Everything is replaced

Note: All the prices in this post have been converted to Euro. In 2002 parts of the EU switched to euro. The conversion rate was 1 euro for every 2.20 guilders.

Yesterday we’ve finally bought a new gas hob. The old one is now exactly 20 years old and has always been a pain to keep clean. The burners can’t be taken off, they’re screwed into place. The hob itself has lots of little corners and hard to reach places, even places you can’t reach at all. It’s dirty and one of the knobs has been broken for years.

But I was reluctant to replace it as it has an iron lid and I like to place pots and pans on it. The newer ones all have glass lids or no lids at all. But since we have been updating quite a few things in the kitchen, the hob has stood out like a sore thumb. So we’ve decided on a brand new one, with a wok burner.

All this has made me realise that all the white goods I bought when I moved out of my mom’s home have now been replaced. 20 years ago I bought a fridge/freezer combo, a washing machine, microwave and this gas hob for 863. I can’t really remember te individual prices, but the hob i do remember. That cost 81.

The microwave was the first thing to be replaced, as it stopped heating food.  A few years later the washing machine stopped pumping out the water, which resulted in a flooded bathroom. In 2009 we replaced the fridge, when we saw the freezer didn’t cool to -18 C anymore. That left only the hob. Which has now been replaced too.

That left me to contemplate what I still have from 20 years ago. And it boils down to our cutlery, given to me by my family. It was my uncle’s and when he died I got it. And a skillet that my dad gave me, because he didn’t use it. Up until a few weeks ago we even had the washing up bowl that was given to me when I moved out, but that started leaking.

So now everything has been replaced. The hob once, the rest of the stuff at least twice. I wonder if the new hob will be of the same economical value as the old one, but I doubt it. It would mean it has to be used 61 years…

Long time no see

It’s been a while since I last updated here. So I thought it’d be time for a new theme and, hopefully, some new posts.

At the end of last year our gorgeous girls, Candy and Dipsy both died within weeks from each other. It’s been hard without them. Dipsy had heart failure and Candy had been ill for years. She had kidney failure. They were born, to different mothers, nine weeks apart and died nine weeks apart.

I didn’t see it coming with Dipsy. And I’m still feeling guilty about it. She was a lovely big girl, kind and a bit of a loner. She loved being with us, but she didn’t want to lie on my lap or anything. She just wanted to be in the same room as us. When she showed signs of being ill we took her to the vet immediately, but it was too late. Her heart couldn’t cope with the buildup of fluid in her lungs anymore. She died at home, with us being there, but not holding her. I really wanted to hold her, but I knew she wouldn’t have wanted that.

Nine weeks later we had to call the vet for Candy. She had been clinging onto life for months, but that faithful day she knew she couldn’t hold on longer. She passed away in my arms.

After a while we really couldn’t get over the emptiness and the loneliness  at home, so we went searching for a breed that would suit us. When picking up Candy’s ashes the vet told us about Birmans. And we quickly fell in love with the breed. So we searched for a breeder relatively close to where we live. We found one about 45 minutes away.

We were lucky one of her cats was pregnant and she allowed us on her waiting list. On March 14 we got a phone call saying her cat had had four kittens and we could have two of them. We really wanted two girls again, but it wasn’t yet certain we could get two girls as, at first, the breeder had said she might want to keep one. But after six weeks we were told we’re in luck and we would get the two girls from the litter. So I’m presenting to you; Pinky and Dexter!

My Love Of Reading

A few days ago a fellow BookCrosser asked for children’s books. I had a few so I send her a box. There were a few books I had read as a child.

Lotje

These books were used for learning to read. Nowadays this happens in small groups I’ve been told. Groups of children that are on the same level. In my time we had to read with the whole class. It didn’t matter if you were ahead or behind on your reading skills. This is what we read and you have to do it.

Now I’ve always been an avid reader. Ever since I started to read I’ve been reading everything that I could get my hands on. My mom took me to the library when I was very little and when I was 4 I got my own library card. In these days (and it’s not that long ago) a child couldn’t get a library card if they were younger than 4. It’s quite different now, thankfully.

So these books triggered a few happy memories and quite a few bad ones as well.

“Frouk, would you read the next paragraph?” Well, I would, but I had no idea where in heaven’s name we were. Being ahead of my class in reading I silently read more than I should have and lost where the rest of the class was in the book. This, of course, got me into trouble quite a few times.

“Frouk, you can’t read that book, it’s too advanced for you.” No, it wasn’t. I had read that particular book from the library and enjoyed it so much I wanted to read it again. It was supposed to be for the class ahead of ours and me reading it got me into trouble again.
This happened a lot and after a while I didn’t want to read books from the library anymore. When my mom heard why not she went to our teacher and I got moved ahead (as the only one in my class) just for reading. I know soon after that they’ve changed the way they taught children how to read, but I’m not sure if my case had anything to do with that.

“You can’t borrow book from that section.” Our library had three children’s sections; 6-9, 9-12, 12-16. And in these days you weren’t even allowed to wander into a different section of you were choosing your own books. Now I started reading books for the ages 9-12 when I was 7. My mom and dad applauded this and always encouraged me to read whatever I wanted (within limits of course). But the library wasn’t that encouraging and it got me into trouble a few times.

“You can’t come in here 3 times a week and constantly borrowing books.” Yes, this was actually said to me by a librarian. Our library was open three afternoons a week, Monday, Wednesday and Friday. And every single one of these days I was there, borrowing more books. By this time the limit was only 3 books and I read them all in two days. Kids books just aren’t as thick as adult books. Luckily my mom was there and told them I could come in as many times as I’d like, provided I brought back the books I’d previously borrowed.

“You can’t borrow boys books.” My favourite book series are ‘boys’ books. But apparently girls can’t read those books. I’m still not sure why. In the following years I’ve heard this many times (never by my family) and never stopped reading those books. On the contrary, my love for ‘boys’ books has grown and I’m buying them whenever I find them in charity shops.

“Your mom needs to borrow her own books.” By the time I was 14 I’d pretty much read the entire children’s section. My mom gave me permission to borrow ‘adult’ books. Of course the library did not agree with me borrowing adult books and my mom had to come with me every time I wanted to borrow books. By this time I was in high school and had homework, friends and sport, so my reading time was reduced quite a bit. The maximum amount of books was upped from 3 to 5, so this meant I was only in there about once a week. It took quite a bit of persuasion before I was actually allowed to take adult books and sometimes still got into trouble with it.

“Why are you always reading?” Again, said by a librarian. And still, I have no idea why she said this. You are in a library, what do you expect people to do? Maybe it was because I was in the check out line and many times I started reading while waiting. I don’t know.

“Why have you chosen the hardest books?” We had to read 10 books for our exams in high school. And I did not choose the thinnest, easiest books, like my classmates did. And of course this triggered a lot of abuse from them. They thought me reading thicker books would have an impact on their grade. I don’t think it had any effect. Only their own actions had an effect on their grades.

“Why would you even read such a thick book?” Said to me by a teacher. Yes, a teacher… I was reading The Thorn Birds by Colleen McCullough at the time. And, as you might know, this books is almost 700 pages. So why? Because I’d seen the mini series and I enjoyed them and I enjoyed reading the book as well.

Luckily, all these snarky comments have never stopped me from reading. I’m very grateful to my dad, who let me borrow his Kameleon books when I was just 7 years old, and to my mom, who always encouraged my love of reading.

old cover (1955)

What does a medication switch mean for a thyroid patient?

25 years ago I got the diagnosis Graves’ disease. I’d been having problems with weight loss (22KG in 2 weeks), terrible headaches, palpitations, fatigue and psychological problems. After the initial diagnosis I’ve been taking Thyrax. The pharmacy tried to switch me to different antithyroid drugs twice. Twice it nearly got me into hospital.

So, now Aspen Pharmaceutical has stopped all production of Thyrax for a so-called “move”. They basically said they won’t be producing any Thyrax for the next 6 to 9 months. What does this mean for me?

It means fluctuating thyroid levels. This will make me very ill. It’ll mean psychological problems, it’ll means heart problems, it’ll mean bowel problems, it’ll mean eye problems, it’ll mean pain, it’ll mean fatigue, it’ll mean regular blood work to be done, it’ll mean weight loss, it’ll mean weight gain, it’ll mean skin problems, it’ll mean hyperventilation, it’ll mean headaches.

Is there anyone who cares? Basically, no. The GP says he can’t do anything, the pharmacy say they can’t do anything, the government say they can’t do anything. It certainly looks like they are trying to kill off the first group of chronically ill people…

 

Quick Gift Box

Hello, long time no see. So much has happened over the last year. Much of which I don’t feel comfortable sharing just yet.

But to kickstart my blog again I thought I’d make a quick tutorial on a gift box I made.

What you need:

  • Thick Scrapbook Paper
  • Scissors
  • Knife
  • Protractor Triangle
  • Scotch Tape or Glue

scrapbook paper

I used this paper. It’s 21X15 CM.

How to fold

Measure out how big you want your box to be. This depends on the paper. My measurements were 8X2X8X2X1 CM.

Cut the paper lightly with the knife, just to make folding easier. After you did this, turn the paper and measure 2 CM for the overlap on the top and bottom. If you made the sides of your box bigger, make sure you’ll measure out the top and bottom accordingly.
Cut the sides on the top and bottom like the picture above shows.

Glue the 1CM overlap and the bottom or, if the glue won’t hold (like on my boxes) use scotch tape to put them together.

Gift Box

And that’s it, really. Quick and easy.

Thank you Dirt Devil!

So, after my last post, in which I wasn’t very nice about Dirt Devil, things started happening.
As they promised, they got in contact with me. Well, I say me, but in fact I was at work and Jay answered the phone. He knew about the problems I had with my steam mop and knew that the new water filter didn’t change anything.
But he didn’t know that they promised to get in touch. To be honest, I didn’t expect them to actually get in touch. The people behind the Twitter account promised it multiple times and it did not happen, so this time I thought it would just be the same. That’s why I hadn’t said anything to Jay.

But they did get in touch. And the outcome is very satisfying to me.

At first they promised to send two (more) water filters. Jay told them the one we ordered had arrived the day before, but that didn’t solve the problem. They then told him we could send it in for service in their service center. Jay was happy with that arrangement (I would have been too).
But, 5 minutes after they ended that phone call we got an email. They offered me a new Dirt Devil steam mop instead of servicing the old one. And I have to say I jumped with excitement when I read that!

Why? Because, as I said on Twitter, I still stand by my review. It’s a great mop. Until it stopped working 🙂

So, only 2 days later I came home to a great big box that had been delivered to our elderly neighbour. I had a meeting, so I didn’t open the box til a couple of hours later. And what I found inside really made me happy.

Inside was not only the steam mop, but the two water filters that were promised in the first place. And on top of that was this!

Dirt Devil

My very own Dirt Devil! And I love it.

So all in all I’m really happy with how Dirt Devil handled the situation after my last post. Thank you Dirt Devil!

Thank you for nothing Dirt Devil…

In May 2013 I wrote THIS review about the Dirt Devil M318 steam mop.
For just over 2 years I was very happy with that steam mop. But then I started noticing things. My floors would get as clean as they used to. The mop started spilling water and it wasn’t steaming as much as it did before.

In December 2014 it almost entirely stopped steaming. There was only a little bit of steam coming out and the floors were left dirty. After a bit of trouble shooting and reading through the manual hubby and I concluded it must be a the water filter cartridge that’s been worn out. So on Dec 22 we ordered a new one at the price of almost 14 Euro. Without shipping that is. There was almost 10 Euro of shipping that we had to pay too…
Within minutes I got an email saying that my order would be shipped out asap.

But then, 24 hours late(r), I got another email saying the part was not in stock and they would ship my order when the part arrived.

I tweeted about the steam mop not steaming anymore and Dirt Devil swiftly got in touch. I replied to their questions and it took them 7 days to get back to me. Granted, Christmas was within those 7 days, so I wasn’t too worried about the delay. They asked me to send them my contact details so they could get the offices in my area to get in touch with me. I replied with a DM some 24 hours later.

5 days later I @ them in a tweet and they got back to me asking me what was wrong. I told them I’d sent my details as per requested and they got back saying the office in my area would be in touch soon. 3 days after that tweet I sent the following tweets:

 

I did not hear anything back. So 4 days later I sent this tweet:

Really annoyed with @DirtDevil right now. On Dec 23 I ordered a new water filter. Got an email saying it was out of stock. On Dec 30 @DirtDevil asked me to send my contact details, which I did. On Jan 6 they (finally) got back to me saying the sent my details to the regional offices. On Jan 9 I asked them how long I should wait for any info. It’s now Jan 13 and I haven’t heard anything…

Again… Nothing… Until Jan 13, when they asked me if the local office had been in touch with me. I replied, saying that they did not get in touch with me. And again, silence…

On Jan 23 I got an email saying the water filter cartridge was in stock and would be shipped out asap. Today I finally got the cartridge I’ve been waiting for for over a month.

So, naturally I wanted to use my steam mop right away. I installed the filter cartridge and plugged the mop in. To my surprise nothing happened. The ruddy thing still leaks water and isn’t steaming properly… Great,just great…

I’ve spent over 20 euro on a bloody useless cartridge and I can scrap a steam mop that’s just over 2 and half years old.
Now I know we didn’t pay a lot of money for it, but this is ridiculous in my opinion. Such a thing shouldn’t break within a couple of years.

I’m going to look for a new steam mop, one made by a different company. Because Dirt Devil has left a bitter taste in my mouth!

Things I did in August and September

Small post which I was going to do much earlier, but didn’t get around to do.

In a nut shell, I’ve done loads, just nothing that would really interest you. I’ve worked very hard through the summer, had a break in september. Played lots of Sims 4 and got back to work again.

Right now, lots is going on, but I can’t share it just yet as nothing is yet certain. So for the time being have a bunch of flowers!

Tulips2

Dread…

Changing colors, dropping temperatures, pumpkin spice lattes: do these mainstays of Fall fill your heart with warmth — or with dread?

Right now, the thought of autumn fills me with dread. Why? Because last week, I got tagged into a Facebook group, which consists of almost every living being I despised at school. Yes, it’s yet another “Let’s have a reunion” group for our class.
About 5 years ago they tried the same thing on a dutch site and I quickly left and never got back. Now they did it again on Facebook…
I can’t help it. There are only 6 out of about 28 that I’d like to meet again. One of which I have regular contact with. The rest can fuck off.

Needless to say, I haven’t had a great time at school. I’ve been bullied quite a lot. But somehow most of the people who were bullying me seemed to have forgotten what they did. And now they want to be “friends”. They want me to read their timeline, which I’m sure, I don’t want to read. And, I think more importantly, they want to read mine.

asshole

Now I know my timeline is filled with sarcastic ecards, but even then I don’t want them there. I’m not that naive… No seriously, I’m wishing them a great time, but I won’t join them. Despite my wish to see those 6 again.

This post was written for the postaday.