rugged bliss

How we built Alpnhaus.

It all started in 2014 with planning application etc.

In March 2017, we began….


The Foundations
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The new septic tank and drainage began in April.
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This was in our garden, so that meant more mud and disruption everywhere!
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This was a memorable as we had 20 tonnes of gravel delivered and guests arriving at 3.00 so we all worked like crazy to get everything tidy for them. Then, after their 2 days of relaxation, it all got messy and buildery again!
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Middle of April 2017……
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Middle of May 2017 and we had so many tonnes of wood. We had to work out a way of getting the wood to look and feel like what our vision was. Which meant each one had to be burnt and brushed to raise the grain. It took a while…..and then some more time….and still more….
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End of May 2017 and the frame is going up. Apart from the morning when after a windy night and someone had forgotten to secure the frame, it was all twisted and nearly falling down!
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July 2017 and we start to make it all a bit sturdier and water tight. It between doing this building work, we are still creating a peaceful haven for our B and B guests. So working time is limited and quiet!
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July 2017 and we can't wait to start putting on our beautiful larch that we have worked so hard on.
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After spending the amount of a family car on insulation, some of it arrives at the end of July. It's all a bit over whelming!
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August 2017 and our slate tiles are delivered. As it turned out, we had ordered 4 tiles too many!
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Still so much to do. And sometimes the weather wasn't on our side.
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End of August and our solar panel are fitted. This also means that the tiles can go on and finally we are able to get Alpnhaus water tight.
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So much more work to do…are we nearly there yet?!
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There is, it seems, a never ending supply of wood that we need to burn and scrape…..burn and scrape…..and more and more……It is now October and really starting to get chilly. We still have no electricity in Alpnhaus so we are having to work from one really long extension cable and candles!
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November 2017 and we can start the wall surrounding Alpnhaus. First job is collecting them from around our garden. It's cold! We are also now able to cover up some mud and put in our driveway. It's such a relief not to have all the mud!
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We still haven't finished burning and scraping the wood. But now it's difficult as it's November and the job can only be done when it's not windy or rainy.
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We're now really feeling the cold, so candles in Alpnhaus give us a bit of warmth. Indoor jobs are now preferential.
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We're preparing the area outside ready for the stone wall. End of November and the first snow arrives. And we still have a pile of wood to use.
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It's boxing day, we have to work inside the chalet. It's too cold outside. Mind you, it's not that warm inside either!
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Mid January and the weather is very snowy. Still we did what we could. But at least we now had electricity.
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February 2018 arrives, we must crack on…..
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Fireproofing the inside and the beautiful Belgian bedding arrives.
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Starting to look tidy now
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March 2018 and the Beast from the East is here and we're utterly snowed in for 4 days.
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End of March, and we're ready for the last push.
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Beginning of April 2018 and the water and heating is turned on. A great day.
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We make it all lovely inside, it's all finished. Our architect comes to look and happily he's thrilled. We wait to get it all signed off by the council and building control. This happens in May. A most wonderful day.
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But we can't open yet as we have no hot tub. After already having been ripped off and losing our money on a bad choice of hut tub maker, we are now anxiously awaiting the second hot tub. Any day now…

16th May they turn up in the lorry (we ordered a new one for Heimlig too) but because we don't have a fork lift truck - who does - the lorry can't unload it. Our lovely farmer friend 5 miles away happily does own a fork lift, so the hot tub is delivered to his farm!

With the help of another friend with a trailer, we are able to put the hot tub in it's place.
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And at last Alpnhaus was ready to share the love.
It was an adventure. Looking back, I can't quite believe that we did it. But we did.

And we got an award for it!

Thank you to our builder and friend John Elliot of Newcastleton and Steven and Denis who came and helped when we just couldn't do it.

And our architect Ray Cherry who understood exactly what we were after and did the drawings what was in our heads.

Below it's me (Christa) then Del and John and then Ray.
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