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Week 25
The Floor above the Living Room

This took a lot longer than we'd expected. That was due mainly to the unevenness of the beams and the fact that they sloped from one side of the the room to the other by about 5 cms. So we had to pack the boards up with lots of timber supports. We filled all the gaps between the boards and the beams with expanding foam. This makes a nice insulation layer between them and also helps with creaks etc. We did that in the other rooms as well.
We are also going to support all the beams with a central beam, it's not strictly necessary, but while we can we may as well. The floor's a bit bouncy in part, so a chunky oak beam should sort that out. We went to our usual wood yard aka Jacques Leplace's place and bought a four metre length of oak 16 cms by 16 cms for the price of a bag of chips.

Central Beam in the Living Room

We needed to create two slots in which the oak beam was to sit. We have the advantage of a threshold on one side of the room, which we can quarry into. As for the other side, we basically had to create a hole in the wall to accomodate the beam. The rest was a case of fine tuning and leverage.

Stud Wall Fixings

We've been putting together the metal framework for the plasterboards. We've begun upstairs, now that we have a floor to walk on. The electric cables will run behind this and the boxes will be set into the plaster board.

Back Step

We've got a bit bored long jumping from the french windows in to the back garden so we've built a step to match the one in the front. It's a brick step set into a concrete base. Once more we've been able to exploit our endless supply of hardcore as well as the diminishing supply of bread oven bricks.

General Stuff

Our opposite neighbour, Monsieur Haut, is very consciencious about his summer flower display - mind you most people are here. Anyway, the left pic, is his display in all its glory. On the right is part of our border, which is thriving with the mix of sunshine and rain.

Guest Pics

Here's the latest contributions, this time from Ray and Anne, who threw a very pleasant do the other night. First off is a photo of the Bailey's, cream and almond cheesecake, which Chris made and which won second prize at the fête last month and which she baked especially for the party, ostensibly so me and Graham could finally try it. I did, and it was amazing (so was the first prize winner, made by Ray - Chocolate and Chestnut tart - sounds great huh?). Unfortunately Graham was not competitive enough in a cheesecake scrum with the cake-deprived-french-neighbours and and failed to get his mits on it. He did however, try the chocorama and that was compensation, but I always say: it's nice to have your cake and eat it and then have a second one to boot. It might sound politely diplomatic to say that I have no preference, but on this occasion it's absolutely true. Both creations were amazing and I would have been hard pushed to have chosen a winner (sorry Ray).

The next piccie is the do itself and happily the weather allowed us to congregate outside. I'm hiding behind the central palm, as you do at dos.

Final piccie is the result of some of our rock excavations which we donated to Ray and Anne. They got used as supports for the bench. That's Anne resting after hauling two ton of sandstone up the garden in a barrow, amazing muscle tone for a slight lass. Nice job though. Don't ask about the stencil, I think it's the result of an experiment Ray had with some home grown alkaloids and a can of spray paint.