Thursday, 27 September 2012

Hack, hack, hack it apart

 We had a couple of trees fall down off the bank when it snowed a while back...  so today I paid a couple of guys to bring their chainsaws and clear them away..

We arranged for two hours work, as that's all we can afford right now, but fortunately they flew through it, and actually cleared masses of broken trees, vines and weeds, right back to our boundary.

That structure up on the bank is some sort of look-out. It's not ours, it sits just on the other side of our boundary, and it obviously hasn't seen sunlight for years.

It's amazing how much space we have uncovered. And it makes me all excited about landscaping and having a proper garden and lawn.....but we still need to wait for stupid EQC to settle our land claim before we can do much more.

Thursday, 20 September 2012

Garden Progress

February 22nd 2011:

October 2011:

February 2012:


At last some really noticeable improvements - with the scaffolding down, my mum and I got stuck into the garden yesterday, turned the soil, laid some compost and planted a few seedlings. There's still a long way to go, but at least the view out of the kitchen window is slightly more bearable than it has been.

For those wondering, the tarpaulin is still covering the back doors as they were replaced, and the new ones have not yet been painted.

Monday, 17 September 2012

All clean and shiny

The scaffolding came down last weekend (but is still on site - scattered around the house).  We are so happy with the final result - it's so nice to have our house back like it was pre-earthquake (well, the outside at least).

On a sunny day the glare makes it kind of difficult to actually look at. And we couldn't be happier about the window sills - glad we took the time to make them nice and crisp.

They are a small detail, but make all the difference when you are looking up at the house.

Thursday, 6 September 2012

Honey, honey.

I mentioned a couple of posts ago that our house is now watertight and sealed for the first time since February 2011. Naturally I was a bit concerned when I saw two streaks of moisture tracking down the kid's bedroom wall:

On closer inspection, they were clearly not water - they were sort of yellow, and sticky. I started to get a bit weirded out, thinking that maybe it was an animal slowly rotting, or could it even be sap from the wood? Surely not?

Then I remembered that nearly twelve months ago, we had bees swarming around the house. I didn't think they had spent enough time here to make a hive, but...

Sure enough, when I got up the courage to taste the sticky slimy stuff... it's honey! We have honey running down our walls! Presumably when we sealed the small ceiling space, the heat has built up and now it is melting...just what we need.

Tuesday, 4 September 2012

DId I say finished?

Oops, when I said that we had finished painting the outside, I forgot the bit where Matt and I went up on the scaffold on Saturday and painstakingly applied paint to the edges and underneath of the window sill tiles. 

This should have really been done ages ago as they had been all messy from when we recycled the tiles back in 2010.

We also painted the small overhang where the tiles sit out from the wall, so that you can see a sharp dark line from below.

Things are starting to look nice and sharp now.

Saturday, 1 September 2012

Painting, done.

The weather this week has been amazing - five days straight of sunshine and breeziness. Perfect painting weather. All week the painters have been up on the scaffolding putting coat after coat on the walls. The ultimate goal was to make the new blockwork seamless with the old. They did a good job trying, but I think we will always be able to see where the old blocks are taken over by the new:

See the transition up there? But that's okay, I think it's kind of important that some parts of the house still tell the 'story' of the earthquake.

I went up yesterday and washed all the windows (it's not very often that we get the chance), and it looked pretty sweet overall.

They also applied a line of grey paint along the edge of the roof tiles, so make them look ultra-sharp. 

And with that, the outside of our house is finished. The scaffolding can go away...hopefully for a long time.