A Room Of One’s Own – Week 11 – Update

Can you believe we have been living with dust and disruption for 11 weeks? So far no one’s gotten snappish, grouchy, or stroppy as John would say. Stroppy and cross are popular expressions here and might be used in this way,

” Don’t get cross with me….”  Or  ” Someone’s being a bit stroppy…”  which might translate to ” Boy are you a grouch!”

All remains peaceful here despite my tendency to be messy one day and tidy the next. I’m generally a bit scattered with my stuff, but in fairness I don’t have a study to tuck it away into like John although his study has some of my things that arrived on this day stored in there too. My boxes are everywhere and so are our clothes, which are currently scattered throughout the study, guest room and the attic (loft) since we’ve vacated our bedroom during the renovation. Enough of this housekeeping chatter…here are the pictures from this week.

You can see a change in the pictures for today in that the wardrobe (closet) that John built last week is no longer there. We decided it didn’t look right once the bedroom lost a few feet to the corridor (hallway) so he shifted it back to the original space before the work began. It’s about the same length only now it’s slightly more narrow. It’s plenty deep enough and will be able to hold his chest of drawers, but it will run the length of the wall now.

This closet repositioning means we have had to change in the style of the new bed we had picked out because the closet takes up a bit of the bedside table space. We found a perfect remedy for this online this morning and I love the new bed frame we picked out.

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Look to the left of John’s elbow (sorry for the bad picture) to see the closet he put in and then ripped out.

It’s one mirrored door and one solid one off to the left.

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Here’s another view. (Sorry about the post being in the way)

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This is the corridor (hallway) that took some of the bedroom width with it.

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John putting up the plasterboard (sheetrock)

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Rebuilding the wardrobe (closet)

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Looking down the corridor (door to bedroom on left)

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Just so you don’t think all I do is sit at my computer…that’s me giving the house a coat of paint last Saturday

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John caught me with painting with my tongue sticking out (necessary for concentration)

Stop by on Sunday to see a little birthday blog I have planned for John if you get a minute. I’ll be baking his cake tomorrow. Thanks to everyone who sent me a carrot cake recipe, I’ll post the results after his birthday on Sunday.

Calling All Master Bakers

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I have a funny story to tell you about the photograph above, but first I have a request. My husband John has a birthday coming up in a few weeks and I need the very best carrot cake recipe you have. If  you’ve got one that others rave about then I want a chance to bake for him. So please send me your favorite and let me give it a try.

Now about that story…. A few months ago, John and I had been out for a little walk and decided to stop by the pub before walking home. As is my way, I had my camera with me and although I don’t usually take pictures that aim quite so directly  into someone’s home, I’m afraid I did that day. Walking by a charming 200 year old cottage that I frequently pass on my runs and walks, I saw the carrots in the picture above hanging in the kitchen window. No one was around and it wasn’t like I was peeping in or anything plus the road is very close to the cottage. Because it’s so close, I was walking only a couple of feet from the window making it easy to snap two discreet pictures very quickly. I didn’t see anyone and I thought no one saw me. Remember now, we live in a village with about 500 people and sometimes I bump into people at the pub who might recognize me. Usually it’s because they know me now since I’ve been here off and on for the last 19 months and I’m pretty friendly and not at all shy. Well, a few weeks go by and John and I are in the pub on a Saturday afternoon and I go up to the bar to get a refill for John and to say hello to my favorite bartender Roger who you see below.

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While I’m at the bar, a man who is buying drinks for his daughter and wife turns to me and says something along the line of, ” You’re not  from here are you?”  Okay, I can’t remember exactly what he said, but in the course of our conversation I find out where he’s from because I can tell he’s not a local. It turns out he and his wife are staying temporarily with his daughter and her partner in that sweet little cottage I think of as Carrot Cottage even though it’s really named after a flower not a vegetable. His daughter was new to the village so I had not had a chance to meet her yet. Going over to the table I introduced myself and asked her about the carrots I saw hanging in the window a few weeks earlier. Since I’m living in a country with different customs as well as expressions that can get you into trouble such as, ” Stop being such a pain in my fanny ” because words may have a totally different meaning, I assume this hanging your carrots thing must be unique to the UK.

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As I’m describing what I saw that day she said, ” Did you have a camera with you?”  ” Well…yes,” I say thinking, ” uh oh.” She said I thought I saw someone out there taking pictures and told my partner Colin, (not his real name)  “I think there’s a woman out there taking pictures of your carrots!” As she said this, I felt kind of silly, but only for a moment. I mean, I think I managed to get a really nice picture of a bunch of carrots. Thank goodness their windows were so clean. It turns out the carrots on a string had no meaning other than he’d just washed them and was giving them a chance to air dry.  I haven’t seen them since, but I always do a quick glance at the window whenever I go by now. I thought I might print out the photograph so that it is in a greeting card form and leave it behind for them with a personal note and maybe a little carrot cake for two.

Remember….John’s birthday is fast approaching so please send me those carrot cake recipes. If you leave your recipe in the comment section we can all have a chance to sample some versions different from the ones we normally use. Everyone except me…I don’t have a carrot cake recipe of my own yet.