This will be the last report on the building progress. It has been 18 months to do the building project which we have very nearly finished. It has been really well worth every euro. Only the rest of the place to sort out now! Here is the before and after. The photo on the left was in 2005 after we had knocked the old garage, but before we had built the new one. The photo on the right is in May 2009, with only the gravel for the driveway in front of the house to be done. We are very happy indeed! Visitors are welcome!


Yes I know this is an early report but we will finish this week. The terrace is done, see photo on the left. This week the big drain was put in across the front of the garage, then through the veggie area and into the gulley by the fence on the west boundry. In the photo on the right you can see John using a kanga to break some rock. The trench is dug, and the pipes have arrived. The area between the house and the garage is nearly scraped off and covered with 1" Clean gravel. There are a few minor bits of tiling and carpentry inside which will be done this week. Then all that is needed is to paint the front doors, windowsills and then decorate inside in due course.


This week has been all about the outside walls. They have now been built, and plastered. The idea is to pave the 'Morning Terrace' with stone and grit as per the 'Evening terrace' on the west side of the house. We like the effect which can be seen in the photo on the right. The paving is not yet finished. The sunken garden inside the walls is for the tortoises and a few guinea pigs. We are planning a raised flower bed in the middle. We have already placed the old chimney of the cottage with a plant in it and an even older one lying down as an animal shelter. I am hoping the lads will be finished next week!


This week has been all about walls. Building the garden walls for the 'Morning Terrace' and the sunken garden for the tortoises. The photo on the right shows the layout of the walls, and incidentally Francis can be seen loading cardboard for recycling into the car. On the left, the top of the walls have been finished, and all ready for plastering. The lads are putting the finishing touches to a gatepost. It all went reasonably smoothly, except for cutting the water pipe to the cottage twice! All good practice! Never mind, next week will see the walls plastered to match the Cottage and Extension, then a nice big land drain across the front of the garage, and that will be just about it, really.


Getting There! Dan has been busy making old fashioned cottage style doors for the bedrooms upstairs. You can see them under construction in the photo on the right. The webcam shot shows us carrying an office desk from two years storage in the garage into the cottage. Yes, we have started to put beds in the bedrooms, and desks in the office. This weekend will see progress on  wiring in the office, and the porch grouted. The second fix was finished this week, with plumbing and electrics. Next week there will be plenty of outside action on the webcam with the lads making the front garden. Hopefully Dan will finish off the woodwork inside.


Tiling, Tiling and more Tiling.... plus a bit if electrics this week. Most of the second fix is in place now, I have put all the lights in as well, so we have LIGHT and POWER! Nearly all the tiling has been done. We have done all the grouting to try and speed things up a little. Francis is here happy as a pig in s.... In the background of the photo on the right, you can see the shower in the utility room. Also the lights are in, and John and Mike are busy doing stuff. Next week should see all the tiling finished, that includes the showers which we have done ourselves. The plumber may well get here to finish his bit, and the lads will finish connecting the outside pipes.


Plastering is now finished. AT LAST! The wonderful dry sunny weather we have had has been ideal. The big job this week was re-routing the 'poo' pipes, so before the rain arrived on Friday, a big trench was dug from the cottage to the poo tank. This had to cross the main ESB electric cable, the main water pipe from the garage to the house, and the electric cable out to the garage. The rain water from the roof has now been fed into the gully between the house and the vegetable garden. The grey water was re-routed round the poo pipe. The extension poo pipe was also re-routed into a new manhole, and then connected to the tank. Spaghetti Junction can be seen in the photo on the left. On the right, the aerial shot shows Mike busy digging the trench, which produced some realy big stones. Connecting the poo pipe and the grey water from the cottage will have to wait until next week. On Friday both en-suites were tiled, and half a bedroom. Then over the weekend Francis has begun to tile the showers. More tiling next week.


The stairs are in now, and looking really nice. The photo on the right is taken from the West Bedroom looking across the stairs to the East Bedroom where Susy is standing in the doorway. The photo on the left shows the door out to the porchway with Susy on the stairs playing with Truffle. The ceiling is now finished and the plastering done in the office. Next week will see the utility room ceiling sheeted, and the plastering finished in there. Also I hope the floors will be made ready for tiling. We may also have the upstairs doors made in a traditional 'cottage' style by Dan.


The big thing this week has been finishing the outside plastering. The WebCam shot from today shows the front of the cottage and extension finished, apart from some cosmetic work. The view is somewhat obliterated by the big loader parked up in the 'front garden' or 'Morning Terrace' as it will be known. In the photo on the right the last coat is going on the gable end. The big loader is in action using a pallett as a platform. Dan is busy on the scaffold rounding the edge of the window, and Mike is busy supervising. The surface on the back of the cottage has been given it's final sponging and looks really nice. The weather has been very kind to us, and we are hoping it will continue into next week when we should have the inside plastering finished, and the underfloor heating connected up. The end is really in site now!


Three major events this week. We see the final coat of lime plaster on the front and gable end of the cottage, so it is looking nice and smooth ready for the final coat of white plaster to match the extension. The 'Barges' have been constructed out of concrete for the end ot the cotttage roof. These can be seen in both photographs. We will be painting them to match the ridge tiles. The Porch foundations can be seen in the photo on the right with the first course of blocks in place. John and Dan are working on the gable end from the Loader bucket. In the photo on the left you can see the Barge on the end of the roof. Three days of work have given us a nice porch, nearly ready to tile. Once that is plastered I think we should see some white plaster appearing very soon. Next week we hope the underfloor heating will be connected up and the porch finished. No work on Tuesday ........ it's St Patrick's Day!