Today I've got to give up the never ending clearing and cleaning for the sake of my newly manicured nails - we're off to a 70th Birthday party this weekend. It gives me the perfect excuse to sit amidst the mess of our move and blog instead.
Ash Cottage, our new abode, is a Victorian cottage with an old butchers shop attached and an acre garden. She has been sorely neglected for a good 20 years or more and so we are gently clearing, cleaning and restoring the old girl to her former glory.
It has been non stop since we got in here, as I'm sure is always the case when you move house. We have a list of jobs as long as your arm and more constantly added. Some days I can't believe how much has already been done, sometimes I can't believe how little. But, I'm quite chuffed at what we have achieved so far. The list is something like:
- Man living in the garden - gone (long story for another post me thinks).
- Dangerous gas fires - gone.
- Meters of unnecessary copper pipes, electrical cabling, redundant heating systems, motion sensors, air freshners, burglar alarms, thermostats and fitted desks and shelving (2 skips worth of the stuff) - gone.
- Bathrooms and kitchen - steam cleaned. Showers - working.
- Trees, shrubs, nettles and grass cut back so we can; a) see out the back room window and b) walk down the garden. Doors to the garage - openable, "Thanks Jack!"...
...although, the old blue sign above the garage door, for what was once an MG Dealership, is no more. Held together and yet destroyed by the voracious roots of the ivy that covered the garage roof.
- Garden fenced so that dogs can't a) commit kamikaze attacks on the cars on the A120 that passes outside our front door or b) chase our neighbours alpacas.
This gate, part of the new fence, was the first completed job on the house. The river Ash that runs along the side of the garden is now off limits to dogs and children without adult supervision and I can't tell you the difference that has made to my nerves.
So, here she is the old girl awaiting whatever is next for her. And, oh, Mrs Fox has plans - crafty Mrs Fox!