So far since moving into our Nest, Andre and I have renovated the kitchen, the bathroom, the garden, laid new laminate flooring, and decorated throughout. The only big project we haven't tackled yet is the front garden - which is currently a hideous mess of concrete slabs, mud, patchy grass and overgrown hawthorn. Yummy.

So the plan is we're going to install a new paved driveway, a new picket-style wooden fence, and some wooden arches along the side of the house that we can train evergreen clematis and sweet peas to grow up in order to soften the overall look (to mirror the effect of our pergola/gazebo-type structure in the back garden):

This has led to some fairly hilarious discussions with Manchester city council. Me: "We're thinking of installing a trellis-style fence". The council: "Well, that doesn't sound very nice". Um, OK then. We've eventually compromised on a picket-style fence which fulfills the council's requirement to be see-through (apparently so we can't hide people in our garden) and my requirement to not cost so much money that we have to re-mortgage the house to afford it.

I'm planning to order the paving from a company called Simply Paving whom we have used previously to order our Stone Circle of Servitude Fortitude. Here are the options I'm considering so far:

Which do you like? All three options have different price ranges, with the most expensive option being twice the price of the least expensive option. Can you tell which is which? Go on, tell me you think the least expensive option (ie the one we're probably going to choose) is the most expensive one. I would LOVE that :-)

I've also placed an ad on Rated People to find a contractor to do all the heavy lifting, digging, and individual sett laying (Alice and Andre in 'actually hiring someone else to do the work' shocker) - I have no clue whether the going rate for this kind of work will be merely eyebrow-raising or full-on heart-attack-inducing, so watch this space - we may well end up doing everything ourselves as usual...