The lovely Shania did an interview post awhile back, and has kindly sent me some really interesting questions to answer here that she's taken from my archives. So I'll start with the first few answers today, and the rest next week.
1. Have you had any further success with reducing your carbon footprint? Is it easier now that you're in your own house with a garden?
I'm happy to say that I think the answer to this question is 'yes'. I'm trying to live a greener life, which is made easier by the fact that our house is in a complex that offers a recycling service, so I have a bin for paper and cardboard, one for plastic, tin and glass and another for the non-recyclable stuff.
Now that I have a garden, I have started a compost heap and am growing my own vegetables and herbs, which means I can cut down on shopping trips and on buying produce that's had to be transported from somewhere else. I don't use chemical pesticides, which means that pests can potentially be a problem, but I pick off the snails and caterpillars by hand, spray with an organic mixture of chili and garlic, and make use of plant partnerships that work. For example, planting loads of different plants in one space actually puts the pests off because they find it harder to sniff out the ones they want to chow.
I also have a big tank that collects the rainwater from the roof, so I use that to water the veggies instead of tap water. And we have become really good at turning ligths off when we're not using them, making the best use of natural light and switching appliances off at the plug point when they're not needed instead of leaving them on stand-by.
I'm closer to work and within walking distance of the shops, so I've cut down on my driving too.
2. You mentioned you were writing your grandfather's memoir. How is that going?
Unfortunately, the answer is that it isn't going. But I've asked my grandparents to come and visit us in the first quarter of this year to see our new house, and I'm hoping to get started there. I'm quite scared by how big a project it actually is, and if anyone has advice on how to tackle it, I'd be grateful. So far I have a set of questions I'd like to ask and some draft chapter ideas, but that's it.
Right, I'll answer the next questions next week, so come back then to find out how it "took a slap" for TSC and I to find love and other random stuff.
And have a great weekend. Here's a funny for you: