Les poissons en France

Friday, February 27, 2009

Into the Foothills.

I'm sorry to admit, but I'm still moving earth, although the heap is getting smaller. For one reason or another, I've not been able to stick at this job, but I've got to get it done by Sunday because the weather forecast is showing rain on the way! However, I have managed to get a covering of soil onto the stones which make up the 'backbones' of the raised bed.

The head gardener has decreed that she wants the rest of the soil still put on the bed. At the moment there isn't sufficient soil for planting, although, even with the rest of the heap, there won't be enough, but that is a problem for another day!

Whilst I was being a labourer, Sue was carrying on with preparing the vegetable beds; and it's just as well, because if this weather continues, it will soon be growing time.

The only problem with all of this 'healthy' outdoor exercise is that eventually the body says 'enough is enough'. We all go home 'healthily tired'!!!!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Mole Hills or Mountains?

As normal with everything we do, what appears to be a quick, simple job ends up taking three times as long as you think. I foolishly thought to myself, 'oh, a couple of days to move the earth...'. After two days, I'm half way!

It wasn't sunny today, but it wasn't a problem for what we're doing. Sue's started preparing the vegetable beds. She's now done 5 of the 39 beds, although she realised that some of those she did today had never been dug. Last year she just put some compost down and then planted courgettes into the compost. With some juditious back rubbing tonight, she'll be back at it again tomorrow!

Saturday, February 21, 2009

On We Go

I've started to move the piles of earth from outside the front of the house (with a little bit of help!)

We obtained the earth (and rocks, of course) from our neighbour Nicole who had some gardeners to prepare and plant up a hedge. As soil is so minimal on our hillside, the chance of some extra was too good to miss. We're going to put it ontop of the rocks which our builders excavated from the Septic Tank. Now that I've started to move it, I'm pleasantly surprised at how much we've got. I think that it's going to go a fair way towards covering all of the stones, although it won't really be deep enough.

I'm soon going to work off any surplus 'winter' weight at this rate!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

The End of the Beginning

At last we have passed a very significant "kilometre stone" the ground floor is F-I-N-I-S-H-E-D.

I am now going to bore you because I am so pleased with the kitchen. As you know we bought the kitchen over a year ago. There were pluses and minuses to this strategy. In terms of design it is not ideal to produce a kitchen layout when all you have is a shell of a building which is open to the roof. However it boosted our moral to go out and buy the kitchen units and as it turned out with sterling crashing against the euro we saved ourselves some money. Once the walls went up and we could envisage the kitchen better we/I inevitably decided that "x" cupboard or appliance would be better in "y" position. Fortunately I have a resident miracle worker! It has turned out even better than I had dared hope and I am just thrilled - as perhaps you can tell. We ended up buying an induction hob which I seem to have mastered,( well I have for John and I). Tomorrow there will be 6 of us for dinner which will be the acid test.

John says:- Thank goodness that's finished! I'm pleased that the clerk of the works has signed me off. I'm now looking forward to getting out into the courtyard to continue rebuilding walls and steps. The plan is to spend all Spring and Summer working on the outside to make our surroundings as nice as possible. However, I have just been reminded that there is work to be done first rotivating 'her' beds and chopping branches off overhanging trees.
Oh well, a man's got to do what a man's got to do!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Still at it?!!!

I can't believe how long this d****d kitchen has taken to put together! First of all it was a matter of puzzling out the instructions (which consisted of a series of illustrations). Then we had a stressfull session of putting the handles on. The first handle went on and was wrong! So, after that everything was measured and checked a number of times before I dared to drill the holes. It was really worrying. Now, we're in sight of the end and I thought that putting the backs on the units would take half a day!! Wrong. It wasn't a simple job of measuring the panels, cutting them to size and fitting them. Oh no. The floor obviously isn't perfectly flat, the work-top varies in height, and so I've been having to cut each one individually to achieve a satisfactory finish. So, tomorrow, the plan is to glue the panels on, finish the plumbing of the two sinks and then let Sue grout the tiles on the work-top.........at last!

Oh yes, and then put the plinthes on. And then perhaps I can get outside to start on chopping off branches, rebuilding walls, repointing the house, fitting...........

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Feeding Time (at the Zoo)

We really are amazed at how well the girls, Cleo and Diana, get on with Yoda, and also how he ignores them! At meal times, it's like feeding time in the Lion Enclosure. Everyone gets fidgity and starts to prowl and we have to make sure that everyone's food goes down together.

The kitchen is finally coming together. The doors and handles are now all on and tomorrow I'm going to start tiling the work-tops. 'Her indoors' is very happy. And so am I now that we're having 'proper grub' cooked in an oven!

Friday, February 06, 2009

Friday Night is Bath Night

We decided that Yoda was beginning to smell, so it had to be into the bath! We seem to have inherited a baby's bath so it's easy to fill it and pop the dog into it. However, both the cats were very interested in the proceedings!

Mr Yoda accepts (with resignation) that he has to be bathed, and just waits patiently until we've dried him with a hair dryer.

I'm still working my way through the puzzle of the different units which make up the kitchen. We're nearly ready to put the handles on, put the panels on the sides and then tile the work top. About another week!!!

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Planting Out

Another glorious day and Sue spent another day in the garden. She's started to plant out Irises in the bed behind the box hedge in the front (the hedge she trimmed a couple of days ago).

As if this isn't enough to herald Spring, we've got Snowdrops flowering under our trees. The clumps are small at present, but in 20 years time.........!

However, just down the road there is a whole wood full which are just coming into bloom and which have possibly been there for hundreds of years.

Monday, February 02, 2009

No Snow Here!

We've been listening to the reports of England grinding to a halt because of snow, but here, it's been warm enough for Sue to get outside to tidy up the hedge in the front garden.

As you can see, Sue took the opportunity to take Yoda out too.

I (as previously) am still working on the kitchen units. I've got the second run of units secured to the wall and the main sink in position.

All I've got to do now is stop the inevitable leaks!!!