10th April: A Blank Sheet

Ok, before I start telling you about what’s been going down, could someone answer me a question please. How the hell does tracing paper work? Rich has been getting overly excited because I asked him this the other night, and I quote ‘Perhaps it’ll have instructions on the packet, you fool,’ followed by a lot of spluttering laughter (although it could have been the signal, he was driving round Yorkshire at the time.)  I would have been quite prepared to take the mockery, if the eejit could have actually explained how one uses it.

Anyone got any idea about gardening?

Anyone got any idea about gardening?

With the build nearing an end it’s time to move on to the garden, all two acres of it. I have some original drawings from Lazy Boy (not been re-promoted yet) with the outline of the plot but it has his crazy paving everywhere, isn’t quite the right shape and has some funny drawings on it which shouldn’t be there. I need something black and white, with the house plan and boundary line, and the correct placement of the pond, so I can start drawing outlines of where the hard landscaping needs to start. Thus far, we haven’t really thought about this kind of shizzle but now we’ve lived here for a while (nearly a year), we’ve got a bit better idea of how we want to use the space. I also need to map the Klargester, rainwater harvester, drain and electric runs, ground source loops, etc, etc so we don’t end up digging them up in the future.

Kitchen garden planned here. Could take a while though...

Kitchen garden planned here. Could take a while though…

I could do it on my original Google Sketch Up plot layout, but I’ve had to offset the house from one of the axis guides, which means (having the technical ability of an amoeba) that everything else is skew-whiff. I thought I’d get a big pad and some tracing paper. But I can’t actually remember how tracing paper works… Does that make me really dumb?

And still more garden to do. Yikes.

And still more garden to do. Yikes.

I suspect I’ll get Lazy Boy’s plot layout and Tippex out all the stuff that I don’t want, then get the stationers to reprint it for me a hundred times over. Anyway, a minor issue, I’ve built a goddamn house for goodness sake, tracing paper shouldn’t really hold this fear…

No one around for a few days. Didn't know what to do with myself, apart from form filling

No one around for a few days. Didn’t know what to do with myself, apart from form filling

The house has lain empty for the past couple of days. No builders, no deliveries, no nothing, which is very strange after nearly nine months of frantic daily activity. Instead, I’ve been catching up on the paperwork. God, I really hate paperwork.

It worked for me ;)

It worked for me 😉

Oh, by the way, funnily enough, after posting the Plum(b) Duff blog, they called. Victoria Plumb customer services, that is. I’m sure it had nothing whatsoever to do with the (not very good) recommendation I left on their Arsebook page. Anyway, the upshot is the pedestal is being redelivered pronto. If anyone wants to complain about any services from any company then drop me a note and I’ll do it for you, it may well become my new hobby. My friend Clare is top of the list with her complaint about some hair products though, I’ll let you know when I get all the details…

So, back to what’s been going down. I’ve managed to procure an MPAN number for the electricity meter and it’s being connected in about a fortnight, it was easy. I’ve downloaded the water connection forms and Oh My Lord, have you seen the info these guys want to know? I have to be honest, I’ve downloaded and printed the water forms out about fifteen times, and always put it to the bottom of the pile (just on top of the firelighters). How complicated can it be? Very, is the answer. If I’d known how hard it was to connect to the mains, I would never have suggested we bought the place. I kid you not, they want to know about all the sanitary fittings (make and model, not just the number) they want the contamination reports, they want maps of this that and the other, your father’s inside leg measurement, what your favourite colour is, yadda, yadda, yadda. Ironically, they want scaled maps of how the property sits in relation to the nearest road. You have to use a specific scale, and you can’t use a bit of paper bigger than A4. Considering our available mains is well over 250m away, I can’t fit it all in to an A4 sheet of paper = fail at the first hurdle. Perhaps, we’ll just bathe and flush the toilets with wine. Although we’d probably be looking for a sponsor. Seriously, if anyone from Anglian Water is reading this, please let me know. I’ll pay you in kindness to take the pain away. Form filling, not one of my fortes.

Obviously, whilst form filling (not successful), and looking for distractions (very successful), I spent a bit of time perusing my new mate’s site www.valentinewarner.com  because I really love his fairy nipples. He very kindly re-tweeted a link to The Meaden Project and isn’t actually a mate, but it’s inspired me to look at our vast garden as a marketing opportunity for some forward thinking, social media, gardening types, if that actually exists. I’m thinking another blog (this one’s done not too badly at just over 75,000 views) at the very least. Don’t worry, we already have a name. Watch this space 😉 In the meantine, if any of you other secret readers want to retweet, I’d be more than grateful. I don’t think Kevin Mc has visited yet, but it can only be a matter of time.

Living the dream

Living the dream

What else? Oh yes the MC12 ( I think that’s what it was, parked outside the ‘van the other night) What a piece of poop. You’d have thought, if you’d just spent $mega on a motor, they could have worked the phone connection out. Having a conversation  with my errant hubster, was like a one way call with Metal Mickey – only one step away from the robots on the Smash advert in the ‘70s. Sort it out boys, I don’t care how fast your motor is, the phone stuff is guff. I’m pretty sure, through the sketchy line, that Richard said we could go ahead with the groundworks for the new riding arena, despite my not fulfilling the promise of coming in £1 under budget (it was the doorknob what did it). Might be wrong, but he’s not back for a couple of days so I’ll crack on regardless…

Woo hoo, the ridge can go on now the frosts have finally gone

Woo hoo, the ridge can go on now the frosts have finally gone

Tomorrow sees my favourite boys back on site (actually, my only boys) to start on finishing the ridge. That’ll be two days at the most, the scaffold can come down by the end of the week, the drains and groundsource can be connected and we’ll be well on the way. To add to the excitement, Fast Eddie is back with the kitchen worktop people so the kitchen, three weeks later than planned, will be looking like a new, finished kitchen. Largely, because it’ll be a new, finished kitchen. God, have things ever been this good?



PS The new pedestal from Victoria Plumb has been delivered. Well, I say that, I checked it and rejected it on account of a load of scratches on the porcelain. More listening to crappy hold music I expect.


10 responses to “10th April: A Blank Sheet

  1. Tracing paper instructions:

    1. Place it on top of what you want to copy.
    2. Notice the tracing paper is semi-opaque so you can see the original document through the paper.
    3. Trace the original document onto the paper.
    4. Have a large G&T.


    P.S. Really?! You can build a freakin’ house but can’t remember how tracing paper works?

  2. I thought there was a final step of turning the tracing paper over and scribbling over the outline to effectively copy what you traced onto another piece of paper?

    Is it not you that has therefore failed Mr Spain???!

  3. ^ Yep, Marty = fail. If I followed those instructions, I’d have my plan but backwards. Peachy is correct that you have to turn it back over again. Sounds a right pain, think I’ll go with the Tippex method…

  4. Emma, its a bit quicker (and you can do away with the tracing paper) if you hold the original against a window (ideally a light box) and put your regular paper on top, you should be able to see through it and ‘trace’ whats underneath.
    Thanks for the Vicky Plumb tip; duly avoided like the plague!

  5. Emma, its a bit quicker (and you can do away with the tracing paper) if you hold the original against a window (ideally a light box) and put your regular paper on top, you should be able to see through it and ‘trace’ whats underneath.
    Thanks for the Vicky Plumb tip; duly avoided like the plague!

  6. Backwards? Rubbish. If you put the tracing paper on top of what you want to copy and then trace the lines on the tracing paper, it can’t be backwards! Exactly as per Anonymous/amyjgm suggests, but sans lightbox/window.

    Unless I’ve forgotten something along the way, that is…. entirely possible, Year 9 Art was a long time ago.

    • Embody wants to transfer it onto another piece of paper no? Using a light box is one way. The other would be to trace over it using the tracing paper so you have the outline.

      THEN turn it over and shade over the lined bits with pencil. Here’s what I got slightly wrong first time. THEN turn it back over put it on top of the oiece of paper you want the new image on and RETRACE over the lines. That will transfer the shaded graphite onto the new piece of paper in the shape that you want.

      I had to bloody google it to confirm I wan’t making this up! http://www.ehow.com/how_4924363_use-tracing-paper.html

  7. Ha ha, this could go on and on. I don’t want the outline on the tracing paper, I want it on some ordinary paper (but it’s too thick to see anything even held up at a window).
    I bought some Tippex yesterday 😉

    • It works honest! For example –
      – Draw square on piece of paper (or in your case get your plan / whatever you want to copy)
      – Put tracing paper over page with square on it
      – Draw square on tracing paper by tracing the Iines of the original picture. You now have 1 piece of paper with a square on it, one piece of tracing paper with a copy of said square.
      – Pick up tracing paper, turn it over and shade over the outline of the square (which you can see through the tracing paper).
      – Turn tracing paper back over again, place shaded side down on a new piece of paper.
      – Draw over outline of square transferring a copy of said square onto a new piece of paper.
      – You now have two pieces of paper and a piece of tracing paper all with an exact copy of the square.

  8. Wow, sounds very complicated! 😉

    We’re up your way sunday if you need a hand with tracing, or making the sketchup model more accurate.

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