January 2018                                                                                                      Back to December


Monday 1st New Year's Day

 4 to 6 to 3°C. 1.66kWh 600W max. A very dull start, clearing to sunshine around lunchtime but then became very dull and windy with some heavy rain before clearing again later in the evening.


It is very cold and soggy outside so working in the garden is impossible at the moment. So back to planning how to improve the bathroom by replacing the sink and panelling the outside wall.

Tuesday 2nd

 3 to 9 to 7°C. 275Wh. Dull, wet and windy.

Wednesday 3rd

 7 to 9 to 7°C. 1.62kWh 700W max. Wet and very windy with some short sunnier intervals.

Thursday 4th

 5 to 10 to 4°C. 1.09kWh 300W max. Another very windy day with some light rain showers and brief sunnier periods.


The panelling for the bathroom wall arrived today. Also Pat went to collect the new sink and its fittings. It was only when she got back that she noticed a hairline crack in the pedestal so had to go back and exchange it. Fitting this and the panelling will give me something to do while the weather is bad.

Friday 5th

 3 to 4 to -1°C. 545Wh 150W max. More rain overnight with showers during the day and a clear evening which might be frosty by mornining.


We are going to Kirstin's tomorrow for our annual family get-together. Hopefully the weather will be better.

Saturday 6th

 -1 to 5 to 0°C. Heavy rain in the morning, clearing to a cold starry night.

Sunday 7th

-1 to 3 to -2°C. 3.22kWh 800W max. A sunny but very cold day.


Started trimming and gluing the marble effect panels to the bathroom wall. So far it is going well. Easier than wallpapering and hopefully much more permanent.

Monday 8th

-3 to 2 to 2°C. 1.15kWh 700W max. Clear frosty sunny start but clouded over by lunchtime.

Tuesday 9th

 2 to 3 to 5°C. 104Wh. A very dark damp cloudy day.


Despite the weather this is the first day for several months when all three hens have laid an egg.

Wednesday 10th

0 to 9 to 0°C. 3.23kWh 1.0kW max. A very pleasant sunny day with very little wind.


Too nice to be indoors this afternoon so the work in the bathroom will have to wait. Slightly difficult because we had drained the water so we could disconnect the old sink. The new connectors for the new sink have valves so we won't need to drain the water again when we fit the new sink, but until we do there will be no running water for washing or teeth cleaning in the bathroom.

Instead I moved all the pots of Spring bulbs, Hyacinth, Narcissus and Tulip, from the nursery to the patio. Then I moved the begonia corms from their pots in the polytunnel into trays so they can dry out. I was worried that the frost might have harmed them but they are all OK apart from two which appear to have already died and rotted even before the frost.

Thursday 11th

 2 to 5 to 3°C. 2.03kWh 400W max. Damp and cloudy with some brighter intervals.


Back to the bathroom improvements. I managed to remove the old sink quite easily, mainly because it was attached to wall by a wooden plate which was rotten. It would probably have fallen off on its own in the next few years so it is good that we decided to replace it. Fitting the new one was not as straightforward as it seemed. The kit to screw it onto wall, described as universal, fitting all standard wash basins, consisted of two bolts with an end to screw into plastic plugs in holes drilled in the wall and the bolt end was supposed to pass through slots in the back of the basin, two plastic inserts to fit the slots and a nuts to secure. The bolts were not long enough to go through the sink and the inserts so I divised another method using thinner rubber washers instead. We then discovered that the waste pipe, also described as standard, wasn't long enough to attach to the waste coming out of the sink and the exisiting waste pipe in the wall. I have some plastic pipe somewhere in the garage or the garden which I might be able to use to extend it.

Friday 12th

 1 to 5 to 4°C. 470Wh 100W max. A grey damp day with a cold northerly wind.


Struggled all afternoon trying find a way to connect the new sink to the existing waste pipe with no success. Pat is going shopping tomorrow and will call in at Screwfix to see if they have something which will fit.

Saturday 13th

 4 to 5 to 3°C. 243Wh 50W max. Another dark and cloudy day.


Pat spent most of the morning trying to find something which will help connect the sink to the waste. She got a flexible connector which does work but the bend required to do it means we can't move the pedestal all the way under the sink but it is far enough to bear the weight. So we do now have something which works but still needs a better solution and this is not as urgent. Meanwhile I have nearly finished the panelling.

Sunday 14th

4 to 5 to 3°C. 341Wh 50W max.  Dull.


Finished fitting the panels apart from behind the sink.

Monday 15th

 5 to 8 to 5°C. 764Wh 100W max. Windy and showery with a few sunnier intervals.

Tuesday 16th

 3 to 4 to 0°C. 1.67kWh 600W max. Wet and windy start, clearing to sunny intervals late morning but then back to rain later.

Wednesday 17th

 2 to 5 to 3°C. 2.92kWh 900W max. A light sprinkling of snow overnight followed by sunshine most of the morning but with a very cold strong wind. Started raining late afternoon and into the evening.

Thursday 18th

 3 to 5 to 0°C. 2.62kWh 700W max. Very Windy overnight, enough to blow a lot of twigs off the trees onto the paths and drive. Sunny for a time in the morning but feeling very cold in the wind. Rained in the evening.

Friday 19th

 -1 to 4 to 2°C. 3.21kWh 1.2kW max. Frosty start then sunny but with a strong and cold north-westerly wind.


The inside walls I treated by injecting damp proofing gel into holes drilled along the bottom have now dried out, proving that the treatment has worked. So I have now started to remove and replace the damaged plaster.

Saturday 20th

 0 to 2 to 1°C. 232Wh. Cold and damp with some showers of wet snow in the morning.

Sunday 21st

 -1 to 2 to 6°C. 100Wh. Cold and wet with wintery showers until late in the afternoon. Coming clearer and much warmer in the evening.


Monday 22nd

 6 to 8 to 7°C. 799Wh 200W max. Another grey day but at least it stayed dry and felt a lot milder. Tomorrow is forecast to be even warmer but it might rain.


At last the weather is warm enough to work outside but it is too soggy to dig over the garden so I finished digging over inside the polytunnel instead. Then started moving the chrysanthemum pots inside the polytunnel to remove the canes and ties and cut the stems down so they will produce new young shoots for cuttings. The first day for some time I walked nearly 10,000 paces working in the garden.


Tuesday 23rd

 6 to 13 to 10°C. 303W. Thick cloud with some rain overnight and into the morning. Very mild for January but only if you kept out of the blustery wind.


Continued moving and tidying the pots of chrysanthemums.

Wednesday 24th

 12 to 8 to 6°C. 629Wh 150W max. Wet and windy overnight and late into the morning before clearing in the afternoon to a clear still and colder evening.


The seed potatoes came today so I have placed them in cell trays with the eyes uppermost in the back bedroom close to the radiator to chit. Also the onion sets which I spread out on trays on the window sill to ripen.

Also we finally got the correct fittings to finish plumbing in the sink drain and the new shaver light and socket for the toothbrush which I fastened onto the wall above the sink. All that is now left to do is run silicone sealant round the edges of the new panelling, including where it meets the window, sink and bath, and sticking back the floor tiles round the pedestal of the sink.

Thursday 25th

 4 to 7 to 3°C. 2.58kWh 900W max. Sunny morning but with a cold wind. Showery afternoon and evening.

Friday 26th

 2 to 7 to 3°C. 2.71kWh 900W max. Cloudy start then sunshine till late afternoon followed by a clear cold night.


Continued sorting out the chrysanthemums.

Saturday 27th

 4 to 12 to 8°C. Wet and windy overnight and during the morning. Less cloudy and warming up in the late afternoon as the wind moved to the south.

Sunday 28th

 7 to 12 to 10°C. 3.17kWh 1.2kW max. A sunny day with a warm southerly wind.


I have nearly finished sorting the chrysanthemums.

Monday 29th

11 to 8 to 1°C. 1.34kWh 700W max. Damp cloudy morning clearing in the afternoon to sunny periods but becoming much colder.


Despite the sunshine it was cold in the polytunnel in the afternoon.

Tuesday 30th

 -1 to 6 to 5°C. 1.31kWh 700W max. Cold start with some sunny periods in the morning but more cloudy and windy in the afternoon.


Kept warm by cutting up some more firewood.

Wednesday 31st

 8 to 5 to 2°C. 3.01kWh 1.1kW max. Cloudy damp start clearing in the afternoon to sunshine but coming colder. The evening started clear but clouded over with some light sleety showers.


I was hoping would stay clear to see the 'Super Blue Moon' and it was clear and very bright as it rose just after dark but the clouds soon covered it.

Too cold to work outside so finished tidying up the pots of dahlias in the polytunnel.