Monday, 28 September 2009


10 years ago I lived in an old farm house in Holland. The insulation was non existent and we had no central heating – but we were used to wearing layers of jumpers and taking exercise to warm up. To be fair we did have a gas fire in the living room and a tiny heater on the wall of the bathroom which coughed out enough heat to prevent frostbite when bathing small children. In fact my son, who was four when we moved back to England, was thrilled at the sight of radiators on the wall in our house and thought they were “a very good idea”.

I have finally given up any optimistic hope of a late summer and begrudgingly accept that autumn is well and truly here this morning. I am trying to remind my now softened offspring, who endured one spectacularly snowy winter when the temperature dropped to -11 without heating, that “No” I am not about to turn the heating on, and that if they are cold they should wear a jumper and put slippers (or even socks) on their feet.

It’s character forming I remind them – and we are doing our own little bit to reduce our carbon footprint now that we have signed up to the 10:10 initiative. This means that we will try to reduce our footprint by 10% by the end of 2010. Next step is to use my bicycle (I’d like to add the word “more” but it’s probably more accurate to just say "use"!) and stop my sons leaving things on stand-by.

If you’d like to know more about 10:10 have a look at:

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