Saturday, 13 September 2014

September

The weather is glorious. Cool, misty starts with cups of tea in bed looking out over the valley. Sometimes early enough for the breathtaking pink sunrises. By breakfast time it's warm enough to sit on the balcony and then by late afternoon it's still hot enough to swim in the river and bask on the bank. (picture to follow)

Yesterday we were joined by an extremely fit black Labrador type dog that we all thought belonged to someone else. He chatted to everyone, joined everyone in the water in turn, sometimes just going in for the fun of it. As we were the last people left, and he was still leaping about, we began to wonder what on earth was going to happen to him. Evidently it was time to leave, he had a final swim, shook himself down and trotted purposefully off up the steps. I wonder if he'll be there today.

Had to go to see a different doctor this week. Directed to the wrong clinic, but had left plenty of time, as usual, so got ourselves to the right place just in time. Worryingly chaotic at the desk with newly appointed receptionist, not helped by the French habit of always dealing with the telephone caller before the person in front of you. Waiting room like something out of the 1950s..............

Sat muttering 'it'll be alright, it'll be alright' in my head and of course it was. Charming doctor young enough to be one of my sons who explained clearly and kindly, spoke excellent English much to HOs relief, and quickly set about organising the next thing needed. Well, he tried, but by that time it was lunchtime and he couldn't get anyone to answer the phone :-)

As we walked back to the car we realised that we were in a touristy place and wouldn't be too late for lunch so sat under a tree in a shady square watching little ones catching falling leaves in the golden sunshine.

Monday, 11 August 2014

Perfect visitors

We have had a lovely week with our first visitors. Couldn't have been more appreciative and helpful. They heaved furniture willingly, made and cleared up meals, took us out to dinner and taught me how to paint furniture. And they are lovely people too.

All the painting we did was with  Annie Sloan chalk paint from http://www.thomasandlucia.com It is brilliant paint and Sue turned my neglected, dead looking stripped down cupboard into a beautiful glowing finish. Still retaining the old look but nourished and loved and a beautiful colour.


 
We also had a go at the mantelpiece. Slightly different waxing and colour mix but they both please me enormously.

 
Today, I was left on my own and had a go at the orangey pine frame of this picture (sweet picture of random children that are just like ours were at that age - except M never wore short shorts, by the time he came along, shorts were longer. And HO had a dinghy at that time too.)

 
and the orangey pine of this mirror.

 
Turns out we have a lot of orangey pine when we start moving furniture. We bought such a lot of stuff in the 70s, and we've still got it!
 
What shall I paint next ..........................................................
 
 

Saturday, 2 August 2014

Every day's a holiday

We are loving playing at house. Some things, like the view, are a continuing delight:
 


Some, like the kitchen table, are a remembered pleasure. Just hoosh the clutter along a bit to make room for lunch.

 
 
The spotlights in the kitchen are brilliant - literally. After worries that all these new-fangled bulbs would be too dim, the spots over the worktop are wonderful. At last I can see what I'm doing but just over the worktops so that the light doesn't intrude on the rest of the kitchen.

 
The cooker is wonderful. Everything I hoped, such a joy to cook properly again.

 
The upstairs landing is a lovely space. We are still playing at moving furniture. Just bringing over the bits that will fit and then moving them three times before deciding. 

 
The view from the guest shower is amazing - well if you're six feet tall or above anyway!

 
Altogether lovely.



Monday, 28 July 2014

We've done it

 
Phew. After what amounts to a year of six days a week, we have finally got to a stage where we can move the fridge over and be based at the new house, not the rented one.
 
The cement mixer is finally out of the front garden - hooray.
 
 
The table is set up. The kitchen is in. The lights are done. Not all the painting is done - we've run out of Lidl paint until they have another offer - but it looks lovely. And is the biggest kitchen I have ever had.
 
 
The bed's made and waiting. And the bedhead is literally made by HO.


And the guest bedroom chandelier is up which makes me smile. (It's another faux ami, nothing a French electrician has ever heard of :-)


The telephone man came today so I can now blog in two places! And EDF promise to come on Thursday to increase the power supply - I'll believe that when they turn up.

Monday, 14 July 2014

Pride comes before a fall

HO is busy putting the kitchen together. We went to IKEA last week. Spent all day there with too much waiting and too much misdirection by Agathe (GPS). We arrived home totally smug and pleased with ourselves that we had conquered the system, manhandled the many boxes from the warehouse shelves onto a trolley and then into the van, then out of the van and onto our floor. (Now realise why we were the only wrinklies in the place!)

I counted them all in and I counted them all back. But we missed one. OFFS. There's a tick on the sheet but there are 3 of the same sort of shelf fittings missing (not paid for and missing, just never collected). OK, well we're going back to England soon, let's not go back to Toulouse (2 1/2 hours away) let's get them there. Then this morning HO rings from the house to say 'there aren't enough cupboards'. And 'you know how we carefully measured and planned this unit there, well there's room for the bigger one we first thought of.

Sigh. Looks like we'll be back to Toulouse..........

BUT. On the good news side. We are spending the night there. The meteo says that it will be a lovely evening in the square and we shall join the throng celebrating Bastille Day. Yay. I was a little concerned that the only working toilet and tap were downstairs but HO informed me this morning (with that slight 'don't you listen') that it's only the taps upstairs that don't work. All the waste is working and we now have stairs so it is very easy to take a bucket of water up and we will have washing and toilet in the ensuite.

Tuesday, 1 July 2014

Now THAT is a staircase

Only half way through but so delighted so far.



Sunday, 29 June 2014

Domestic Goddess

(Note to self) 5 kilos of strawberries makes 14 jars of jam. And it's too many to get an effective boil going in my pan. 5 kilos of apricots makes 16 jars of jam. And that's enough for now until there is some fruit in the garden.

We have been so busy on the house that I missed a tree full of cherries. How did that happen? One minute they were way off ripening and the next they were on the ground. Always next year.

Today was supposed to be the day when I went round taking photos of everything and wrote a detailed blog with pictures.......................

Instead, it's taken to almost bed time to get the bloody jam to set. But then I hadn't taken the pictures either.

The house is brilliant. We need another visit from the electrician to fix lights and the plumber to connect up water but apart from that, upstairs is pretty much finished. The tiler is two days into a three day job in the bathrooms. All the walls are white, all the wood is brown, we have skirtings.

The stairman is coming on Tuesday, the floor sander is booked for next week for the ground floor floors.

My gloopy joints are brilliant. Especially downstairs where you pretty much can't see the join anywhere!

I have been telling the neighbours that I will be eating in the square for 14th July and then sleeping in our house. Talking about it makes it happen, right?