Our house renovation dream

Moving On

Today we moved out of Dene Cottage.


I don’t think I’ve ever mentioned the name of the house for fear of herds of fans camping outside; or more truthfully because someone might decide to try and nick the copper bath. I think the bath is the hardest thing to leave behind despite it being a nightmare to clean when your baby and husband use it every day.

It was supposed to be a forever, or at least long-term home for us. Which is why we shoved it full of the best insulation you can get, soundproofed, underfloor heated and tanked it to make it like the best quality self-build within the walls of a new build with the added bonus of being allergy-friendly for Paul. We didn’t realise it wouldn’t be baby friendly. And by that I mean less the rock solid limestone floors (although they weren’t especially fun for River) and more the isolation I experienced in our house as a new Mum with a baby that hated (still hates) the car.

So we’re moving on to a new project, a little house, half the size of Dene Cottage, down the road from my family so that River can grow up with her cousins on her doorstep, with the added bonus of acres of woodland to discover and climb.

Here are some of my favourite moments from Dene Cottage

Wielding an SDS drill, eating pasta from Tupperware in sub zero temperatures on Boxing Day 2012

Bosch SDS Hammer Drill

Visiting the house to find it with no roof or foundations

September 2013

Spending time getting to know Paul’s Dad, Trevor, in a way that I wouldn’t have been able to had he not helped us so much with almost every aspect of the build.

July 2014


Planning rooms Dexter-style

September (5)


Late-night wonky wall building

April 2013

Sleeping in the living room with Mojo

June 2014 (Sleeping in Lounge)

Christmas Day

Christmas Dinner for 15, done!


Getting engaged in the kitchen, by the hole in the wall we only just got round to fixing

Spending the morning of our wedding surrounded by family and friends getting ready, speed walking to the Church and forgetting the keys.


*Photo credit: Anna Hardy

Every single bath (especially whilst pregnant)



Bringing our newborn baby home.

Thanks for the memories, Dene Cottage.



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