Tuesday 22 September 2009


At last I have found five minutes to do a long awaited blog post! I dont know where the last few weeks have gone, except they have passed in a blur of heavy duty hard work and graft as we attacked our little house with gusto, long awaited renovation work finally underway! However, we managed to sneak in some nice interludes, like trips to the coast and arty crafty things here and there...

Amidst all the building work and heartily in need of a break, we took off to Whitby for the day - it was Regatta weekend and there was cheery bunting everywhere, rescue helicopter & lifeboat displays etc. The sun shone and there was a delicious saltwater breeze blowing in off the water. A lazy afternoon was spent upon the sands, in and out of the sea as Little Daughter finally braved the waves and went in above her knees. Very deep indeed she thought, and laughed wickedly as she soaked all her clothes! What a tonic to be by the sea, and to end a magnificent time of it sitting on the pier eating fish and chips from the Magpie Cafe...oh heaven, the simple things are often all you need....

Anyway, while we have been renovating our home, we decamped to my parents house, ours was swiftly turned into a building site and no place for a little girl. I went armed to the gills with plenty of wool and crochet hooks and finished the cushion I blogged about in my last post...here it is:

Since then, I have begun a scarf for myself - last year my sister, Mum and Little Daughter all received one and I decided amongst blankets and throws that Im still on with, it would be nice to make myself something to keep warm with, so Im getting on with the intention to have it ready before the cold weather sets in...I'll post pics of that soon!
Ive also got another textile picture to show you:

(Sailing Day - available at Little Blue Bird)

Right. Its about time I shared some pictures of the renovation work Ive been banging on about isnt it? Before I do, let me tell you a little bit about this house of ours. It is very old, built in the late 1800's and full of quirky corners and the like. When we took it on, it was just the two of us, and we took it on with every intention of knuckling down to some hard graft and transforming a time weary and sad little place into something cheery and welcoming.

And then our little girl came along. And everything stopped. And for a long time we had to live in this awfully decorated room, where someone with a passion for artex had at some point in time, had a total love affair and gone wild with the stuff! I hated it, and I cant tell you how wonderful it was to start work with a sledge hammer!! ha!

Below is a picture of how it looked before (shudder) I actually feel a little embarressed to show you this as it really is so very, very bad.

Can you see that awful triangle shaped thingy in the middle of the room? Someone had moved the fireplace to the centre, away from the original chimney breasts and that vile object housed the flue. It was constructed of solid brick, the whole way through - as well as metal girders to support the weight.

We filled a 3 tonne skip in a day. Behind all the wooden panels we discovered a stone wall with alcoves. Behind the artex on the walls, were tongue and groove panels, and behind that was chipboard paper stuck to polystyrene stuck to more woodchip...

(finally getting it all down!)

Eventually, our lovely plasterer Danny arrived, and suddenley things started to look interesting...the vision Id had in my mind for so long was starting to take shape!

(the Lounge end, all plastered and Smoooooooooooth!)

In the weeks that followed, we tackled all manner of jobs that present themselves when you take a house back to its bare bones. Electricity and plumbing problems - flooring that needed relaying about six times etc, but finally came the day that we could move back in! We still need to get the pictures up, the bits and bobs out of their boxes and the bookcase and the books back in, but all in good time, and for now, we are sitting back and enjoying our new space.

(Dining Room end)

(Lounge End)
Phew! Im glad we've done it. And now Im ready for a little break away...it just so happens it's my future-in-laws anniversary this weekend, so we are going to be celebrating and relaxing with them. A trip to the coast may be on the cards too, a perfect wind down and much needed time to crack on with that new scarf!

Sending love to you all, I'll endeavour to catch up with you and your blogs now, as things are back to normal - Ive only had stolen minutes to quickly glance at a few here and there so Im looking forward to a nice hour of browsing!

See you again soon,

Julia x

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