It's all in the detail

Does it really matter if we haven't got room for a sofa in our lounge? I'm not sure. For the moment I'm concentrating on what I love and what is just about "finished". I'm not showing you any room shots yet because my reputation is at stake, but I promise a full blown before/after shoot will be in order as soon as every room is furnished and tidy. It's good to have ambitious goals, yes?

Various items of beautiful furniture have been purchased.

Various houseplants and items of decor have been randomly placed (whatever gets those boxes unpacked and out of the house).

Various attempts at artistic aerial shots have been made. 

Various people in my household have become appropriately addicted to drinking (tea) throughout the day.

Various items of storage (some with integrated mirror!) have been added to the bathroom and bolted to the wall for good measure. We can't have people stealing our precious storage. Specially now that we've sold our souls to the devi(kea)l.

Like I said. Various pieces of lovely furniture. Pretty repurposed wood from local shops that makes every room smell of polish.

Various details that don't go with the rest of the room one bit, but sometimes you have to choose vasts amount of storage and originality over your goal to get everything matching. 

Various forms of storage, in this case along with a comfortable bed that fit up both flights of stairs. We finally have a real bedroom. And that mattress is pretty comfortable by the way. Valances to follow, if I can ever be bothered to hunt for the right size.

Various towels. There's nothing quite as soothing as a neat stack of towels. 

Various spots and possible usages for Charlie. We'll see where he ends up. 

Various moments of love/hate for my velux window in the attic bedroom. It's filthy and in less-than good condition and in desperate need of a blind, yet it offers some nice views of the hills and the canal (for those of us who are tall enough) as well as the stars at night, and once I slip its LBB (little black blind) on I'm sure I'll have nothing but love for it.

Various moments of hate and not much love for the carpeted stairs, but I like them better now they've been steam-cleaned and acardusted and our handy-man had tacked the carpet to the last few stairs like he should have in the first place so that we don't risk tumbling down them.

Various doubts as to whether this should stay here, or even in the house, as we haven't really got any use for it. It makes the hallway nice and narrow, that's for sure, but I can't quite bring myself to get rid of it after spending all those hours making it look nice.

Various joyous dance moves took place when I realised we had a hidden curtain rail and all it would take was a £2 rod before we could hang our curtains and sleep undisturbed by daylight until at least 7AM.

Various nighmarish moments have been spent staring up at this pane of glass while trying to wedge heavy furniture up the stairs. I'm happy to say these days are over and that we've found more or less pleasing solutions for every room. The doormat is a little embarassing but Boyfriend insisted, and as I'm a bit of a tourist myself I decided it was acceptable. Also it was the only non-ugly doormat available. Can I blame it on baby George??


Little by little

Well things are moving forward! We took a trip to Leeds to apply for NINs just after we got here, and guess what! They've come! This means we can register as freelance hippies (I believe this is the official wording). Yipeeee! I'm not a huge fan of Leeds but you can't deny it's got all the shops you could wish for, and the train ride takes you through some lovely Yorkshire countryside. I was glad to get back home to Hebden though. I'm surprised at how quickly I've reverted back into country girl mode.

Hebden Bridge train station. Doesn't make me miss good old Athis Mons station. Is anything ever ugly in Yorkshire? I sat on a bench waiting for our little train and felt just like a character from an Enid Blyton book. Except the fantastic five (or whatever they were called) rarely went on adventures to the jobcentre to be asked some slightly unexpected questions such as "have you always been a woman?"

We treated ourselves to some fancy Carluccio's coffees for having survived the jobcentre experience. Not that it was horrible really, the people were friendly enough and we got what we came for, which means France wins the bitchy bureaucracy battle over England. And now I live in England, so YAY!! Oh yes and last night I helped Boyfriend with his online registration to become self-employed, which took all of 20 minutes from start to finish. Take that, France!

If I had been in the mood for shopping I could have gone bananas and spent hours here, but I wasn't, and neither was my bank account (dear former employer: it's been 3 weeks, where the hell is my last paycheck???). The next big city will hopefully be Manchester, maybe when our first or second round of guests arrives (so soon!! Eeeek!!) because for now I'm quite happy just trying the local cafes and shops and then walking home via the canal. Am I boring you with my canal yet? Because you can't beat the canal. This is what happens at the canal:

The other night we took our sun-lounger over the wall and drank our tea by the canal. I even took the neighbour's dog for a walk along the canal the other day, just because I love the canal (and because I wanted to tire the dog out so it wouldn't spend the rest of the day barking. Yes, this is my most serious problem at the moment) It's such a hard life. Canal.

Next up I've got a proper little bunny house tour for you. Even though it's nowhere near finished I can't resist showing some of my favourite bits. Watch this space!


Out and about in Hebden Bridge

Hello my dear bunnies! Sorry for the long silence, I have no excuse except for the fact that the effort of moving and sorting out a million different things has turned me into a lazy blogger. Hopefully this is a curable disease as I've got loads to show you. 

Let's start with the first real walk we took in the neighbourhood. If you can call a canal inhabited my geese a neighbourhood. 

So this is what happens when you climb over the wall at the end of our alleyway, litterally 10 metres from our back yard.

You'll soon see what I meant about foxgloves

This is the old lock keeper's house, now inhabited by a friendly South-american lady who's been warned that the day she decides to sell, we're buying.

So after a 5 minute walk down this little path, you get to the local pub

With tables on the canal, where you can sit and watch the houseboats go by and the geese beg for food.

What can I say, I've got a thing for flowers that grow out of walls

And for houseboats with salad and sweet peas growing on the roof!!

The scenic views don't stop at the pub though, look at this cute little bridge where the canal flows into the river (we live right between the two, but according to the friendly person who sold me our house insurance, we're not on the flood path! yay!!)

I wouldn't ride my bike along here. Not that I ride bikes anyway. Too many embarassing accidents during my childhood have left me traumatised.

Warning: more pretty things!

Even when it's ugly, it's pretty

This is the alley where we hang our washing and chat with the neighbours and spend ages watering the flowers that the landlady left us and that are not liking the extreme heat. Maybe they should try taking the metro during rush hour when it's 32 degrees outside. Ugh, the memories! The nightmares! Let's move on.

If you look closely you'll find the neighbourhood is full of strange creatures

And if that little walk isn't enough, you can always pop into town for a £3 Tibetan curry

The boats will still be there on the way back

So what do you think? Did we make the right decision? I still can't quite believe we live here. Maybe the novelty will wear off, but for now I'm enjoying my long-awaited adventure very much.


Bunnies & stripes & foxgloves

Maybe I should think about renaming my blog now that my life revolves around the local flora. And the local fauna (neighbourhood cats) and the local watering holes. And the locals (who are all so nice). How about bunnies & stripes & foxgloves & cats & pubs & humans?

Ok, so we moved. It all went pretty smoothly! Two major disappointments happened when (1) I realised the house has carpet on both staircases and on the landing, and (2) I realised our guest bed wasn't going to fit up the very narrow (carpeted) staircase. I've since come to terms with the carpet being in my life for an undefined period, but not with the bed being set up in the lounge. Or with the fact that (just like in France), people aren't prepared to pay the very low price you are offering to sell it for. On the up-side, Boyfriend is swamped with several big work projects, which means lots of bacon that we can swap for a lovely new bed. If we ever find one that comes in small enough pieces.

But let's move on to the pics, shall we?

Dogs are allowed to drive camper vans. Fact.

Goodbye Belgium! Goodbye continent!

Very smooth sailing. I spent half the night wondering whether we were even at sea or not. Lovely compared to our crossing to Ireland, where I was lifted off the bed a couple of times, and our crossing to Jersey which thankfully ended just as I was getting nicely sea-sick.

Hello United Kingdom of sausages and crumpets!!

Where even the motorway is surprisingly pretty

First drive into our neighbourhood!! Please ignore the dirty windscreen, we were tired and excited and couldn't be bothered to stop and clean it.

After a quick tour of the house (carpets!! Ugh!) the landladies left us with a packet of digestives and some fresh milk in the fridge. Our furniture wasn't arriving until the next day so Boyfriend very religiously got to work creating his wine cellar.

Our first meal at home!! Outside in the sunshine! If you're a regular reader you'll recognise our staple foods: scotch eggs, cheddar, ham, bread, and mini pork pies (which we saved for later, we're not that greedy thank you very much). FIY I had a very healthy banana for dessert and a 'herbivore platter' at one of the local pubs for tea so I was ok for my 5 a day.

Welcome to Yorkshire. Please have a seat and make yourself at home. (or so the abandonned armchair seemed to say)

Just the normal views on our way to the bank in Keighley. Nothing to get excited about, right? Just wait until you see my next post!

And out first home-cooked meal! We took the garden furniture inside and opened our first bottle of good wine. 

So that was our move. We've been here a week now and I'm feeling like a pretty happy bunny. Let's see how it all turns out!