Friday, 31 July 2009

Gods don't like people not doing much work. People who aren't busy all the time might start to think.Terry Pratchett, Small Gods

No time for thinking here....busy busy busy but happy!!
The “Then” blog. For details see entry for March 7th 2009. In brief the restoration of Claonairigh House.
Monday 27th July 1992
Rain morning, sunny spells, no midges
G had the luxury of shower, shave with lots of hot water, brush teeth with constant running cold water and a sit down on a porcelain W.C. P and G windows:-small kitchen window, hall and made landing window out of old landing and old bed room windows. Used power tool off the generator which didn’t work very well at first because it was wet after being under a leak in the roof. Mum cleared some more and found 1918 Begique 20 cent coin and the large doorstep outside the porch. First mail delivered...note from Marjorie.

Tuesday July 28th
No rain! no midges!
P and G windows lounge, repairs to broken beads on utility and dining room. Visit from “Arch Duke Ferdinand” (some broad on a horse). Mum weeded and primed the windows, raided the cottages for 4 counter balances, one lock and one sash window must go back for four pullies.

Wednesday 29th July 1992
2nd day no rain and no midges
Collected timber and building materials from Harcros Lochgilphead £201.45 for porch, discount of 25-30% collected provisions from Coop. G and P windows utility and kitchen. End window. Mum primed and weeded.

Thursday July 30th
No rain Sunny!! No midges
Chasing slates, barn slates given to Mungo and Co by Mark Page. Must sort out with Diggers (Digby Guy). Went to Harcross and Ardrisaig to old distillery. May be able to buy some second hand slates. Ordered gates and 50m stock fence from Coventry fencing of Oban. Picked up safety gear for chain saws. G and P windows, Mum primed bak door and painted a window on some plywood. Dining room window.

Friday 31st July 1992
No rain Sunny!! Midges morn and eve.
G and P windows, bedroom and en suite and bathroom. All windows now glazed YEP-YEP Hooray!! Gleaned some slates and zinc ridges from the cottages and 4 pulley wheels. Mum finished weeding. Previous owners son came round. Used to be farm house 50 hill cattle, 4 milk cows, 1,000 sheep and arable crops before forested.

Monday, 27 July 2009

Fortunatley no pictures exist of the following.....

Fell running is, I believe the sport of running up a hill or “fell” as they are known in some parts of the world and then running down it again. Yesterday at the Luss Highland Games the assembled slightly damp crowd were treated to a new definition of the event as I most certainly put the "fall" into Fell riunning. As the result of a slight misunderstanding I set off with the four “local” runners up the nearest hill to experience a new event that has no marshals, no signs and no indication whatsoever as to which way you are supposed to go...there is a marker up the hill, you go touch it and then you come down. Simple. Hmmmm, strike one as I got lost coming through the farmyard at the bottom of the hill and ended up wandering along the side of the main road. Retraced steps eventually and returned to the correct path and finished to huge cheers and lots of jocularity. Strike two:- determined though I was not to take part in the “open” race in the afternoon, the one I should had done in the first place I was persuaded by Toby and a feeling of “hey ,what the least I will beat the guy in the clown suit!”. This race went all the way to the top which I managed okay but oh boy the down was something else. I was quite scared at times and managed to find a unique way down the hill negotiating rivers, barbed wire fences and the largest patches of bracken I have ever seen!! Bless the bracken tho as it managed to stop me from falling down small ravines several times as I clung on to it. Finally I got to the farm yard and managed to fight my way out the correct way to find some worried relatives and some cheering crowds, having to run round the track at the finish was a curious mixture of humiliation and pride. I looked as if I had had tough time anyway sporting bracken in my hair and bloody scratches on my legs, a shame the nettle rash that covered both thighs did not show up. As I came over the finish line “the doughty Mrs Corner...” Toby passed me on his last lap of the mile run which he came third in, he had had made a fourth in the fell run....and no, I did not beat the Clown......

The “Then” blog. For details see entry for March 7th 2009. In brief the restoration of Claonairigh House.
Sunday 26th July 1992
(Linda and Garret)
Showery but warm showers midges ok
Started the day tick removing (Darby’s Tail), bleeding quite a lot. Windows again , guest room windows. Fitted letter box. Mum cleared some more weeds from round the house.

Kilmore Games

And so the weeks financial take rises as Feya makes £40 odd at Kilmore, Toby £30 odd and Garret £2.50.......

Saturday, 25 July 2009

Refused my 10%.....

Rosie and Freya refused to give me my rightful cut of their winnings at the Inveraray highland Games this week. They had a great time collecting their little brown envelopes with cash inside them for the first three places in each event. Finally a point to all that exercise!! Toby found it harder as he was against older competitors but had the ultimate satisfaction of beating his Dad....worth more than gold. he did manage an envelope of his own in the last event..local mile 3rd place.

whoops catch up time!!!

The “Then” blog. For details see entry for March 7th 2009. In brief the restoration of Claonairigh House

Sunday July 19th
Heavy rain interspersed by bright spells
What a weekend!!on Friday Garret and linda emptied the contents of two cellars and a garage onto an unsuspecting Swillington Common. I have never seen such an incredible collection of stuff. The van arrived at Stonefleet at 6.45pm and then went onto Russ in Micklefield. By the time we all converged on 8, Top row it was 8pm. By 11.30 we were beaten by the darkness and exhaustion too. Obviously the original plan to leave at 2am had to change. We fell into bed exhausted at about midnight. Saturday began very early. We had a false alarm at about 3am when my car alarm went off. As soon as it was light 4.30 we were off again until finally after much heavy lugging, discussion on weight and worries about distribution we were all set. It had taken us a total of 8hr to pack the trailer. Some stuff had to be returned to the garage until a later date. Garret and I went off at 9.30am with the trailer, Peter and Russ in the van began at 11.20. G and I had an uneventful journey apart from the glass sliding about in the back and so I spent from Glasgow onwards in the back with Tess bracing my back against it. We made Argyll Caravan Park by 4.45pm with peter and Russ only 2 1/2 hrs behind us. G and I cleared the rubble and wood out of the dining room and kitchen. This involved 1st moving the wood out of the porch into the living room to make room. All the wood is now in the living room. Unloading the van was a major undertaking and once again we were beaten but eh dark at 11.30pm. We have had a fire to burn some of the wood in the living room which the bats were not too keen on neither were the midge thank goodness! They were out in force waiting for foolhardy humans to bite. The caravan is in the driveway and we gratefully retired there for supper picnic style with Guinness and wine-perfect!! Russ slept in the van on a mattress and had a good nights sleep whilst Garret and I mused separately on the musical tome of Paters snoring in the caravan. The remainder of the van was quickly unpacked this am with ruse and Peter on their way by 12.30pm. There are several keen fishermen around this morning. Someone caught a 3lb salmon in the river yesterday.
Monday July 20th 1992
Clear morning, very wet evening
Today was a general cleaning and sorting day. Garret strimmed a pathway around the house and up to the caravan site. We lit fires in the guest bedroom and library-or attempted in the library anyway. Garret sorted out the nails etc and began to clear the bathroom. I dug out the remaining stumps from the back of the house. We started to try to get the caravan up to the site only to be assisted by Linda and Peter arriving just in time. The downpour that followed didn’t exactly help but we now have a king sixed bed base on a plywood floor.

PS Happy Birthday Peter!

Tuesday July 21st
Very hot and sunny
We now have water. After an initial hitch when Peter and Garret could not find the stop tap. They had remembered that it was next to a tree when they fixed it. Unfortunately we cut the tree down and I pulled the stump out yesterday. Linda and I have started digging the border at the house rear waging a war against the stones and tree roots that are ever present. Whilst working a tree feller up from Newcastle for the season stopped by only to be coerced by Peter into dropping a rotten tree. The tree was very rotten and has unfortunately fallen over the river which G and p are now clearing up with the aid of a chain saw and block and tackle. Derby (L and P dog) and Tess have been confined to the caravan which neither seems to mind considering the heat and their being very busy all morning barking at everything and occasionally nothing! We had to administer a spot of first aid to Steve the feller whose belt buckle broke and he slid down the tree burning the skin from his fingers.

Wednesday July 22nd
Hot sunny am.
Fiona and Garret left am today. Peter dug a temporary toilet pit today then we walked around the site to measure how much stock fence is required. Staked Derby at the back door. Peter started work on the dining room window. I am digging border again. We had visitors around 1pm. Margaret and her husband from The George. They came to ask if we needed any help at any time from her husband. Gave peter local news on fishing etc. Putty very hard, slow going, managed to sand and paint one sash. Started to rain this pm. Midges bad. Peter went to camp shop gas etc rang Garret.

Thursday July 23rd Raining very hard
River very high has washed some logs that took so long to get out of the water away no water fall just a strong force. Could only work in the house today, windows again. We had a fire most of the day. Worked until 8pm. Garret arrived at 10pm. He had trouble with the trailer near Glasgow. Too late and too midgey to unpack this pm. Derby very strange this pm. Then I found a tick between his eyes not able to get it all out (Ps fresh supplies of jam and dog food)
Friday 24th July
Showerey but warm
P and G unpacjed early. Went to Lochgilphead this am. Shopped at Coop, pet shop, went to Tom Grants (archeitect) with money for ABDC, Malden (Shiny black wheelbarrow), council offices (Mr Halliday) re grants sounds good! £9,450 should be available. Called at Husvana re protective clothes for chain saw strimmer. Garret ordered some. Back home. P and G gone to inveraray PO and bank. Mail to be delivered to back door if they cut a slot this weekend. P and G worked on windows all day I did some more weeding until the midges beat me. Peter came back at 9.20pm and said the first window was glazed and back in place, staring to look lived in again with one window frame that works (dining room)

Saturday July 25th
Raining very heavy
PG windows again slow but getting there. Watched a fisherman on the far bank pull out a nice salmon this am. Have seen another mink today we will have to make sure that no food is left outside. They are black and longer than I expected. It is even too wet for the midges today.3.45pm started to brighten, we have had so much rain the jockey wheels of the boat and trailer have sunk halfway in. Not looked at the caravan yet. Cooked my first full chicken today, 4lbs6oz took 2 and 3/4hrs second shelf up breast side down for half the time and then turned over. Using the last of the veg today except potatoes. Darby took 3hrs to dry from his morning walk that was taken at 11.30am. LARGE kitchen window finished. Did some weeding in the afternoon.

Monday, 13 July 2009

Riding and stuff July 13th

Like the proverbial bears Rosie, Toby and I had a bowl of porridge each in the tent this morning. That is about as far as the similarity goes as we had no chairs broken or otherwise and although my porridge was definitely cold and I pretty sure theirs was too. Rosie and I were merely guests as it is Toby's domain but wow...that "tent" smell is so evocative of holidays well past! After the memory lane trip we changed course and cycled off to the stables for a lesson for Toby and I and a photograhic session for Rosie.

The “Then” blog. For details see entry for March 7th 2009. In brief the restoration of Claonairigh House
Monday 13th July 1992 Stonefleet, Tockwith, North Yorks.
Finally it is all beginning. We are house owners once more and paupers to boo! The money has been transferred from our account and now it is really down to counting every penny. Our new address is:-
Claonairigh House
PA32 8XT

Thursday, 9 July 2009

Wednesday July 8th

The “Then” blog. For details see entry for March 7th 2009. In brief the restoration of Claonairigh House

Wednesday July 8th 1992
Cloudy start but warm later
Went to Lochgilphead to see solicitor. No problem abut te caravan also saw the man from the council about grants. Went to house quite late. Cleared grass, weeds, old raspberry canes etc from round the house. G destroyed well partition between kitchen and hall, also began to remove the glass shards from window. G removed the slate and rotting beams from porch. Every time i look at the house I cant believe it. A perfectly positioned 250+ year old house in our safe keeping. It is all our dreams and more come true.
Ps my compost heap fell over.

Tuesday July 7th.

Freya's birthday today. The final birthday treat long agonised over turned out to be a very painless trip to the pool in Dumbarton which has a small flume and a wave machine. A couple of hours was idled away reading and chatting to Toby back at home on facebook via the phone whilst they cavorted, splashed and even swam a bit. . Freya was supremely satisfied with the day which is always a plus! We came home and ate lots of big pink cake...perfect.
The “Then” blog. For details see entry for March 7th 2009. In brief the restoration of Claonairigh House
Tuesday July 7th
Cloudy but warm
More tree felling today. The mill can actually be seen now as can the back of the house. Met the architect, very nice enthusiastic man but a little too forceful in some areas. Still, he is working hard for us and is willing to proffer help and advice as required. Made compost heap.

Sunday, 5 July 2009

Too tired for anything but the "then".....sorry!!

The “Then” blog. For details see entry for March 7th 2009. In brief the restoration of Claonairigh House.
Sunday July 5th
Caravan park
Very hot clear day
Today Garret and I moved a very large mound of dead Rhododendron bush 50yds to the right! We were clearing a space behind the mass of still living rhododendron for the caravan, boat, trailer etc. We also met the “neighbours” from The Kennels up the road. Pleasant friendly folk.

Friday, 3 July 2009

"Here is the weather forecast rain for the 3rd July"...then and now the same with some lightning thrown in today for good measure.

The “Then” blog. For details see entry for March 7th 2009. In brief the restoration of Claonairigh House.
Friday July 3rd
Inveraray caravan Park
Heavy rain with clear spells.
Visited solicitor in Lochgilphead. All going ahead, has purchased the superiority of the feu from Argyll Estates. Briefly visited the house. Some one ? on behalf of Bidwell’s has removed the cottage roofs. The roses at the back of the house rambling up the wall to the first story and over the garden wall are breathtaking both in their beauty and smell. They are very small delicate ivory flowers and a pleasure to look at. No further tiles have gone which is a relief; we met Mr Hendry on the way back to the camp site through the forest. He saw 6 deer in the paddock recently.

Wednesday, 1 July 2009

Last Day of Term.....

A very happy Smiley Freya with her two trophies, one for Sports and the other for Creative Writing...pretty much sums her up really. The other photos are Toby chilling out at Lindsay's in the afternoon after the traumas of rising before 11 to attend the Primary school Assembly.

The “Then” blog. For details see entry for March 7th 2009. In brief the restoration of Claonairigh House.
Tuesday June 30th 1992
Milarrochy Bay.
Drizzling and cloudy, clearer in the evening.
Contacted solicitor and architect today. Architect has contact with a previous owner of Claonairigh whose sister happens to be a historian who is kindly putting some notes together on the history of the house. He also took his wife and children to see the house when passing this morning. Wide was impressed. They are really giving very good support with their enthusiasm.