Monthly Archives: July 2016

In a week

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Exactly one week ago I slept for the first time in my own home. That sounds so amazing, so unreal and I am one incredibly fortunate woman.

The first night, the old cat came too and although the plan was to leave him in his familiar surroundings for as long as possible – I still haven’t cleared the old house and go there daily – I thought no! He is as much part of this as Juno and I am.

In the throes of moving on the (at the time) the hottest day of the year, my wonderful step son showed up en route to visit a granny up north. He is back from Australia for a few weeks before heading there again. What a delight to see him after a year. What a great young man.

It was a big, busy, emotional, exhausting day. I celebrated by having a BATH. Luxury after years with only a shower.

Then the three of us slept in one room, the dog in her bed beside mine and the cat under the bed as he was a bit scared. We have no blinds….so it was an early start but oh the sense of peace.

bosley first morning

It has not all been peaceful since, it has been a hard slog as the last little bits get sorted. Today all his stuff went into storage. The old garden furniture went to the tip. More bits were brought here and there is STILL stuff to sort out. I am afraid my girls who are both in Japan now got a cyber bollocking for not clearing out their rooms. I am not sure what part of ‘we are moving out and you need to pack up ALL your stuff’ got lost in translation because very little happened.

But in the grand scheme of things I cannot really complain. I have a home, I have no mortgage, I have Internet, I have a garden, I am happy and blessed and in six days from getting the keys the living and dining rooms changed so much….

Lovley LE on the job in the living room before, during and after….

The dining room – with my little Irish Friend and baby S and then after.

Of course it all looks serene with nothing in it, sadly it is filling up!

The first quotes have come in for replacing the guttering which is hanging by a thread and for a pet flap in the french door (only place to put one). I need a new front door too as this one is rotten, is not secure and is not insurance compliant. Those three items take care of almost my entire budget for short term improvements. But done they will be and the rest will have to be saved for.

Tomorrow I have clinical training all day. A break from the house and the labour.

 

 

 

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Wonderful friends

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I love my friends. When LE turned up she had five buckets of paint and two of base-coat and a tub of filler for the many, many holes and dents and gouges, and an impressive collection of rollers, brushes, trays and tools.

I had innocently imagined more of the wall scrubbing, but she was having none of it. We got the huge TV off the living room wall (not shown in picture but it was an eyesore). Curtains down and the lace ones into the wash….The poo brown ones went to the tip….sorry but dark brown curtains in a shady room = gloom.

The first few swipes of base coat on the wallpaper resulted in it bubbling (we had decided to paint over it as it was a very smooth surface), which meant it did not like moisture, so with damp cloths and scrapers we had it all off in about 20 minutes.

Within 5 hours with time for a tea break in the garden, the living room and dining rooms were done, TVs removed from walls, a kitchen cabinet removed, everything tidied and the car packed up with stuff for the tip. LE taught me a lot about decorating and I want to know so that I can do as much as possible myself to save money.

It looks like this now:

living room - after

That fan light will come down at some point…

But, the smell of fresh paint and the extra light the colour brings has lifted the space so much.

LE’s fab hubby and his work mate will be at the house today doing more painting as I take youngest to Heathrow. She is off to Japan to see her Dad, Granny and sister.

This weekend is going to be the toughest yet as my furniture is being moved on Monday and there is so much to prepare in the old house for that. I forsee many, many trips back and forth….

 

 

 

 

 

 

first impressions – two varieties

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The dog came with me today to hang aound as I worked and within minutes we had locked ourselves out of the house and being a terrace, well that’s it….there is no other access than the front door.

I troubled the neighbours to see if there was any way I could get over their back fence into my garden as luckily the back door was open. Well, the dog shot into their house, up the stairs, bounced on the bed, ran down into the living room, bounced on the sofa when the husband invited her for a cuddle and nipped his NOSE. I could have run away, and wished the ground would swallow the bloody dog up. Mr Neighbour was loving it, being a massive JR terrier fan, and told me his own late dog had sliced the side of his nose open with its teeth…I am not happy with that tale nor with Juno, so she is in Coventry today.

Anyhow, he said that I could use their garden bench as a leg up over the fence – but it was wobbly and the fence about 8 feet high. I had to ask him to hold the bench for me and as I scrabbled and managed to lift my leg over the thing, I remembered I was wearing my ‘gardening’ jeans – a big hole in each inner thigh…..however, by this time all hope of coming across as a nice person to live next to had long gone and I just slithered down into my side.

Of course I still had to go and get the dog who was being told ‘you are welcome here any time young lady’. Really??  Thank heavens for nice people.

In the meantime, first impressions of the house on getting the keys yesterday were that it is very, very run down and frankly,  very, very dirty.

My Little Irish Friend and her baby came with me and we agreed not to put the baby down!!

Here are some shots of the living room (red flowers) and main bedroom.

 

The garden is lovely and today I potted up some petunias and lobellia in two lovely strawberry pots that had been left there.

And I scrubbed walls. You could see a huge difference. Tomorrow my lovely fit friend LE comes to help prepare more walls for painting…..

 

 

 

 

 

 

This is it….

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This is the front of the house that will be my new home. As it is, I have not yet received the key and the list of things to do is growing….and of course it will take time to make my mark.

Moving is very expensive as I am discovering. But thanks to a google search and a brilliant site called Helpiammoving.com I have a checklist of just about everything that must be done.

Addresses have been changed, mail redirected, phone line set up – well,  it will be in 2 weeks – broadband, water, council tax, DVLA stuff, home insurance are all done. Still have set up utilites and a few other things, but it has been a good exercise and very satisfying to check off the list as I go.

You can see there is a chimney and there is a fireplace that has been blocked in. Apparently there is no problem with the chimney/flue (still learning about this stuff) but this is a smoke free zone. I have always hankered after a house by the sea (a girl can dream still) and a house with an open fire, so was delighted with this feature. As it turns out, some phone calls to the Environmental Services at the local Council reveal that I can indeed have a wood-burning stove installed, as long as I compy with the DEFRA rules. There are literally dozens of options and once settled I plan to start saving like mad and install a wood-burner.

Many of you know that I follow Frugal Queen and she and DB are champions of this type of fuel/heating and it struck me that there could be great savings made after the intial layout.

Emotionally it is becoming a reality that this is where I am going to be for some time. The last few weeks have been very hard, clearing this place out. Eventually I got the woman who is going to be the letting agent for Him in Paradise and who will manage the house for him to come and see it. We are friends (the lady and I), having worked together for some years in the industry. She told me to stop fretting and that it looks great – and to leave the rest to her and her team. I nearly cried with relief.

Now I am at the stage where there are lots of little annoying things lying around that don’t really have a category (other than tat) that need to be sorted.

Once we get the keys on Tuesday and I have had time to see it empty and decide on what fits where we will move some things in as we clean….

It’s going to be a helluva week.

the house (2)