Sunday, 24 February 2013

Name that tree!

This is what happens when you leave Mark and his dad alone with a chainsaw... 

To be fair they didn't get too carried away - one of the reasons we bought our house were the lovely trees in the backyard - a big Peppermint, two nice Banksias, a scruffy looking Tuart and some other miscellaneous Australian trees.. 
Now it's cleared it looks loads better but still nice and shady.

Here's a test for any green-fingered Antipodeans out there - what is this tree? -

It had small pink flowers a couple of months ago and now has those funny little nut... things. 
Any ideas?

Wednesday, 20 February 2013

Not quite there yet...

I still haven't got any 'after' photos to show you - and that's what I'm really doing this for after all!

Things are looking a lot whiter and cleaner but that doesn't make for very interesting photos.
So instead here are some random pics:

I resorted to Coke and Starbursts to get me through today...

Random Happy Meal chappy...

My special painting flip-flops thongs

I few weeks ago we had a flier in the letterbox advertising a house built in 1968 - it was described as having plenty of 'period' features - the mind boggles (I'm thinking original red formica kitchen and avocado bathroom suite...)

This is our own special period feature -

Yes - that is a tap in the corner of our living room - it doesn't work so I'm thinking it will be useful for...hanging stuff on?

Sunday, 17 February 2013

This weekend...

Disaster! Today I ran out of white paint! And the downstairs walls definitely need another (fifteen) coats...
So this afternoon I started sanding down the old wooden window!

I've only read three books so far this month (been a bit busy..) - a bit of Adrian Mole, The Little White Car by Danuta de Rhodes (which is actually Dan Rhodes' pseudonym - I only just found this out and it's very strange having read it believing it was written by a woman, and then discovering it was written by a man)
And 22 Britannia Road by Amanda Hodgkinson - which is a thought provoking look at family reunions after life changing events.

And this morning I found these little jars at the swap meet for $1!! Yes - one whole dollar!

Thursday, 14 February 2013

Tracey English Giveaway!

Fab UK illustrator Tracey English is having a giveaway on her blog - hop over there now if you fancy winning this lovely screen print.

(Although obviously I'm hoping I'll win...)

(Image copyright Tracey English)

Wednesday, 13 February 2013

Painting, more painting, and a fantastic find!

Painting progress report: after 52 coats of paint the doors are beginning to look more white then blue... I'm going to tackle the window frames on Friday.

Look what Mark brought back from the city yesterday!
OK, I asked him to - it was a real bargain on Gumtree.

It's a real beauty - all the original handles - and the glass is as good as new. I'm thinking it would go perfectly in the Art Deco house...

It needs painting..... join the back of the queue please

Monday, 11 February 2013

And so it begins...

Work has begun in earnest on The Ugly House - my mother-in-law 'volunteered' her services - she's a dab hand with a roller.

I let her go home today - between us we've touched up all the white internal walls, started painting the green ones and nearly finished painting the dark blue woodwork white (one of those nightmare jobs where every coat should be the last, until you stand back and can still see the blue!!! Aargh!)

I also came up with three reasons why it's a good idea to paint your house when it's 40 degrees outside:

1. The paint dries quickly
2. You lose half your bodyweight in sweat each day
3. You get to go for a swim when you've had enough

Those are the only three positives I could think of...

Mark has built half a fence and is finishing the gate tonight. (The table legs came in handy!)

And most importantly, we discovered what the pole in the middle of the living room is for -

Friday, 8 February 2013

The Ugly House - Before...

We christened our house 'The Ugly House' when we first saw it - e.g. 'Oh look, The Ugly House is still for sale'
When it was still for sale after six weeks, and Mark had got a job, and the seller had dropped the price, it started to look slightly less ugly, and slightly more... do-able.

Are you ready for some 'before' photos?

Look away now if you're easily disturbed.

This (apparently) is the kitchen... And yes, it's upstairs.. (Handy for a morning cuppa in bed)

This is the downstairs, which currently has a concrete floor and strip lights, but will soon be a lovely living room...

The stairs to the balcony are completely rotten and will soon be gone... (If you look closely you can see that the fourth step up is already missing)

That huge concrete water tank down the garden will one day be our swimming pool!
(I'm serious..)

This is the upstairs landing which is nice and big and has a door onto the balcony...

And this is me on day one, still looking quite happy and optimistic... 

What's the best way to get those stickers off the bathroom mirror?

Wednesday, 6 February 2013

The Good, The Bad and The Ugly House..

I picked up the key (singular) to our house this morning! 
(And two nice congratulatory bottles of Margaret River wine from our Estate Agent)

Think I'm going to need the wine as the first thing I did on getting the key was to drive to Bunnings and buy a box full of cleaning stuff and bug killer... I then drove to our new house and set off three Mortein bombs (to kill the bugs...) and then ran...
I'll go back tomorrow to sweep up the little corpses..

Since I couldn't go back in the house for two hours, and it was an hour before school pick up, I drove around our new neighbourhood taking photos of my favourite houses (and looking very suspicious cruising slowly down the streets taking photos out of the car window..)

It's a funny suburb, an equal mix of the original 60's fibro beach shacks, and the million dollar mansions that are slowly replacing them.

Here are some of my favourites:

This one is a little Art Deco gem, and probably the oldest house around - isn't it gorgeous?
Sea views too.

This is one of my favourite fibros, just for the jaunty way it's positioned on a corner block:

Mid-70's I'm thinking? There are lots of these A-frame houses around here - it didn't really take off as a house design though, did it?

This one is just pretty - look at that lovely fretwork - and a nice Wedgwood blue too:

I like the room randomly stuck on top of this one:

And, if I ever get depressed about the immensity of our renovation, I can always pop around the corner and look at this beauty... 

Tuesday, 5 February 2013

Guilt trip...

Well, I felt a bit guilty for being so happy after dropping the boys off at school yesterday....

So I baked them some cookies...

Put them in my new ebay found ice cream tin...

 And took them for a swim at the beach on the way home from school...

And I think we might do the same again today!

Monday, 4 February 2013

It's oh sooo quiet!

It's very quiet round here...
Why's that? Because I dropped my little treasures off at their (new) new school this morning!

(I love them really!) (But honestly, soooo quiet now.....)

We went down South for the day yesterday - by 8.30am we were in the sea, it was gorgeous.
I have serious sun umbrella envy - we need one, preferably a stripey one...

I've been running round town for the last two hours doing last minute house-buying jobs (bank transfers, boring paperwork etc) so we should hopefully have our house by Friday.

Here's a sneak peek at the outside - this is the best side by the way! It gets much, much worse..

Can't wait to get started!

Going to sit back with a cup of tea and enjoy the peace, hope you are too!

Friday, 1 February 2013

Chair potential

I picked up four cafe chairs for $10 each at a garage sale this week, and I'm planning their transformation - as soon as I pack the boys off back to school on Monday (can't wait....)
I've got 6 or 7 old chairs we brought over with us which might feel the paintbrush too...

I'm obsessed with the colour turquoise at the moment, but this green is quite nice too?
Or I could just copy my sister and go multi-coloured?

Ooh, decisions, decisions....

(Click on the pics for the original sources)