Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Kestrel Cottage

At what stage do people abandon good old fashioned 'No 77' and decide they're going to make their friends write something twee like 'Kestrel Cottage' on Christmas cards? Is it when you see one of these chaps out of the window?

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Phew! That's It!

The weather's a bit hotter which makes the final 20 or so barrow-loads up the hill a pretty sweaty job. Still, mustn't grumble (just sneak off to help with some painting)

That's all the topsoil dumped and raked, turf's ready and waiting. Now for the fun bit.

One down...

...and quicker than you can say Jim Robinson!

Give it a drink.

TA-DAHHHHHHHHH!!!! Huge Thanks to everyone who has worked on MegaGarden over the last 2 years. Once we get the swing chair in place next spring, you're all invited to the party of the year!

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Back Breaker

Today is going to be fun. Got to remove the remaining rubble and also cart a ton of topsoil and turf up the hill to the top of the garden. Feels a bit like this all over again.

Nearly there, just a few more broken bricks and we're clear.

Those sandbags from last week came in handy again.

Looking like one last trip to the tip while Nick carries soldiering on with the topsoil.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Ten Ten Ten

We've got a nice sunny day on this most binary of dates and Nick is whipping through this herringbone like nobody's business.

Even got time to cut out the 'BBQ platform' to a perfect shape.

Okay, i'll go and help with another few coats inside and be back in an hour...


Saturday, October 9, 2010

Bricking It

Nick marks off the foundations of our mini patio, if we've done the maths right, there should be just enough brick to make a spot for our future swing hammock. Once he's satisfied, we'll need some sand and cement. We're doing this dry.

Splat (oof my back)

That pile of rubble doesn't seem to be getting much smaller either, despite last Sunday's efforts. Think i'll give it a miss today and 'help inside'.

Bricks coming up...

...and away we go! CLONK.

This is the idea. Unfortunately all the bricks are different shapes and sizes. Taken from our old fireplace and bits of our stunning (ex-) brick kitchen, if they're wonky that will have to be 'character'.

Stihl-saw screamin' and we're under way! Thought my back was nearly recovered so decided to be a good egg and carry the bricks up for Nick while he did the tricky stuff.

Looking beautiful. You can tell this is going to come out great. What a craftsman for a brother!

Meanwhile inside, the house is getting its first coat. Look at that lovely bump - little mister could be here in a fortnight, no time to waste!

Visit from another local little mister. PATMAN.

Think that'll do for the day. Now we know what we're doing, tomorrow will be a breeze.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Delightful weather

Sunday, bit grim weather-wise and all that concrete needs bagging up for the tip. Quick trip round to the Kaill's for some rubble bags and we're sorted.

Here comes Nick, well prepared for the weather. Bless him.

Digging a drain for the lawn-to-be. This is going to be the lowest point, so we don't want it getting all boggy at the top of the steps.

Fill it with lumpy bits and bobs, hopefully we should be okay...

Saturday, October 2, 2010


It's been a few months since we last worked on the garden, we'd moved out while the builders moved in and made room in the house for our new arrival - due 01.11.10! Nick decided it was time to put some serious hard labour in on the garden before uncleing duties took up all his free time, so it was down to the hire shop and welcome back to our little friend - the electric breaker.

Going back in time to 2008, you can see where we broke out the old concrete patio. We did the front and the sides but have now realised that we need to take some more out at the back for the foundations of our new mini patio and to give the lawn enough depth to grow. That giant pile of rock is reminding me of another past MegaGarden episode, involving about 10 back breaking trips to the tip.

This is going to be the site of the new mini-patio. Finally put to rest that awkward question about what to do with edging along the side of next door's shed. Currently made out of hexagonal paving slabs and bits of slate - lovely!

C'mon Dad, get your back into it!

Only slightly less amazing than a Millenium Falcon landing ramp, this lovely old steel advert for Royal Daylight Oil (with Eccles phone number) was found just inches beneath the soil.

Big pile of timber and whatnot, includng leftovers from the Mushroom growing experiment (wonder how they are getting on) which may be used as replacement bannisters, or maybe keep us warm over the winter.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

BBQ Inspiration Part 3

The Greek take this BBQing lark super-seriously. This was on the villa opposite our hotel but was empty all week, shame we never got to see it fired up.

That's for a whole lamb and a few chickens innit?

Coupla wee rustic kits hidden away in the woods. BBQ and oven - so sweet.

Local quarry truck. One hell of a heavy logo. Pretty 70s new york subways crossed with Asterix.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

BBQ Inspiration Part 2

Out on a roadtrip around the North West's garden centres to find some tropical fish for Seth to have a look at, I come across this bad boy. I'd love one of these, totally Flinstones, but i'm a bit worried the scale and the materials won't be right for the top of Megagarden.

So nice though...

Didn't find any tropical fish but spent half an hour in the water feature department.