Sunday 24 January – Progress

Last week I was able to report that we had enjoyed a productive week and managed to tick a number of tasks off of our incredibly long ‘to do’ list.

This week we have continued to make progress and achieved some good results as well but I get to the end thinking, probably unfairly, that it hasn’t been as successful as last – not sure why and is only a perception as hopefully you will see that again we have achieved a significant amount (for those who follow our Facebook page we have been posting some of the things on there as we do them.)

The 2 major successes of the week have mostly been down to David’s handiwork with the sewing machine and decoration (I am i/c Christmas decs as you may recall but David has worked wonders for Valentine’s publicity!)

I showed a fairly poor photo of the drapes that David made for the four-poster bed last week so I have attached a couple of better ones we have been able to take this week.

Four Poster - Family Gîte FinistereFour Poster 2 - Family Gîte Finistere







We have found a couple of material shops in Quimper which have a wide range of fabrics, and David has put his stint at fashion design training to good use making 3 new curtains in total to hang behind doors in Priory and our own kitchen.  These should make the rooms extra cosy and private for ourselves and our guests.  These you can see on our Facebook page.

David has also taken a number of photos to highlight our gîtes as ideal locations for couples to come and spend a romantic Valentine’s weekend as they are so full of charm and character. I suspect that we have left things a little late for this year (although there is always a chance) but we can put them to good use for 2017.  If of course anyone reading this fancies a romantic break away please do look at our packages on the website – we would love to welcome you.

Hayloft Valentines - Family Gîte FinistereHayloft Valentines 2 - Family Gîte Finistere








Romantic Valentine's stay in luxury accommodation in Brittany


Romantic Valentine's stay in luxury accommodation in BrittanyRomantic Valentine's stay in luxury accommodation in Brittany









My focus has been predominantly outside (when the weather allows) as now is the time we want to get a lot done before the growth season starts and we are delayed for another year.

You may recall that we had a tree surgeon friend come and fell a couple of large trees on our western boundary which blocked a lot of light into the garden in the evening, this week I have completed the task on that part of the wall removing the smaller trees and shrubs which had become a little overgrown and un-shapely.

It is a little open at the minute although this is not an area adjacent to any of the gîtes, and as well as removing all of the unwanted trees, I have moved a lot of self-set holly and yew plants onto the wall to grow and make a great hedge (albeit in a number of years!) The ‘after’ picture doesn’t show it as well but we have not felled the lovely large yew tree just the scrub around!  This is also the area that we hope to build our new garage in front of as well so it will not be so open for long and we met with our architect a couple of times during the week and now have final plans that we can submit to the Marie for the permis and start the painful process of getting quotes for the work!

From this:

Peaceful gardens in rural location luxury accommodation in Brittany

To this:

West Wall 1

Next week, the plan is to source a number of other self-set plants and re-plant them on our other boundaries so that in years to come we will have a lovely thick and secure hedge. In the meantime there is a lot of wood left to chop and, as I prefer to do as much with a bow saw as I can, it takes a little longer than slicing through with our chainsaw!  All good wood for the burners in a couple of years’ time.

West Wall To ChopChopped






Other achievements this week include having French satellite TV installed in Granary and Priory which is something we have wanted to do and, as we hope to have a greater number of French clients in this and future years, it was necessary, we always felt a little apologetic when we had French families stay with us this year and all we could offer were French DVDs.

We are also now able to focus a little more on our own pad and I put up our bathroom cabinet in our downstairs cloakroom which had been sitting in the spare room since we arrived. For those who knew our Balham flat they will remember that we totally transformed the bathroom while we were there and the cabinet was a bit of an extravagance so when we decided to move it was certainly coming with us – we just needed to work out where to install it.

The cabinet has a number of lights which need to be wired in and we initially thought that wherever we put it we wouldn’t be able to do this. However, our cloakroom has always had a random piece of cable sticking out of the wall in a bit of choc-block which didn’t seem to have any purpose. Initial investigation suggested that it was a dead wire but, when I double checked before screwing the cabinet up, it was live although we have no idea where the switch or fuse for the power actually is!  Upshot is the cabinet is screwed up and powered up and looks great (despite a little damage sustained in transit.)  I haven’t included a photo of the downstairs loo – it didn’t seem right!

More of the same next week, and hopefully another day trip, as well as pictures of our first dinner party to be held in Priory – a Burn’s Night dinner this evening, hence posting this a little earlier than normal and using the fact I’m in a rush as this week’s excuse for the typos!!

À bientôt.