Eco stuff: only little steps - but we have extended the use of LED bulbs beyond the new barn development and have now converted the lighting in three rooms of the main house. And this is the first Winter where we have had both big woodstoves providing most of the heating and reducing the use of the gas heating system - it looks as if we are on target to have a ratio of 80:20/wood:gas, which is really pleasing. Also, we're looking at reducing water use - with very much a 'first step' in installing 'eco taps' in the kitchen. So, we're trying!
Kitchen: having done quite a lot of catering for guests last year (because so many chose to take evening meals) we realised we needed to do some work on the kitchen - in two ways: firstly, improving the work surface space for food preparation and 'plating up'; secondly, changing the cooker, which was reaching the end of its life and just could not cope with cooking for 8 or more people. So, we solved the first issue by creating a central unit area and side area by buying two shop counters from an old haberdashers shop:
And then there has been choosing a cooker - which has not been too difficult and it was delivered promptly. Its size required us to re-jig the existing cupboards and when we came to do this we found that they were resting on a solid concrete plinth about 10 cms high which would have to be removed to get the cooker in and at the right height Beneath the plinth we found original tiles that must have been part of a cooking range's fireplace). Excellent! It took four days to do this and get all the adjustments done on the cupboards, the gas pipes, and the new worktops and sink - but we're very pleased with the result .... and here's the enthralling story in pictures: