Friday, 1 January 2016

New Years Day 2016

This is probably the last post regarding our building project as we have almost finished and the first day of a new year is as good a time as any to end it.
We did move in as expected on 1st May. The house was far from finished but our lovely builder, Hakki, kept his word.  We had around 20 trades people working on the day we moved but gradually they finished their work and we were able to start painting and making the house our home.
Eddy painted the whole of the inside and most of the outside before the heat defeated him and he 'downed tools'. Most of the people who are important to us have seen it as over the summer we had quite a few visitors and guests.  We thoroughly enjoyed showing the house off. When the weather cooled we started working on the garden and hard landscaping.  Although it is really tough going, trying to create a garden on a mountain, we are slowly getting there and it is a 'labour of love'. The outstanding jobs to fully complete our home are to finishing outside painting, tiling the entrance to the garage, creating an orchard. rockery and driveway to the basement side of the house and completing the boundary fences - not much in the scheme of things.
As I have since we brought the land and even though we had snow last night, I went part way up the mountain this morning to take a couple of photos;

Having now lived here for 8 months, we feel really settled and love our home.  There is nothing about it that we would change and if we could afford to, we would do it all again.
So in finishing the blog, I will leave you with this;
The architect Charles Moore once said: “If you care enough you just do it. You bind the goods and trappings of your life together with your dreams to make a place that is uniquely your own. The crucial ingredient is concern, care for the way that a house is built and the shape it gives to your life."
All that remains is for me to wish you a healthy and happy 2016 and to hope that whatever you do in this coming year, your life too has 'shape'.

Sunday, 26 April 2015

26h March.  With less than a week til move in date, I am thrilled to say that it is now looking quite possible.  So much has happened this week, probably best I tell it in pictures;

pool surround and terrace completed

patio finished

kitchen installed 

hall doors and lights completed

Bed delivered and lights fitted

TV room lights filled

4th bedroom wardrobes and fan fitted

3rd bedroom wardrobes

2nd bedroom wardrobes

Front door, arch plastered and hall lights fitted

Not very much left to do now before we can move in- plumbing is probably next on the list.  There is still quite a bit to do but now that we have all doors and windows fitted, it really feels like our home and we are so looking forward to living there. However, the amount of cleaning that needs to be done is a bit daunting so if you happen to find yourself in the area with a pair of marigolds, do drop in.

Saturday, 18 April 2015

18th April.  As this is Cyprus, not all things on my wish list have been completed since my last post, but we are 'getting there'. The final finish coat has been applied to the walls - in white so it looks quite good - and most of the ceilings have been finished.  Nearly all of the doors and windows, including the large glass patio doors have been fitted and they look spectacular. The patio and terraces have been tiled and work on the pool has commenced.

Lounge, looking though to the kitchen.  Our bedroom door to the left.

Our bedroom.  Arches through to the 'behind the bed' wardrobes and on into our bathroom.

Our bathroom. I know the tiles look a bit 'busy' but there is a lot of white stuff yet to go in.

Kitchen area

Hallway, looking towards the front door.

Painter, painting the lounge ceilings.  Please note the dust sheet - almost unheard of in Cyprus.

Bedroom 3

Bedroom 4

Lovely glass folding doors

Marble pool surround being fitted by the amazing Suliman.

Hakki (builder) and Eddy

It is now only 12 days (maximum) 'til we move in.  The outstanding jobs before this can happen are;

  • Fit front door, pool door and garage door (to make the house secure).
  • Fit kitchen and install 'white' goods.
  • Fit sanitary ware in our bathroom.
  • Connect AC unit and light fittings in our bedroom.
  • Paint our bedroom and kitchen/lounge area.
  • Build wardrobes and shoe cupboard in our bedroom.
  • And probably a million other things which have slipped my mind

So, this coming period should be very interesting.........

Saturday, 4 April 2015

4th April.  It has been 3 weeks since my last post and after another frustrating, under-floor heating related episode (when I had to resort to threats of non-payment) things have finally started to progress. We have moved yet again, and thanks to our (almost) sister and brother-in-law, we are living in Alsancak,  about 10 minutes away from the build. We are incredibly lucky to have such good friends and family to help with accomodation and storage. Without them, we would have been in trouble.
Since the last posting, quite a lot has happened.  We now have 2 cess-pits and a well - with water!!.  The well could not be sunk in the original location as the digger thingy couldn't get a safe purchase so had to be put in the second best place.  However, within a day of completion we had 5 meters of water, so can't complain;
Original intended location at the front of the house

Second best location, to the rear. Much better, I think.

Most of the floors and all of the bathrooms have now been tiled (not yet grouted though) and quite a few of the windows and French Doors are now in ;
Bedroom 2 with en-suite to the left and French Doors to the front

bedroom 2 en-suite

Bedroom 4 and en-suite

bedroom 3 and en-suite

Our bathroom

Our bedroom window.

We now have electricity connected and the rest of the windows and doors, plus kitchen are due to be fitted this week. The renderers will be returning to finish off the dropped ceilings and the electricians and plumbers are on stand-by. The pool has been water-proofed, ready to be tiled and there will be a final concrete pour to level off the up-stairs and pool terrace this week, weather permitting.  It it all happening quite quickly now and really beginning to take shape.  We are optomistic ( I nearly said confident but don't want to tempt fate) that by the end of this month, we will be able to move in - fingers crossed!!

Sunday, 15 March 2015

15th March (Mothering Sunday). The last 2 weeks have been really frustrating. After the foam floor dried, the next stage was for the Under-floor Heating Mats to be laid.  The floor tiles were delivered, the tiler was on-site and nothing more could be done until this happened. Then, despite many phone calls and visits to the company, resulting in promises that it would happen for certain the next day, the fitter did not appear until this morning. I know we have been really lucky so far in that, by and large things have happened according to plan -weather permitting - but it has not stopped me having several temper tantrums.
Anyway, this morning we did our usual Sunday visit and, at last, the heating mats were at last being fitted;

The elusive fitter working in our bedroom

TV room

Suliman (the tiler) had been kicking his heels for the last 2 weeks so has made a start on the pillars around the pool.  Eventually, these will be rendered and wooden panels set in between. Apart from stopping people falling off the terrace (it is quite a drop) it will give us privacy from the road.;

Hopefully the heating mats will all be down by the end of today and Suliman can start tiling tomorrow. We are also hoping that as the rain seems to be stopping finally, that the windows and doors will be fitted and the cess-pits and well will be dug this week.  Mind you, I said that 2 weeks ago............

Sunday, 1 March 2015

Ist March 2015. Spring has finally arrived and we have not had rain for 5 days.  The sun is shining and the temperature is rising, slowly. This week, the 'First Fix' has been (almost) completed and it is starting to resemble the home we envisaged.  The electrician has been in, the plasterers have arrived and the foam concrete for the floor area which is to have the under-floor heating, has been laid;

Hallway with arch to guest rooms

Foam concrete 

Evidence of a cat having tested out the freshly laid floor

Looking through to the kitchen (our bedroom door, to the left)

Our bedroom, looking in through the window.  Arches lead to the wardrobes and en suite.

The roof has had a waterproof layer of concrete laid. Although recent heavy rains have shown that there are no leaks, our builder doesn't want to take any chances. Look at the lovely blue sea and sky, for a change.

This week, we are expecting the heating mats to be laid, the tiling to start and the doors and windows to arrive - fingers crossed!