What a busy month December has been - We started off with our Christmas pop-up shop; this year expanding up the front stairs and into the inner hall, so that we could showcase a wider range of art and crafts. The new 100m string of outdoor lights, as well as 8 cheeky up-cycled garden snowmen, successfully lit the way to the front porch as we welcomed more visitors than ever before.
The following week the front hall was reconverted from Christmas hop to wreath-making workshop: Rebecca and Catriona tutored us in how to make beautiful festive wreaths using an array of foliage, and every wreath produced looked stunning but individual to the maker. In order to sustain these creative endeavours Jane, from the Monymusk Bistro, laid on a feast of nibbles, coffee and soup which were served in the adjoining panelled parlour.
Both events helped raise valuable funds for our ongoing building inspection and survey, which our architect Dave Chouman (accredited by the RIAS in conservation architecture) is busy completing. This report will enable us to manage restoration and repairs carefully and in order of need.
On the 16th of December we all got a bird's eye view of the house as Dave treated us to a ride in a large (and thankfully very stable) cherry picker. Seeing the intricacies of the slate work on the turrets, as well as viewing the winter sun dappling the highest treetops, was invigorating and inspiring. He showed us how to check the harling for faults, and talked us through the required repairs in a very optimistic manner. (When a house is this old and large, optimism is key when planning for the future.)
Come Spring ,we will have a plan of action in place, and be ready to start the next phase in the never-ending, but rewarding, conservation of this historical building.