Thursday, September 29, 2011

Jackhammering's All Done

We have removed the maroon carpet in the hallway and the white tiles you can see in the foyer/cloakroom have now also been jackhammered up. We will be tiling from the front door, down the hall and through the kitchen in the same tiles.

Even though the hallway is relatively short the carpet removal took alot longer than expected. In Australia the carpet would have been held down by lengths of wood with hundred of tiny nails which grip onto the underside of the carpet and hold it in place. This wood would have been nailed to the slab. In Guernsey they do not use nails they use some type of adhesive. It works very, very well as getting the wooden strips off the concrete took a few hours whacking with a hammer and a large screwdriver. We don't own a chisel.

The tilers, on the other hand, took up all the tiles in the kitchen in less than four hours! I left for the school run and then went shopping; when I came home at lunch there was already a large waste bag full of broken tiles on the driveway and a huge mound of them in the middle of the kitchen floor.

The sink is gone now and we are washing up in a bucket which we fill up on the downstairs shower. You don't realise how often you use a sink during an average day until you don't have one.

The room looks larger somehow, now the tiles are gone. Perhaps it had something to do with the angle the tiles were originally laid.

The last of the wall tiles and the floor tiles under the cooker were removed the next day. It is amazing how quickly you can demolish a kitchen.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Kitchen Renovations - The Second Weekend

Mr Bee removed the rest of the kitchen this weekend. The most hated and hideous copper hood was on the way out - hooray!

 He removed all the copper to discover an over engineered mess. This large wooden construction was built around the existing original extractor fan. Our house has had two extensions in its lifetime, both of which involved the kitchen. At some point (judging by the copper sometime during the 1980s) the previous owners decided to snazz up their kitchen and add the copper hood. The problem was the cooker is 110cm wide but underneath the hood the actual extractor was only half that size. As a result it never actually extracted much at all and made a sound like a jet taking off to boot!

 I am going to be repainting the kitchen again once the construction is all finished. I painted a few years ago and changed it from yellow to blue but I think I am feeling the need to change it once more. As to what that colour may be, I think I will have to look through my decorator books and Country Living magazines to narrow it down.

We are keeping our Rangemaster cooker as there is nothing wrong with it and it was one of the reasons we originally bought Bumble Bee Cottage in the first place. Look not a smidge of copper in sight :)

We have chosen the matching Rangemaster rangehood so finally all the cooking smells and grease will be whisked away and no longer coat everything in the immediate vicinity.

The plumber is coming this week to disconnect the sink and to remove the old dishwasher taps and drain. We are moving the dishwasher over next to the sink. I think it was placed in that awkward corner as this is where the sink would have originally been prior to the extension.

The tiler starts tomorrow with his jackhammer; so it will be bye bye ugly picture tiles. Needless to say I am going out for the morning with all that noise.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Kitchen Renovations - The First Weekend

Our kitchen was starting to show each and every day of its twenty-two years. We were going to paint it but the kitchen had other ideas. The cutlery draw was opened one day and literally collapsed in a heap on the floor. So we lived with a gap where the drawer used to be and procrastinated a little more. A few weeks later a second drawer followed suit and a third. We now had more missing drawers than usable ones. When I say the drawers collapsed I mean they actually collapsed, with all four sides falling off. Then the cupboard doors started to fall off one by one. It was as if the kitchen had simply given up the ghost. After deliberating for three years we were finally forced into a decision.

And so the work of demolishing the old kitchen began. Mr Bee and I spent seven hours packing up cupboards and the dismantling said cupboards. We filled one large waste bag that day and many more in the week that followed.

I am going to use the new kitchen as an excuse to force myself to thin out many of my collections, whether I am true to my word remains to be seen.

The kitchen looks so HUGE with no furniture in it. I am going to have to give what I place in the new kitchen some serious thought.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Month of the Spiders

September is called the 'Month of the Spiders' in Guernsey. When I first heard this I did wonder why. I am not wondering anymore.

I went outside to load the children and all their assortment of school paraphernalia into the car to be greeted by this. Our rosemary bush in the front garden was absolutely covered in the most beautiful spider's webs. There were perhaps ten of them and they were all larger than a dinner plate; sparkling, dew covered in the morning sun.

There are no poisonous spiders in Guernsey so they were doing no-one any harm. I half expected there to be a quote about a pig appear in one by the time I arrived back home ;)