Welcome to my blog

We moved to Ireland with the notion of building our "dream" home in May 2007 after purchasing the site earlier on that year. Mr C is Irish and originally from Limerick but he remains in the UK during the week, his job is running www.cruise.co.uk and earning the bucks that will hopefully allow us to "live the dream."

It's taken us almost two years but ground will be broken on the site by the end of May 09!! A lot of blood, sweat & loads of tears (all mine!) have gone into this project already, we left a fabulous house behind in Newcastle...and now for my Kevin McLeod bit, "can the new build can live up to my expectations and the old house we left behind"? I'm not sure...keep watching my blog and you'll find out!!

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Stairway to Heaven

The next big decision is the staircase

Top of my list of things to do this week has been to decide on my stairs. The precast for my "upstairs" arrives on site this Friday, so if I'm going to go the whole hog and have concrete stairs to match my concrete floors, now is the time to jump or so I've been reliably informed by Mark my contractor. Well jump I have and concrete it is....floors and stairs co-ordinating already, a true Bradshaw/Beeny decision!!

So focused and on a mission, I've been browsing for ideas on www.concretestairs.ie, a "does exactly what is says on the tin" website, and the more imaginatively named www.stairporn.org, er.... "a not what it says on the tin" website, no naked bodies cavorting on steps, just great looking stairs!

This is my favourite so far. It's the subtle curve and the delicate balustrading that get me here, two little words "LOVE IT". I will be delighted if I manage to recreate a staircase as beautiful as this in my own hallway. However, as a "realist" I appreciate that a certain amount of the said beauty would be lost in my own house, what with the numerous pairs of shoes stacked upon the subtly curving treads along with the layers of school sweaters, coats and bags that are likely to adorn the delicate balustrading come 3 o'clock.....

This next gem of a staircase is located in a studio on Majorca which listed on www.shootfactory.co.uk. I'd like the underside of my main staircase to be exposed like this one, rather than solid to the floor as above......what do you think? I'm definitely going to go for this style of staircase in the games room.

Image courtesy of Shootfactory via stairporn.org

Just thought I'd mention that Shootfactory is a full-service location agency, representing UK and international properties, studios and venues for TV, film, photo shoots, product launches and events. An amazing site to trawl for ideas if you are as hooked on houses as me!

I'm most likely going to clad the stair treads in wood. The rustic sleeper treads above appeal, but think this is a tad too chunky to go with the curve and the steel balustrading that I'm hankering after.

Image source unknown

I will probably go for a tread like this one, think it's quite quirky how they have used stainless steel for the riser. An alternative option to the delicate stainless steel balustrade would be to "keep it concrete" like this example.....it all comes down to budget at the end of the day.....will keep you posted!!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Ikea Dublin.......I'm so excited!!

Arriving into Dublin Port in the beginnings of Monday morning, we were greeted by glimmering shafts of early morning sun, so uplifting when all you were really expecting to be met with was grey and wet. We'd been away for almost three weeks and having the sun out to greet us made me feel really happy to be back home in Ireland again.....

The two weeks we spent cruising on Ventura were pretty good (would definitely reconmend to any families out there thinking of cruising....our girls were blown away with the kids clubs on board, and that always makes for a happy holiday!) However, nothing in comparison to being met with giant billboards everywhere announcing the opening of the new IKEA store in Dublin on 27th July, now that really did make my heart skip a beat!!

Image courtesy of decor8blog.com

Saw these new Ikea PS collection items on decor8 recently and was totally reminded why I am such an Ikea fan.......'Ikea is for life' and not just the student days!! Ikea will definitely feature in the new house as it did in the old....

I loved this Ikea wardrobe so much after my 4 year old customised it, I entered it into a competition on Mydeco!! Don't think it will be coming with us to the new house sadly :-(

Friday, July 3, 2009

Parting Shots

Left a wet and windy Limerick behind us this morning, we had a rendezvous with the 8.30am ferry to Holyhead.....yeah, the start of our summer holidays!! Think my little man, The Child of Prague must be off for a few weeks in the sun himself. Judging by the disgusting weather we encountered en-route to Dublin Port, he's taken himself somewhere other than Ireland!!

Anyway, we are off on a two week jaunt round the med courtesy of P&O on their lovely new ship the Ventura. After spending the day today buying last minute bits & pieces at The Trafford Centre in Manchester (so miss the shopping in the UK - STILL!!) we head for Southampton in the morning to join the ship.

This is where we'll be visiting

Well cruising round the Med should take my mind off the house, site, mech & elec budget headaches for a couple of weeks......it'll all be there when I get back...along with the first floor!!

This is what the site looked like when we left Limerick.....things are progressing well and we are still on schedule (fingers tightly crossed) x

Kitchen from front elevation

Family Room (West Elevation) Can see the chimney breast emerging,
this is where my multi-fuel stove will sit, with huge windows either side!
Kitchen from the south elevation
more kitchen...
Where my back door will be soon.....
looking into the games room....
looking into a ground floor bedroom....

Family room from the rear!