Home and garden plans for 2018

We have almost been in our house for almost 3 years now. We knew it would be a long term renovation project when we moved in. However, to be honest, we totally underestimated just how long it would take. At first glance it doesn’t look like we have done much. In fact we have spent this time replacing windows, removing unsafe chimneys and other essential structural work. Now that the important donkey work is finally complete we can continue renovating, safe in the knowledge that the building isn’t going to crash around our heads. So what are our home and garden plans for 2018? They fall broadly into 2 categories. Fantasy and reality!

Home and garden plans for 2018

Home and garden plans for 2018


Loft conversion plans

In an idea world we would do a loft conversion. We had the plans drawn up with a view to doing the work last year. Then disaster struck and although the resulting bathroom is my pride and joy the work was budget busting and I don’t know when we will be able to start the project.

Now that the children are older we always seem to have a house full of their friends. It seems like I blink and an extra child has appeared out of the woodwork. We need extra space so they can spread out (and get from under my feet). The plan is to add 2 rooms in the front loft. 1 will be an extra bedroom and the other will be a study/den for the children. With gcses looming a study space is going to be vital so we need to find a creative alternative in the meantime.


In the absence of a lottery win we have to be realistic. We have a couple of projects on the go that I want to get completely finished before we move on. Does anyone find that they have a house full of 80% done projects and none are complete? Just before Christmas we split our lounge into 2 rooms. The lounge is almost finished. However, the hallway is like something out of a horror film.

Hallway mid renovationEek! The doorway for the new lounge

Hallway renovation front viewSince this photo was taken we have fitted a door and architrave but not a lot else. On the bright side we have found the original tiling under the laminate so we hope to excavate them. The plan is to add panelling to the walls. This means we only have to plaster half of the walls. As an added bonus it will also stop the blasted cat from scratching the wallpaper off!


A much easier project will be our bedroom. Since we renovated it the wood for the architrave and picture rails has moved slightly and needs a little bit of attention. We expected this as new wood will naturally shrink and swell with changes in room temperature and can take a few years to settle. While we are recaulking etc I’m going to give the room a lick of paint.

Previous bedroom makeoverThe bedroom needs a little bit of tlc now

In the garden I need to finally get to grips with our vegetable patch. Vegetable patch is overstating it at the moment. It is really a fenced off area with a few blackberries and strawberries amongst the weeds. Late last year we saw the addition of an apple tree and tayberries (my absolute favourite). I was also recently given a poly tunnel so I now have no excuse to get going on my little plot. I hope to get the children involved and will probably pay them to do the digging until my hip problems ease.

Other plans (if we should ever find the time)

This is of course only half of what we plan. We have 2 of the children’s bedrooms ‘almost’ finished and another waiting to be started. Our giraffe bathroom (don’t ask) needs a complete overhaul and we still haven’t painted the new plaster from last year in the kitchen/diner.

For those of you planning a renovation project take heed from this post. It never finishes! But if that’s the sort of thing that floats your boat you will have the time of your life doing it!!

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  1. 1st March 2018 / 11:14 PM

    Ah, it all takes time – and money – and while it’s nice to have a goal, and have it all done, often it isn’t all done anyway so don’t be too hard on yourself – thanks for sharing with #PoCoLo

    • Louisa
      8th March 2018 / 5:52 PM

      Thanks Stephanie. It can be a little disheartening when you have so many plans but so few funds!!

  2. 23rd February 2018 / 7:26 AM

    We are finally starting our small house extension and upgrade inside our existing rooms >>> SCARY and EXCITING at the some time. Good luck!! Popping by very late from #Pocolo (computer and life issues delayed me!)

    • Louisa
      8th March 2018 / 5:53 PM

      Good luck with your plans! I know exactly what you mean about it being exciting and scary at the same time

  3. 13th February 2018 / 11:11 PM

    Gosh… We moved out of our house just over a year ago. It was a renovation project when we moved in over seven years ago, and it still was one when we moved out. Even though we’d been working on it pretty much the whole time… Loved being a house owner, but… Anyway, hoping all goes really well with your projects for this year! x #MMBC

    • Louisa
      18th February 2018 / 8:17 PM

      That’s the problem isn’t it, that it’s never ending. I think by the time we have finished it will be time to redecorate the rooms we started with. I do love the freedom to knock down walls though, I think I was a property developer in another life!

  4. 12th February 2018 / 10:38 AM

    I have never renovated a house but I can imagine it takes more time and money than you think. When we’ve done smaller decorating or repair jobs in our house they’ve often taken longer than we anticipated!


    • Louisa
      12th February 2018 / 3:49 PM

      I think that when you are renovating you have to add a zero to any quote because it always comes in so much more expensive than planned!

  5. 11th February 2018 / 9:22 AM

    you’ve done so much already, the loft conversion will be nice, we did that and it really was worth the extra money having dorma windows put in to make two full sized rooms

    • Louisa
      11th February 2018 / 7:10 PM

      We plan on a dorma too. Glad it worked out for you, hopefully ours will be a success as well

  6. 11th February 2018 / 7:46 AM

    We’ve got a renovation project too so I feel your pain – we thought we’d got the basics done but we’re about to start work fixing the roof of a Victorian dog kennel in the garden – that’s something I didn’t expect to ever have to do!

  7. 10th February 2018 / 7:05 PM

    Bless you Louisa – I really do feel for you. I know how it feels. You’re so nearly there though – and just think of the value you’ve added. It will all be so worth it! Thanks so much for sharing xx #HomeEtc

  8. 10th February 2018 / 3:48 PM

    I’d love to see the children’s bedrooms – you seem to be making a lot of progress!


    • Louisa
      11th February 2018 / 7:23 PM

      I will share an update when they are fully finished!

  9. 10th February 2018 / 2:12 PM

    Oh my, that’s some project you took on there! I love having a plan and seeing it come to fruition but I had that in between stage and we almost never completely finish anything! Your ideas sound great though. Definitely recommend having somewhere for the kids to hang out ?

    • Louisa
      11th February 2018 / 7:37 PM

      Your outside space is amazing, it gives me hope that we can achieve something our kids will love as much!

  10. 10th February 2018 / 12:43 PM

    Oh, I love a good home improvement project. It looks like you are getting on really well with yours!
    We have recently moved into our house and have loads to get on with.

    Thanks for sharing with #MMBC. Hope to see you Monday x

    • Louisa
      11th February 2018 / 7:33 PM

      It sounds like you have renovations and lots of diy in your future too. Good luck!

  11. 10th February 2018 / 9:45 AM

    We bought a ‘fixer upper’ too and I know exactly what you mean about how long things take. After around 6-7 years, we have FINALLY been able to start our major work – a double height back and side extension. We had some hiccups in the road, but I’m finally keeping in mind the end result and am determined not to get obsessed about all the dirt and dust!

    • Louisa
      11th February 2018 / 7:30 PM

      I can guarantee that the dust and dirt will cause some frayed tempers but your plans sound amazing!

  12. 9th February 2018 / 7:55 PM

    It sounds like you have already done a lot – the frustrating things are the bits you can’t see – like structural stuff, but at least you have the groundwork in order, so you can move onto the cosmetic decor that is more obvious.
    I laughed when you said your hallway was like a horror movie!! It actually looks very bright and spacious. It’ll be wonderful when it is finished.

    • Louisa
      11th February 2018 / 7:29 PM

      Thank you, yes the hall is a lovely big space, so hopefully the work will be worth it in the end

  13. 9th February 2018 / 5:25 PM

    I’ve fought the difference between fantasy and reality in my homes my whole life. “If I only had the money….” has been a frequent refrain. #PoCoLp

    • Louisa
      11th February 2018 / 7:27 PM

      I already have my fantasy self build constructed in my head for when we are millionaires. For now I shall try to be realistic

  14. 9th February 2018 / 1:11 PM

    I am very curious about the giraffe bathroom. Our house needs a complete overhaul so I was reading this and thinking about all of the things we need to do. Like you, I could do with a lottery win to get there but we will start this year to try and get started. Love your dressing table by the way.

    • Louisa
      11th February 2018 / 7:26 PM

      The giraffe bathroom is a very ‘marmite’ room. We hate it! My dressing table is much loved thank you

  15. 8th February 2018 / 11:07 AM

    Hi Louisa, it sounds a nightmare at the moment, but I can imagine how lovely a family home you will have when all the work is complete. We rent our home, so I’ve never had the urge to renovate, but there have been times when we’ve played the ‘imagine what we would do if this was our house’ game and there is plenty…I’ve just had to look up what a tayberry is!… They do sound nice!


    • Louisa
      9th February 2018 / 1:09 PM

      Even in our previous rented homes we have renovated some of them (lucky landlords). We just cannot help ourselves! Honestly, tayberries are just gorgeous. It’s a shame you don’t ever see them for sale in a supermarket x

  16. 7th February 2018 / 4:27 PM

    Oh I’m so with you on the renovation pain! “Almost finished” is a bit of a catchphrase in our house. Loving the the “fantasy”! You’re making great progress though! I know it won’t feel like it to you, but trust me… You have! Thanks for linking up lovely #BLOGGERSHOMES xx

    • Louisa
      9th February 2018 / 1:07 PM

      We have even started buying lottery tickets in the hope we can afford our fantasy!! x

  17. 7th February 2018 / 2:32 PM

    80% finished? That sounds like my house 🙂 🙂 I never finish projects as I’m too inpatient and move to another one before completing the first (or because it’s cheaper). I’m sure you’ll get there 🙂 Love your writing! #HomeEtc

    • Louisa
      7th February 2018 / 2:40 PM

      Thank you Anne Marie!
      I think with us we find we don’t have the supplies we need to finish a particular project, so we move on, thinking we will go back to it the following week. And of course we never go back to them!

  18. 7th February 2018 / 2:31 PM

    Took us 11 years before we had our cottage in some kind of presentable order (we had a party to celebrate) and structurally sound. Even so, still working on areas, and the plans for the extension have gathered an inch of dust. You have done a lot in 3 years.

    • Louisa
      7th February 2018 / 2:38 PM

      Thanks Cheryl. I think because so much has been structural it doesn’t feel like much has changed. I usually redecorate then move house every few years. We have no plans for moving this time so it’s a total change for us!

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