When I published my post on Surviving building work earlier today I was asked to provide some ‘after’ photographs of my house. At first I looked back through old photos that showed it as I like it to be. For example, this one makes the most of the fact that the sun is shining and the flowers are blooming. It was taken a couple of summers ago. Little has changed other than the weather.
Today is a typically dull and damp winter’s day here in southern England. There are no flowers, few leaves and the ground around my house is muddy from the abuse my hens inflict.
Although my children no longer play in their sandpit the hens still enjoy scratching around in it. On a day like today they are not to be seen as they are confined to base until the saturated ground dries out.
It is hard to believe that in a few months time this soggy area of garden will have returned to it’s more attractive, verdant state.
For now though, our plot is untidy, scratched up and cratered where the hens have searched out the bugs that keep them happy and made the dust baths that help keep them clean. They love to be let loose in the undergrowth at the bottom of our sloping garden, to scratch amongst the overgrown ivy, cut timber and fallen leaves.
However, let us get back to the building work that I posted about. This was facilitated by the provision of a single storey extension at the back of the house, shown here.
Once the outer shell had been built, a number of internal walls were removed and my new kitchen created. I love my kitchen. Eight years after it was built I still would not change a thing about it.
The idea behind this construction effort was to open up our family living space. We built two new rooms: a laundry room, shown here on the left; and a large family room to the right.
The family room has lots of windows, including in the roof, and a door to the garden. We also opened up what had been the dining room (seen on the right of this photo) and it has recently been turned into a space for me to read and write in.
So, there you have it, a short tour of ‘after’ the building work. It may have required six months of disruption but, as far as I am concerned, it was worth the challenge that it took to create.
If you are having building work done then I wish you well; it is not an easy time. Try to be gentle with yourself in other areas if you can and, when it is finished, give yourself space to enjoy what you have achieved.