I really am getting worse at posting over here, am I not? Must try harder.
So, the boys are back at school and seem reasonably happy so to be. I have got over my initial dismay at having to return to making packed lunches and nagging boys repeatedly to pack their bags and track down their games kits and Second Born, for Pete's sake ROUND UP YOUR SOCKS!
On the plus side, we have been able to get back down to the Corbies a few times and make a start on addressing the after effects of some pretty full-on damp work. We have fresh, bare plaster on most of the walls on the ground floor up to a height of about 1.2m and above that we have an enticing mixture of nasty old wallpaper, odd textured paint and crumbly old plaster. As a result, we spent last weekend stripping the remaining wallpaper in the dining-room-soon-to-become-another-bedroom and trying not to pull all the plaster off in the process. My aunt had lent us one of those steam-powered wallpaper strippers and whilst it is undoubtedly effective, it is also one of the scariest pieces of equipment I have ever tried to use! It is basically a huge kettle attached to a hose with a square of plastic at the end and it steams and bubbles and drips scalding water all over the place (at one point, memorably, it managed to spray the ceiling!). Second Born was so alarmed, he refused to remain in the room with it. Sensible boy, that one.
This weekend we managed to paint the walls in that room and, if you ignore the dodgy, lumpy old plaster on the top half of the walls, it looks really rather good. Next week: painting the weird scratchy textured walls in the living room.
We have also discovered a really good use for the Kindle: if you once wrote a whole load of stories with your then very young children, and if you saved those stories on your laptop, then you can load those stories onto your Kindle AND you can then make the Kindle's strange alien-like computer voice read them out to you. Judging by reactions around here, this is the funniest thing anyone has EVER done. I recommend it. (Husband tells me it may be possible to create a sound file of one or two of these stories and upload it. You have been warned.)