Spring has arrived, and like the garden which is blossoming, things really seem to be happening renovation wise. The kitchen is fitted – but like everything in Croatia, progress is slow, so we are still waiting for final snags to be dealt with. The downstairs bathroom has been ripped out, the plumbing has been done, my shower ledge/seat has been made, the very beautiful shower drain (yes, it *is* beautiful) is in-situ and the floor has been re-concreted with a slight angle for drainage. But, like everything in Croatia, progress is slow, so we are still waiting for the underfloor heating to be fitted, the tiling to be done and the actual bathroom to be fitted. But never mind, we’re half way there.

But, whilst waiting for these quite crucial jobs to be completed, we haven’t been idle. The garden is no longer a building site – mounds of rubble have been bagged for when our wall is built. The big pile of coarse sand has been spread where we park the cars, meaning that when it rains, we no longer have Glastonbury outside the front door. Plants have been planted and many cans of spray paint have been bought and utilised – all in a subsequent blog.

We’ve also made the decision to deal with the wooden beams throughout the house. They are very old beams, and consequently, visiting woodworm have taken a bit of a liking to some of them. However, we haven’t liked the woodworm, so we’re systematically going through each room and cleaning, treating, caulking, undercoating and painting all of them. In their natural wooden state, they are beautiful, but the house is emerging as something quite contemporary inside, so we’re not too unhappy to be changing the look of them. We’ve gone for a very pale grey satinwood top coat which against the white walls and pale blue woodwork, is very calming…

It’ll be a long job – and a labour of love – treating all of the beams in the house, but we’ll get there. And meanwhile, we’re compiling a wishlist of do-able things, that will make a very big difference and give us a renovation lift, as the summer progresses…

Storage

This is the one thing we are really short on. Apart from our own storage, the house has no cupboards. Because winter is so dramtaically different to summer, we need a big space to store things like bedding, clothing etc which we will change seasonally. We have a big recess in the main bedroom and the idea is to create a huge cupboard with shelves and rails, and with beautiful Moroccan/Indian style doors. Which we just need to source…

Bath

We’re very lucky to have two bathrooms, which may sound very decadent, until you see them. Both the size of shoe boxes and currently poorly laid out, which is why we’re redesigning them. Neither is really big enough for a good sized bath, so both will have very decent sized walk-in showers. But we do like a bath, and so have decided that the main bedroom is big enough to accommodate a free-standing bath. We have very definite ideas about what this will look like – and so like the doors (above), we just need to source the bath…

Greenery

By my own admission, I am a shocker when it comes to real greenery. I forget to water/feed and so have embraced the faux. The living room is taking on a new lease of fake “green” life and this is going to be expanded around the house. Our big branch, currently suspended across the upper hallway beams, will be transformed with trailing foliage…

…and the clothes rails (which we’ll no longer need when we have the storage cupboard in place) wil be utilised like this, in the bedroom…

Still a long, long way to go but The House is definitely becoming “ours” – and more so, when we tackle the Wish List.

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