Friday, July 29, 2011

Filling in

One reason why we had to get the blocks in yesterday was that today we were expecting Sheila and her husband Carlos to come and give us a hand shifting more soil, like they did before. So with Carlos, given a radio tuned to Radio 2 and a beer and we were off, several hours later, we had filled most of the lower patio and the soil on the upper level was almost gone.DSCF3817

But we now have a very level surface at the bottom.DSCF3818

A little more levelling at the far end, as this end is a little high.


The ramp now is a more gradual which is much better…


Where most of the soil came from.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

A Step in the right direction

Work still continues on the step extension and the lower patio. we’ve put a few more of the blocks on to bring it up to the level where we can think about putting in the all important first step, but we have now run out of big blocks.


The blocks laid and ready to get in filled both in front and behind.


The whole ramp can now be in filled up to the height.


And with the left over material finished off rendering the inside edge of the roof.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Draining away

One of the tasks we have been working on is trying to divert the water off the roof to a more useable place. At the moment the water just tips off the roof and down onto the ground around the house, one side effect of this is that the lower storage room at the font of the house stays very damp. As we are laying the patio and the extension to the steps we need to put in the pipes as we go.


The pipes down all glued into place, with an access hole just in case we need to clean things out.


Helen double checking the width at the top of the ramp.

Thursday, July 21, 2011



Finally got the curve finished on the top of the bathroom roof parapet. Following the curve that was drawn on the wooden board at the back it was just a matter of building it up with rocks and cement

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Bad News

I received a letter a few days back from Social Security which seems to say that I have been registered as an employee of the Consejria de EducacĂ­on. I seems they have done an audit and consider that use being hired as self employed was illegal and we should be treated as employees. We shall have to see what impact this has when I get back to work in September.

Sunday, July 17, 2011


With the two tubes laid in under the surface of the lower patio, we can now sort out the watering systems.DSCF3799

So from the valves the pipes go down the tubes.


Out the other side


Along the wallDSCF3800

And down to the crops.


And while Helen was doing the piping I was busy running the cutter over the lower terrace.

Friday, July 15, 2011


On the lower patio we have a number of pipes for the grey water irrigation that used to just sit on the surface, but with the changes to the lower patio these are now being placed in large red tubes that need to get buried under the earth as we put it in.


So having put the pipe in we needed to fill in some earth on top to make sure that the path was still useable.


OK looking from the other direction you have to go up over the pipe before you go down the ramp, but hopefully that will get in filled in the next couple of weeks.


The side wall of the ramp which is almost finished now, showing the irrigation pipe coming out through the wall instead of over the top as it used to.


A long time ago we built a small wall on top of the bathroom roof. One part never got finished this was a small curve to blend the top of the wall with the slope down to the existing wall. so with a board screwed to the side of the wall and a few pieces of bar inserted top stop the whole lot sliding down the slope this is already to be cemented next time we make some.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Another row and finishing the door

Two jobs for today, the first was to bring up the wall for the steps down to the lower patio up another row. After this just one more row and they will be up to the height  required to finish the infilling of the lower patio.



And once the blocks were done with we could used the rest of the wheelbarrow full of cement upstairs to finish off around the door.


That's the top done, now for the bottom, and that is where the trouble started, we had a great trouble getting the wedges out from under the door. It took close to an hour just to get them out once this was done we could then fill the holes with cement.





Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Framed again

Having got the frame for the door fitted it was time to get on and get the surround sorted out.


First this involved cutting and sorting out lengths of the wood which were salvaged from the old water tank roof and planned and sorted at the same time as we built the frame and door step.DSCF3778

What’s behind the green door, well the kitchen actually once we build it.


Close up on the step, with the weather strip to stop the rain coming in under the door, now just have to get the wedges out from underneath the step.

Saturday, July 09, 2011



Have you seen this person? no it’s not a chimney sweep it’s Helen after a very tough session with the cutter. What has she been cutting? we before we could fit the new door frame we needed to widen the opening and cut out the existing concrete step at the bottom of the door.


New wider openingDSCF3765

Hole ready to take the new door step. What the photos don’t quite show is that when cutting the old frame out which was concrete, the cutter makes so much dust that a times I couldn’t see Helen inside the kitchen, and as the wind was not quite in the right place the dust got sucked into the house and left a thin film over everything.

DSCF3767OK frame in and all looks good here. Wedges underneath to hold it all in place while we wait for the cement to be mixed.


Special screws fitted to secure the door into the wall.


A little cement underneath to hold it up.


And more cement to fill the holes on the outside and there one door frame fitted and hopefully the wind won’t whistle through the back door in the future. as the new frame has strips under and down the sides, and top to stop the water getting blown in which it did with the old frame. It make look nice and simple here on the blog but it in fact took most of the day to finish.

Wednesday, July 06, 2011

When is a door not a door?

When Helen removes it and starts to work on it….

Yep, Today was the big day when we finally got round to sorting out the back door, this is a task which has been in the works for quite a while.


Firstly we needed to trim the peg at the top of the door which goes into the hole in the frame. The problem with the current door is that you can remove the door even if the door is closed and bolted. Not any more the peg is now cut and designed so that the door can only be removed when it is in a full open position.


The bottom of the door sits on this little metal plate and there is a strip on the door which matches it and this in the main pivot of the door.


With the small modifications to the door complete it was time to assemble the frame and fit the door into it to check it would fit and also so we can make and cut the frame to length, We cut the pieces for the fame a while ago but for some reason it never made it to the blog.

Tuesday, July 05, 2011

Another level


Last week we laid in the first level of blocks for the extension to the steps today we are ready for the next phase, we have to extend the foundation a little bit ready to take the next set of blocks. so after digging the trench it’s concrete time again.


It looks a bit strange for here, you think well why not just but more blocks in, well then maybe this picture might explain things a bit better.


Yes you can see that the ground level comes up at this point, se we would have to dig down to get blocks in.