Words to describe the last 6 weeks: chaotic, wonderful, changing, tiring, exhillerating, stress inducing, sunny (!), requiring patience, delicious, and with plaster dust everywhere!
A quick recap:
- I was joined by the inimitable Lisa Cahill and Amy Prendergast for performances of She’s Electric at the Midleton Mid-May Arts Festival. We took on Midleton’s Main Street provocatively wrapped in red tape marked “danger”. Vulnerable, brave, provocative. We had a wonderful response, especially from children (they aren’t afraid to look.) I’m not sure the town knew what hit them!
- The final push!!! Our amazing friends Cian & Aine came down from Dublin, and along with our neighbour Colm we got the last of the plaster down and out of the house. Then we grilled black pudding burgers and drank sangria. No one leaves here hungry after a hard day’s work.
- Colm was with us almost daily, weekends and evenings after work, for about three weeks. He helped us scrape clean the Victorian tiles we uncovered, move the rest of the furniture up to the third story, fill two dump trailers with rubble, and set up our new “studio apartment” in the back of the house. Literal blood and sweat (fortunately no tears). We are so grateful.
Our friend Eugene, a dairy farmer up the road, helped us enormously by hauling away all the plaster that came out of the house. We filled TWO of these!!!
- We got a goat. Ivy (named for her favourite food) is eating away at the field; she’s amazing! Unfortunately, Elvis the dog has had some issues with this new addition to our family, so we’ve had to scramble to fence off portions of the field for her to graze. A huge relief now that fencing is sorted. She’s lovely and gentle.
- THE BUILDERS STARTED!!!!! It’s really happening. As usually happens with construction projects, there was a delay of a week. But now we’re really going. The new windows are ordered. The rotted wood lintels are being replaced with concrete ones. We found quite a lot of damage from the roof leak, but so far (touch wood) it’s the only major issue. The roof will be repaired soon, and a steel beam will be put in over a wide opening in the hall. I’ll try to post some photos soon.
The first week in November is the estimated finish date.
The contractor is not elated about our decision to stay in the house, and that’s fair enough. It makes their job more difficult as they work around us. We’ve got temporary water and electricity to the back of the house, but hot water is another story. So showers are limited. Ask me about our adventures in cleanliness in November. Victorian times.
- Of course, the delay in starting meant the builders began just as my sister arrived to visit for two weeks, ahhhhh. Actually, it probably kept me out of their hair! I can definitively say that the Jameson Distillery tour in Midleton is way better than the one in Dublin. We ate a lot of tasty food, sampled many stouts and ciders, and marvelled at the buildings older than our home country. Also, we shopped.
Cassie stayed in Tipsy, the caravan, and loved it. My mother-in-law helped me make new curtains and figure out how to cover the cushions. Here is a sneak peak of the fabulous flamingo wallpaper I put up, but I think the caravan make over deserves its own post when I’m all finished.