Not so much a blog as a weather report! Lots of fog, freezing the air and the ground, weakening the already weak sunshine. Creating a big fat inversion layer above Loch Lomond but allowing the grandeur of the mountains to rise above.



More news next time, we're just catching up with life and activities disrupted by the winter weather and preparing for the next lot. The fire's lit, we're warm and we're getting ready for Christmas. Best wishes.

Not quite there yet...

The sensibilities of moving in tomorrow aren't really there as progress has been quite slow since our builder went on holiday last week. He's a very good project manager so I think it would all look a little further advanced if he'd been around. We perhaps 'ought' to wait another week but....the jobs fill the time available and Steve and I need to move in. The kitchen is messy but there isn't much left to do there and we could reasonably use it at the weekend after a good clean. The childrens' bedrooms are being carpetted tomorrow so we'll get their furniture in and blinds fitted on Saturday if possible with a view to that being our first night.

The granite worktop was fitted last weekend, just 2 weeks after templating, and we're very pleased with the result. The team were a very pleasant trio from Estonia and Lithuania. The plastic protective wrap on the doors and drawers is coming away on this photo and together with the general high dust and grime levels doesn't inspire but we reckon on using this kitchen this weekend. The caravan hob is just about adequate and the oven ok only for warming stuff. Last summer it took nephew Tommy Boy nearly an hour to part bake/part burn a pizza. We have managed to cook a good selection of food over the past 9 months, we've even entertained a few times, but a real kitchen is now beckoning.


Here's the wood shed (the biomass store!) which has been constructed from salvage timber, notably the joists from the original house and an oversupply of sarking board.The roof elevation will be approx 2/3 covered by the solar panels.

Latest.....

The patio area around the southwest corner of the house - sunspot for summer days and evenings. It will be topped with black limestone slabs which are due to arrive on Wednesday-ish.
After much delay the American blond oak staircase has arrived but is needing some adaptations by our onsite joiner. The timber is beautiful though and despite the general mess in the house is one of the final landmarks in the building of the house.
The above photo is of the porch area by the front door. We've continued the larch cladding in this area which looks good with the height created by the continuation of the roof line. Jim the electrician is fitting the lights we've bought in the next day or so and this includes one to uplight this area, low energy of course!
Herewith the slate flooring in the family room which attaches to the kitchen/dining. I felt most sorry for the tiler who is trying to lay 82sqm of slate tiles whilst all around are busy with their own trades, typically on Friday this numbered around 12-15 people. At one point he locked the front door so no-one else could come in. The above slating has not been sealed but the bathroom has and the finish looks super. The floor will need resealing every 3-5 years but as this can be done with a mop and bucket it doesn't seem too onerous.

The exterior revealed

The scaffolding is just about down after a day and a half of disassembly and the render is dazzingly white. The polythene over the ground floor windows will be removed after the renderers have finished covering the grey you can see at the bottom of the house, this may happen tomorrow depending on the extent of rain forecast. We haven't had rain for a week now I think.

Next week we'll work out the design on the ground for external hard landscaping close to the house. The architect drew a rectangular area of paving on a plan but the levels on the west side need a bit more thought so we're just going to work to our own design in conjunction with the groundworks crew. Some number of tonnes of hardcore are arriving tomorrow afternoon to start that process. There's always something arriving on site, today's delivery were the 122 boxes of kitchen which the fitters will commence construction and installation on Tuesday. The appliances arrived yesterday, the kitchen sink last Friday but we still need to buy taps...a job for the weekend.
Two days ago the vinyl flooring went down in the 2 upstairs bathrooms so Willie the plumber has now fixed the sanitary ware in both those rooms. The gorgeous bath tub is in the ensuite.
In the ground floor bathroom Billy the tiler has started fixing the slate tiles, setting up the lines took a while as this slate will run through the majority of the ground floor.

Turning Chillier part two


A continuation of the previous blog - the technology sometimes prevents such things. The step shown left was finished on Friday. The stone for the whole wall and the step has been recovered from the demolished farmhouse save for the coping stones which have been bought from a nearby farm where the wall had fallen down. The weather forecast for later in the week is distinctly cooler with daytime temps nearer zero and we have had our first conversations around the subject of 'how long can we/will we stay in the caravan'. No decisions to move out yet as most of the time its really not difficult. Naturally we would prefer more space and a lovely big bathroom but that is, quite literally, a work in progress. The office is in an old toolhouse adjacent to the barn which adjoins the house and with its high level of insulation it is a very pleasant place. Steve has been insulating the water pipes within the caravan and we need to tackle the ones outside where they are not underground.

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