Une belle aventure

Our new life in 'Les Vosges'

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We got the kids working during their holidays

So it was the February holidays. The weather was terrible, just wet and cold. We didn’t have enough money to go away and even if we did Cooper was still too little to stay somewhere. Finally I had time to crack on with some D.I.Y and give our little home a ‘homely’ feel.
Brilliant! So it’s always challenging doing some decorating with your other half…Not always the same way of doing things, the same vision or expectation ect… Matt is fairly perfectionist and doesn’t mind if the job requires hours, days or month. I, on the other end, just like to get things done (even if it means cutting corners or dare I say it Bodging it!!!)Yay the French are awesome are bodging stuff so i feel at home here now. 😉
Our house was never meant to become some kind of show house so a little bodging there and there and everywhere won’t hurt. Well it will hurt Matt so we won’t bodge too much.
I also want to recup and reuse as much stuff as possible and it really doesn’t matter if it doesn’t look perfect. For me it looks real!
So we’re working on some compromises….Add to this the kids, who always like to get involved. Some days it worked and others it was just dreadful. Add to this a dog and a cat who love playing chase!
Happy D.I.Y!

In the bathroom, we have reused the old tiles. This has meant lot of preparation, soaking them and taking the old plaster off but it is worth it.
My bodging has meant that the paint is not sticking to one of the wall so we have a new plan for above the sink!
The original plan was to insulated the outside of the bathroom before decorating but as always I wanted to get on with it. I know that in the long run, this will mean we’ll have to redecorate/repaint some walls but the building-site looks is kind of boring after a while.

Then i painted the utility and gave the tiles a little make over. (bye bye avocado green)

Then I moved on to the lounge and started painting the ceiling….Then we ran out of paint and couldn’t find the same one again, settled for a different one, argued it was going to look really s***, painted for hours…..went to bed, woke up, finished it and actually felt happy with the end result.


Then, well I just wanted the whole room done, so we painted the chimney, got the tiles off the walls, went to the shop and bought some wallpaper and some wood and some really crap adhesive….(‘Colle tout’ was the best but they decided to replace it with ‘Fix all’ which isn’t as good. lol)

We are not completely done but we’re getting there.

The kids have also enjoyed making breads. They are getting really good at it.
Saf has also been making a house for her doll. I love her creativity.



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When we’re not wrecking stuff…Well we’re restoring it

We took a short break from wrecking the bathroom and started decorated one of the bedrooms. This one will end up as Rhys’ room, although the kids will probably have to share it for a little while when we move in to the house later on in the year (hopefully!).
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The tar from the chimney had leaked through the plaster. We had to dig and refill, replaster and sand.
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Prep the walls and started wallpapering. The kids came back from school at lunch time (it was a wednesday) and things stalled a little while they helped us. lol
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A coat of varnish on the wood.

We’re learning and planned our electrics before wallpapering. 😉
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We sanded the windows down outside and inside. We’ll do the shutters later… We painted the frames on the inside. Again we’ll do the outside later on.
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Matt re-puttied the windows, with the help of Flint.

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We tackled some pretty old and groovy electrics. We didn’t want to just trash it all as there’s some fairly new stuff along with some old and ancient stuff. Matt spent some time making sense of the whole colour code and apart from one switch, got everything working. We were stuck. Fortunately, our neighbour’s brother-in-law, who is an electrician, came to our rescue and shaded some light on the circuit we couldn’t fix.
You’ve got to love this ‘helping each other’ attitude and this makes life so much easier.
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Less is more! 😉

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Testing to see if it is still live…..

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A little update for the plug.
Second coat on the door for a black chalk board. (to remind Rhys to get up in the morning. lol!)
I never thought a single room would require so much work! I have cleaned the floor a couple of times, sanded the skirting boards (ready for painting) and sanded the water stains on the floor.
I will give the floor a good clean with a mix of turpentine and linseed oil. We’ll see if that does the trick to give it a new life.
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So, minus a couple of finishing touches, we’re pretty much there with our first bedroom.
Here are some ‘Before and After’ photographs.
It actually doesn’t look that much different in comparison with some other rooms. So I am glad that I have taken some photographs every step of the way as there was actually quite a lot a background work involved.
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