Monday, March 02, 2020

Home in France - Our New Old House

It filled me with joy and relief to return to our home in France.
The house is not magically completed and free of construction debris, but some of the rooms are really coming together and we are focusing on details to make our house a home.
Sunday when I arrived was my birthday, and I enjoyed dinner in La Gallerie, a local restaurant, with some true friends.
Dinner with friends
Plus, Earl had made me a birthday cake. Some of our meals included dessert, but (since my French is better than most of us English speakers) I asked the restaurant owner if we could bring the cake in. He said, of course and he would serve it. He even gave Earl a thumbs up as he served it, so maybe he tried a bite.
He served the cake with whipped cream and a celebratory stick,
Cake and whipped cream
 then placed a giant flame in front of me as they sang happy birthday.
Thanks, Steve, for taking the picture
To top it off, since we didn't eat dessert, he took a carafe of wine and our aperitif drinks off the bill.
So my birthday behind us, we could focus on getting our visas for the coming year and working on the house.
I have time to go for walks again in the morning, since I am not teaching at 5 a.m.
The river Aude runs through our town
While I was gone, my friend Jules put up a kitchen backsplash for us. There are a few tiles yet to be finished because we have to tile around the electrical outlets. And we just ordered a couple more cabinets, one to go between the sink and the refrigerator, and the other to go on the opposite wall.
But you can see the progress.
Yes, Delana, that is your goat cutting board hiding the missing tile.
Flowers on the window sill from my husband after he stole them from my friend Jules. 
The kitchen remains our "finished" room where I grade papers and we hang out with friends. But the guest bathroom is almost complete.
There was only a master bathroom upstairs and a toilet room downstairs. (I won't even call it a half bathroom because there is still no sink in it).
Our friends and builders Kris and Jason, stole some space from both bedrooms and created a full bathroom that will serve guests, like Grace and Jack who arrive in two weeks.

The shower and sink. A marble ledge is yet to come where the hand soap is. 
The bathroom is small but serviceable and hopefully will make anyone staying here more comfortable, and us too.
The sink is tiny, so we removed this medicine cabinet and put a flat mirror there. That way people can spit into the sink without knocking their heads on the medicine cabinet.
The toilet and towel warmer. A cabinet will go above the toilet for more storage. 
The bathroom still needs a door frame. I'm trying to pin Kris down to creating that when he returns from England next week.
Earl is still working on heating for the house, slowly painting radiators and then attaching a heating unit to each one. The electrician is coming tomorrow and will hook up the one in the kitchen, living room and guest bedroom. The one in our bedroom is already plugged in and keeping us toasty at night.
Today, I'm finishing up my three classes and my schedule should be a bit freer since I'll only be teaching one university class, plus all the Chinese students who I'm meet online every afternoon.
Before you know it, we'll be ready to start sprucing up the exterior of our house.


John and Lynn Phillips said...

Wow Umm impressed! It looks just beautiful :)

Peter and Shelagh said...

It looks great. Love your choices. Also a very nice outlook from your kitchen window.
Really looking forward to exterior improvements.

Kiwi said...

Absolutely amazing transformation of the kitchen and creation of the downstairs bathroom. You have excellent taste. You all look so happy at the birthday dinner - can't just be the wine! The Good Life in France.

Latane Barton said...

You are making so much progress and it is looking fabulous. And, yes, those French know how to celebrate, don't they? (grin)

Marg said...

Your house looks great!

Mary said...

The house is looking amazing! Wonderful celebration with good friends!

Mystica said...

I love your sense of adventure and follow your travels. You make it sound easy though I think visas can be a problem everywhere for everyone!

Cockadoodle Doo or Cocorico?

 We stood in the middle of the road, having walked together 13 miles that day and Claudine grasped my forearm. "Mais non! It doesn'...