Before even starting, we had to complete the window openings in order to get the measurements for the window order. Kate and Nick arrived while we were finishing off that job and Kate finished the final landing window.
We enjoyed a couple of days off exploring and walking with Kate and Nick and Emily and enjoying our usual wheelbarrow barbecue. Fortunately the weather forecast proved pessimistic and we had just a smidgeon of a shower during the fundraising Gigha walk. We were almost the only walkers, as it turned out, most people ran or cycled. We paid for it on Sunday though, as the rain hardly stopped until late afternoon. Kate and Nick set off for a leisurely drive home, leaving us to watch films until things dried up.
Emily pointed out that we should really get all the panelvent and roofshield on to the gable wall before moving the scaffolding. Hmmm. She was right of course but as usual it took longer than you’d think, what with fitting the noggins for the edges of the sheets and cutting the odd angles for the gable. It took all day Monday and by the time we had measured the window openings and checked them, we didn’t have time to move the scaffolding.
So it was off to Edinburgh for some work for Suse, collecting our small trailer from Val and Ted and a meeting with the man from Nordan which took almost 5 hours but was very useful. We were able to go to the showroom and play with tilt and turn and H type windows and to check how smooth the sliding doors are. Then we went through every window and made sure we were using the best style and had the sizes and openings right. We are able to reduce the overall u-value to 1.1 by using insulated (foam-filled) frames and decided on proper transoms in the windows, rather than the stick on type.
After a quick visit to Mum we went up to Stirling to meet Jones and run the Dumyat hill race. Suse went for a walk round the lake and arrived back at the same time as the winner Jethro. Jones had a good run but John was very out of practice!
On Thursday we moved the scaffolding to cover the front of the house. That took all day! The inside of the house is darker now that the gable wall is closed off but the wall doesn’t flex any more so that must be good!
It was Mother’s Day in Australia and so our daft daughter Jo sent pressies for us both – brilliant magnetic arm bands. They are perfect for holding nails or screws and pencils. (I also wore mine on my sore ankle for a couple of days!)
Even with the scaffolding, it was a tricky job getting the sarking up on the roof and measured and cut to join on the rafters. Then fitting the roofshield. It was all a bit precarious so we left a hatch so that John could get in and out rather than scamper around outside all the time. It would have been nice if the hatch coincided with the chimney but that was too much to hope for. On Thursday night, one side was completed. We have ordered a tower scaffold to help with the cathedral ceiling side.
We managed to get the tow hitch welded onto the small trailer and John has had an interesting time getting the hang of driving it. It is proving ideal for transporting the logs, even if he does look as though he’s on a bucking bronco. We also got the veg garden filled up with early and maincrop potatoes, so it will soon look like a proper veg garden.
On the wildlife front we are still having to water the tadpoles but they are growing and noticeably more active. Some wrens have taken up residence in the old apple tree (lucky we didn’t take it down!) and there is another nest in a nearby rhododendron but David couldn’t identify the builders. The cedars are full of siskins and tree creepers as well as the great tits in the bird box. Owls and blackbirds are not far away. The trees are leafing up beautifully, including most of our seedlings, the fruit trees are in bloom and a few wild flowers are appearing – but so are the rushes.