Wednesday, 29 January 2014

What goes up

Should hopefully stay up :)

The happy workers having a well earned rest. Lee is a little camera shy. Hence the raised paper.

John hard at work, a craftsman. The big hole in the middle is going to be a velux. There's going to be a lot of light spilling in from that end. Windows and doors virtually filling that end wall.

Those suits mean they won't get lost. Apparently £250 a pop! But Ben won't take his off. I think the zip might be stuck.

After discovering the water came up the drive and across the kitchen floor and into the neighbours, we are going to renew the lead pipes. Which will mean it goes through the cellar to our new sink position. We have Lee and Del, the plumber working out how to get it next door, without causing mayhem or upsetting them. Has to be done now, or there could be problems in the future.

Jay seems a little disappointed, we ordered the furniture for the main bathroom this afternoon, which means there's only one loo left to order.

I have high hopes the steels will be in next week, then we will really be able to see the space. Exciting stuff.

Watch this space.

Saturday, 25 January 2014

..... and Relax (well, sort of)

Not sure why, but I'm feeling a lot less stressed at the end of the week than I was at the beginning. We still have a list of things to do as long as my arm, but at least they're things which signify we're heading towards the home straight. We've been out today and spent a ridiculous amount of money on tester pots of paint - the top floor should be getting second fix of both electrics and plumbing next week, so that's pretty much ready for the decorator to start.
The second floor (apart from the bathroom which isn't started yet) needs the new windows to go in, and the window walls in the three bedrooms need to be plastered after they've gone in, but other than that they're almost done too!

The extensions are finally going up, and now they're started, they're going up fast! The builder reckons he'll be on to the roof of the first one by next week, weather permitting, then it won't be long before the steels go in, and old walls come down at which time we'll really be able to see the size of the new kitchen. It's one thing seeing the plans on paper, but I can't wait to actually stand in there!

We've had two kitchen appointments, with one more to go, then it will be decision time. Apart from the overall budget for building works, the kitchen will be the most expensive single item by a long way, so we really need to get it right. We've already ordered the kitchen table, a sofa bed for the 'gym' and a couple of other bits and bobs - luckily on a ten week hold with the shop - which means we have a deadline!

We also had the survey from the woodburning stove people this week. The chimney needs lining - which we knew already due to the age of the house, but we also need a steel lintel as there are a few cracked bricks over the fireplace, which we weren't expecting. Luckily Lee, the builder was there when I had the meeting (Al was off galivanting in York for the afternoon) and he's able to fit and supply the lintel, as well as rendering the fireplace. I have told him there's no rush - it doesn't matter if the stove is one of the last things to go in. I'm more interested in seeing the size of the back room!

Exciting times :)


Tuesday, 21 January 2014


Ok, so on the plus side, things are moving on a little bit. Hopefully the en-suite is being plumbed in next week - the tiling's all done and looks fab. The extensions are coming along slowly - the first course of bricks was laid today which is good. We've picked the replacement windows we want, although still need to decide on the final design for the front door, so all that is good.

Unfortunately, the 'to do' list is far far longer than the 'done' list! We've decided that we really need to settle on a kitchen design before the extension is finished - we're having a water based underfloor heating system in the kitchen, and hopefully an island with the hob on, so as the floor can't really be drilled through once the heating's in, we really need to know the locations of gas and electrics in good time for the first fix. With that in mind (and as Al has a few days off work) we have appointments at two different kitchen places this week to get started on the design - and hopefully see if we can afford everything we want in there!

We also need to move on with deciding about the log burner in the front room. We can't really do anything but have a stove in there now - we had Lee, the builder remove the old gas fire, and knock out the old fireplace to see what size opeining we had in there - it's nice and big, but the brick arch over it is quite scruffy, so can't really be cleaned up or left exposed, which means we need to think about having it plastered and trying to source an oak beam to use as a mantelpiece. The chimney will need lining as it's an old house, so we need to get quotes for that as well as for the stove itself, and the fitting of it. We're in a smokeless zone in our town, so as we want to burn wood, we need to get a Defra approved stove, which limits the options a bit.

Although we're moving to a bigger house, our bedroom is actually a little smaller, and because of all the weird angles in the loft, we've decided that to best use the space, we really need fitted wardrobes in our bedroom We've had a meeting with a nice man from one local firm, and he's drawing up plans which we should get this week, but we also have an appointment on Saturday with another firm so we can compare prices and ideas. We need to grab the plumber the next time he's up there to ask him about moving the sink in the main bathroom when the new suite is in there - we're not sure whether it's feasible at the moment, which means we can't buy the suite until we know what sizes we can fit in there!

I'm trying really hard to stay positive, and keep reminding myself how great it will be when we finally move in, but I can't help feeling stressed a lot of the time!


Sunday, 12 January 2014

Happy New Year catchup

Happy 2014 everyone :)

Been a little lax recently in posting, what with the run up to Christmas and New Year. Followed by New Year bugs for us both. I had my first day off sick in over 5 years. On the way to healthy again.

Back in October, almost 3 months to the day, the view from the landing looked pretty much like this

Now we have a landing a bedroom and a bathroom up there

 Little landing, very well lit by the velux, letting light down onto the original landing, which was very dark.

There will be a door through to the eaves. Between front and rear, we think there will be about the same as we have in the current loft.
 The east wing of the bedroom. Including eaves access a.
 The west wing of the bedroom. Wall socket and aerial, ready for the TV.

Also eaves access b. We would probably have been ok with just one access,
Bathroom, not not a bad size, the sloping roof makes it feel smaller than it is. A big walk in shower. Controls outside, so no need for a freeze.

Tiles will be here tomorrow and tiling starts Tuesday. We could end up with a fully working bathroom and not a lot else.

Originally the front two bedrooms had  been knocked into one, now back into two.

 Main front bedroom, which will start life with the gym kit in it. It is a good sized double. A pull out bed for the odd guest, is in the plans.

The fire has been opened up, we hope to get a cast iron, original feature, grate to put in it.

The outer walls have had insulated plaster board added. Loses about and inch on either wall, but the fact the walls will be flat, clean and warming is a bonus.
The little room at the front. Would be a good single, But we'll be having desktop computer and office stuff in there. Couple of massive cabinets will be filling one wall.

The main guest room, at the rear, facing south. Probably a double with en-suite in a modern house. Chimney stack and boiler having been removed, makes a hell of a difference.

To be fair, the view isn't great at the moment. The garden when sorted will be great, the neighbour getting his act together and sorting the fence would be wonderful.

It's south facing so will be a bright room and will never be overlooked because of the allotments. We think that's a bonus.

Footings have been dug and inspected, £200, for the rear extension, for the large kitchen. Hopefully that will be moving on rapidly now.

Quotes have been requested for windows.

Fitted wardrobe people failed to show today, husband has appendicitis apparently, so rebooked for Wednesday.

Much more is going to be happening, still exciting, still scary, but all good.

Watch this space.