In this photo, Steve has his Shop-Vac set up on the porch with a long hose running up to the roof (where he is out of shot here) to use to vacuum out the chimney from above while he also scrubs on it with long brushes.
After working on the chimney from above, he came inside and removed the sheets he had over the fireplace to prevent soot from shooting out into the living room. He then pulled the fireplace insert out of the chimney and vacuumed behind and inside it. I helped him shift the insert (which is very heavy) in and out as needed.
After getting everything set back in place and the tools put away, Steve cleaned up and then Lisa, Steve, and I chatted for a while. We haven't had any plumbing issues (aside from small things Lisa can handle) this year, so we haven't had to call on him for plumbing.
Steve is semi-retired now, but still does chimney sweeping in the autumn. We're happy that he keeps coming back and cleaning our chimney. It's very cheap insurance against a chimney fire, especially given how the wood fire is our primary source of heat in the house. For the moment, the small electric oil heater is enough to keep the living room comfortable, but it likely will only be a couple of weeks at most before we'll have to start burning wood.