Friday, 3 January 2014

Unearthing the Gates to Hell!!

When I told a friend about my discoveries under my carpet and she suggested it could be the Gateway to Hell I did think she was being a bit melodramatic but as my woes unfolded I did wonder if she had a point.

You see, having lifted the stinky carpet of doom and pulled up the underlay beneath I was confronted with the original flooring.
This consisted of some sort of vinyl tiles in a maroon-y brown, bonded to the floor in what can only be described as some sort of desperate death grip. Reason being they would not budge.
A previous owner had foolishly attempted the job and this was evident by the fact many tiles had sacrificed themselves for the good of the others and shattered into a million pieces which subsequently needed to be re-joined and smoothed with copious amounts filler, clearly their plan worked because the previous owner abandoned their attempt and left the rest well alone.

Unsightly as this was it didn't pose any sort of a problem to me when it came to my plan of laying a wood floor over them.

What did was the volcanic eruption that appeared to be occurring under the floor in my bay window.

Now, when I bought this house I had a very thorough structural survey done and nowhere did it mention that my house was built on an ancient burial ground that the inhabitants may one day wish to crawl out of. So I knew it couldn't be that.

I did wonder if while laying the cement flooring a builder accidentally dropped a spanner.. or even his entire toolbox contents.. without noticing and poured the cement straight over it thus leaving many an exciting lump for future owners to discover.

I did not find it exciting. I found it very trying. The main stumbling block was: wood floor is flat.. volcanic lumps leading to the Gateway to Hell are not.

Only one thing for it. One of them would have to go.

This conclusion took a lot longer to come to than it did to write. It also caused many a bald spot to me an my merry band of helpers (Mum and Dad) who took to tugging out our hair in frustration as we tried to decide what to do.

Should we just cover the whole mess over again with carpet?
By far the easiest option but not the most cheerful of prospects. I had already bought the wood flooring and for the last two months it had been staring at me accusingly from a corner of my dining room.
Should we lay a self levelling cement scree and bring the rest of the floor up to the level of the highest bump?
Or should we smash through those lumps and risk letting out the unquiet spirits of the underworld?

Armed with nothing but a scutch hammer, my brave and valiant father bent himself to the task.

He smashed and smashed and smashed. And we swept and swept and swept. And do you know what we found under those lumps?


No little red pointy horned imps. No groaning spirits. No fallen spanner, no screwdriver not even a dropped spoon.


Just cement-y lumps which once excavated then needed to filled and smoothed which was duly done.

We put down the new underlay and then began to lay the wooden floor.

We were like machines, my parents and I.

We slotted, clicked and fitted planks. We sawed and planed wood. We bickered and bashed our fingers like there was no tomorrow.

The three months of manky flooring were becoming a thing of the past
as bit by bit they were smoothed out by the wooden flooring-y goodness.

Until finally da da daaa!!!

The floor was laid and as the sun streamed through the window and filled the room with a honeyed glow I realised what those lumps were.

They were Love Bubbles.

We only had to pop those cement bubbles to let the love spread out through the room.

Who would have thought?

So, now when I walk through my living room, the light gently playing on the whorls and knots of the wood you may hear me quietly sigh and say 'aahhh love bubbles'.

Thursday, 2 January 2014

A little word about Christmas.

As I wasn't spending Christmas in Elbieland this year I didn't decorate my house.
I wasn't exactly being a scrooge.. I do love Christmas and made sure when I moved that all the decorations were to hand.. problem was three and a half months later the house had become a bit of a bomb site and releasing the Christmas crate from its oh so convenient resting place had now resembled a military manoeuvre.

So here in all its glory is my lone decoration.

Do you like him? I think he is a handsome specimen. He sat atop a Christmas cake my Mother made me... I had to remove him fairly swiftly, before the excessive booze fumes emanating from it, melted his feet off!

So, Christmas was a lovely intimate family affair, quiet and companionable, an oasis of calm in an otherwise leaky roof filled life. But more importantly I scored some absolute crackers in the Christmas present line!

I got a lovely lot of books and amongst them was this little treasure.

It was given to me by my sister and written by my adorable long distance flickr friend Pamela and combined my love of photography books and dolls.

It is currently sitting pride of place in my living room.. which is getting very close to being liveable.. as you will soon hear.. brace yourself it's another one of those traumatic posts!

Until then, Happy New Year!

Much Love,