Saving Energy

Mark Uncategorised 3 Comments

A lot of football fans feel the bond with their club has lessened since the influx of foreign money. I feel the opposite.

You see I support Manchester City, bankrolled by the oil riches of Abu Dhabi who in turn, judging by my recent energy bills, are bankrolled by me. I’m as good as a board member.

Our latest estimate for these twelve months is £3,200. For a two bed mid-terrace?

Yep, I know that doesn’t sound right but apparently it is. Trust me, I’ve checked everything, rang everyone, and sat staring at the gas meter as it spins like a fruit machine just because Janet refuses to have a cold shower in February? I know, selfish to the last.

There was only one thing for it, an energy-saving drive!

To be fair to the boys they’re already environmentally aware. Not only do they help me with our recycling but also their schools, bringing home endless scrap paper to be recycled on our fridge door.

They have their own ideas on how to save water too.

Sonny kindly offered to swap drinking water for fizzy pop. Luca suggested an upside down umbrella to collect rainwater. They’re both advocates of washing their clothes in muddy puddles.

They’ve also discovered you can dramatically reduce my time in the shower by turning on the hot tap in the sink and walking away.

Another favourite is the knock at the door from a phantom postman.

Last week I cut one shower short on hearing,

“Luca, I’ve found the felt-tips. Do you want to go to school as a tiger?”

They do however share a bath, although if I’m honest it’s as much about child control as it is saving water. They get on surprisingly well in the bath, probably because they know defeat comes at the price of a dunking.

How old are kids when they no longer want to share a bath? No seriously, how old because at 34 my sister really should be going home for her baths by now, it’s become more than a little awkward!

We really do need to save energy though. Our consumption has tripled over the last couple of years, which I realise coincides with me becoming a stay-at-home dad.

Now I’m only saying that in order to refute any accusation of there being a direct link. I prefer to think that just like me the boiler has aged exponentially since having kids. I may protest too loudly.

Our boiler is very old. The radiators appear to have sinus issues, and the loft insulation qualifies as crepe paper, so we’ve signed up to the governments green deal to get a new boiler and attempt to keep some of the heat in the house.

In the meantime I’ve also reluctantly signed up to Janet’s own energy saving scheme. Primarily it involves multiple jumpers and using an electric heater instead of putting the heating on. I do however remain to be convinced by all of her ideas.

For a start, only having one warm room during the day means Luca and I are eating our lunch in the front room. There’s a cost to constantly hoovering up his our crumbs.

I’m not convinced by her campaign of switching everything off at the plug either. The savings have to be off-set by the amount of cold coffee I’m now making.

Then there’s my issue with energy saving light-bulbs. By the time they’ve spluttered on I’ve already cursed my way across a floor of LEGO, fumbled around for what I needed, and left. It can be hours before I’m shouting,

“Who left the light on all day?”

If only grumbling could be bottled, I’d be a net supplier to the national grid.

I also decided to sacrifice some personal hygiene for the greater good. I’ll not repeat what Janet thought about this, although given the low base from which I was starting she probably had a point.

But our bills are coming down. For all my cynicism a lot of little changes to our behaviour has started to make a significant difference.

Hopefully we’ll have a new boiler installed this year and can go back to having more than one warm room.

And who knows, maybe I’ll get another few years out of these frost-bitten arthritic bones yet.

{This is a sponsored post. All words and opinions are my own and honest.}

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