Friday, June 27, 2008

Entrance and Growth

So, here is Oscar putting some of the finishing touches on the porch - still stuff to do but you get the idea!
And here is the most amazing growth spurt I have ever seen. It was planted four weeks ago and we thought it was dead - no greenery whatsoever (you can see it in earlier planter photo) now look at it! Grey water sure works well.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Front door frame/wall

In just two days we have a front door frame/porch structure/wall/brick and sand thingy!
Amazing how much you can get done when there's nothing else to do!This is Oscar doing the brick and sand stuff. And it's also me having finished the porch structure to protect the door from the rain, only I'm behind the camera. On the roof.This is me in my devastatingly stylish building attire, trying to saw a bit of timber we don't want any more out of the way.
And this is the door frame, insulation and half can wall from the inside. As I write this Oscar is finishing the whole can bit off. Render tomorrow and then that's it! Oh, the little hut in the background there is where we have been living for the past four years...

Friday, June 20, 2008

You know you're building a house when...

...you actually get excited when someone says "I have a few old bits of plaster board left over if you want to come and pick them up". Oooh yeah.
My brother in law was updating his sausage drying racks and rang to see if I wanted the old timber ones complete with sausage mould and a hundred nails per piece. Well of course I did!
So we nabbed the hundred-year-old things to use as a wall frame for the mechanical room. It took a couple of hours with a hammer to denail them all, but it was worth it because under the layer of sausage mould (I have learnt a thing or two in this nation of bleach-wielders) the timber is very strong and healthy.
See?And here is Carla's room split in two (bedroom and study or play area) with the aforementioned plaster board...

Ah, the joy of hand-me-downs.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

The Berm

Here is a photo of the house from behind. As you can see, it doesn't much look like a house at all and as the vegetation takes root it will look more and more like a small hill.

Monday, June 16, 2008

recording recording (twice)

Oscar is at it again! He's recording his fifth solo album and we have had the boys over to record it all in the new house - good acoustics and food and company!
He is also recording another album, a collaboration with a local jazz singer, Cristina Blaco. Oscar has written a number of songs and he plays while she sings - again, recorded at home using SOLAR energy...

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Cricket!



Now I know there is a bottle brush in the background and that Carla has impeccable style (heh-hem) and a real bat, but these couple of photos were actually taken in Valencia about ten days ago. Yes folks, we have Cricket in Spain!

Monday, June 09, 2008

plants in the planter

Oscar and I went to a local nursery and got lots of lovely plants for our water recycling botanical cell. They are all in and so far none have keeled over dead. We are now flushing the toilet with water that has been used for our shower and then filtered through the gravel and peat moss to the well at the end of this cell. A pump sucks it up and sends it to the loo. When the washing machine and kitchen sink go in, grey water from there will also go into the cell.
To be honest, the water is a bit smelly when agitated at the moment and it is black from the peat moss but apparently (and here I am really, really hoping theory becomes reality) this is normal and it should get better and better as the plants become established and the mini-ecosystem that cleans the water starts to evolve. We always have the tank water option if it hasn't worked in about a year or so.