Saturday, 29 June 2013

little jobs

School holidays-I love you! I have spent the first week exercising, eating well, catching up on sleep, reading and TV shows (ohmygod-Mad Men!!!). I've also been checking off a heap of little wedding jobs, and decluttering and reorganising like a mad woman!

Our hall table arrived! Initially we freaked out, and thought it was too big, but a little styling and getting used to it fixed that. This is only temporary styling-we are going to hang a big mirror on the wall to reflect more light in to the lounge room. It has lots of my favourite things-a small bone box from Turkey, filled with all of our random overseas coins. Two of our travel photo books-one from our year living in London, and one from our Turkey and Egypt trips. My favourite, limited edition Versailles Glasshouse candle. I use it sparingly! I also thought it was a nice place from some inspirational and happy quotes I picked up from Kikki K. I've had words with L that it is to stay pretty, and not be a dump ground. Hopefully it being nice now will mean that it can stay that way. 

It's such beautiful wood-Tasmanian Blackwood
You can see how narrow our hallway is

Our bookcase in the dining room was overflowing, so I pulled it out and started again. I'm not sure if I like the colour-coding or not. But it looks less like books shoved in. I find it hard to make a bookcase look nice with lots of books-and I am a reader, and a book lover-no ipad reading for me! Bad blogger didn't get a before-but here is a cropped shot from a few months ago-add in about 20 more books piled in there.
This photo is about a year old-that's our stove before it was installed!

And now
My vent for the week is at gumtree. I've been looking for some wooden bedside tables. We have gone without for a year, and I am sick of reading with a headlamp at night. I figure I'll get something cheap, paint them, and when we get around to getting good ones I will just re-purpose them to the spare room. I found some good ones the other day, good price. I texted the seller asking questions-INCLUDING are they wood, or a veneer over chipboard. The reply came-wood. I drove for 25 minutes to go pick them up, and while the front was wood, the sides were bulging chipboard, that was dropping flakes everywhere) covered with a laminate veneer. So I drove another half an hour back, minus the bedsides. FRUSTRATING. Vent over.

I have linen press and bathroom storage to go and deal with!

We also sent off our invitations! I love them! Here they are-a good friend made them for us, and we had them printed. They are printed on a linen paper, apart from the post card, which needed a heavier cardstock. 

Are you decluttering? I find winter is good for it-you stay home, and want to feel nice in your home!

Wednesday, 26 June 2013

ideas needed...

Last downstairs post for awhile... Promise! :) 

We've finally basically finished painting downstairs, and I love it!! I can't wait to keep going with the rest of the house, although the purple will now have to wait until after the wedding. 
I painted the stair railing in Lexicon Quarter gloss, the same as our skirtings. I basically did a quick coat on the vertical posts (they were already white, and just needed a freshen up, but the railing took a few coats to cover up the green. 
I was pretty keen to get rid of the final traces of green, but we aren't sold on the white railing-what do you think? Leave it white? Or maybe a double/triple strength Antique White USA to bring in some contrast? Ideally we would replace the railing with a varnished wooden one, to tie into the stairs and floors, but until then... 

The green is still fighting through!
Look-we managed to finish off that tricky bit above the stairs-vjs, high angles, stairs, lots of funny bits to cut in-not ideal! But it looks amazing. Just need to paint around the window, and a bit of skirting in the white gloss. We did it all in Antique White, even the ceiling-cutting in and fiddly details were just too much!

We need something for this bit of wall/roof, but are not sure what it is. It's right at eye level, and quite close really when you are going downstairs, and it just seems like a big, blank area at the moment. A print? A clock?-seems a bit useless..., a mirror?-almost like a last check on the way out? A photo? Hmmm.... any ideas? It's quite narrow and tall.
One last before to leave you with... 
... so much better!

Any ideas about our railing and that funny bit above the stairs? Would love to hear them!!

Saturday, 22 June 2013

future, future plans...

I thought while I was posting about downstairs I would show you our plans for the far distant future. Currently our house has  3 bedrooms-1 downstairs, 2 upstairs and also the sunroom. Downstairs we also have a big garage that is built into the house.

The big empty garage before we moved in
Looking back the other way. It does not look like this now....
What we would eventually like to do is change the direction of the stairs from the main part of the house, so they go into the garage, and  convert the garage into a big family room/ rumpus room. It would mean putting a floor in, as currently there is just the cement slab, and a ceiling as the current room is just the bottom of the floorboards and big beams. We would also put in some bigger windows, and probably some doors where the current roller door is. We could put a shed out to the side, so it wouldnt be a whole wall of doors. I want to build a wall already to block off the laundry/storage area from garage, so hopefully that will already we there. We could then easily turn the current room under the stairs into a big fourth bedroom, which would have access to the bottom deck. Could maybe even sort out a walk in robe, by stealing a little bit of the current garage... Hmmmm. One day maybe....
Do you have any one day plans??

Tuesday, 18 June 2013

fixing downstairs

After our burst pipe we had a few things fixed. We had to wait a few months to see what damage there was. Some of the initial damage went away-the walls and skirting went back to normal after they dried out, but some things took time to show up-like the floors. 

A few sections of the roof had bowed quite badly, so they were replaced. Unfortunately, they repainted it green again, which we then repainted a few months later. 

The downstairs floors also began cupping due to the water damage, as that is where the water lay. The moisture levels had to settle, and that took a few months. The floors were originally stained to match upstairs, but we took a risk and didn't get them re-stained after they were sanded. I'm so glad, as they are such a lovely colour, and a quite bit lighter. It actually shows a lot less dust too!! These photos are from after we repainted the walls and ceiling. I love our downstairs floors so much-so glossy and smooth. I REALLY want to do our upstairs ones now, but they are a little way off yet...

We also got two new vanities, as the chipboard did not hold up too well. We were quite limited with our choices due to the small bathrooms, I have a little DIY improvement coming up. 

Sorry about the bad lighting-it's hard to get photos before
or after work at this time of year!!!

Downstairs is basically finished now, with the floors refinished, and the walls, ceilings and skirtings all repainted. We do have to do something about the lights down there actually. We are going to buy a new bed for downstairs and turn it into our main spare room. It means that anyone staying with us has their own area, and bathroom, and we wont wake them when we get up early in the morning. Eventually we will move our current lounge room setting to the room under the stairs, and get another TV, but that is a few years into the future-probably when we have kids..... 

Sunday, 16 June 2013


We did have some unplanned work go on in our house this year-all caused by a burst pipe upstairs. 

L works shift work and had an afternoon start. I went off to work, he went off for a surf. He got back about 2 hours later, opened the garage door and water was gushing through the floorboards. He rushed up through the bottom story, water running down the walls, pouring down the stairs, dripping through the roof to find water gushing out from below the upstairs bathroom vanity. He ran out and turned off the mains water. 

Thankgod he was on a late-if it had been me that had come home to find that I don't know what I would have done. Apart from the fact that he found it at about 9.30, if it had run all day long-for 6 or 8 hours the damage could have been a lot worse. 

We were so lucky. We live entirely upstairs, downstairs is for the future. There are only the two of us, and we moved here from a unit, so we have no furniture, no electronics, nothing downstairs. Luckily because of the bathroom being close to the stairs and because of the floorboards, all the water went downstairs. If we had had different flooring it could have spread out across the top floor and damaged furniture and electronics. 

We had an emergency visit from a plumber and an electrician to sort out the pipe, and check the everything was safe. 

We don't have photos of the water-L was too busy trying to clean it up. These photos are from a bit later that day-about 8 hours later. 

You can see where the water flowed through from upstairs
Downstairs floor-it was already damaged in some places
There was about a meter square of floor that was really scratched. We think once there was an office downstairs, and someone used a wheelie chair without a mat underneath.
Water flowing down the light fitting

Water dripping from the cornicing

It was over the coming days and weeks, and even months that the damage really became apparent. The roof bowed in a few places, paint bubbled, skirting swelled up, the skirting separated from them walls and the floorboards started to cup. 

Don't mind L's ugly feet

Because it burst in the bathroom the water proofing stopped the water, so it flowed out down the stairs, and through the floorboards. It then spread out across almost the whole downstairs ceiling, so the damage was quite widespread to the roof and cornicing. We were hoping we would get a paint job covered, but that didn't happen. 

I just want to point out that our 'flooding' was really minor in the scheme of things, and is in no way compared to the heartache and absolute disaster that lots of people have experienced. We have friends who lost everything, and weren't covered by their insurance in the 2011 floods-they are still missing walls in their house. 

I'll be back with the repairs. Have you had any disasters?

Tuesday, 11 June 2013

house plans

I'm a visual person. I need to see things for them to make sense. I'm sure some of you are too, so I thought I would show you our house plans. We did them up on It's simple, but a can be a bit fiddly to figure out, and sometimes does weird things.

Top floor. This is basically where we live. Our bedroom is the middle one on the left, that also opens onto the office/sunroom.

Bottom floor. This is usually fairly empty. It has a slightly smaller footprint than the top floor, as the top floor has the front deck, and there is nothing but the clothes line under the dining room.
North is directly to the right. As you can see there are a few rooms that you haven't seen yet, so I'll have some posts about them coming up soon! 

Monday, 10 June 2013

i'm back...

Sorry I disappeared for a few weeks. I broke the blog!!

I was renovating my page-hope you like the new look!!-and somehow messed it up royally. I took it as a sign to close it down for a few weeks, get my reports written, and do lots of fiddly wedding stuff, rather than procrastinate by trying to fix it.

Reports are now written, over 8500 words later, wedding invitations are addressed, and we finally (almost!!) finished painting all the fiddly bits downstairs.

I have a few things up my sleeve to show you, and promise I wont go away again! I missed you all!


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