Sunday, 22 December 2013

Merry Christmas

Pennine View is getting ready to host a few Christmas parties and has taken on something of a seasonal appearance. It's nice to finally have the space to entertain in some style.

This Blog will now go quiet for a while until we pick up work again which, as it is mainly outside, will be after the worst of the winter has passed.

It remains only for me to wish all my followers 
A very 
Merry Christmas 
and a 
Happy and Prosperous New Year

Thursday, 5 December 2013

Done for Christmas!

At last the internal work is essentially completed! The remaining carpets were fitted on Tuesday and various items of furniture were delivered today so I can now finalise the dining room and lounge.

One item of internal work remains but it will be left until the new year now: the back bedroom has always suffered from damp and the plan is to "tank" the outer wall and then board the ceiling and skim the walls in the same way as we have done for other rooms.

My focus now is on having everything ready for the Christmas season as I am hosting at least two events in my nice new home!

Saturday, 30 November 2013

Aerial antics

I had another go at taking some pictures from my little aeroplane. My "point & click" camera doesn't really have good enough zoom capability for this sort of thing, so these are cropped from larger images, with inevitably poor resolution.

There is, of course, also the problem that it is quite hard to take pictures at the same time as one is flying an aeroplane!

Thursday, 28 November 2013

Ready for carpets

The dining room painting and decorating is finally completed, as are the kitchen and family bathroom. This is a significant step because I can now get the carpets fitted in the rest of the cottage and the inside building work draws to a close.

Outside, the steps to the French windows have been built and what we hope will be the final weather sealing applied - we shall find out next time there's a decent wet sou'wester.

The wall to support the path around the extension is mostly built, needing just a top level of finishing bricks. We can then fill the void with all the rubble that's left over, ready for the paving slabs to be laid on top. We can also use the huge pile of earth than has been lurking by the oak trees to build up the surrounding garden. Most of this will be work for next year.

Carpet fitting is booked for next Tuesday.

Thursday, 21 November 2013

Slow progress

The dining room work is dragging on a bit, partly because I have spent much of the past two weeks away but also due to tradesman availability, waiting for stuff to dry and so on. The room is now plastered, the new radiator fitted, electrics completed and coving & skirting boards done. The plaster has at last fully dried out, ready for painting, which is scheduled for next week. The carpets will be fitted to the remainder of the house during the first week in December and then I should be able to move back in, in time for Christmas!

Meanwhile, work has started outside, although it's bitterly cold. The rainwater drainage system has been installed and the foundations are in place for a retaining wall for the path around the new extension. Hopefully the wall will get built in the next few days. The pebble dashing around the new windows on the east side has also been completed.

Friday, 1 November 2013

Dining room episode 2

Reasonable progress this week. The new dining room window is now fitted, so the building is once again weatherproof (not that it was really a problem - the window faces east and the weather tends to come from the south west). Also the first fit electrics have been completed, so we are ready for boarding and skimming next week.

 Meanwhile, the electrician has fitted a generator changeover switch. We tend to get power cuts, especially in the winter and the ability to switch the entire house over to generator is bound to be worthwhile. I have a 3kVA generator and tests indicate that it will run the entire house apart from high current electric heating devices such as the kettle. The main thing is it will keep the lights on and the central heating running.

Finally the step to the front door has been built. A similar step is needed for the French windows and, of course, the patio and pavements are yet to do as well, so this is just the start of the outdoor work.

Hopefully we will be able to finish the wet trades work in the dining room next week.

Tuesday, 29 October 2013

Starting on the dining room

Work started on the dining room this week and already the old window has been removed and the resulting gap widened to take the new, larger window. This was achieved with minimal dust and general mess, which is pleasing, as the hallways and kitchen are either side and I wasn't keen on a lot of cleaning! We now await the window fitting and a small amount of electrical work prior to boarding and skimming out.

I've ordered up some sandstone paving for the patio area, although I think it's unlikely that much of the patio will be done this side of new year. However, it does enable us to finish off the steps to the front door and French windows. I've gone for a terracotta stone, which I think will look nice against the white walls and grass.

Thursday, 24 October 2013

Office move

I've completed the not inconsiderable task of moving my office/radio room/computer room/man room into what was once the master bedroom. The old office is now empty, awaiting the return of the builders early next week to convert it into a dining room.

The home cinema system is fully operational and is simply stunning, especially in 3D. I had to buy a few 3D Bluray titles to see how it works and it was worth the investment - Avatar is amazing in 3D!

I've also removed the redundant antenna mast outside the old office and re-homed an amateur radio beacon that I run as a service to the community in order to be able to completely clear the old office. And today I used the chainsaw for the first time to chop up a load of wood into stove-sized chunks. I barely made a dent in the stockpile that has resulted from all the building works.

Curtains. I need to start thinking about curtains...

Friday, 18 October 2013

Moving in!

The carpeting was fitted in the new extension and main bedrooms on Tuesday, as planned. On Wednesday my friend Jim helped me to move the heavy stuff out of the summerhouse into the house. Yesterday I was able to move into the new master bedroom and today I've been busy fitting out the dressing room/walk in cupboard and the new lounge.

There's still quite a bit to do - I have to move my office-cum-radio room and that is not a task for the faint hearted! Once that's done, the builders can start on what will become the dining room, fitting a larger window and skimming the walls/ceiling. And of course there's the outside to be sorted out in due course.

It's nice to have some space at last!

Monday, 14 October 2013

Ready to carpet

At last we are ready to carpet the extension and front rooms tomorrow. Something of a marathon effort on the decorating front and numerous odds and ends of finishing work have got us to this stage, just in time for the carpet fitters to do their thing tomorrow. The plumbing work in the en-suite has also been completed, as has the loft insulation. The rooms all look rather empty. We shall do something about that on Wednesday, when my friend Jim comes around to help me move in!


Friday, 11 October 2013

En-suite completed (almost)

The wet room shower was completed today, apart from the fitting of the glass screen, which is  Monday's job. Hot and cold water connections were made into the existing system and a quick test revealed plenty of pressure from the large shower head.

 The vanity unit plumbing was also completed.

Elsewhere, most of the loft insulation was fitted and the front rooms cleared as much as possible, ready for carpet fitting next Tuesday. Painting is a weekend job and on Monday the remaining loft insulation and wet room screen will be fitted.

Thursday, 10 October 2013

Stove installed and working

The multi-fuel stove and fireplace have at last been installed in the new lounge. As part of the acceptance/approval testing the stove had to be fired up twice and on the second occasion I ran it for a couple of hours. It heated the room very well indeed, albeit it was a mild evening anyway. Today the lining and skirting boards were fitted to complete the job.

This is a major step towards completion of the main extension. Also this week, the hallway skirting and other minor items of woodwork have been finished. Much painting and decorating too.

There is some further painting and decorating to do but that should all be finished in good time for the carpets to be fitted to all rooms at the front of the cottage on Monday or Tuesday of next week. There is still a small amount of plumbing work to be done but that shouldn't delay me moving in to the new rooms towards the end of next week.

It will be so nice to have some space again!

Saturday, 5 October 2013

Master bedroom progress

Quite a lot of progress this week. The en-suite furniture and heated towel rail have been installed and are now just waiting for final plumbing work to be completed.

In the dressing room the wardrobe and chest of drawers carcasses have been fitted. I have lots of shelving, clothes rails, etc. to make up and install. You can see one of the large pull out shelves at the bottom of the big wardrobe.

Meanwhile, the dust seal between the north end of the old cottage (where I have been living in two rooms!) and the building works has been removed. This enabled the hallway to be boarded and skimmed so we have, at last, finished the wet trades work. With the two parts of the bungalow reunited, it is now possible to see the true scale of the new extension. It's a fair hike from the kitchen to the new living room!

Next up is installation of the granite/marble fireplace and the wood stove, early next week. There's also plenty of decorating to get on with and then I will be able to get the carpets fitted. The end is in sight!

Tuesday, 1 October 2013

Heating's on!

The central heating is completed in the new extension and in the old front rooms. This evening we filled the system and with a keen sense of anticipation, fired up the boiler. No leaks! Soon the radiators were starting to warm up and before long the new rooms were losing their autumnal chill. The heated towel rail makes the new en-suite lovely and warm!

Meanwhile, painting and decorating has continued to make good progress. The external doors have had their first few coats of varnish and are therefore weatherproof, which is good, as rain is forecast for the next two days. Internally most of the rooms are finished apart from some minor snagging work.

Benny is back, rejuvenated by his short holiday and keen to get on with the hallway. This means that the partition between the new stuff and the part of the bungalow that I've been living in has to come down. The next few days will be rather trying as two parts become one for the first time but it will also be extremely rewarding.

What? No pix? I could post some pictures of me basking in the glow of nice warm radiators and mellow emulsioned  walls but I'm not going to. You'll have to wait until next week when the partition is down and the fireplace is installed and there's lots of other photogenic stuff to whitter on about.

Wednesday, 25 September 2013

Doors 'n' windows

Benny the builder is on a well deserved holiday break this week but activity continues apace, with significant progress on various finishing work. The front door and French windows have, at last, been fitted. Locks and other furniture have also been fitted to the door and all windows, so for the first time the extension is secure.

The home cinema projector screen has been fitted and checked out. It's going to be great to see that in operation!

In the en-suite, the tiling has been completed and the electric under-floor heating is working.

The lighting and power has been connected up in the extension and most of the LED lighting has now been installed. It seems to be very effective, which is a relief, as this was unknown territory for me.

Right now the plumber is completing the en-suite installation and we also hope to have all the new radiators fitted this week. Decorating continues apace. The Ikea stuff for the walk in cupboard arrives tomorrow, so hopefully we can get that installed in the next few days.