Tuesday, 23 June 2015

cobbles....and more cobbles...

spent a very productive long weekend in Wales..
Took delivery of more course sand on Friday, which allowed me to crack on with laying cobbes in the basement. A labourious job, but once you get into the rhythm,
 - make a mix
 - gather a pile of cobbles
 - get on your knees
 - pick up a stone
 - place a stone (not allowed to put any back)
 - pick up a stone....
 - ......
- make a mix
Almost therapeutic, and a rather pleasant job...particularly the finished effect, which is stunning (in my opinion)

I was accompanied during this work by a very busy Jenny Wren, who was back and forth feeding her chicks in the ceiling above me...she became rather brazen, and was buzzing over my head every couple of minutes...completely oblivious of me !!!

Through Friday and Saturday I managed about 10-12 mixes, and finished about 3 quarters of the floor, until I ran out of cobbles (and only half a bag of NHL5 left)

The old channel that carried the stream out of the  basement ,would have lost its cobbles many years ago, so we knew that we would be short...however underneath the cement slab outside the back door, is also cobbled, so they will have to be sacrificed to finish the basement.

Meanwhile (between mixes), I started digging out a soakaway. The downpipe from the front roof has been channeling rainwater away from the house, using old plastic guttering for ages, and I've been intending to bury it for a while...
So I dug a metre deep, metre wide, hole away about 10 meteres away from the house.
On Sunday I lined it with an old jumbo sand bag, filled it with rubble, and dug the trench to the downpipe. Layed in the pipe, covered the soakaway with old tarp and earth...hey wouldn't know it was there !!

Jan finished her retaining dry-stone wall around the front garden...which looks a proper garden now. Helped by the flush of new lawn which is growing very well.

To finish it off  I moved the cement mixer around the back of the  house, and tidied up the front so it doesnt look like a building site now !!!

Monday, 15 June 2015

slow progress in the basement...

This weekend, I took the Friday off work, and went down to take delivery of more sand to continue with laying the cobbles into the basement floor.
Unfortunately the delivery truck arrived with 3 tonnes of fine sand instead of the course sand that I ordered, so back it went and another weeks delay before I can get on...frustrating !!!

So I finished the new outside door to the cellar, and fitted it on the Saturday.

The rest of Saturday and Sunday morning, I worked on the frame for the trap-door that will provide internal access to the basement from what will be Library...

Jan finished limewashing the attic room, so that we could start moving up temporarily. I am finally going to sand and seal the floorboards on the first floor.
Top floor looks lovely...
Saturday was wet, but Sunday was lovely and warm and sunny, so as soon as the grass had dried enough...we spent the rest of the day cutting grass usual

Did I say frustrating?!?!....still acheived a lot though!!!