Stuff I’ve had done to my house (so far)
If you read my blog sometime in 2006, you will know all about my traumatic experience with B&Q when they made my bathroom. The experience was so traumatic that I couldn't even walk into a B&Q for a decade, let alone buy them anything and, if friends bought them something, I felt deeply betrayed. . […]

kitchen before and after

If you read my blog sometime in 2006, you will know all about my traumatic experience with B&Q when they made my bathroom. The experience was so traumatic that I couldn't even walk into a B&Q for a decade, let alone buy them anything and, if friends bought them something, I felt deeply betrayed. . It discouraged me for life.

Thirteen years later, however, feeling a little less traumatized and living in a house in need of a complete overhaul, I was brave and allowed various traders (and women) to come and of nicely my house for me. So far everything has gone wonderfully (I probably shouldn't use that word because, typing this, I am using my washing machine for the first time since it was moved to its new location of veranda).

For the past almost two years, this is what I have been doing to my house, without any B&Q (touch wood) style catastrophes.

Fence repair

garden before and after

I live by the sea and it's fucking windy all the time (except when it isn't which isn't very often). This means that the fences are regularly knocked down. I had mine repaired twice and the last panel only remains standing because I have a garden bench supporting it. I figured that while I was having the fence fixed, the fence man might as well tidy up the yard at the same time. And he did a great job of it.

The attic

attic before and after

I decided to paint the attic room myself because I thought it would be simple and nice. Wrongy McWrongface! I, being a non-handyman person, didn't know that a) cheap paint is crap; and b) blue is a very difficult color to cover even though it is light blue. It took me four or five coats (even after ditching the cheap paint after the first coat for a more reputable brand) and I still did it very poorly and if you look closely (please don't don't), you can see pieces of blue.

I wasn't going to try to install a floor myself so I paid professionals to do it and a nice job they did of it too. They didn't even moan that I had left some furniture in the room (when I made my carpet in London the company that made it had a charge of £ 25 per item that needed to be moved around their general conditions.).


bathroom before and after

I am ashamed of myself. You would think after all the trauma I had after my B&Q experience that I would never buy from them again. And I really didn't want to but I traveled the whole world (sort of) for a bathroom that I a) loved; and b) didn't cost around a billion pounds, and the only one I found meeting both of those requirements was in B&Q. The man from B&Q asked me if I had bought from there before and I took great pleasure in telling him about the time I took them to court and won. He said 'good' which I found amusing but took the mental note to never employ him due to his extreme lack of loyalty to the company. He also said they don't do installations anymore and I said it was probably because people kept suing them for screwing up royally (I used a more polite phrase than that, but you understand the basics).

So I bought my pretty B&Q bathroom and paid a professional plumber and not some brainless monkey with no limbs and no training that B&Q found on the street to install it for me. The bathroom was delivered on time (shock horror) with nothing missing (ditto), the plumber sealed it, I brought in the people from the flooring company who made my floor. attic to lay vinyl flooring, the fencer opened a new door, and while the bathroom needs to be finished with a bit of boxing and stuff, it looks really pretty.


veranda before and after

My kitchen is tiny. Seriously, despite what my friend on Facebook says it's not the smallest kitchen in the world, I think it is. I had originally planned to expand the kitchen by knocking in the side return and building outward to almost triple the size of the kitchen, but because I wanted the back to be mostly glass in a sort of Half veranda / half kitchen hybrid, I realized that this wouldn't really give me much more storage - only more floor space - so I decided to have a veranda built instead.

It took seven days for a team of brilliantly banter builders that I missed after I finished. It's not exactly an ideal veranda, as I mainly use it for overflow kitchen storage (thanks to a cabinet from Ikea in which I can store my bread maker, crockpot, blender, my air fryer and everything) and not to sit still, sipping tea in the sun, and since I had the cooking done I now have the washing machine in there but it gave me a lot more flexibility in terms of space and it doubles as a craft room / writing room (I'm currently sitting in the lanai typing this).

Windows and front door

front door before and after

When I moved into my house it had brown windows and a brown front door and all the trim was a gold color that was peeling off. It was ming. In an ideal world I would have beautiful wooden sash windows but it is not an ideal world and I am not rich so even though I could have had aluminum replacement windows, I went for a nice, clean and neat white marsh standard uPVC.

I had spent MONTHS choosing a new front door after the man in the window gave me two large brochures with lots of beautiful (and not so beautiful) front doors, only for the man who is came to measure everything to tell me that my door is so narrow which left me with a choice of only five. I chose the one I hated the least and accidentally saw the same one on a house a few days later and hated it a lot less in real life.


kitchen before and after

My kitchen, besides being tiny, had obviously been set up by a handyman who had just pointed the worktops and cabinets in the general direction of the kitchen and told them to fall into place without any care or attention. . If the cabinets and countertops had been in better condition and installed correctly, they would have been fine. However; they weren't.

I had a new kitchen installed last week (purchased and installed by Wicks) and it's GORGEOUS. I can't stop staring at him, I love him so much. I need a new floor and I need the walls painted, but it will be done (except to buy all the new things like cutlery and storage jars, kettle and toaster and all that. which is obviously needed for a brand new, clean and sparkling kitchen). I also have a dishwasher again for the first time in two years and I like it very much.

I can't think of anything about all these improvements that went less well. Fingers crossed, all future improvements are going as well.

If you’ve never run before or you’ve had a long break from running, it can feel intimidating to get out there and hit the pavement. But if you get familiar with some basic information about course and follow a beginner’s schedule, you’ll be well on your way to starting a new course habit.

At your visit, share your course plan and goals with your doctor and have him/her assess your plan and any potential health issues. If you have had any previous injuries or issues, make sure your doctor is aware of them, and ask if he or she has any suggestions on how to prevent a recurrence.

Visit a specialty course store to get professionnel advice on buying the right course shoes. An professionnel at the store will look at your feet, watch you run, and make recommendations based on your foot type and course style. If you already have running shoes that you like, but you’ve had them for a while, you may still need to get new ones. Running in worn-out course shoes can also lead to injury. You should replace them every 300 to 400 miles.

Beyond running shoes, you don’t need much more than some comfortable exercise clothes to get started. If you’re running outdoors, make sure you follow some basic tips for how to dress for hot weather running and cold weather course, so you stay safe and comfortable.

As your résistance improves and you start running longer, you may want to invest in some technical fabric running clothes and other basic course gear, such as a running belt, good course socks, and a course hat. Some runners also like to have a running watch to track their times and distances.

Before you get started with course, get familiar with how to do the run/walk method. Most beginner runners start out using a run/walk technique because they don’t have the résistance or sport to run for extended periods of time. The run/walk method involves course for a bermuda territoire and then taking a walk break. As you continue with a run/walk program, the goal is to extend the amount of time you’re running and reduce your walking time. Of course, some runners find walk breaks to be so beneficial that they continue taking them even as their résistance and fitness improves.

Before you start any running workout, though, you need to make sure you warm up properly. A good warm-up signals to your body that it will have to start sérieux soon. By slowly raising your heart rate, the warm-up also helps minimize stress on your heart when you start your run. Start your runs with a brisk walk, followed by very easy jogging for a few minutes. You can also do some warm-up exercises. Always end your workout with a slow five-minute jog or walk to cool down. The cool-down allows your heart rate and blood pressure to fall gradually.

Use your breathing as your guide when running. You should be able to carry on a conversation while running, and your breathing shouldn’t be heavy. Don’t worry about your pace per mile—if you can pass the ' talk test ' and speak in complete sentences without gasping for air, then you’re moving at the right speed.

Make sure you’re breathing in through your nose and mouth, and breathing out through your mouth. Proper breathing and taking deep belly breaths will help you avoid annoying side stitches, or cramps in the abdomen area.

Drink water at the end of your workouts to rehydrate. If it’s hot and humid, you should also drink some water ( about four to six ounces ) halfway through your workouts. ​

Post-run is a great time to stretch and work on improving your flexibility because your groupes musculaires will be warmed up. It’s also a relaxing way to end a workout. Try some of these stretches that target particular areas that frequently get tight during and after course.


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