Thursday, 27 June 2013

Shed Converions. Amongst Other Things.

I think they missed each other... Or not.

We've decided to convert one of the sheds into a bunk room. This means that at the moment workers will be able to stay in it, but eventually possibly students. It's all open to suggestion at the moment. 

The space is quite good, so Adam, Ben and I have been trying to design a room which utilizes what we have to our best possible advantage. At the moment the plan is to have 2 sets of bunk beds, so accommodation for 4 people. Hopefully we will be able to make the beds entirely out of recycled wood from the house. We have already found enough (seen on the floor here) to make the frame for the first bed and the slats are going to be made out of old skirting boards-one of my better plans!

First step is insulation. 

Even now when its not actually particularly hot; the shed is way hotter than outside, so you can imagine what it will be like in winter... Not pleasant.

After looking into polystyrene and bubble wrap insulation, we have decided that the most effective and economic way is by using the fibre glass insulation that Dad and Andrew took out of the house. 

The firbre is in sheets and is absolutely horrible, it sticks to everything! We're going to use sheet hardboard to cover the fibre glass. Unfortunately there isn't enough batons to screw the hardboard onto, so we had to make some more batons. (show below)

Ben making batons.

Adam and Ben fixing batons into the shed walls.

Masks, gloved and goggled with shiny coats on, we attached the first strips to the roof. Adam and I held them whilst Ben stapled them to the ceiling.

Mum's looking pretty happy!

The rhododendrons may be invasive and really, really hard to kill, but up close, they are brilliantly pretty.

Even the rain has its upsides.

The chimney pots are at least waist high on me.

From the ground the tiles look quite small, but actually they're massive!

A couple of views from the scaffolding.

Wild goats on the Oa.

We ame to this beach on holiday last year. It has the most amazing waterfall, but is also amazingly windy! You have to walk down a path which zig zags down the hill.

No Rick, you can't take that home.

Friday, 21 June 2013

Islay Goes To Islay!

After 10 and a half hours in the car we finally arrived at the ferry port! 

The journey was reasonably uneventful despite going wrong very early on, Islay was not keen, having encountered a very noisy lorry near the start of the journey she then panted constantly the entire way, refusing to lie down! We had to transfer her to a spot on the back seat at the first service station as she was packed almost as tightly as the luggage and was getting very hot. (Mum's air con doesn't work, so we have to have regular blasts from the windows... 

At the ferry port, surrounding road works had cut off the electricity supply, unfortunately the back up generator had also broken, so Rick had to go to the toilet by the light of his phone-an interesting experience apparently! It also meant that they couldn't print off the ferry tickets, resulting in a very garbled conversation between the foot passenger ticket man and myself, as he had not ben told. (The scottish accent didn't help anything either...)

Having been awake for a full day and night, Islay, and us actually, were very tired and also quite hungry. She wolfed down her breakfast at the ferry port after having a very welcome walk on the beach. We, however, had to wait until we had got on the ferry for a 6 piece full english breakfast! (This is a ritual, which has to be carried out every ferry journey, even if (like Mum) you're going on it 4 times a month, or me, and on a diet! 

Square (lorne) sausage, grilled tomatoes, loin sausage, hashbrown, egg and bacon! I almost had to get an extra item and have beans, but resisted at the last moment! All this, complete with butter, two pieces of toast and cappuccino only comes to £5.99. I love cal mac ferries.

Islay was also quite keen.

Islay was a little worried about going near the edge.

She got closer and closer....

Until her nose was through the bars!


A stowaway!

Once at the Dower House, she settled in brilliantly. In fact, the first thing she did was steal a log of the fire wood pile!

Ben's chicken hotel! Looking forward to the eggs.

Sorry Mum, no otter today.

Having been told constantly not to climb on the scaffolding, it seemed only right that Dad should immediately break this rule...

There's a never ending supply of sticks here.

Enjoying the sun.

 Even Islay was bombarded with midges...

The view is even better from up there!

Having made these benches, it's only right that Rick should enjoy them!

Once Nick had started climbing on the scaffolding everyone joined in.

From left to right:
Rick, Ben, Nick (on top) Adam, Mary-Ann and me (Jenny!)

These photos were tricky to take, I had to set up the camera on rhododendron hill then sprint up to the house in 10 seconds!

The deer ate Mum's tree...

Ben building the chicken pen around the hut.

Islay very much enjoys getting soaked in the burn...

Adam cutting down the nettles on the path to the beach. If the theory is true and nettle stings do prevent arthritis, he should be safe.

A quick beach photos shoot!

A whole night awake really took it out of her.

Archie's much more confident than when I left after easter. Still 'meows' constantly and sleeps all day though!

Dad found an old singer in the house! He already has a green one, so has the beginnings of a collection.

Ben's mug. When Mary-Ann stopped working at Milborne First School she found this mug in the cupboard where it had been for years. It was painted many years ago by Ben's Mum Jenny Clarke, so it seemed only right that we should 'borrow' it for Ben to use while he's here!

I'm only here for 3 full days, but it's still worth the 30 hours traveling time. - Jenny