I’m Back

Well it’s been a long time since I posted anything, but I thought it was time for a new look (hope you like it!) and an update on what’s been going on.

The end of last month and the first half this was basically spent dotting the i’s and crossing the t’s on my dad’s estate, took a bit longer than it should have for various reasons which I won’t go into but is essentially done and dusted now – which is a bit of relief. It finally feels like it’s time to get on with the rest of our lives now, so that’s what we’re doing.

Angela has always hoped for more than just one child, but various problems have led us to conclude that it’s just not a good idea for us to have another ourselves. So we’ve started looking into adoption – it’s obviously a long process but we’ve a first meeting with a social worker from North Ayrshire next week, and then another meeting next month with Families for Children (Glasgow City Council). We’ll keep you all posted on what happens with that.

The extensions is moving forward slowly, planning application has been approved by the Planning Committee and the Architect’s are now working on the Building Warrant. Hopefully building will start sometime in the summer, but we’re probably looking at 16 weeks worth of work so I just hope we can fit it in before Christmas.We’ve also invested in a new hi-fi, eventually it will probably go in the extension but for now it’s found a home in the living room – we’ve not really had any sort of music in the living room since we moved in so it’s long overdue. Sevenoaks Hi-Fi in Glasgow supplied the kit (an Arcam Solo and a pair of Kef iQ5 speakers) the weekend before last, but one of Megan’s pals (who shall remain nameless) managed to knock one of the speakers over last week and damaged the driver unit and grille. It’s largely superficial but Sevenoaks have offered to repair it free of charge (we just need to pay for the parts) so we’ll get it fixed as soon as the parts are in – at least it still works for now.

We also bought (online not from Sevenoaks) a SlimDevices Squeezebox – clever box of tricks that lets you stream your music files wirelessly from your PC to your hi-fi. I thought that a decent hi-fi might expose the lack of quality in the mp3 recordings, but the Squeezebox makes them sound great – no need to re-rip all the CDs in a lossless format!

The Volvo passed 98,000 miles at the weekend and will probably hit the six figures sometime in July – its still going strong though so I don’t think there’s any need to look for a replacement just yet. The only thing that’s really gone wrong was a the link arm between the wipers – it wore out in the middle of some typical Scottish weather on the way to Edinburgh. Fortunately the driver’s side wiper kept wiping, but the passenger side stopped half way with a load thunk. I’m now wiping in stereo again, but £150 lighter for the privilege.

On the snooker front since the last time I posted, I beat Megan at Center Parcs (which was a confidence boost!) and Darren last week at Largs to leave the current score at 6-3 to Darren (I’m catching up!). In between we had a game a doubles with one of Darren’s pal’s and a guy from Elaine’s work – it was a good laugh (finished 3-3 – just like the FA Cup Final!) and hopefully will be doing it again next week (to be confirmed).

That’s about all I can think of just now, hopefully updates will be a bit more frequent now that things have settled down a bit…

2 thoughts on “I’m Back

  1. Hi Steve – I’m a long time reader first time poster 🙂

    I was just wondering about how those mp3’s sounded on your new Arcam Solo. What bit-rate are your mp3’s recorded at? If it’s the same as mine (128-bit) and they sound great on a good hi-fi then I’ve no need to re-rip in the future should I ever be able to afford such a system myself.


  2. Hi Tim – it’s nice to know i’m not talking to myself 🙂

    We had bit of a listening test this weekend with Dave & Jim – Dave a bit of a musician (plays in a band) and has a better ear than either of us (other one’s not soo good though…)

    My mp3’s are ripped at 192bps rather than 128bps, and we tried some lossless as well as comparing to the Solo’s CD player – Dave convinced us there was a difference but not even he could reliably spot which was mp3 and which was lossless. (There was a difference but it was difficult to say which was better)

    The CD was best but you’d expect that, the mp3s still sounded great so I’ll not be re-ripping anything – unfortunately can’t say whether 128bps sound as good. Angela’s got her songs ripped on an iBook and I think iTunes is 128bps by default – I’ll try some of her’s and let you know!

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