Our trip away allowed the accumulation of maintenance tasks around the house and in the garden and the better weather has provided a window to get them done.
There's gates, a wrought iron fence, the facia and the external windows to paint. The garden beds need weeding and mulching. We'll do most of it ourselves (with the help of the family) and be ready when the real summer comes. The work in progress is almost done and it will need to sit for a while before I start rewriting so the timing is good.
The spectre of down-sizing to a town-house, or something similar, has raised itself once more and we will have many discussions in the near future. Maybe this time, we'll do something about it, because we both realize it will have to be faced some time.