power Mac to access the internet, and found that any sites with a lot of content, or with audio or lots of moving graphics, took forever to load - and often the sites bounced me off before they could load. The BBC site used to shut me out because the loading time was so long.

When I made my own website within a month of getting online, I made sure that I stuck to a very basic design and didn't shut out people because they didn't have a powerful computer or fast connection. I hope I would be as thoughtful nowadays, although I now have a broadband connection and a pretty powerful computer.

All the children and my husband have a cold now. We have the son of a friend spending the day with us. My friend is away in Dublin for a conference which she is helping to run, and her son has a training day, and so to the delight of my younger son, whose special friend this is, he will spend the hwole day and not just the time after school with us.

I decided yesterday to get on and finish off some do-it-yourself jobs. Ages ago I bought some plywood to make a bed guard for K's bed. She has a cabin bed, but we had to buy a new mattress, which turned out to be too deep for safety in a cabin bed. I bought the ply to stop her rolling off in the middle of the night.

I had marked out a shape to cut out of the playwood, started cutting it with a jigsaw months ago and gave it up as too hard. Yesterday I took the jigsaw and a lot of elbow grease, and finished the cutting out, and then painted the board, both sides. She wanted blue and purple in a swrily design.

The children looked at the paints I was using and asked if they could paint their wall in their bedroom. I started painting their room ages ago, but they couldn't agree what colour to do the other walls, which still have a rather insipid flower patterned wallpaper on them. So we mixed up some blue pigment with some green paint and got a rather fetching aquamarine colour, and we all painted the wall. It meant moving a couple of hundred books and videos and two bookcases, and of course we had some dramas. K kicked over the paint soon after starting, and so I had to carefully slide the newspaper containing more than half the paint we had made up, onto a sheet of hardboard and then we had to paint like crazy before the paint ran off the hardboard or solidified.

K also managed to get paint over her trousers, which made her wail for ages. She has one pair of jeans which she wears constantly and gets very upset if they aren't available for wearing. After twenty minutes scrubbing and soaking I managed to get all the paint out. I had to get up at 6 am to make sure that they were put in the tumble dryer so that she could wear them again this morning.

Still, we finished the wall, and managed to put the furniture back, and it looks miles better. Now all I have to do is paint in and around T's loft bed, which won't be an easy task.

My dear husband came home drunk and went into mega tidying up mode as soom as he arrived. It is best to either get out of the way or shout at him until he withdraws to our bedroom, I find. As I was still reorganising in the children's bedroom, I left him to it. He is supposed to be cutting down, but has been drunk the last four nights out of four. What he is using for money I can't imagine.

I have been researching alternatives for congestive heart failure for my father, who is quite poorly at the moment. I discover that CQ10, Vitamin C, Omega 3 oils and L arganine plus gentle arm exercise will be helpful. Not sure that he will take them though. He gets so fed up with taking pills and medicines that he ends up taking some things every other day - probably dropping his intake below the leval at which it would be helpful. I have tried to point this out to him, but he is very resistant. The trouble is that he was always so healthy and fit and active, he finds it difficult to think of himself as being unwell.

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