Archives for posts with tag: Downsizing

Wow.  It’s been absolutely ages since I updated this blog.  Home-in-the-Making is ‘made’ but, as any homeowner knows, homes are never ‘finished.’  There’s still quite a lot going on here and a few things still have to happen.

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I asked my local street corner ‘Beader’ to make little yellow chickens.  I think I got ducklings instead.

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So this is a quick update.  As usual in Johannesburg at this time of year, there is a distinctly autumnal feel in the air.  As recently as last week though, we were still having thunderstorms and heavy rain and the drought in this part of the country has been well and truly broken.  After just one storm on Friday, I measured 20ml of rain.

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It’s fairly late in the year for this sort of rainfall and our water storage tanks are brimful.  This is reassuring for the dry winter months ahead.  Should we have any inexplicable water cuts, we’ll be covered.

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Our house seems to have settled into its surroundings now.

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Autumn is creeping into our park.

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Guest Suite Over the Garage

My next project is to finish decorating and furnishing the guest suite over the garage.  These rooms have a separate entrance and would only be used to accommodate visiting friends if the main house were full.  Despite the mixed reactions I have had from friends on the subject, I’m thinking of trying this out on Airbnb when it’s complete.

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Galley Kitchen in Open Plan Living Area.

This is how the guest suite looks today.  You can see two perspectives of the living room and three of the bedroom, one showing the sliding door into the bathroom.

Barn sliding door in guest suite

Barn slider in guest suite.

Quite a lot needs to happen in this space before I can consider renting it out.  Let’s see how it will turn out. And in the meantime, Daisy wishes you all a Very Happy Easter.

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An unexpected bonus of having to manage this stage of the building process from a distance, has been the discovery  – so far – of two lovely, privately owned guest houses very close to our new home.  Feeling that I cannot always rely on the generosity of friends on my flying visits up to Johannesburg, I’ve recently stayed in both the Abbey Guest House in Craighall Park and the Windmill Guest House in Parkhurst.    I doubt I would have ever discovered them had I not found myself in the strange position of being a visitor in my hometown and they have both proved to be lovely surprises. Should I ever find myself with a very full house and unable to accommodate friends, I’d have no hesitation in booking them in to either of these two ‘home-from-homes’.

Abbey House from the Driveway.

Abbey House from the Driveway.

When the electric gate at Abbey House opened, I was quite surprised to find a very similar ‘farmhouse’ style house to the one we’re building.  This guest house was custom built and there is plenty of secure, off-street parking which is essential in Johannesburg.

Bedroom - one of 11 rooms.

Bedroom – one of 11 rooms.

Garden Path

Garden Path

Water feature in the garden not unlike the one I am planning.

Water feature in the garden not unlike the one I am planning.

Covered Veranda

Covered Veranda

Abbey House Veranda 2

Another view of the veranda.

Another view of the veranda.

If I could have simply transferred the entire veranda (with the exception of the Kudu head) to my new house, I would have been very happy.

Living room.

Living room.

I loved the overlay of rugs on both the veranda and in the living room. The floors of the entrance area, dining area and veranda at Abbey House were all done in a smooth concrete finish which we call cemcrete.  I had requested it for my veranda but somehow or other, this had been misunderstood and the contractors – in my absence – had laid tiles instead.  Becoming quite desperate to get the house finished, I had decided to simply accept them but, on seeing how beautifully the cemcrete flooring worked at Abbey House, I changed my mind, dug in my heels and insisted that the tiles be lifted.  That would have been a messy and noisy job but fortunately I didn’t have to be there.  We’re now waiting to have the originally-planned-for cemcrete surfacing poured.

Big Generator in the driveway.

Big Generator in the driveway.

Generators are becoming essential for Guesthouses and hotels in Johannesburg with power outages becoming a daily occurrence. About 10 days after my stay at Abbey House, I needed to return to Johannesburg and found it was fully booked on the days I needed to be there so I set about looking for something else in the area.  I decided to try Windmill House as I had been past it a few times on exploratory drives around Parkhurst, my new neighbourhood.

Article in a Neighbourhood Newspaper.

Article in a Neighbourhood Newspaper.

(I’m not too sure about “Posh”.  That seems to be pushing it a bit.  But it has become a very popular neighbourhood for ‘starters’ and ‘downsizers.’  A friend who lives in Victoria, Canada, one described it as being a place for ‘Newly Weds and Nearly Deads’…  This might be a good description of Parkhurst.  We have friends who have moved back there for the more compact homes and gardens, having started out there between 30 and 40 years ago.) Windmill House describes itself as a B&B and is smaller than Abbey House, having only three suites.  It is tucked away on what must be on of the last dirt roads in the northern suburbs of Johannesburg and it is nestled close to the same river that runs through the park in front of our new house.  In fact the garden of Windmill House runs right down to the river. It is quirky and utterly charming. Wind 3

The Windmill Itself.

The Windmill Itself.

The bedroom had a double volume ceiling and exposed beams.

The bedroom had a double volume ceiling and exposed beams.

Driveway leading to pool and river garden.

Driveway leading to pool and river garden.

Windmill House Veranda

So although it is very frustrating to be trying to manage this building process from afar, there have been some upsides to going home as a visitor.  Johannesburg is nothing if not full of surprises.

Eddie's Removal Truck outside on Feb 23rd.

Eddie’s Removal Truck outside on Feb 23rd.

It’s funny, the places that writing will take you.  Having never given it much of a thought in the past half a century, the nursery rhyme ‘I wish I lived in a caravan’ spooled through my head on repeat for the whole of last week and much of the week before that.  So last night I googled it and found it was actually regarded as a poem and was written by someone called W. B Rands.  I remember the illustration vividly and my ‘Hilda Boswell Treasury of Nursery Rhymes’, dog-eared and somewhat worse for wear, is one book that has survived many culls and charity book sale appeals but is right now inaccessible to me. It is packed away in one of the approximately 100 boxes that have gone into storage so I’m unable to reproduce the picture here.  But it’s not the picture that kept running through my head, it’s the sentiment: “I wish I lived in a caravan With a horse to drive, like the pedlar-man! Where he comes from nobody knows Or where he goes to, but on he goes.” That was the first verse.  On Google I discovered several more verses and found the last one oddly relevant to me: “With the pedlar-man I’d like to roam, And write a book when I come home, All the people would read my book, Just like the Travels of Captain Hook.” By the end of last week I felt I could just about write a book, or at the very least, an article, about what to expect when you pack up a fairly big house after 20+ years of living in it.

Moving Out.

Moving Out.

As it was.

As it was.

As it became...  Special packaging was constructed around the piano to move and store it.

As it became… Special packaging was constructed around the piano to move and store it.

The Doll's House, still incomplete, also required special packaging and was the source of intense interest.

The Doll’s House, still incomplete, also required special packaging and was the source of intense interest.

It was very hard work.  It wasn’t particularly emotional or sad – in the end there really wasn’t much time left over for sentiment – it was simply exhausting and all-consuming.  On just one day last week my Fitbit informed me that I had done over 13000 steps – 3000 more than my daily goal – and I had not even left the house.  The packing just seemed to go on and on despite the loads that left with Joseph, with  Caroline – 2 full trucks – with Hospice and with another wonderful charity called Cordis Brothers and the deliveries we made to Meals on Wheels and an Aids Orphanage.

Caroline on her way to retirement.  With two grandsons and a friend.

Caroline on her way to retirement. With two grandsons and a friend.

And  I know that when the time eventually comes to unpack in the new house, there will still be more to give away.

Too much stuff. But the little chair, made for an ancestor in Oxford 150 years ago, has to come along.

Too much stuff. But the little chair, made for an ancestor in Oxford 150 years ago, has to come along.

I never want to own so much stuff again. For now, the furniture destined for the new house is in storage with the removal company as are rather a lot of boxes.  And still more boxes – because we were not ready in time – are stored in the homes of several long-suffering friends.  The three unsuspecting cats are all boarding in a cattery and this has left me more aggrieved than any other aspect of the building delays. Finally, last Saturday, a day later than planned, we were ready to hand over the house keys and – with  Daisy squashed into a corner of the back seat – we set off on the long journey to Cape Town.  Ironically, it was the thought of the open road that kept me going over the last few days of packing.  I found myself longing for the wide open spaces of the Free State and the Karoo and although it has been inconvenient not being able to move from one house directly into another, in the end I think this hiatus period will be a good thing.

Karoo Skies

Karoo Skies

My love of long road trips and of driving often draws sceptical looks but recently I discovered in the writing of Antony Osler, an echo of myself: “I love the empty road.  My eyes attend to everything but don’t get caught anywhere.  They see without trying.  I welcome whatever comes into my field of vision, I let it all pass behind me without regret.”………………..”Just driving. Just driving and seeing.  Just driving and seeing and thinking.  Letting the landscape flower through me as I flow through it.” (Zen Dust, Antony Osler, Jacana Media, 2012). So it’s not only me!  I feel vindicated.

Storm over the Free State.

Storm over the Free State.

I’ve been away in England for a while but more of that another time.  I arrived home a few days ago to find the summer storms had taken up their annual noisy, volatile residence in our Johannesburg skies, bringing with them their intermittent thunderous downpours that can turn our streets into rivers in minutes.  And also bringing with them that time-worn builder’s excuse of ‘weather delays.’

By this stage, we’ve heard just about every other possible excuse for what seems to be one of the slowest building projects ever and my response to the ‘weather’ one is to discount it as there is an endless list of things to be done inside out of the way of rain and lightning.  We are, however, now on a helter-skelter slide to the South African Builders’ Holidays which start next Friday the 12th and which continue until the 12th of January.

We resigned ourselves months ago to not being in the new house before Xmas and are concentrating now on simply getting it to as secure a condition as possible before everyone disappears to The Bush, The Coast, or, as with most of the labourers, to other parts of the African continent.  The contractor is making a big deal out of security.  Personally, I think he is exaggerating the risks but then he does have experience in these things so I’m trying not to say too much.

I rather suspect that his reluctance to have the plumbing completed before the 12th of December has more to do with simply running out of time than of the risk that the copper piping might be ripped from the walls in the dead of night over the Xmas holidays…  Once again, for those of you in First World Countries, this might seem unlikely, but the theft of copper piping has become quite a major issue here.

My husband has turned into quite an impressive project manager over the past two months and along with Bernard is drawing up weekly schedules for the site manager to follow.  We never expected to have to get so involved in micro-managing things but it seems to be working.  Fred, over there in Sydney, we do rather wish you were here to take this on!

In an effort to convince myself that we have made some progress during the year, I looked back over this blog to find what things looked like last December and found the photo below on a post written on December 2nd, 2013.

Above the Ground at last!

Above the Ground at last!

Well, we’ve come quite a long way since then but so we should have seeing as it is a full year tomorrow since this photograph was taken and it’s not as though we’re building a particularly big or complicated house.  But, looking on the positive side of things, although very slow, Bernard is very happy with the quality of the workmanship so far.  So, for the sake of reassurance, the photo below, taken from an upstairs window of the cottage, shows what things looked like yesterday.

South view of house.  Taken from upstairs cottage window.

South view of house. Taken from upstairs cottage window.

So by the end of next week, all the exterior doors must be in and locked and all the windows must be glazed.  The opening onto the park must be secured and the gates onto the street must be bolted and that’s about all we can hope for at this stage.

Below are a few photos showing some interior progress:

Stacking doors delivered

Stacking doors delivered

These doors are waiting to be installed across the front of the veranda.  They’ll hopefully make it a completely weatherproof space in both winter and summer.

View across stairwell from the pyjama lounge.

View across stairwell from the pyjama lounge.

Finishing off rhinoliting in the stairwell requires a head for heights.  For those of you overseas who might have another term for rhinoliting, it is the art of applying a 3mm plaster finish to walls and ceilings using gypsum plaster, especially manufactured as a combined basecoat and finishing plaster for internal application onto brickwork.  It gives an exceptionally smooth finish and there is a certain degree of skill required to apply it.

Throwing concrete slab on 'underground' room.

Throwing concrete slab on ‘underground’ room.

On Friday the workmen were busy throwing the slab on the ‘underground’ room (L-shaped structure on the left of the photo) that is to house the pool pump, water tanks and generator.  With the number of power cuts we’re experiencing at the moment, we’re looking forward to having an alternative power supply.

Framework for Bay Window going in at last.

Framework for Bay Window going in at last.

Part of Bay Window Frame waiting to be installed.

Part of Bay Window Frame waiting to be installed.

We’re putting pressure on the contractor to get the cottage finished by mid-February.

The ground has been filled in to the right level for the cottage carport.

The ground has been filled in to the right level for the cottage carport.

Cottage veranda taking shape.

Cottage veranda taking shape.

Parkhurst Cottage Garden 2

In the photo above, you can see the edge of the veranda relative to the street boundary wall.  Both photographs are taken from East to West.  I’m planning on growing climbers on the wall and doing paving interspersed with ground cover between the veranda edge and the wall.  I’m very happy with the way the veranda roof has worked out.

Internal door installed upstairs in cottage.

Internal door installed upstairs in cottage.

All the internal doors, throughout the house, guest suite and cottage are like the one above and will be painted white.

The cottage is going to start life as office space for 4 people.  And since those 4 people need to be out of their existing office space by mid-December and plan to work from our present home until the new space is ready, there is considerable pressure on everyone to turn this into an inhabitable building as soon as possible.  Looking at it now, I think it’s going to take a while.  Watch this space…

 

 

Spires in the small town of Wellington, viewed across vineyards.

Spires in the small town of Wellington, viewed across vineyards.

Last Monday, the 27th of October, I took a break from flying around Parkhurst on my broomstick and went wandering around the vineyards of Wellington in the Western Cape instead.  Along with a group of 10 friends, we did, not for the first time, the Wellington Wine Walk (wwwwinewalk.co.za) which involves three full days of walking and three nights staying at different wine farms.

Wide Open Spaces

Wide Open Spaces

This time we walked 16kilometres on the first day and 12 on day two and three.  The walking is punctuated with several stops on different estates, tasting wines, having lunch and generally getting some idea of life down in that part of the world.

Lunch stop

Lunch stop

It could not be more different from life in Johannesburg and it offered a complete break from all things building-related.

Far From the Madding Crowds.

Far From the Madding Crowds.

A day or two before I left for the Cape, I popped in at the house to check on progress following my previous  not-too-happy visit and found quite a lot of activity.  It seems that the occasional broomstick dive-bombing exercise can be quite effective…

Stair window and front door frames were in place.

Stair window and front door frames were in place.

Living room door frames in place.

Living room door frames in place.

 

Ceiling of cottage veranda with street boundary wall behind.

Ceiling of cottage veranda with street boundary wall behind.

Rhinoliting started in the cottage. And paint samples on the walls.

Rhinoliting started in the cottage. And paint samples on the walls.

Painting undercoat on the garage walls.

Painting undercoat on the garage walls.

The wall bordering on the park  taking shape.

The wall bordering on the park taking shape.

Production Line

Production Line

Bird's Eye View from upstairs balcony.

Bird’s Eye View from upstairs balcony.

Up to now, I haven’t really tried to explain what is supposed to happen in the front garden which is what the chaos above is eventually supposed to be.  And the main reason for that is that I’m not sure where to begin…  Firstly, there is going to be a swimming pool somewhere in this space.  It is designed to run parallel to the park wall.  A vast quantity of ‘filler’ has to be delivered to the site to bring the level of the front garden up to just two shallow steps lower than the finished house.  In effect, the pool has already been dug.  The filler will be packed in around it.

On the left of the pool, close to the gate that will open onto the park, there will be an underground room, housing – among other things – a generator and a couple of water tanks.  For those of you reading this in First World Countries, this might come as a bit of a surprise but having back-up electricity and a supply of stored water is becoming almost a necessity in Johannesburg and seeing we’re building from scratch, we decided to factor that in.  Power outages are increasingly common and every now and then we turn on a tap to nothing more than a burp of fresh air.  This usually happens without warning and with no  information forthcoming as to how long it will be before services are restored.  I never thought that having a swimming pool in one’s garden would prove to be useful in such a variety of ways…

And so it is that landscaping the front garden is not as simple as one might have thought and at this stage, quite a lot of energy and time is being expended there.  But having put up with no fewer than 3 power outages in the last 3 days, I think the effort will eventually prove to have been worth it.

More London VIP's

More London VIP’s

Last week our son and daughter-in-law were in Johannesburg on a visit from London and they visited the new house for the very first time.  We had not realised that Greg had not been home (ie to Jhb) since before we bought the original house in October 2012, so he has really been entirely dependent on this blog for information as to what his parents are getting themselves into.

It was interesting seeing his reactions and hearing his impressions.  Overall, he seemed to find the house bigger than the impression he’d had from the photographs I’ve posted and generally seemed quite satisfied with what he found.  I had the feeling he might have been surprised by this….  Of course, having lived in London since 2005, his perception of space is different from ours and he and Carly were quick to recognise that the cottage we’re building on the street side of our house is just about exactly the same size as the flat they have recently bought in Maida Vale.  But I am the first to acknowledge that there is absolutely no point in comparing South African sizes and prices with London.

A Maida Vale Mansion Block.

A Maida Vale Mansion Block.

The two aspects of the new house with the most appeal for them, are I think, the outlook over the trees in the park and the undercover veranda which will be similar in size to what we have in our present home.  Undercover verandas have become very important areas in South African homes.  Given our (usually) moderate climate, they are spaces where we spend a lot of time and are often treated more as an open-sided room than a veranda.  I think too that Greg realised if he ever wants to practice golf shots while home for a few days, he will only have to go through the gate in the garden wall to be able to swing golf clubs to his heart’s content.

Another discussion that came up was centred around the bathrooms.  There are three en suite bathrooms upstairs.  The ‘main’ bathroom was to have a bath and separate shower, the bathroom attached to the second bedroom was to have a bathtub and no shower and the third, only a shower.  I had reservations about the second bathroom and had discussed with Bernard the option of having a shower option over the bath.  He seemed resistant to this idea as being a less than ideal compromise.  I was planning to have the discussion again…  However, having discussed with Greg and Carly the fact that the second bedroom would probably always be first choice for guests, given that it faces the sunny north and has a lovely view, we decided that the bathroom should incorporate both a ‘tub’ and separate shower and discovered when talking to Bernard that by moving the passage wall just a few centimetres, we could achieve this.  Nothing like offspring to help one revise one’s ideas….  Needless to say, the builders will have had to move a wall this week. I use the word ‘tub’ with some hesitation as it is not one we hear often in South Africa.  Or in England, for that matter.  It is very much an American word.  In this country and in England we tend to refer to a bath tub as simply a ‘bath’.  We would never say ‘she’s in the tub.’  We’d say ‘She’s in the bath’ or, ‘She’s having a bath.’ With the internet, movies, international décor magazines proliferating everywhere etc, it is becoming more acceptable here and I have to say I really love the word.  There is something very satisfying about it.  I think I shall start to use it!  A few weeks ago I came across a whole article and debate on Houzz about the pros and cons of showers versus tubs.  Showers seemed to come out on top but if you can fit in both, I think that’s still first prize.

bathtub

After checking out the house (in detail) we moved on to 4th Avenue Parkhurst where we had brunch at Vovo telo.  Despite it’s being the Monday of the long Easter weekend, (In SA both the Friday and the Monday are holidays) all the restaurants on 4th Avenue that were open (most of them) were heaving with people.  I was pleased the children were able to enjoy this aspect of Parkhurst as it’s one of the things we love about our new neighbourhood-to-be.  I love the High Street feeling of 4th Avenue where little shops and restaurants still open onto the pavement and the street as opposed to being stuck inside big shopping malls.

Downsizing is interesting.  It elicits different reactions from different people depending on their ‘head space’; on what age or stage of life they’re at.  We’ve had quite a few people express great surprise (shock, perhaps?) that we’re choosing to move from the suburb we’re in which appears to have a certain cachet, to where we’re going.  Even if we want to go smaller, the implication is that perhaps we could have simply gone to a smaller house in the same suburb or a similar one.  Well, we could have.  We have permission to sub-divide the property on which we now live and if we were really determined to stay here we could have built a house on what is now our tennis court.  And one day, someone might do just that.  But we were looking for something different.  Much as I love my neighbourhood, I feel as though we’ve ‘done our time’ here.  While there are still some ‘older’ people, there are also lots of new, younger families (just like we once were) with school-going children who love the bigger gardens, pools and courts and who fill up all the rooms in these rambling older homes.  If I could choose the buyers of this house, I’d pick a young family just like that and I’d hope that they wouldn’t even consider building a house on the tennis court.  We bought this home from a family who’d lived here 25 years and we’ve been here for 20.  I think we’re only the 3rd family to have lived here.

We could also have decided to move into a gated estate but we didn’t feel ready for something like that and many of them are quite far from the area in which we now live.  Moving to one of them would mean changing our whole lives.  As it is, Parkhurst is a 5 minute drive away as the crow flies and 10 at the most.  Although it has a completely different feel to it, it is still in the middle of my usual stamping ground.  We will have the same pharmacy, the same corner shop, the same supermarket, doctor, nursery garden and most importantly, the same veterinarian.  It has a more ‘urban’ feel to it and that is something we’re looking forward to.  We’ll be able to walk somewhere for Sunday brunch.

It seems to be a suburb for starting out and for winding down.  Whenever I drive through it, I am surprised by the number of prams being pushed along the pavements; some by young parents and some by nannies.  And at the same time we have several friends who started their married lives there and who have very recently moved back. We think we’re going to enjoy living there and also, we think that when our children and other family members visit from London, they’ll enjoy being there too.

Tubs of Fun

Tubs of Fun

 

 

We have made a small but significant change to the roof windows in the guest-suite above the garage and to the upstairs section of the cottage.

Originally we had planned to have only opening skylights in the guest suite and while there were downstairs windows in the cottage, there were also only skylights in the upstairs section.

Original plan showing Velux skylights in guest suite.  The cottage has similar skylights on the northern roof face.

Original plan showing Velux skylights in guest suite. The cottage has similar skylights on the northern roof face.

Now that we are able to climb up to the upstairs level of the house, we are able to appreciate the outlook; not only to the north, over the park, but also to the west, over rooftops to trees beyond.  We realised that to be able to actually see out of the skylights in the guest suite, you would have to stand up against them and you would not be able to see anything but sky from a sitting or lying position.   We are now replacing the four west-facing skylights with two dormer windows and are adding a dormer window to the west face of the cottage roof.  The plan now looks like the one below and we prefer it.

Revised plan showing two dormer windows above the garage and one facing west in the cottage roof.

Revised plan showing two dormer windows above the garage and one facing west in the cottage roof.

 

This elevation gives a good idea of what the house will look like when approaching from the driveway.  Bernard, our architect, specifically wanted different roof heights which he feels are reminiscent of clusters of farm buildings.  This is the main reason why we have the flat-roofed link between the garage and main house.  That ‘link’ is to be the laundry.  I have always had an aversion to flat roofs because I have never known one that doesn’t eventually leak so this has been something of a compromise for me.  I do, however, appreciate his reasoning and I like the way it looks.  But I think I will climb up onto that roof myself when the waterproofing is done.

Looking carefully at this drawing has also revealed a strange-looking upstairs window which is supposed to be a conventional sash.  I’ll have to take that up at the next site meeting.  I have no idea how it has come to be drawn like this.  It is a west-facing sash window in the third bedroom.

The only other physical changes we’ve made so far have been the moving of the door leading from the kitchen to the scullery by a few centimetres and extending one internal kitchen wall by approximately 800mm.  I’m not sure but I think this is pretty good going.

'Birdsong'

‘Birdsong’

My daughter arrived home from London this morning on a short visit and came along to the site meeting with me this morning.  Anyone who has a daughter will appreciate that this was an important event.  Firstly, although London has been her base for the past 5 or more years, our present house where we’ve lived for the past 20 years, will always be the one she thinks of as ‘home’ and so to see it being slowly ‘dismantled’ as I steadily sift through cupboards and shelves and make plans to fit into a much smaller space is probably unsettling for her.

Home for the last 20 years.

Home for the last 20 years.

She visited the site before the previous house was demolished and I think she – along with many other friends and relations – struggled rather to envisage how we were ever going to create a new, welcoming home there.

 

The Original Street Frontage.

The Original Street Frontage.

But today, with the upstairs walls going up and some of the rooms actually starting to take shape, I think she was reassured.

Mark (our contractor) explaining the dimensions of the patio.

 

The conveyor belt in position.

The conveyor belt in position.

The conveyor belt is now in position and was in action today.  It is being used to carry building materials up to the first floor.  In the photograph above you can also see the openings for two north-facing windows in what will be the living room of the cottage.  Above the garage is a window that has somehow made a completely unplanned appearance and no explanation was forthcoming this morning…  It will have to be bricked in.  While we have made a change to the window schedule for both the cottage and the guest-suite, this opening does not fit with either the original plan or the new one so someone was a little confused.  We have had very few errors of this sort though and nothing that couldn’t be easily fixed.

Today's View to the North.

Today’s View to the North.

 

Bernard and Rupert discussing the changes to the guest-suite windows.

Bernard and Rupert discussing the changes to the guest-suite windows.

Standing Upstairs and Looking South towards the Street.

Standing Upstairs and Looking South towards the Street.

The weather seems to have stabilised and it’s great to see measurable progress from week to week.