Take time to sit back and enjoy

It is now 10 years since we bought this house. I’ve just realised, looking at the blog, that there’s been nothing to report since February.

What a pleasure: there have been 10 years of projects, major and minor, and always a substantial job or two waiting to be done, and this is the first year without one. It is wonderfully pleasant to focus on gardening, or to sit in a comfortable chair to keep a lookout for that swimming grassnake, or be delighted by a dragon or damsel fly, or by a kingfisher or flycatcher. The hours spin by.

It is by no means the end of the project and there is still plenty of opportunity to practise basic skills: two outside walls still need to repaired, but now our attitude is to wait until bits start to fall off before stirring into action. (That won’t be all that long: two large chunks of old cement render are threatening to detach themselves from the clay underneath, but it’s a slow process and I’m hoping they will wait another year or two before dropping off).

There’s more decorating to do inside – one room, to be precise, and also a wonderful old oak floor to repair and bring back into use. At present it is protected by sheets of hardboard with carpet on top but we aim to restore its glory by repairing, cleaning and beeswaxing it. At the moment we are researching the best way to do that.

If I look further ahead, the roof needs a bit of an overhaul, the old hand pump is waiting to be restored and refixed near the well, and some of the outside drainage could be improved…. but let’s think about all that some other time, or indeed some other year. For the moment, a cold beer by the pond is the priority.

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