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July 2006

June 2006

Spiral Staircase

M.  Leger arrived yesterday to finish the last of the spiral staircase. We had agreed that to finish things off we needed a balustrade with a curved hand rail  to circumnavigated the hole on the landing.

Firstly for safety but also for the extra presence and effect it gives the whole feature. Spiral_staircase_00122222222222222222


Of course, whilst we have opted not to use Ikea to provide the kitchen it does come in handy to supply the necesseries for equiping the house out.

Donna spent the day in Bordeaux yesterday shopping for the appropriate items and at the moment they rest in the piggeonaire bedroom ready for deployment.Genoise_62497314622222222222


You know you are getting older when you decline the latest album from Blobby Williams, a new shirt from Burberry or perhaps a meal out at your favourite restaurant.Sander

For me the highlight of the day was opening the a new belt sander to complete the work surfaces.

Although the kids did buy me The  Saving of Private Ryan.  A powerful film.

Bien Progress

Boy! some people are slave drivers! :-0))

I took a tea break at 3.30 today and was reminded that our first guests were due shortly.

OK, He might be right but it is my birthday today so the tea ,maybe, was deserved?

Today after about three days of preparation I finished the work surfaces in the kitchen of the gite. Donna and I think they look great and it will be interesting what feedback  we get on them.

Genoise_6249731432222222222 It seems an age to sort out the surfaces but as they started so raw (as a sliced tree) they took a lot of preparation just to get them to a workable state.

The grain of the elm is fantastic although there is some wood worm damage.

The woodworm is not a problem to us. We think, especially as the wood is local and stored in Monflanquin for so long it has a history to it that IKEA, MFI or Kitchens for us cannot provide.

The dilema is shall we fill the holes or let them remain?Genoise_6249731442222222222222222

All (all!!!) that is left to do is shelve the spaces below the surfaces for the wicker baskets. I am sure we wont put doors on until the winter.Genoise_62497315022222222222


I am sorry that the updates are soo few and far between at the moment. I feel a weight of responsibility but the reality is we are flat out ploughing through the jobs on the run in to our first let on the 20th July.

One thing we are delighted with is we have now let 4 weeks even though we are not finished! We have to thank our guests for their order, their vision and for their faith!

The tiles for the pool were delivered today and if all goes to plan the liner should be here at the weekend. One more week and the pool hopefully will be operational.

I plastered the walls in th kitchen today and tomorrow I will place the work surfaces and we will be ready for the cooker  etc.


A question I asked many moons ago. Should it be Ikea or self build?

Well, in our main house (in a bit of a rush as we had nowhere to live or cook) we decided to build our own using blocks with a tiled surface and splashback in tiles with Lutece 2000 plaster over the blocks. It forms a very rustic, almost understated look.

In the Piggeonaire we have decided to stay with this theme but utilise the Elm which we bought not long ago. Kitchen_work_surfaces_0052222222222Although in a very basic state after being ripped into boards some 40 years ago or more, the Elm works down nicely and with a light treatment to retain the lovely grain and light colour we feel should look really good. Kitchen_work_surfaces_0042222222222 It rips down well with a chainsaw which is a good thing because handling it on the band saw would be hard, especially as I need 2 metre lengths and 40mm thick.Kitchen_work_surfaces_0032222222222

We will install shelving underneath using the same and initially use wicker baskets to hold the kitchen items but later in the year I hope to make the doors to fill in the spaces..Kitchen_work_surfaces_002222222222222


In between her many other chores Donna is about 1 hour from completing the tiling in the shower. This means next week another  milestone is reached as the water will be connected  for the first time.

Shower_0022222222222222 For her first ever attempt I am very proud of her achievement. This is a good thing because I hate tiling and this means that job will be Donna's for ever and ever and ever.