Tuesday, 22 October 2013

Mews News - Reno update Part 2

Not that most of you keep tabs but I have been a little stressed lately.  My builder who I mentioned was a "character" in Part 1 of my house renos had an accident.
He fell about two stories.

Luckily, nothing serious happened. 
He is a lucky chap. 
But he could have died or 
at least broken something from the fall.

Look where he fell from.

Do you see that chipped bit of the mini ledge on the landing?
He hit his shoulder and his head on that 
which broke his fall before the floor did.

True to his style, 
he was in a bit of shock but instead of going to A & E, 
he went to the pub and medicated with 4 pints and recounting the incident to everyone which is a form of Irish therapy I suppose.

But the scale of the fall doesn't really translate.
This is what my staircase used to look like before the renos.



Never really liked the space to be frank.
It is out of proportion to the rest of the house in my opinion 
but Mr CSW loves the spaciousness of it.
 I also dislike the woodwork on the banisters but 
I suffered from not finishing up decorating work within 6 months after we finished our last renovations 5 years ago.

But staircases back then were built to be comfortable rather than squeezing every foot to be "usable" space.



We no longer have this skylight as we have built another floor on top of this.


This is the framework for the new floor.


The room below is the bathroom for the new floor with a storage cupboard just behind it which is to be accessed from the staircase.


The new terrace is below right but 
we have tarpaulin over it to keep the area water tight.

Mr CSW with some of the builders.

The terrace with the drain.
Mr CSW has been a very competent project manager
 and has been on site every single day.

Measure twice and cut once!
But don't get the wrong idea, 
he has never even put up a shelf.

I was doing quite well with morale and
adjusting to a new neighborhood but 
I hit the renovating wall around the time of my last post.
I just got completely overwhelmed with the project, the new home and area, living out of suitcases, not being able to find anything, eating too many takeaways because I don't feel like cooking and my builder's injury.

I haven't been social to the point where I had to pull out of some social events due to sheer exhaustion.

But I also have "choice" fatigue. 
Everything is in flux.
One minute we plan on doing the basement excavation and then we decide to delay and see how things go in a few years.
My neighbor's basement excavation which was rather disruptive...

But that makes an impact on the type of kitchen we have as we would have to get a whole new one if we plan on doing another project in a few years. 

So anyway that is why I have been quiet of late.
I am regrouping now and getting over this pity party and get back to normal very soon!

Hope all is well with you and 
look forward to being back to normal next week!  
Have a great weekend.

63 comments:

  1. Phew, what stramash!
    That's an awfully ambitious project you've got going there, I had the gas men in last week and wanted to run a mile, I couldn't take all the shouting. I don't think I could ever undertake a project like that, I'd end up in the loony bin.

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  2. self medicating sounds like something my husband would do! Your poor builder!
    Loving seeing peeps of Mr CSW!!! He looks very professional!
    Hope things run smooth and when stressed, open good wine! My tip!
    x

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    1. a wine and xanax is what i need! Yes Mr CSW is shy and as she says he never talks to the press so this was quite a coup :) x

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  3. Poor fellow! Like Karen, self-medicating is what my husband would do, too.
    I have never known a renovation that didn't involve stress. These things never go easy! We redid our kitchen about 7 years ago. At the same time, we completely redid our front yard and removed a closet from our front entry way. We spent way more money than we intended and the front yard business took forever. But it was so worth it. Our yard is lovely, the kitchen looks great and we couldn't be happier with the results. When you are in the thick of it, you can't really see an end, but someday you will get to enjoy a peaceful, beautiful home in which you can relax and enjoy yourself!

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    1. True - I must remember it is pain followed by relief. I nearly left Mr CSW the last time we renovated so this one is going much better! :)

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  4. Hang in there Naomi! It will be great in the end....and the end is nearing,,,sorta anyway!

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    1. You are right - don't know about great but at least livable? x

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  5. Gosh- here in Straya our builders have to wear harnesses and stuff...
    He is vv lucky

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    1. They are so much laxer here and I have had to remind them about health and safety everytime I am on site! He is soooo lucky.

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  6. Wow, that is amazing because as you said the before stairs didn't really seem as long and steep as the after fall. That is incredibly scary!!!. I know about the "choice" fatigue. My husband is an instant chooser,and he has better taste than me but then I question him.

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    1. I am now almost not caring what the house looks like - i just want in!

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  7. Wow, what a scary story! I'm glad your builder was not hurt! Renovations are enough to put anyone on edge, not even counting the possible injuries that can happen on the job. I'm sorry to hear you have been so stressed out. Hang in there!

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    1. Thanks Louise! All is well that ends well right?

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  8. Scary, that's a very luck fellow. He should buy himself a lottery ticket, obviously the Gods are looking out for him.

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    1. Funny Laoch because he did buy lottery tickets but I told him he used up all his luck in staying alive and not having broken anything!

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  9. We are seriously living parallel lives right now and I can totally feel your pain! As I am sitting here listening to the rain drip constantly into my 1st floor with wires dangling everywhere just hoping the internet doesn't cut out again. I almost hit breaking point the other day with hubby left yet again on a trip and had to pack up with the kids and refrigerator when the electricity shut off. How much time do you have left?

    I can't believe your builder fell from 2 stories and I'm glad everything is okay. How's the wallpaper battle coming along ;)

    xox

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    1. Wallpaper is the last thing on my mind as you can imagine! But even though technically our new flat is very comfortable it's like i have moved house but without the permanence and it isn't my "village" and getting anywhere with London traffic and transport is not easy! Hope yours chugs along well touch wood xx

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  10. I am still having post traumatic about your poor fellow! Yikes! I don't know how you are holding up - my head is ringing and I need to lay down! So many decisions!

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    1. I know! and the scary thing is we are sitll in the construction part Wendy...

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  11. It is an ambitious project to be sure and this is so stressful with your builder falling and then going to the pub for 4 pints! My gosh I'd want to do that too but it would have been much better if he's had himself checked out, not just for his own health but your sanity.
    I'd be cancelling everything social until all was well again, especially if you have some areas of indecision with the reno, I can see why you are avoiding social distractions right now. Don't feel guilty I think it's a good instinct!
    I hope it all sorts out quickly, that your builder doesn't have any more accidents and that you get your energy back. Keep us posted Naomi!

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    1. Dani - I didn't think it was a big built but now I realize I naive I was so I am now definitely not going to proceed with the basement now! Yes I am overstretched and I can always entertain when the house is ready right? :)

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  12. Such a massive undertaking. Renovations scare me, although are inevitable if we have more children. Thank goodness your builder was unscathed.

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    1. I have to remember that he is ok because the stress otherwise would have toppled me over!

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  13. Your story is too hilarious and tragic. Your builder falling and then going for pints to heal?? Oh my, I'd be drinking pints by now myself. Renovations are so stressful. I ended up hating my hubs and my builder. Until it was finally finished. There is a light at the end of your tunnel that is not an oncoming train.

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    1. He proves further what a character he is. he finally went to the doctors but had to register with his GP - he never did it because he couldn't be bothered. Don't get me wrong he is a legal European but just never got around to registering at a doctors office!

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  14. Your poor builder! How stoic (and a bit silly) of him to recover with a pint or 4!
    Sorry you're in the doldrums.... I can only imagine how unsettling it must be, having not gone through renovations yet. We've got that to come next year.
    I hope things look up soon and that you're soon happily back in your house with your decorating mojo back.

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    1. He isn't stoic but he is mental for sure. But he is fine now and back to his larrikin ways so he has fully recovered. No mojo but stil love looking at other people's homes :)

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  15. Renovations are a nightmare, I lived in a hut on site at one stage and it's a bloody miracle that anybody got out alive because I was ready to shoot all of us by the end stage. I feel your pain. So lucky your builder wasn't a hospital case (or worse!) It's horrible living in this limbo situation but when it's all over, you'll be glad you did it because I think it's going to be fabulous!! Just put your blinkers on and keep looking forward.

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    1. Now i realize why there were bits to my house that weren't "done" before - it's because I was over it and I didn't care and i just wanted to be inside!! I am afriad the same might happen here.
      But I must rejig and be thankful and you are right - blinkers. Keep calm and carry on!

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  16. Before we keep calm and carry on, would it help if we sat down together and screamed "aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaarrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrgggggggggggghhh"? Not sure why we should sit down rather than stand up, except that I feel slightly weak at the knees over your situation (and mine :) ) Not sure if you have mentioned an expected completion date; is there one?

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    1. You are so cute - completion date??? I have stopped asking...! ;P

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  17. Oh you poor darling.... I can totally understand you feeling so overwhelmed. But... back to basics ... are you getting enough sleep and eating properly... if not.. it only makes everything worse. Sorry to sound like your Mum... but just be sure you putting good stuff into your body and sleeping properly and slowly your mental/emotional strength will return. As to the flux situation of your kitchen choice etc... this is very tricky and is adding to your confusion. Do you see yourselves living there "for the rest of your lives"? Lots of strength to you Naomi xxx

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    1. Yes I think sleep has been patchy and eating terribly. All the good work in the summer but without it I dare not think the state I would be in now! But yes that is another issue - don't know how long we will be there either - everything is in flux at the mo...But yes those things make a huge impact. Need some of your chicken soup Jenny :) xx

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  18. Bummer! Those Elf and Safety rules are there for a reason. The estate guys where I worked in Wales always refused to do things because of Elf rules, so I'd do it myself, which was, apparently, fine.

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    1. People sure are lax about that stuff here and especially as most of the actually labour is from Eastern Europe where they don't have health and safety rules to break it becomes hard to enforce it even when I nag them. But we have put rails up and he bought new steep toecapped shoes so fingers crossed!

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  19. You must have been so scared! What a chance he didn't get anything!
    xoxo

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    1. I was just shocked - he is one lucky so and so!! x

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  20. Living in the midst of a renovation is a nightmare. All the decisions to be made there and then, spot on, though the actual work seems to take ages. I can empathize with you.
    Quite an operation going on, I can´t figure out how your house is going to turn up from the pictures yet.
    Your worker was very lucky not hurting himself seriously.
    I wish you strength and luck in the renovation operation.

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    1. Well in a way I wish i was living in the renovation - I am living 45 min tube ride away on the other side of town so checking in is a little harder. I know to make decisions beforehand but things still seem to change so much that one can never be truly prepared. Thanks mette for your wishes :)

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  21. aaaaw well welcome back babes and no need to apologise for your absence - I've been there, done that and still don't post as often as I'd like to. I'm glad you are feeling in a position to get back to what you enjoy - I'm guessing you enjoy blogging..........

    Anyway how exciting Naomi, I'm so jealous that you are involved in this personal project. Good luck with the rest of the renovations and thank goodness your builder was okay. Without sounding morbid, imagine if the unthinkable happened and then you had to walk up the same staircase everyday, eeek!!! xx

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    1. Yes I do enjoy blogging and missed it but i just had no energy...But you are right I had the same discussion with Mr CSW and there is no way I could have dealt with that! Have a good week dar xx

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  22. OMG, your builder! I'm getting dizzy just looking at the pic of where he fell. But his recovery plan made me laugh, glad he's OK.

    Much strength to you to finish the ambitious reno, I could never take on something that trying. I agree eating and resting well are important. Everything is 10x worse if you're feeling sick or tired.

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    1. he is mad as a hatter he is - i always tell him he should write a book. I did know it would be tough but I do have choice fatigue and actual fatigue. I ate well yesterday bu then had two portions of red velvet cake ( for energy)!

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  23. How exciting for you when all this is ready! xo Caroline

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    1. I am now changing gears and trying to get excited! xx

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  24. Ouch, the poor builder! Love that he just had a beer to recover! Thanks for sharing your renos, I adore stuff like this. Yes because I love glimpses into peoples lives but I also love renovating (well not the during but the before and after). When stressed, drink wine! Take it easy x

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    1. Who knew beer was so curative? Yes I normally love renos too - but other people's mess ;)
      Well hopefully there is a good makeover to show soon xx

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  25. Wow! That was quite a fall-and yes-he was very lucky that ledge broke his fall. He may want to 'rope up' next time. Ahhh I totally understand your 'choice' fatigue. No wonder-you have had so many changes in such a short period of time. It will be gorgeous in the end, no doubt, but this is the hardest time of the project no doubt. Can you scurry off to a spa for the weekend? That would be my choice girlfriend!
    xx, Heather

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    1. Ironically I am too tired to even go on holiday - who knew! xx

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  26. Oh I feel you pain as I have spent nearly a year in the house while renovating the Kitchen, bathroom, laundry toilet, ripping up tiles and laying timber floorboards,painting the outside (two storey) and landscaping at the same time!! So far I have been happy with my decision except that I bought a new timber dining table and as soon as it was delivered knew I hated the stain. It doesn't go with our timber floors and windows at all. I'm sure this is down to choice fatigue. I reckon we are about three weekends from finishing and the stress levels are still high - divorce may be on the cards!! I think what you are feeling is pretty normal. Do try to eat, sleep and have the accessional social activity to balance perspective. Good Luck, Kate

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    1. Funny enough i nearly left him the last time we did renos!! the stress is weakening dont you think? State of mind is so important. AM so envious you are nearly done - did you take photos of the process? Even tho it is painful to be in one - it is always so interesting to see other people's renos dont you think? :) Thanks for the voice of reason Kate!

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    2. Yes, took lots of photos along the way and its good to look at them and see how far we have come. Another annoying thing is the lead time on almost everything these days, tiles light fittings, furniture - drags everything out too long. Our scaffolding came down today!! Just waiting for electrician to install new light fittings and a local craftsman to install a decorative wrought iron handrail in the garden where we have some steps. Still have an ensuite to do but that can wait until next year (or two) . We are speaking again today..ha .ha. It does seem to speed up at the end. Hang in, Kate

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    3. The theory of relativity in building sites then eh? :) you must be so happy! We had a huge storm here so of course water has come in...oh well, joys of building a roof in this climate. I just wish I had Kevin mccloud to comfort me!

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  27. I can't even start to imagine how exhausting that is. Already, just moving from an appartment to another is a real source of stress : find the apartment, sign the papers prepare boxes Move them adjust, find new furnitures, etc... and that's with no work at all... and I already don't want to do it again ^^

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    1. i know moving is a nightmare isnt it/ that is why each move has to be worth it! imagine I have to move again!!

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  28. Moving and reno work are both VERY stressful. It will all take time but you will get through it. Pace yourself and remember it's a marathon, not a sprint! I can't believe you blog at all while it's going on, it's amazing. I need to channel your energy. Re the Jean Paul Gaultier exhibit, it is coming to London after it leaves Brooklyn. It's scheduled to be shown at the Barbican Art Galleries from April 9-August 17, 2014. Ask the museum for a press pass so you can go to the preview and take pictures! I wouldn't be surprised if JPG is there himself, like he was in Brooklyn. Unrelated side note: I got to meet him today at the Manhattan Vintage Show. It was amazing. I will post about that soon! XO, Jill

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  29. Will look into it, thanks for the heads up Jill! Can't wait to hear xx

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  30. "Choice fatigue" - I know exactly what you mean! Simply everything is a decision. At first you sail along brilliantly and then it suddenly becomes too much and you enter dither land. Do you follow Steve's Urban Cottage blog? He is amazing, it exhausts me just to be a follower!

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    1. I just had a look! All I do is choose I don't do what he does so perhaps I should chin up a bit!!

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  31. It's looking good N, and I'm sure once it's looking a bit more house like you'll get your mojo back with the decorating stuff (and wallpaper). Cannot believe your builder fell so far - my GOD he was lucky. I too have suffered with choice fatigue. There are a few things that I have that are the result of me not really caring that much. You think about things for so long, then just kind of give up about it. Time will tell if this was a really big mistake... but I still kind of don't care at this point! Hang in there xx

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    1. Thanks Heidi - you are right - at this point my biggest questions are does it work? is it water tight? and then i forget about all the nuances. We just had the biggest storm in the UK since 1987 and of course roof is leaking so design issues are out the door! But yours is looking fab and planning it out early one will have paid off for you! cant wait to see end product xx

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  32. Naomi, So scary about your builder! Luckily he is okay. Sounds like it will be gorgeous and I cannot wait to see it!! I say home renos are like childbirth. Terrible when you are going through it, but after you wipe it out of your mind. It's so worth it.

    xKim

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