02 March 2014

The best laid plans...

The moving back in didn't go on schedule. Walt went out to get some necessary supplies and groceries, and I stayed home and mopped the kitchen floor. When he got back, we got busy trying to put the halogen light fixture back up on the kitchen ceiling.

 The kitchen floor is tile in this pattern.

We were both up on ladders, muttering profanities and getting pains in our neck from looking up toward the ceiling. The wires were a b*tch to patch back together. We ended up taking the fixture down three times before we finally got it right. One of the plastic fasteners that attaches an arm of the thing to the ceiling broke. It's really a piece of junk... Looks good, though, when it stays up there.

It was the part of the ceiling you see here that really needed repairing. It looks a lot better now.

By then it was lunchtime. Lunch was delicious — field peas (a little like black-eyed peas) that I had brought back from the U.S. last year, and pan-roasted slices of gigot d'agneau (leg of lamb) with a spicy dry rub to season them. Then a green salad. We opened a bottle of Cahors wine (vin noir is one name for that Malbec vintage).

Now we have to deal with finding a new stove, to replace the broken one.

At that point, we said to hell with it. I went and watched a movie on TV, and Walt turned on tennis and spent a few hours enjoying the matches. Later in the afternoon, I went into the kitchen and made an applesauce cake, because we didn't have any other sweets in the house.

 Another upcoming project is to take everything out of these cabinets and paint the shelves and inside surface, now that we know we don't want to put the doors back on them.

The result was a pretty big mess in the basically empty kitchen, and nothing I wanted to deal with right then. So this morning I have to clean up all the dishes and then finish cleaning and moving back in. Walt too. We will get it done. We will get it done. Or go crazy trying.

(Sorry this is kind of boring. Remember, the blog is our personal record of what life is and has been like here in Saint-Aignan.)


  1. I don't find this boring at all.

  2. Don't feel obliged to get it finished on our account. We are used to living in a building site and extremely tolerant of that sort of thing.

  3. The kitchen is sparkly clean, and your white tiles look brand new. I know it is a pain in the neck to go through all this but your kitchen looks very photogenic.

  4. I like the glossy, wipe clean walls...
    good technique in the kitchen.

    I helped my Mum paint our kitchen using bathroom paint for the same reason.

    Where was Dad... ???
    Mum wouldn't let him near a paintbrush...
    nor anything electrical for that matter..
    she reckoned that he would booger it up!!

    She was probably right, he just wasn't practical in that way...
    or, perhaps...
    had made sure that she thought that????

  5. It's not boring. It's rather like our life, except I think you and Walt are even busier than we are. I hardly even have to think of what's for lunch, since I can often just take a recent post of yours and let it inspire me.
    I am getting ready for Overseas Americans Week, though. I'm focusing on banking issues -- both here and in the US. If you or Walt or any of your US readers who live overseas want to share any woes, let me know in an email. Attach a copy of the letter the bank sent you. We'll black out any personal info if you haven't done so before sending.(banking@aaro.org)
    Your kitchen looks brand new!

  6. I love the colours in your kitchen, especially the tiled floor.
    Putting it back together will be satisfying.......when it's finished!

  7. Susan and Simon, look forward to seeing you this afternoon. (MA, if I don't call today, I'll try to call tomorrow morning.) The kitchen is all put back together.

    Ellen, I've gotten several letters from Fidelity re: my retirement fund and their management of it. But I think you are aware of Fidelity issues. I keep meaning to transfer the fund to my credit union in DC but I never quite get around to getting it done.

    Jean, we are satisfied. We got it all put back together this morning, with a few minor but, for us, significant changes. It's hard fitting everything into a small kitchen.

    Nadège, whoever did the tile work in this house — in the 1960s or 1970s, I assume — did a fantastic job. Floors, bathroom, kitchen... all of it.

    Tim and Starman, :^)

  8. I agree! (Well, with everything positive that has been said :)

  9. It's not boring, it's interesting! It's also fascinating to see how organized, tidy people live their lives (sooooo not us!).

    And the shiny kitchen and perfect ceiling look terrific.

  10. I am not bored because I can relate to kitchen repair/reno issues! A few years ago we did a reno on our galley kitchen in Texas. At the time we were traveling extensively in our travel trailer, so between our travels and screw-ups from the cabinet company, our reno took a year and a half. The rep from the cabinet company (KraftMade) finally came out, took one look at the finishes that did not match in several areas, and got the final problem taken care of - with, of course, a couple of months for the materials to arrive!!

  11. Yes, my name can also go on the list of people who say you are an inspiration and motivators for those of us that don't quite work in the way that the two of you manage!
    The kitchen looks clean and very attractive. Bet that applesauce cake was delicious!

    Mary in Oregon

  12. What's the use of a blog if you can't have a good grumble every now and then? Your kitchen is by no means boring - it's a good lesson to us all in making the best use of what you have. Good luck in finding a cooker with the right dimensions so you don't have to take everything apart again. P.

  13. Pauline, 60cm is a standard width and that's how much space we have.

    OFG, I'll come back around to the applesauce cake...


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