JENS MALMGREN I create, that is my hobby.

We reached two significant milestones this week

The tiler finished tiling, and Gijs started the heating system.

Monday 20 December

Today we worked from home. I was excited that Gijs would come and start working on the heating system. Early in the morning, I got a message he would not come today, but tomorrow he would come.

After work, we went to the new house and there we met the tiler. He had tiled the first half of the workshop.

He would tile the other half tomorrow, but he had not brought any tiles inside ready for tomorrow. It will get cold tonight, and if the tiles are lying outside, he will have cold tiles to work with tomorrow. It is better to tile with warm tiles. He said he had to catch the bus, so he would not have time for that. Thus then I started bringing in packages for him. Strangely he changed his mind and helped me to help him to bring in the tiles for his work tomorrow.

Tuesday 21 December

This is the darkest night this year. From here on, it will only be lighter every day! This is also the start of the winter, and it was a cold night indeed.

I am looking forward to that the heating system will get installed.

Today I got no message early in the morning that Gijs could not come. I did not get any message he was at our house either. It was not right to message him and ask him what he was doing. "Where are you?" I asked a neighbor if he could see any bus at our house, and indeed there was a bus. With that, I could happily concentrate on my regular work from our old home.

After work, I went to the new house. Gijs had started on the installation. A little box was installed above the pipes going to and from the outdoor unit in the utility room. In the kitchen, there were two heaps of chrome and brass stuff.

The tiler had finished tiling the other half of the workshop. That means we got all tiles placed on the floor! Tomorrow the tiler will fill in the joints between the workshop tiles.

It feels great that the tiling project is coming to an end. It was more work than I had anticipated. The tiler has done a great job, and I am happy with that.

Wednesday 22 December

It was a cold morning. I took a photo of our Privet ligustrum plant covered in frost. It was lovely. I took the photo with my Nikon camera.

Today I had a meeting at the office. There were people in the office, and they were happy to see me, and I was happy to see them too. I can work perfectly well with online tools, but In-Real-Life meetings are excellent.

After the meeting, we went to the new house. We did not have the whole afternoon open for working in the house because my wife attended an online course in the afternoon.

When we arrived at the new house, the tiler had just finished his work in our house! The workshop was finished! With that, the entire floor was done. We thanked him for the work he had done in our house. He was happy with the work in our house. The tiler started on 13 November, so that is 40 days ago.

The tools of the tiler are still in the house. I suppose it will be picked up another day.

We met with Gijs working on the heating system. We had a talk about where to put the central zone of the heating system. I suggested the workshop, and we decided on that since we got a wood stove in the living room. The central zone is the hottest. All other zones can only be colder than the central zone, but they can be programmed individually. How this works was a mystery until I figured out that the only way of making the other sub-zones colder is by adding more cold water. Then I don't know how this works on the first floor.

Gijs said he would be able to finish the heating system on Friday.

Thursday 23 December

We worked from our old home today. In the evening I went to the new house.

Gijs had connected the outdoor unit. I suppose he will isolate the pipes tomorrow.

We got a system control unit in the utility room on the wall. This is where the computer is that will control the entire system.

There was a red ball-shaped tank mounted above the big tank as well. I will interview Gijs about what the different components are. That is interesting. The red ball is a pressure tank keeping a steady hot water pressure.

In the workshop, we got a control panel installed as well. It is different compared to the sub-zone room units.

Before I went to our old home, I set up my workplace to work in the new house tomorrow. I don't need so much, I got an extra monitor, keyboard, and mouse. A table made of a cupboard plate and two trestles. A chair obviously, and the most essential ingredient, a heated floor mat.

Friday 24 December

Today I worked from the new house. Gijs had already worked in the house for a couple of hours when I arrived in the morning. It was not cold today but overcast.

Gijs finished the heating system while I worked remotely at the office. In the morning, the vinyl floor tiles arrived.

One of the last tasks for Gijs was to isolate the heating pump tubes.

Gijs explained how the computer worked and what I should look after in the system. In the beginning, there is much air in the system that needs to get out. Automatic valves are letting out air. I need to keep an eye on the pressure of the system. If it got too low, I had to fill the system with more water.

Gijs gave our electrician three todo items as well:

  • The circuit breaker automats for the outdoor unit have to be of type C. Currently, B. The C type is slower, which is better for the heat pump. Apparently, it has motors, etc., with high peak currents.
  • A UTP cable is needed for the central unit. That way, it can talk to the Internet as well.
  • The cable to the sensor in the living room had only two threads. It had to have four.

Then Gijs went home. There is currently a 14 days startup program that gently warms the floors.

I could end work a little earlier today; that was a holiday present from my employer. I then moved the vinyl floor tiles to the first floor. The men that brought them took three packages each time. I tried two but found it to be inconveniently heavy. One package each time was sufficiently heavy for my liking.

Then I went to our old home. But not for long. We planned to come back to the new house after picking up our daughter from the train station.

I got the idea that I wanted to clean the floors. We had a fresh mud track over our protective papers that looked sad. The mud was thick at the front door and got thinner and thinner until it arrived in the kitchen. That mud will get wondered around in the house if it stays like that; it will not be good. If it was possible to clean the floors, especially the protective paper, we could keep the mud further away. I brought a floor wiper with me to the new house.

Our daughter had sightseeing in the new house while I wiped the protective paper. There is a thin layer of plastic on the paper. It was possible to wipe the paper clean from mud and clay.

Then we had a cup of gluhwein, and we wished each other a "God Jul" as we do in Sweden. With that, we went to our old home.

Saturday 25 December

​​​​​​​It was a lovely winter day. The sun was shining, a couple of degrees below freezing. We did not do anything useful in the house, but we checked up on the sheep two times today. At noon we went to the sheep to give them their food supplement and renew the water.

Since it is freezing, it is difficult for the sheep to drink the water from the bucket. There was a freshly made hole in the ice when I came to the sheep today. It looked like they had made the hole with their hoves. I took a little warm water in their water bucket to take longer until it was frozen again.

Then we took a self-test of Corona. That was an unpleasant experience. We sneezed a lot in the family before concluding that we were not carrying any virus.

Then we went to my parents-in-law. It was a jolly afternoon, catching up on all the things in the family since the last time we met.

I decided to stop calling this festivity for the common English name this year. I will start to use the Swedish name Jul instead. It feels more comfortable for me, but I have no idea how long I will keep doing this. In last year's blog about Jul, I talked about the ridiculous story behind this celebration.

This year I am just feeling fed up with church stuff in general. It intrigues me that we had another festivity in Sweden called Jul before Christianity, and apparently, the original tradition has got lost. I don't know much about that. The only thing we have left of it is the name Jul. Perhaps Jul can get a new meaning: the celebration of lost traditions.

When it was dark, we went to our old home, and before dinner, we checked up on the sheep again and gave them new water. It was necessary because there was a layer of ice in the bucket.

The temperature in the house was already perfect. With proper heating, it is possible to start ventilating the house. That is necessary because there has been a lot of water used to create the floors. The anhydrite was 9 cubic meters of material, much of which was water. Then the tiler used a lot of water. When the first floor was equalized, there were buckets of water used again. When we plaster the walls, we use water to mix the mud. I must say, though, that there is currently more moisture on the first floor. On the ground floor, it is a dryer. It will be good to have the floors dryer when the vinyl is glued on Tuesday next week.

Sunday 26 December

We had a slow morning. When we arrived at the new house, it was a couple of degrees below zero Celsius. In Fahrenheit, that is a couple of degrees below 32 degrees. We gave the sheep new water without ice.

Then we started on the activities. We had decided to clean out garbage collected in the last couple of weeks. Next to the workshop door, there were rests of the tiler. In the house, there were rests of both the tiler and Gijs. My wife sorted some of the garbage according to how it is sorted at the recycling station. It will make the time at the station less tedious.

Tiles not needed for floors and walls are lying outside to the right of the entrance to the workshop on two pallets. Unfortunately, frozen moisture between the tiles formed massive blocks that were difficult to move around. I managed to clean up one pallet, though.

Another time when it is not freezing, I will move the rest tiles to a better location.

After working on the tiles, I cleaned the workshop floor and rolled out the protective paper. We also cleaned up the bathroom on the first floor and put out a protective paper. I stopped when I ran out of tape. We need to buy more tape another day.

It feels better to remove the clutter. Clutter outside brings with it a feeling of misery I would like to avoid. I know we got an untidy pile of pallets behind the container, but we don't have garbage lying around.

It feels like a great week. We reached two significant milestones in the project. When I swabbed the protective paper and the floor, it felt like a home activity rather than a building site activity. I walked around on my socks. Just such a thing!

Here ends this week's blog post. This week, the tiler finished the tiling, and Gijs finished installing the heating system. He still needs to come back and install the sensors in the rooms and the motors regulating the heat distribution through the pipes. All zones got the same setting, all fully open as it stands now.

Next week we will have the first floor glued!

I was born 1967 in Stockholm, Sweden. I grew up in the small village Vågdalen in north Sweden. 1989 I moved to Umeå to study Computer Science at University of Umeå. 1995 I moved to the Netherlands where I live in Almere not far from Amsterdam.

Here on this site I let you see my creations.

I create, that is my hobby.