Friday, 28 February 2014

Being responsible (I must be mad).

In our efforts to get all of the things which are wrong with our house sorted out (andastudioplease!) we had a double glazing company come to give us a quote a couple of weeks ago.  The process of getting a quote is such a pain in the bum!  

We had two strange men in the house for HOURS, wandering around with tape measures, telling us what we should do, bringing up other options, and generally faffing around so much that by the end of the evening it was very hard to pin down just exactly what they thought they were including in the huge quote they gave us.  It was a huge quote.  We knew it would be a lot of money, we have a lot of windows and doors, not to mention a leaking asbestos garage roof.  I hate the protocol these companies seem to have, of giving you "the quote", and then "the discounted price", and finally, "the discounted price with the further credit option discount" - you always feel that somehow you're being overcharged, the price seems so (huge) variable.

So they came, they saw, they huge quoted.  And now they've called back saying that as they're at the end of their accounting period, they'd like to give us a further discount (about a fifth off of their final with-a-credit-account quote), and they want to come out on Monday and re-measure.  But we'd need to sign up by the end of next week.  Gaaaaaaah!

So the only sensible thing to do, obviously, is to get a different company to come out tomorrow morning and do the whole dance again!

Tomorrow's company said (over the phone at least) that they could probably do the complete garage conversion, whereas the previous one could only do a straight replacement on the flat roof, and put doors in for us, so that much at least sounds promising.

I'm also wary of being overly keen to get the double glazing done, because our neighbours have recently gotten a new wood burning stove to heat their greenhouse, and I'm wondering if the new windows would keep the smell of the smoke out.  New windows would be nice . . .

I'm also wondering whether just getting tomorrow's quote will be enough, or if I really ought to find a third or even a fourth company to be sure we're doing the right thing and paying the right price.  !sigh!  Why is it that the more money you have to spend, the less reliable the work and the costs become?

Tuesday, 25 February 2014

What am I doing (what's the point)?

So, what am I doing?  That kind-of is the point!  I want to blog to document all the creative things I've been getting up to.

I'm a happily married mum of two, my big girl (Madam) is 6 and my baby girl (Little B) is 4 months old.  Both were conceived by IVF (with ICSI) so when I say that we're not planning any more, it's a pretty sure thing!  So now that my body is my own again, and I can look to a more predictable future, I'm hoping to reconnect with my inner artist who has been in hibernation (with a few brief awakenings) since I left art college.  It's been too long!

I've got some big plans for this year, we need to get several major jobs done around our house, and we're hoping to be able to put a studio in our back garden.  This would give me a dedicated work space, and also be the place where all of my accumulated arty & crafty stuff could go, which in turn will free up a fair amount of storage space in various wardrobes and cupboards around the house.  I'd like to document our progress with the building work throughout the year, and I'm hoping that blogging about it might help me to keep the motivation going, and keep my spirits up too.

Other plans for this blog:

To document my creative output - I'm hoping to move towards making more art, but at the moment crafting projects are easier for me to work on.  I knit and crochet often, and craft a lot with my big girl (we're making a dolls house at the moment, hopefully I'll have some photos soon to share with you), and I'm hoping to draw, paint, sculpt, print, and just generally do more cool stuff as time goes on.

I want to be able to publish and share my knitting & crochet patterns, instructions for arty and crafty projects, maybe even recipes too.

I don't know where I'm going to be by this time next year, or what I might have made in the meantime.  I don't even know if this blog hosting site can do all the things I want it to do.  There's only one way to find out . . .