Life's Little Details: Knitting, Sewing, Green Living, Frugal Living and Cooking In A Little Corner of Southern French Countryside.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Our New Home (Or, Why We Can't Move In Yet)

My parents and some others keep telling us we should just move in to our new home, despite the fact that it is still unfinished. The idea behind their comments is that we can always work bit by bit while living there. I know these well-intentioned friends and family members are only concerned about our comfort, and given the fact that we currently live in a prefab used to house refugees (thirty-some-odd years ago!), it makes sense to want to move as quickly as possible.

I must, however, set these people straight. We may not live in the lap of luxury, but there is a certain amount of comfort in the tiny box we currently call home. There is hot, running water, a dishwasher, washing machine and dryer (essential when you've got small kids, in my mind), electricity (even if it does overload and shut off at least once day, because it can't handle the heaters plus other appliances). We may all live crammed in one bedroom, but afterall, that's only for sleeping, and we can make due here. Now, to show you why we would rather stay here, despite the beauty and size of the new house, I have a little photo montage prepared for you. I won't embarrass myself with shots of the place we live in now, but I will show you why we can't move into the new one yet.

First, we've got the stairs that lead to the upstairs bedrooms. These sturdy iron stairs were handmade by my iron-working father-in-law. I think he's doing a wonderful job... but, do notice there's a very important section missing. You see those large holes that would be ideal for small children to fall through? Yeah, it'd be best to cover those before moving in (and, of course, that's on the list of stuff to get done).

Next, we move on to another set of stairs. This one leads from the kitchen up to the mezzanine that overhangs the livingroom. The original idea was for this space to become a tv room, but with the coming of a new child, this will most likely end up a parents' bedroom. No complaints on that from me. The view is amazing from here. Note the holes again, though. Certainly not toddler friendly.

Now that we've seen some areas that are certainly off-limits to the kids (you know, their bedrooms), let's move along to the bathroom. Here, you see a picture of the sink area. Despite the fact that the sink is sitting in its little hole, it's otherwise totally uninstalled. There is no running water connected here. The mirror is missing (and I do like to see myself when I'm getting ready in the morning), and the countertop is just rough concrete for now. Also, what you don't see is the fact that the wood floors are still not installed. Obviously, it lacks some of the creature comforts one would want in a new bathroom.

This last shot of the day is one of the bathtub. Hard to tell that's what it is, but I swear, it's the tub. It's covered by cardboard at the moment to protect it a bit. It and the area surrounding it are pretty much in the same state as the sink, though. Not exactly a good place to clean up after a day's work or play. I thought I had a few photos of the kitchen to show, as well, but apparently not. It's large and will be lovely, but it looks remarkably like the bathroom for now. Certainly not a place you want to prepare your daily meals.

So, despite the fact that we now have electricity in the new place, it's far from comfortable and certainly no place to raise three children. So, we patiently wait for the funds necessary to finish the job. I'll be doing a little bake sale to raise money. It's either that or selling my body, and who wants a pregnant lady (Actually, don't answer that. I'm sure a google search would prove me wrong.)? I'm only joking. No bake sale or selling of my soul or body. We're just going to have to wait around a bit till some more wine sells, I guess. Until that time, though, we'll stay put in the little cardboard box we call home, and I will continue to organize and clean it to make it more liveable (and easier to eventually move out of).

Some time soon, I will share a picture of our newly-installed wood-burning stove. Its state-of-the-art technology (some kind of special combustion system I couldn't begin to explain) should keep us warmm through the winters. That'll have to wait till I feel like uploading that photo from our camera. Until that time, I hope you (Mom and Dad) now understand why it's not such a good idea to move right in and work as money comes along. We're far more comfortable here in the meantime, even if in this case the word comfort is used very loosely (afterall, comfort is relative, you know).