Meet The Family!

Hi there,

We are the little family who live at Snowdrop Cottage, a wee house, in a wee village, in Scotland.

Thanks for dropping by, why don't you come in and meet us all.

I'm Ann

I do most of the home-schooling, cooking, fixing, gardening, plastering, painting, organising and the day-to-day running of our home. 

My favourite power tool is an orbital sander. My favourite hand-tool is a paintbrush, if that counts... I also love my treadle sewing machine.

I am stubborn strong-willed and will tackle most challenges without fear of failure or injury - Due to this personality trait, I have several uncompleted 'challenges' and I injure myself on a fairly regular basis. (12, 3)
(I steer clear of large power tools for fear of instant death)

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Here's John
aka @gohn

He works full-time with data and stats. He loves techy things, and takes sole charge of our media servers and networks within the house. He also loves movies and chocolate.

His favourite power tool is a hammerdrill, his favourite hand tool is a philips screwdriver.

He does not enjoy porridge but eats it anyway. He has a bionic ear implant which means he can now converse with dolphins... but he still can't hear people talking to him in a crowded room.

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- We keep our kids' identities a little blurred -
- to reduce the cost of future therapy sessions - 
- we hope you understand -

This is 'Small' and 'Teeny'

Small is a super-cool 9 year old who loves writing stories, watching movies, reading and investigating awesome stuff. Her favourite band is Florence and the Machine.

Teeny is a very sweet toddler who loves story time, trying to catch a ball, and putting pretend cookies/cake/poo on your head (which is, evidently, hilarious)

At the end of the day, this is all for them.

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She is, well, she's a Cat. A middle aged lady coming on 14, who still thinks she is still a kitten. Her favourite pastimes include shredding toilet roll (see photo) and catching little furry creatures.

She is a part-time hunter who does a brilliant job at keeping our home mouse free.

In her free-time she likes to loll around in front of the fire.

She is both tiny and stubborn.

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Our home is Snowdrop Cottage a 250+ year old cottage in a small village in the middle of Scotland.  In our home we do everything that we can with our own 8 hands (and 4 paws). We build, cook, sew, learn, grow, and mend (and catch mice). This blog is the story of how we go about creating our own handmade home, and all our adventures along the way.

At the back of our home is what we call our mini-holding; a third of an acre of sloped messy lawn, which we are gradually turning into a productive garden. We have a poly-tunnel, large veg patch, small orchard and chickens.

We hope you find our blog inspiring and entertaining and every now and then, just a little bit helpful.

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A bit of a backstory...

We moved from our home city of Glasgow into our country cottage in 2007 with a new baby and lots of hopes for the future. 

In 2009, to bring our home up to modern standards, we decided to demolish the horrendous 1950s bathroom and 1970s kitchen and build a 2 storey extension incorporating a new kitchen, bathroom, shower-room and master bedroom.

The job was too large for us to tackle ourselves so we hired a builder to do the structural work - he came with references and credentials. Our home was completely destroyed by the incompetence of this builder who failed to follow either our plans or building regulations. Despite our best efforts, the building became uninhabitable and we were made homeless. Family stepped in to put a roof over our heads.

We were interviewed and filmed by TV makeover shows but we were never picked, we received countless empty promises of help from various sources. An online campaign grew and virtual strangers sent best wishes from around the world in all the ways that they could, we are forever thankful for their friendship and support through those dark days.

Our home was not habitable for more than a year, while we moved our family between relatives spare rooms across Scotland, and 'camped' in our own house in the summer. We were at the lowest of low, we struggled to hold our family together and, by the skin of our teeth, just managed to pull ourselves through to the other side.

Having exhausted our savings, bank loans and credit cards we were left in the horrid position of having to borrow money from family and friends just to make our home safe again.

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We picked ourselves up, dusted ourselves off and started all over again.

After having new builders make our home structurally sound we finally moved back home for good in Easter 2011, we had holes in the floors, none of the walls were plastered and the living-room had a bare concrete floor and no walls, there was no hot water, no heating, no shower or bath, no kitchen, no insulation and a lot of drafts.

We began doing everything ourselves: plumbing, pouring concrete, plastering, painting... and other things that start with P. Slowly turning what was a building site into the family home that we had always planned.

5 years later we have cleared our debts, rebuilt our home, and had another baby. The house is far from finished but we are a long way from those dark days of homelessness and debt.

You can follow our story and join in the conversation by subscribing to the blog or join us on the social networks, you'll find the links below.

Thanks for reading,

Ann x

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