Sunday 01 May – The Smell of Progress

Where has this week gone?!

At the end of last week’s blog I had said that we should be able to make some additional great leaps forward in Granary this week.  Looking back, we have certainly made progress but can I say there have been great leaps?  Perhaps not.

However, we have continued with putting things on walls rather than taking them off so that is progress and, as some of that has been some pretty aromatic paint, at least we feel we are heading in the right direction.

In last week’s picture of the Granary bathroom, you could see that the new tiles hadn’t been grouted and there was still no ceiling.  Thankfully, this week both have been done and I have got a couple of coats of paint on the ceiling as well in preparation for our sparky coming back next week to fit the lights.

Granary bathroom ceiling replaced

Unfortunately, we aren’t quite as advanced with installing the taps and sink as we did find a small snafu with some of the pipework and the newly tiled wall.  This meant that we had to strip off a couple of the tiles, make a small adjustment and re-tile.  Frustrating but I’m glad we found it last week when we could do something about it easily and not impact the timeline too much.

Granary bathroom rebuild

I haven’t yet applied any paint to the walls yet, as, when the sparky is in next week, he will move a wall socket that just impinged on the tiles.  Again, a small problem best avoided but should only require a little filling, addition of some mosaic tiles and all will be good to paint.

I did mention last week that I hoped to make progress installing the kitchen, and I have.  I thought it best to get as much of the painting done above the cabinet line to minimise the chance of getting splashes of paint on them when installed.  This has meant a new coat of paint to the ceiling and several coats of undercoat and emulsion to the walls.

We have chosen to go with a colour this time as opposed to just white walls, and we really like the shade.  The new kitchen will be a blue colour and a different configuration to before giving us lots more cupboard space and the same amazing oven that we have in Priory.  Sadly, the style we had in 2015, which was still available for Priory’s refurb in 2020, had been discontinued so Granary will look different to the other gîtes but we think will be just as stunning.

While I have only installed a couple of wall cabinets, the remainder are constructed and ready to erect.  It is handy having lots of large spaces to build things and even the cabinets in the games room haven’t prevented our current guests playing lots of pool and babyfoot.

Granary kitchen in kit form

The weather has continued to be dry and generally warm which means David has been able to spend a lot of time outside.  His major achievement was giving Stable’s terrace its annual spring weed.  The terrace could be described as ‘rustic’.  It is generally uneven and a real weed-trap.  It is one my very long list of projects to lift and either relay with the same stones or pave.  Maybe next spring …

This time of year is amazing in the garden and the azaleas and rhododendrons look fabulous when in flower as they love our acidic soil.

Happy azalea

The wisteria looked even better this week – I may have been a bit premature with last week’s picture – and has definitely improved now that I appear to have mastered the pruning technique after a masterclass from a neighbour a few years ago.  Even the sole remaining apple tree in what we call the orchard, has the best display of blossom we have seen in a few years.

The tree has always been an odd shape (odder as it’s lost branches in various storms) and leant over at a precarious angle (and I’m not sure it is getting even steeper each winter) so, sadly, is on our list to fell, before it blows over and may cause additional damage.  Perhaps the blossom will give it a couple of year’s reprieve!

The coming week should see both the kitchen and bathroom completed leaving just a lot of painting in a few rooms and lots and lots (and lots) of cleaning and rebuilding.  No panic required.  Yet!