Wednesday, 12 January 2011

Larger victories..

Word has it the builders are re-doing the bathroom as requested! Apparently. So they say.

I am one of those "I'll believe it when I see it" kind of people, but we're feeling a bit more positive around here.

Monday, 10 January 2011

Small victories...

After attacking various plants on Saturday, including some of the smaller agapanthus, Matt came home from watching the cycling and decided to get stuck in to the two giant agapanthus plants which have been taunting us from the living room window - I know it is hard to look at this photo and see exactly what we are complaining about - the scraggly trees? The cracked fence? The weedy lawn? No, it's the two green luscious perennials situated in the centre and to the left of this photo:

I don't think they had ever been officially 'planted' - just dumped on the ground as the root systems were largely above the earth, and some were still plastic wrapped...

Anyway, after getting them out, we needed to figure out how to get rid of them - drag them down the hill and borrow a trailer and drive them to the Green Waste Dump? Hmmm, we couldn't really be arsed with that. So I thought - what about Trade Me ...(the rest of the world has eBay or Craigslist, but New Zealand has Trade Me). Matt said "no way" and "no one is going to want these". But I listed them anyway - as is, where is. $5 Buy Now.

We waited.

And less than six hours later someone had snapped them up and is apparently going to come and pick them up next weekend. With a trailer. And take them away. Then give us five bucks for doing so.


Saturday, 8 January 2011

Taking it out on something...

We have been here nearly twelve months and I feel like we have just been sitting back letting the garden get the better of us. Watching it grow and close in. So in response to the recent bathroom fiasco, I took to the outdoors today and attacked. There were no power tools, just a flannel shirt, some old jeans, some gardening gloves, a trowel, some secateurs, a hand-held saw and brute (or in my case not so brute) strength. And some anger.

I tore at weeds, ripped out as many of the hideous agapanthus I could get my hands on, and then I spied this tree:

Minding it's own business near the back courtyard. It kind of annoyed me. Just the way it looked. It attracts heaps of bees and flies too.

So I took to it with the hand saw:

Ten minutes later, it was a goner:

Just a stump remaining (well, a stump and a whole tree which needs to be cut up into smaller pieces to remove...).

Thursday, 6 January 2011

A long overdue update on the bathroom

I'm not going to harp on too much about this, as frankly it is getting us down. But as I mentioned in an earlier post, the tiling job wasn't super great. Here are just a few examples:

I have had to be totally brave and actually asked for all the tiles to be removed and for the builder to start again from scratch. Mental. I can't believe I asked that. We did spend ages agonising over it, wondering if maybe we are being unrealistic, and pedantic, and just plain fussy. And I felt sick when I got off the remains to be seen what happens.

I'm hoping that the whole thing will be finished by the end of February. But I have a horrible feeling I will still be posting about it in June. Hmmm.

Monday, 3 January 2011

We got ourselves some blinds for Christmas!

Yes, we really splashed out and got ourselves two blinds for the house. One for the huge front window and another for the sliding doors.

We have decided to go for Luxaflex Duette blinds, as they have a similar profile to the original venetians, but have the added property of providing some insulation when in use. As a bonus they kind of let the light diffuse through nicely, so that room almost feels lighter when they are down.

From the side they have a honeycomb profile which is how they can insulate:

And they are really slim when pulled up, so they don't interfere with the frame at all.

They are super dooper expensive though, so we only bought the two, but hopefully a bit later in the year we might be able to get a few more for the other downstairs windows.

The front one is currently permanently down as we had some big aftershocks on Boxing Day and I am so sure that that window is very close to shattering (it is old and thin and there mustn't be much flex in the frame)...we'll see.

Saturday, 1 January 2011

Happy New Year!

I got a new camera, so will back soon with lots of amazing photos and witty stories regarding our house...stay tuned.