My parents are coming to stay with us in the middle of April, less than two weeks at time of writing… We are therefore trying to prioritise the workload accordingly and have concentrated on the remaining bedrooms and upstairs toilet, while the bathroom has been pulled back, probably to be completed after their visit. With the best will in the world, it remains difficult to gauge how long jobs will take and the scale of this place still catches us out!! Also, Edward has a part-time job now, gardening for a local man (used to be the mayor of the commune), so his time is more limited than it used to be. Plus, we have to take a day off each week, which I find hard to do but it’s essential for keeping us sane and giving ourselves at least a little time to recover from the hard graft :0)

Plumber at work

So, we’ve decided that Edward should finish installing a sink in the upstairs toilet and this can be decorated in time for our visitors. As the bathroom is more involved, this will be tidied up but the new sink we have for it will be installed after Mum and Dad’s stay – we’ve just run out of time!


But first things first, the pink flock wall paper in the toilet just had to come off….

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I couldn’t wait to get that lot to the tip!!!

Edward has been busy making the support for the sink and tap and then building a small cupboard underneath – I think I’ll be able to get in with my paintbrushes early next week….

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Bedroom 3

Having completed the twin room, Edward was able to move into here temporarily, while we did up his new room to be, the one we’ve been calling the green room….


On the face of it, this room didn’t look to be in too bad condition, but as with the others, removing the wallpaper revealed huge cracks, old mould stains and countless gouges out of the plaster….



It took a day to sugar soap the walls and ceiling and then fill all the cracks and gouges. In addition, Edward added some extra wall power sockets and installed a wall light for the bedside, another purchase in England… (or is he just sleeping?!!)…


We decided to keep the green accents in this room but paint the walls and ceiling white for a clean, fresh feel. The skirting, door and window sill (which Edward had to make) are all painted in light green.


We picked up some pretty wallpaper in a sale in a shop in Mayenne, which is perfect for this room….


I love the asymmetrical arrangement with the wall light here.


A week later and it was completed and how good is it for Edward to be in his own room at last…

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Sadly, on the night it was completed, we had a terrific storm, the tail end of hurricane Kate and the window, which needs replacing, let in the driving rain, leaving a huge puddle on the newly painted window sill. This will need to be redone, but at the moment is functional. When rain clouds loom, we now close the window shutters!

A gardening interlude

In between decorating Edward’s bedroom, we took advantage of some nice weather to do some more outside.   While Edward raked up some hay from the meadow, I made a border on the south-facing wall of the small barn.


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This has been planted up with gladioli against the wall, with some asters, phlox and day lilies. The gaps will be filled with annual flowers.

And, I have a potting shed!!! Edward used one of the old doors we’d taken out of the house for the bench and I made a platform from an old pallet….


I’ve been promised shelving for the pots will be installed at a later date 🙂


Disaster strikes

A couple of days after finishing the new border, we were hit with the stormy weather, driving rain and gale-force winds. Concerned for my newly planted bulbs, I went to check on them when the storm was over. It took me a few moments to register what was wrong…. the border was fine but something else was missing…..



My lovely new greenhouse, complete with seeds and cuttings, was nowhere to be seen…


Empty pots and compost were strewn all around at the end of the barn where the greenhouse once stood.

Further investigation found the twisted mess of poles and cover, caught in the base of a plum tree around the far end of the barn…


It was heartbreaking. All the newly sown cornflowers, larkspur, cosmos, sweet peas and nasturtiums were all gone, not to mention umpteen pots of chrysanthemum cuttings that Dad gave me 🙁

Digging around in the broadcast compost, I found a few cuttings and even some nasturtium and sweet pea seeds, so all was not completely lost! Edward said he’d be able to fix the greenhouse and we’d find a more sheltered spot for it….

Post script….

Greenhouse, mark 2

Edward the fixer, fixed it….

Gaffer tape and a new location should ensure it’s not going anywhere, any time soon!!


Salvaged seeds and cuttings are back where they belong…


More sowing to come! ♥