Friday, December 3, 2010

Holiday week one: renovations and restorations

John painting the ceiling boards
Both John and I were really needing a holiday, so we took two weeks off work. The first week was quite fraught really: having been so busy we had not really had time to work on our relationship and family, so there was some serious renovating to do on that front. Parenting is a minefield anyway but we have a blended family and that brings with it a unique set of issues, which require upkeep and attention. The stats on blended families are not cheering: 90% don't last five years, sadly. If anyone reading this would like more information or support on this topic I can recommend the University of Florida "Stepping Stones for Stepfamilies" series, and a number of other sites.

But we also had some serene times that week. We listened to some marvellous ABC RN  while we worked on restoring the interior of the living room, which when we bought the Grange was panelled in gaudy 1970's plasticised sheets. My brother Marc helped us pull those down quick smart, when he was here last year, bless him! The hardwood boards underneath were damaged but whole, though shrinkage had left many gaps in the walls. We fixed those with flexible gap filler (we used 17 tubes on the one room). Then sanding and filling of the many holes and finally a nice coat of paint. I still need to make more architraves (which had been removed in years gone by and are lost alas) and finish the cornices / scotia and skirtings. Good hard work but the net result is much better. Before and after shots are below.

I think the relationship is much better after the week's renovations, too.

Prior to purchase
Nearly finished
The living room after panelling removal but before painting.

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