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Wednesday, 21 July 2010

The Heart(h) of a Home...

Last week at work, we had a book sale in aid of charity. I came away with around 12 books, some of which I shall put away for Christmas pressies for GJ, one will do for Grizz for his Uni course, fingers crossed...

Another book, I kid you not, was to help me to deal with a certain fault of mine, it was called PROCRASTINATION

... It had hardly been read. The pages unsullied.

How's that for procrastination?!!

I've left it at work, to read in the quiet spells we're experiencing, now our work is drying up, and before the Posh Boys make up their minds about closing us down, and shipping us out, or they just sack us anyway because we're currently Public Enemy Number One... Grrrrrrrrrr...

Anyhoo, where was I?

Ah yes, after years of procrastinating; Shilly-shallying, putting off and putting off...

After almost a decade of living in an unfinished home, while it crumbled about my person, me sitting in the midst of it like Miss Havisham in her widow-bride's weeds of lace...

I am finally putting wrongs to right.

A week or so ago, my neighbour started work knocking out the fireplace in my sitting room. I recently acquired a wood-burning stove, to see us warm through the winter. My hearth had been boarded up by the previous owners, terrified of the open fire that raged fiercely in windy weather.

And there are wonderfully windy nights in the winter in them thar hills!

So, the fake wooden carpentry box of a fireplace has now been removed. The original wide fireplace opening has been cleared of its rubble and broken bricks for perhaps the first time in ooh, eighty years. At that time, the original lead-blackened cooking range was removed and a Thirties' ceramic Art Deco hearth was put in its place. After that there was the Parkray Bonfire of Eighties' Vanities. ...And then the fire was boarded over. Blinded. Buried...

Now I have a five feet-ish wide hearth, its opening to hold our Aga Little Wenlock is around four foot in height...

It's very sweet. Me likey...

It needs some brick acid run over its one hundred year old bricks and then some re-pointing of the knubby bits. Then there'll be white-wash, and next plaster will be applied to coat the uneven outside brickwork.

I think I'm going to paint the wall a dark raspberry colour... I have a little Farrow and Ball tester pot of paint to try.

The coal-black stove will finally be levered into place after sand-coloured Indian stones are set down to make a hearth, to act as the touch-stone of my home...

I'm coming over all Pagan again with all of the elements free to run through my home.

Mind you, I have been sitting here for more than a week, covered from head to foot in one hundred year old soot from the exposed bricks.

I look like I'm on the run from Fagin's gang of boy-thieves in a showing of Oliver!

The house is filthy everywhere...

I found a mouse's nest (now vacant, but the chewed up cardi was a clue) behind the sofa...

GJ has black-speckled freckles...

Everything we touch gets covered with grimy finger-prints like a scene from CSI Miami!

Anyhoo, does anyone know where I can get hold of a rustic oak mantel shelf?

I'd settle for a railway sleeper!

Anyone got one up their sleeve?!

8 comments:

jinksy said...

I'd like to meet anyone who could hide a railway sleeper up their sleeve! They'd have long, strong arms, and could shift those Eucalyptus log seats for me to better positions in my garden! Would you share him, if you found a strongman?!

slommler said...

Well I sure would have loved to see pics of this process you are going through. Love to see projects in the making!!! Sounds so fabulous!
Hope to see pics of the finished fireplace.
I have no clue where you could find a mantle. Sorry
Hugs
SueAnn

A Mom on Spin said...

I can't get past the mouse's/mice's nest! You know I have an irrational fear of small rodents!

Derrick said...

On the bright side, Fhina, Russ Abbot might be able to use you in his gang, which would mean you could stop worrying about the posh boys! I bet your room will look just dandy.

carma said...

Well, you've sure been incredibly productive!!! I hope you enjoy your updated digs :-)

Angel's Attic said...

Thanks for dropping by, I'd love to see photos of your fireplace when it's finished - hope you're going to share it with us.
Nickyx

Expat mum said...

Yes yo umust post photos when it's finished. It sounds lovely in theory.
You should Google railway sleepers - there must be loads in your nek of the woods.

gpc said...

I have a friend, elderly, ill and blind, and I tried to clean his house once when he was too ill to protest. I found mouse nests and droppings everywhere, I still recoil at the memory of the 'crunch' when I reached under a couch cushion. Shudder. But what an exciting project you've undertaken! I have a beautiful unusable fireplace I would love to convert if I can ever afford to do so. And raspberry walls sound fantastic!

Something I wrote earlier...

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