Home life transport

Politics and couches

Just a quick post while I work on some more substantive content. State Budget Victoria’s State Budget, normally in May but much delayed due to COVID-19, was on Tuesday. Most of the big ticket public transport investment (Airport Rail, Geelong upgrade, and a huge early works package on the Suburban Rail Loop) had already been  ... [More]

Friends and loved ones Home life

The new empty-nester

This is one of those posts like I used to do, with life events and observations. Little or no transport content here, so if that’s what you’re here for, you can skip this post. We moved into my current house back in 2005. It was what I could afford at the time. I prioritised position  ... [More]

Home life

Some personal metrics

Public transport use down, electricity consumption up, mobile internet down, home internet up. Grocery spending up… then almost back to normal. Some personal metrics in the age of COVID-19.

Consumerism Home life

The new fridge

Amongst all the chaos in the world, a everyday standard curve-ball thrown my way: my fridge broke down on the weekend. Okay – drag out the esky and buy a bag of ice (no I’m not going to a party) and save what food I can. Lucky I’m not a big hoarder of food, so  ... [More]

Going green

Getting into hot water

There’s a lot of doom and gloom from COVID-19 at the moment. So here’s something positive: I got a new hot water system. Twelve years ago this month I got solar hot water installed: a collector panel on the roof, a tank to store the water, and a gas booster. I thought it was going  ... [More]

Home life TV

Home improvement

Yes, sometimes my blog isn’t about transport. If you’d prefer to see only transport posts, you can use this link. Here’s a post where I ramble on about recent upgrades around my house. Wall insulation I had wall insulation installed earlier in the year. The winter gas bill came in recently. It’s down 37.7% from  ... [More]

Going green Home life Toxic Custard newsletter

Wall insulation

Improving my house’s heating and cooling and energy efficiency is an ongoing project. 2008 Solar hot water 2012 Ceiling fans and roof insulation 2015 External blinds 2017 Air-conditioning (a backwards step for energy efficiency, but a giant leap for comfort on very hot days) This week it was wall insulation. Obviously this is best fitted  ... [More]

Going green Home life Toxic Custard newsletter

Decarbonising my home

While my most pressing home renovation need is the bathroom (planning to do this the next time my sons are away on a trip), I was also thinking: Governments should be doing a lot more on climate change, but what are the major emissions in my home, and how could I decarbonise? The car. I  ... [More]

Home life Toxic Custard newsletter transport

What is a “family-friendly” house?

When you’re house-hunting, there’s a continuum of numerous factors weighed against each other, including indoor space, outdoor space, location, walkability, and plenty more, including of course price. By walkability, I mean the walking distance to amenity such as parks, good public transport, shops. (Walkscore attempts to measure this.) From some points of view, perhaps the  ... [More]

Home life Toxic Custard newsletter

I finally got air-con

(To just see transport-related blog posts, you can use this link — which is also on the top navigation menu) For years I’ve resisted air-conditioning at home. Partly it was the cost, partly it was that I really wanted to pursue passive cooling as much as I could — measures that used little or no  ... [More]