Tuesday, 26 April 2016

House - kitchen and dining

Well, here it is.... finished at last.  Today we received our Certificate of Occupancy (although we've been living in the house 2/3 weeks now).  Mick's spent the time while we've been living here finishing off the many fiddly things.  He built a fabulous built in shelving unit too.

We spent yesterday unpacking boxes to fill the built in shelving. It was a fun day and we really enjoyed rediscovering our favourite books and knick knacks. It's really starting to feel like home. We love it!

For a start, here's some photos of the kitchen and dining area. A bit of an odd assortment taken day and night.  I'll take some more next weekend.

Sunday, 6 March 2016

House - cabinets and cooker

Despite the heat, work on the house has progressed.  We've had quite a few new items piling up in the shed waiting for installation.  We bought a Belling freestanding cooker, a Morso wood burner, and an instantaneous gas hot water unit.  The dollars are rolling out the door.  The cooker is in place and I really like it.

Mick's made a huge leap forward with getting the bathroom vanity unit in place. It was an awkward moment as we maneuvered it down the hallway and there was no way we could turn the corner into the bathroom with it! We tipped it up, we turned it over, we started talking about which bits he might have to remove to get it through the doorway and then we decided to have one more go. We carried it on its side down the hall and then very carefully tilted it into the doorway, turning it as we went. I'm guessing we had about 3mm to spare!

The laundry cabinets are in place now too. We bought a two drawer flat pack unit that will be our laundry hamper. We had a pull out hamper in our house before going to the UK and loved it. We wanted one again and this was a great solution in a small space. I'm very happy with the amount of storage we've managed to squeeze in.  The washing machine can be pulled out of storage and put in place now.

The timber benchtops for the bathroom vanity, the laundry, and the kitchen island are almost complete. I'm sure I've taken some photos of them but they must be on my camera so maybe next time.

Klara is a keen supervisor.  We've made a decision that she won't be allowed down the hall and into the bedrooms, bathroom or laundry.  So, we have started teaching her that she must stay in the open plan living/kitchen area and not follow us down the hall.  It's going better than I expected because until now she's had run of the place.  We are trialing a spot for her bed and will see how that goes.  At the moment she just wants to sprawl on the floor because of the heat.

Saturday, 5 March 2016

Tuesday, 23 February 2016

Good flooring for a narrowboat?

We were just talking last night about the flooring we are using in the house.  We think it could be a great option in a narrowboat.  It's actually from a UK company called Karndean. The boards are vinyl and just get laid straight down onto the level surface beneath.  The product is called Looselay.  At first we were a bit skeptical about the idea of it not all being glued down but having seen it successfully used in a commercial environment we were sold. The perimeter of the room does get stuck down and in our case we need to use a special two pack adhesive in the bathroom and laundry to comply with wet area regulations.  The rest of the house the boards can be lifted back up and replaced or swapped around if necessary.

It has turned out to be a pretty easy installation with very minimal waste.  They told us to allow up to 10% wastage when we ordered it but it won't be anything like that.  We have been using the off cuts from one row to begin another row so that the joins will be staggered.  The only time an off cut can't be used is if it has been cut by us at both ends.  It needs to be the perfect factory edge that meets the next board.  We have about half a dozen pieces left over like this now (halfway through the job) but even they won't be wasted.  We figured we can use them under the feet of the bed or other furniture that might mark the flooring.

Saturday, 20 February 2016

House - Floor in progress

I took my car to the dealership this morning to have a minor issue dealt with.  I got home to the unexpected start of the floor being laid.  When Mick gets an idea in his head there is no stopping him.  So that was the rest of the day taken care of.  Mick cutting and laying boards and me opening boxes and sorting boards so we had a good selection. So now the 2 bedrooms, hallway and walk in robe are finished and they look great.  Klara wasn't impressed with being locked out of the house.  She couldn't work out why should couldn't come in today. At the end of the day we let her in and she walked around sniffing the new flooring.

Not the best photos..... my camera battery was flat so these are taken with my phone.

Monday, 8 February 2016

House - busy Monday

Today was a huge day of progress on the house!

The Caesarstone benchtops arrived.
The split system heater/cooler was installed.
The last of the lights fittings were put in.
The power was connected.

I picked up parcels from the post office..... a very heavy box containing all the cupboard/drawer door handles.  After searching high and low for what is a very common type handle but being unable to find it anywhere in chrome, we ordered them from a UK company!  Sad isn't it when you can have them shipped direct to you cheaper than buying them in a shop. 

In the afternoon Mick and I went to Bendigo to knock off a few items from out list.  We ordered the blinds (paying a hefty deposit), ordered a shower screen, bought a new shower head (the plumber put the outlet so low that the previous one we bought is now so low we can't stand under it!), and finally bought some LED globes for the pendant lights in the kitchen.  When we toted up the financial damage for the day we discovered that in one day we're paying out near on 10% of our total budget. Ouch!!!

Monday, 25 January 2016

House - painting

The house is progressing well and we're cautiously hopeful it might be finished by Easter. We'll see. I don't want Mick to feel any pressure to hurry. He's getting too old for working such long hours! For the first time ever we paid a painter to come and help him with his most hated job. Together they spent four days and pretty much got the job done. It's so much more effort to paint timber lining boards than smooth plaster. There's a little more to go but it's looking great.

Now it's all been cleaned out in preparation for the flooring to go down (piles of boxes in the middle of the room). There are a couple of things to be done before that - Mick won't have other tradesmen working over his new flooring. The split system heating/cooling unit has to go in, the kitchen benchtops installed and the electrician needs to come back and make some modifications to the wiring. We changed our mind about the lighting and have bought downlights for the open living/kitchen (although we assured the electrician at the beginning that we would never choose downlights!). 

This house is so very different to any of our previous homes. It's more modern and it's white! Some of the decision making has been a bit difficult. We're used to dealing with our previous historic home and choosing things for that house seemed so easy in comparison. We had traditional colours and they were quite strong colours. It's what we knew and what we were used to. Now we're trying to choose modern fittings that will fit in with what has become a bit of a Scandinavian look. It's only a little house and we love the fact it's so light and bright. Every evening we go across to the house and wander around. We can't wait to move in!

Sunday, 3 January 2016

Happy New Year catchup

It's been a very busy few weeks since we got home from Tasmania.  We said farewell to Carol, got through the silly season with several visitors, and have been busy with the progress of the house. I'm way behind with my record keeping and am feeling the pressure to choose, buy or order the next items needed for the house.  Mick's been painting and now installing the kitchen. 

We had some very hot weather leading up to Christmas.  Lucky Carol left just in the nick of time with the week from then on being 35 degrees plus every single day. Thankfully it eased off for a few days from Boxing Day and now we even have a good few days ahead that will only reach high 20's.  That's a big relief for us.

There have been dreadful fires along the Great Ocean Road over the Christmas period and Christmas day 98 houses were lost in Wye River - 1/3 of the town!  The fire has been burning for a couple of weeks now and still isn't under control.  How frightening for the local residents, some of whom are only now being allowed back in to their homes.  The Great Ocean Road businesses will be suffering too with no tourists allowed in and locals having been evacuated.  Not a very merry Christmas.

Klara met Lochlin, my friend Vic's new guide dog puppy.  We thought she'd be gentle and motherly with such a tiny pup but she was so excited she just saw him as another playmate.  When Anthony and Leanne were here with Zac she had  a great time running through the doggy tunnel which I haven't brought out for a quite a while. 

I bought a couple of old quilts on Ebay and went to collect them.  The lady selling them had the most enormous collection of antique quilts I've ever seen.  It was lovely to see and also to meet someone as passionate about their antique quilts as I am.

Now it's time to go back to work.

Carol waiting for the airport bus

3 nieces

Klara's dog walking group
Lochlin, the guide dog puppy

Lochlin testing out Klara's bed

Non stop playing

Running with Zac

Klara & Zac

Klara loves the doggy tunnel


Kitchen in progress

A big tidy up
Veggie garden shade

More antique quilts than I've ever seen in one place!