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Nice Things on Monday

This morning I met two dear friends for coffee in what is a very popular meeting place (above.)  I don’t know how we’ve allowed it to happen, but we’ve not met since about this time last year!   One of these two friends has suffered ill health and the other has been busy with a family wedding and a forthcoming grandchild, so little wonder we’ve allowed a year to slip past, almost unnoticed.  And you all know what I’ve been doing, as I’ve posted regularly about a wide variety of things.

Anyway, we managed to coordinate our diaries and met for coffee this morning.  It was lovely catching up after so long.  My friend who has suffered ill health brought the lovely news that one of her daughters, now in her 40s, who always said she would never marry, is to be married; and my other friend was happy to report that her son and his wife are to have a baby early next year, which is lovely, too.

We discussed the schools of our grandchildren – those about to start and those who are already attending school – and we generally had a lovely time.  It would seem that primary education varies vastly  from school to school. All I can say is that the help that our son and his wife have received regarding our little grandson starting school this coming September has been exemplary, with meetings for the parents, teacher visits to their home (not just their home, but to all the homes of the new little ones starting school), and visits by the little ones to the school during the latter part of the recent summer term for story time and a Teddy Bears’ Picnic, so that come September they will have already met some of the new classmates and also be a little familiar with the building and the staff.

This (above) is where we had coffee (although this is an old photograph from several years ago) – it really is a pleasant place to meet.

This afternoon we had new vinyl flooring laid in our tiny upstairs bathroom.  Last year we had a slow leak behind the loo, and by the time we saw it, the damage had been done to the flooring which husband ripped up.  He mended the leak, and then laid new hardboard on the floor so as to be ready for new vinyl flooring (we don’t like ceramic tiles – they are cold and unforgiving to anything dropped upon them, and skiddy when wet) but as we tend to use the downstairs shower room 99% of the time, we kept forgetting we needed to organize someone to lay flooring upstairs!  But at last it has been done and we’re very pleased with it …

Yes, I know … it’s not a modern room, it has no ubiquitous white suite, or fancy roll top bath or fitted bathroom cabinetry, no quaint wooden ladder acting as a towel rack, but we seldom use this room, preferring to use the shower room on the ground floor close to our bedroom (which hasn’t an en suite bathroom.)  The sanitary ware in both rooms is called ‘champagne’ and it was installed when the house was built in 1985.  We decorated this room about a decade ago (when we decorated the other two rooms upstairs, all with sloping ceilings as they are in the roof space of our dormer house) with a pastel yellow and white paper with a wisteria design.  I think the pale cream flooring has made the room look quite spacious for a tiny space.

The pictures on the wall are flower prints (they are actually greetings cards) and I liked them as they are mainly turquoise blue on a black background, so I had them mounted and framed with black frames. I can see that there is just a corner of wallpaper on the bath panel that requires sticking down!  Husband will be notified, ha ha!

Until next time.




About Margaret Powling

Margaret Powling
Margaret’s main interests are her husband and family, her friends, her home, her garden, writing, literature, architecture, décor, social history, photography, historic houses and gardens, and towns, villages and the countryside. She writes about the things she enjoys: flowers, scent, fine soap, monthly style magazines, and other such small indulgences, such as afternoon tea or simply enjoying her summerhouse with a book. She invites you to enjoy this virtual visit to South Devon, England.

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  1. The wallpaper and the sloping roof lend an element of charm to this room, Margaret. I have only once had a larger sized bathroom, it didn’t make life any different. And at present mine is so darned tiny!! But definitely to have two bathrooms is a nice luxury. And I love the prints that you have put up.

    • Margaret Powling
      Margaret Powling

      It’s lovely having two bathrooms, Ratnumarti, even though neither are en suite with bedrooms and both are very small. The convenience of having two loos is, well very convenient! The downstairs bathroom is small a shower room, with shower, basin and loo, and we use that all the time as it’s on the ground floor, where our bedroom is also situated. I love the prints, too. I actually bought eight of these greetings cards, and have five more still in their cellophane wrapping from years ago, but they aren’t with predominantly turquoise colours, and I liked those colours for this room.

      • great idea with the prints. It really pays to be original. Some of the newer homes in New Zealand have large bathrooms, and often more than one. The very old homes, many had massive rooms and massive had bathrooms. The not-so-older homes of 1950s to 1980s had small bathrooms. Fashions change, obviously.

        • Margaret Powling
          Margaret Powling

          Rooms here in the UK tend to be small, Ratnamurti, or smaller than say in Australia, New Zealand, or the USA because we don’t have the space, simple as that, especially when you consider that there are parts of the UK totally unsuitable for housing (the mountains of Scotland and Wales, for example) and we have a population now of close on 66 million. Of course, in times gone by, there were the huge mansions on the large estates, but they were almost like villages in themselves, the owners supplying live-in accommodation for staff, or if not live-in, then cottages on the estate. Houses now being built are certainly, generally speaking, smaller than the ones from the past.

          • 66 million! 4.5 million here. Hard for me to comprehend.

          • Margaret Powling
            Margaret Powling

            Yes, that’s roughly the population of these small islands, i.e. the main island of Great Britain, including England, Scotland and Wales, and then over the Irish Sea to Northern Ireland, plus the various islands, such as the Isle of Man, The Isle of Wight and the Scottish islands. This is why there has been a call for more stringent measures to be taken on immigration. It’s not that the British people don’t want people to come and live here, it’s just that there currently isn’t the infrastructure to withstand many thousands arriving every year. But when you leave the towns and see all the countryside, you realize there is still a lot of countryside left (although no one would want to see it all built on!) New towns and villages have been built and are continuing to be built. A famous one is Poundbury in Dorset (which was very much the brainchild of Prince Charle and is on the outskirts of Dorchester, which, in Thomas Hardy’s books he called Casterbridge, as in The Mayor of Casterbridge), and on the outskirts of the city of Exeter (not only a Cathedral city but a University city) there is a new town of Cranbrook.

  2. simpleliving31.blogspot.co.uk

    Glad you had a nice day out with your friends, I have seen some lovely greetings cards about, I have a few small frames which we bought in France so I may well frame some cards.

    • Margaret Powling
      Margaret Powling

      If you have lovely or unusual cards, framing them is a good way of having some art work that is inexpensive but attractive, Marlene. Needlework framed, too, looks pretty. I also have two lovely lace handkerchiefs framed, although at the moment they are not on any of our walls; I might bring them out and hang them again one of these days. I had them on our bedroom wall for years when the room was in shades of cream and apricot, but they are now having a rest!

  3. I can remember the excitement when a toilet was installed INSIDE the bathroom at my late grandmother’s house in the mid 1970s. This was in suburban Sydney (Australia) when most houses had the one toilet outside – often detached from the house. No light, which was terrifying at night for little kids like me. My maternal grandmother kept a potty (a chamber pot) under her bed. Kids today would laugh at such notions, I’m sure, as modern houses have at least two toilets and any number of bathrooms.

    I had a water leak from the bathroom last year, discovered when damage to the skirting board in the adjoining bedroom was detected. Initial quotes of $AU20,000 for full bathroom replacement (and the associated upheaval) gave way to several visits by an honest plumber and about $AU2,000 in repairs. A drama I’d rather not repeat but an important lesson nonetheless.

    • Margaret Powling

      Outside lavatories were commonplace in this country until the mid-20th century, Lara, and to save nocturnal visits, a chamber pot was essential. That was a dreadful quote from the first plumber! Thank goodness you didn’t accept his silly price! The leak we had was a small one and husband put matters right, and the flooring we had laid this week was just £110 (I can’t translate into Australian dollars, but it wasn’t a huge amount of money.)

  4. Your bathroom looks quite charming. Frankly, the size of some bathrooms seem outlandish, to me (many homes are outlandishly sized as well). But then I’m living in a small home, all the way around!

    • Margaret Powling
      Margaret Powling

      Hello, Jeannine, and thank you for your kind comments re our small bathroom. When I see huge rooms, particularly kitchens, on programmes on TV such as Escape to the Country (where the people being shown country homes always seem to say, “We want a large kitchen in which we can entertain, and it must have an ‘island’ …”) and suddenly you are faced with a kitchen in which you’d need roller skates to get around (the island would just be a nuisance in the middle of the kitchen) I think, “why on earth would anyone want a kitchen where you have to travel miles to get from hob to sink just to pour off the hot water from the potatoes?” As for “entertaining” in a kitchen (I always think “entertaining” sounds like you’re going to put on a show!”) I do not wish people whom I have invited for a meal to see me making their meal even to the point of perhaps having to conceal some culinary disasters!

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