During week 18 the temperature finally crept above freezing and after almost four weeks of living with no water we could finally turn the taps on with confidence. We still had to live with the small issue that the temporary supply we were connected to from the old farm house has ‘bacteria’ in it, so drinking it was a no no. We did however also get our mains water pipe and water toby fitted in the plot. Before we could connect the caravan to our mains water supply, Scottish Water were required to complete an inspection of the pipe work and turn on the pumps in the pump house down the hill to ensure we had sufficient pressure. One small problem….the water toby was leaking…..we had water, but it was a wee stream through our future front garden running from the toby down to our house. Not ideal, but luckily it was running off to a drain at the side off the house. Eventually after more than a week the Estates contractor fixed it and Scottish Water gave the all clear. Simon, with some general instruction from the plumber, then ran some new blue water pipe from the toby to the caravan and finally not only did we have our own water supply but a drinkable one. Never have we been so grateful for something we normally take for granted each day. Large glasses of water all round to celebrate.
There was more excitement with the arrival of a special delivery all the way from Australia. I love love love Edison style bulbs and while the look of a traditional filament bulb is great it is unfortunately far from energy efficient. As Simon is all about the LED and I am all about the look what we wanted was an Edison LED…simples. As it turns out this is not so simples….there are some available, but although the glass build is the correct shape, the LED light within it looks nothing like a traditional filament. Eventually I discovered a website edisonlightglobes.com that had exactly what we wanted….filament style LED’s in a variety of bulb styles. Result……however there was one small issue, the company was based in Melbourne Australia. They will ship their bulbs and lights to anywhere in the world, but as you can imagine it wasn’t cheap. After spending weeks gazing at the web site and working out the cost of what we wanted, the accountant in me just couldn’t justify the cost. That is until a friend mentioned she was going to be visiting another friend in Melbourne in February……how convenient. Luckily she wasn’t planning to take any hand luggage and kindly agreed to take an empty carry on case to bring back our bulb order. In the end we bought 26 bulbs of various shapes which thankfully just squeezed inside her case. Now we just need to buy the various flexes, ceiling roses and wall lights to create the complete light fittings for the house. We really are blessed with wonderful friends who travel to the most convenient locations at just the right time.
While the bulb delivery had gone perfectly, the delivery of some other materials did not go quite so well. The roof slates that were ordered were the wrong ones…..thankfully these were quickly changed before the slaters arrived. The wrong natural stone to clad part of the outside of the house was delivered as Perthshire walling rather than the mixed colour local walling we had specified. The mixed colour local walling does include the Perthshire walling as one of the colours and luckily as only a small part of the order had been delivered, the quarry were able to deliver all the remaining stone as the other mixed colours. Finally the wrong floor insulation was ordered; however it arrived on site and was partially installed before we had a chance to check it. A few emails and phone calls later we agreed that we would continue with the insulation as it was. It is a lesser specification, but overall it does not have a significant impact on the overall insulation values for the house. Given that it will be covered in concrete there was no aesthetic impact on the house and it is a bit cheaper so at least we save a few pounds that can go towards the expensive light bulbs from Oz!
The insulation was laid to the whole of the ground floor plus the bathroom and en suite on the first floor, before the underfloor heating pipes were run and secured in place. We were all set for the pouring of the concrete the following week.