Thursday, November 23, 2006

Progress on all fronts.

Well, there has been progess, on all fronts. I`ve now been given a time line to work with, which is a relief with Christmas looming close. We`re still chasing the Planning Consent and Building Control paperwork for the replacement windows and Veluxes for the attic, you see (bloomin` Council chambers won`t let you get away without every t dotted and every i crossed.....;-) ) So basically everyone has given up on Plan A, which was to finish totally by Christmas, and have decided to finish everything but the windows before Christmas, leave the scaffolding up over the two week holiday period then swoop in straight after the New Year to do the replacement windows etc. We should have the consents by then.

(For the non-UK readers who have asked... our local councils don`t just let us do any old alterations we want to our houses. Even things they totally approve of, like reinstating original style windows in place of the vile 70`s plastic monstrosities we currently have. It requires a period of time where we officially request permission to do this, notify our neighbours to see if they object, allow 28 days or whatever to allow them to object and even then the County Council might decide not to allow it if we had wanted to do something inappropriate to the building. Same with the Veluxes, which are a sort of sloping window we want to put into the pitch of the attic for ventilation. Just to complicate things further, we also need a Building Control warrent for the Veluxes, which means we need to prove to the Council we`re not going to do anything to damage the safety of the structural integrity of the house. For the two Veluxes we need to cut and brace one roof joist per Velux. Nothing difficult, it`s very common and perfectly safe if done properly but we still need to complete the paper trail. If we don`t do all of this, when we come to sell the house twenty years from now we won`t be able to, as no lender will give a buyer a mortgage on a house with unauthorised alterations. Plus we can get hit with massive fines from the Council for not following the legal process. If they feel scunnerish about it, they can fine you AND tell you to reinstate the original structure. Really, it`s not worth not doing the paperwork! Plus, we`re getting some grant aid towards the main outside works which is really nice in these days of cash strapped Council budgets and they`ll require all the paperwork done properly.)

Anyway, to get back to the timeline, this means we`ll have our lounge and kitchen still functional over Christmas, with (hopefully) working utilities and heating. In return we get to keep our scaffolding for another three weeks or so. It means I can put the Christmas tree and all the decorations up...originally I was thinking if they took the lounge windows out the week before Christmas I would be frantically cleaning the mess up on Christmas Eve and putting the tree up at 5am on Christmas morning, yo ho ho. So I`m happy. It also gives me another five weeks to box up ornaments, books, toys etc. The window replacement is going to be very, very messy.

Gawd, you must be all sick of reading about my house! Well, it`s my blog and I`ll moan if I want to. ;-) But belive it or not, I have been doing a reasonable amount of crafting amidst all this, even if it is only (a) more socks and (b) a plain sweater for Duncan. I`m still going to the Haddington Spinners every`s a haven of tranquility and sanity, belive me! I also go to the Edinburgh Guild on the third Saturday of every month, though having said that I didn`t last Saturday because it was Mairi`s big ballet show and she was performing.

I am currently spinning a lovely blend of shocking pink merino carded with white angora from Marshmallow the rabbit, who is owned by my spinning friend Debbie. (I swapped her a tent for a box of angora fibre, lol. ) This is for a hat/scarf/mitts for the Pink Princess, of course, though she might not get them this winter! I also bought four 50g balls of dyed mulberry silk roving from Doreen at
Scottish Fibres, who was at the felting workshop last Thursday and who always brings along a sack or two of her new stuff "just to show us". Temptress! I bought some siver grey to blend with the grey angora I bought at Woolfest (name of rabbit unknown) and some very intense peach, pistachio and lilac colours. Sounds revolting? No....gorgeous.

Unfortunately I can`t show you any of this at the moment, because we`re down to less than seven hours of daylight here now and the green safety netting round the scaffolding means the house feels permenantly subterranean when it comes to lighting. The garden is a no-go area because of the building works. I must see what I can rig up indoors, but I don`t really like taking pictures of fibre and yarn under artificial lighting. The colours don`t show well.

Oh well, on with another cleaning and packing day. And Christmas shopping, argh!!!!

1 comment:

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