Archives for the month of: April, 2012

I probably shouldn’t post while I’m feeling this way (tired, displaced, devoid of humour) but for those of you who are following this blog, I feel I should try and offer up something. There aren’t any photos as there hasn’t been any progress that would actually show up in photos. I’ve done a bit more painting but it’s far from finished. It’s a big job for a small girl. It would be so much better if Craig was able to help out but until his exhibition is Canberra is done, I’m all on my lonesome.

The girls have persuaded me to let them get rabbits. Am I insane? We already have a smelly, fur-shedding dog that attracts ticks like there’s no tomorrow and costs us a small fortune in vet bills. But little girls love small, cute animals and given that the are eight and seven (almost) they are at the age when it’s ‘now or never’. They’ll lose interest in a few years and they’ve promised me that they’ll do all the feeding and cleaning of hutches. I’ve promised myself that I’ll hold them to that promise instead of doing the usual – giving up and doing it myself because it’s a lot quicker and hassle free.

Anyway, it’s a bit depressing knowing that the working week begins tomorrow and I’ve achieved practically nothing. Now where on earth are the school uniforms that need washing? I’ll have to run a lead from the bathroom onto the deck so I can do some laundry! FUN!




Here’s the first glimpse of the kitchen bench tops after installation. Excitement plus for me!!!!  I’m most happy with my choice! How’s the funky pattern left behind by old tiles? When we first moved in (2006) and I ripped off the ’80s apricot tiles, that’s the pattern I found underneath. I actually kept it there for a while ’cause it’s kind of interesting. Anyway, it’s going to be history soon. Well soonish. When I get time to finish painting… You can see from this picture that an architrave/board/timber panel has been put up to bridge the gaping hole left between what used to be two separate rooms. The white wall (to the right) is the old laundry/porch while the funky green boards and tile pattern is the old kitchen.

Plumber installed faucet and the first coat of oil is on.

The stove in place. Gas is connected but not the electricity.

This photo illustrates where NOT to place your new power points. I suppose to an electrician, a power point is a thing of beauty but I didn’t want them to be so obvious.  SHould I bbother moving them or not? It’s going to be difficult to patch those holes. What would you do?

Meanwhile the bathroom looks like it’s going to remain unrenovated for a while. The builder put up some trim around the room to conceal gaps etc. Once I wash off the boards on the ceiling it should be OK for the interim.

And that’s it for now. Was going to post a little stop-motion video clip that Craig took (clandestinely) while I was working but computer says no!

Rachael x

It’s been a while since you’ve seen any progress besides the kitchen bench top decisions so I thought I’d bring you up to speed on everything else…

The holidays have not been ‘restful’ or ‘rejuventaing’ by any stretch of the imagination. My poor kids have had a cranky- tired- bitch of a mum for the most part.

Although I don't have to "No Gap" these cladding boards, each groove must be painted individually. Arghhhh!

Below is a pic of the new kitchen area after one coat …

First coat finished... fresher already!


So, if you read yesterday’s post you’d know that I’ve purchased new bench tops. Here’s a picture…

Ignore the "laminate" bit. It's solid timber.

And here are the cabinets that these bench tops will eventually sit atop…

Note: the VJ cladding is still unpainted in this shot.

Here’s a picture of where they sit while they wait to be assembled…

For now, the kitchen bench is sitting behind the lounge with all the kitchen crap.

Now for the “bitchin”…

Purchasing said bench tops was a hideous ordeal. The bit last week where I appealed to my blog readers to help me choose a ‘look’ was an absolute joy! So thank you for your valuable feedback. Clearly it was influential because I’ve done a 360 on my initila choices. Anyway…This bench top purchase involved a four hour round-trip, torrential rain, bored children, frantic phone calls and texts between myself, Ikea and Bob, the builder, 40 mins spent tying the 150kg load to the roof racks of my Subaru Forester and THEN a 2.5 hour drive home through torrential, blinding rain, accompanied by (as I expressed last night) warbling and whistling that approxiamted the “death dance” performed for Ridgimiraril in Rolf de Heer’s and Peter Djiggir’s 2006 film, Ten Canoes (as the wind played havoc with the straps and the minute gaps between each package).

WARNING: The rest of this post might just bore the shit out of you if you aren’t actually involved in a budget renovation or the planning of one. If that’s you, please just skip ahead.

At Ikea, the bench tops come in three different lengths ( 246cm, 186cm and 126cm) and of course only ONE of the lengths that I needed was in stock yesterday. I knew this before making the journey because I’d done my homework by checking stock levels on the internet and by ringing the store to make double sure the figures were correct. It did seem nuts to drive ALL THAT WAY until ALL the stock I needed was in-store, but, the sad fact is that Ikea cannot put stock “on hold” for you so I needed to get the length of bench top that WAS available yesterday (on the off chance that it would be out of stock when I go again for the other lengths at a later date).

Anyway, once I got to the showroom, I found that the actual bench tops on show looked markedly different to the photographic representations in the online catalogue.  I had arrived intending to purchase the ‘beech’ wood product but ended up purchasing ‘oak’ instead. 

The 246cm lengths in ‘oak’ bench tops were in stock but to my astonishment I found out it was going to be another 6 WEEKS  before the 186cm and 126cm lengths were to be available. Anyhow, I grabbed the 246cm length (along with a shitload of oil thanks to the advice from the lovely Liz who’s been through this before), just like my builder told me to, and braced myself for a six week wait.

AFTER going through the checkout line and picking up my bench top (oh God, why couldn’t I have had this brain wave earlier?????) I realised that it might be possible to buy several of these long lengths instead of the various other sizes that Bob wanted. Phone calls were made, calculations were done and I got the go ahead to purchase more lengths. This was going to save me another trip to Satan’s Workshop so despite my bored 6 year old’s protestations I went back and got the damned things and (shit-loads more oil, of course).

Those mothers ain’t light. Each bench length weighs 47 kg and my mother-in-law and I had to get THREE of them onto the roof racks of my car. But as my mother-in-law is an old farm girl she wrangled those bench tops like she was born to do the job. If I hadn’t have had her with me, I imagine I would’ve just broken down in tears…

Here’s her handy work…

 So that was my day yesterday…

Rachael x

Look, I’m a lousy blogger. It’s been FOUR WHOLE DAYS between posts! Anyway, believe me, this dearth of posts distresses me more than it distresses the followers of my blog, which after just visiting my site stats, appears to number a grand total of TWO.   Housegoeshome it’s just you and me now ( yes, I “follow” my own blog) so please don’t abandon me. PLEASEEEEEEE! For those of you who don’t already follow her very entertaining blog, you should know that she’s stuck on a cruise ship somewhere in the middle of nowhere and probably won’t waste her wifi dollars on deregistering as a follower of my blog while at sea. Whew!

Anyhow, Bob, the builder, has jumped ship to another job while he awaits kitchen bench top decisions to be made. Fair enough.

 The good news is that I bought new kitchen bench tops today. They are from Ikea. They are timber. There is not an ounce of laminate involved. I totally abandoned the idea of colour and laminate for now. I’m just not brave enough. Besides, it’s so much cheaper going with Ikea Numerar bench tops. And money talks ’round here!

I sooooo wanted to post pictures of my Ikea adventures today but as I’m staying at the inlaw’s I’m having trouble downloading from my iphone onto a foreign computer. Anyway, suffice to say that my mother-in-law (who is almost 70) single-handedly secured 150kg of hardwood bench tops onto the roof racks of my Subarau Forester with a few pissy straps and ropes. I drove the 2 hours through torrential rain and traffic jams, down the M1 and back home. The bench tops didn’t budge the whole trip home but the wind rushing through the 150 kg load left us listening to a warbling and whistling that approxiamted the “death dance” performed for Ridgimiraril in Rolf de Heer’s and Peter Djiggir’s film Ten Canoes.

Promise, promise, promise will post pics tomorrow when I’m home. Will also post pics of paitning progress and solar panels. FUN FUN FUN!

Rachael x

I’m fricken OVER this painting! It would be so much quicker if Craig was helping but it’s just li’l ol’ me. Instead of painting VJs, Craig is painting masterpieces for his upcoming exhibition in Canberra. Here are some of my recent faves…

Well, that’s enough procrastinating. Blogging when I should be working. Tsk tsk.

Rachael x

I went to sleep with orange on my mind. It’s a great colour; sunny, zesty and happy. But the question is … can we live with it for years to come? Then just when I thought I was on the home stretch, I woke up with GREEN on my mind. And they’re both still competing for my affection. Here are the samples I picked up today…

Of course integrity of colour accuracy is compromised by the photo but the likeness isn’t too bad. My current faves on the top row are no.2 and no.4, and,  on the bottom row,  no 2 and no.4.

Here’s some pics I downloaded for inspiration..

Then again, there’s always safe ‘white’…

Now here’s what my kitchen actually looks like today. The old kitchen sink cabinet was evicted from our house forever and Bob installed two new cabinets. Ikea has given me a wrong drawer for one of the units so I have to drive back again tomorrow ( 3 hours – round trip – arghhhhhh!) to get the right one so he can finish. While we’re waiting for kitchen benches we have a cheap temporary  tops.

The old kitchen cabinet was ripped out today. The fridge will sit between the two black units and the stove will sit to the right of the RHS unit.

My place looks pretty crusty after seeing those pics above, hey?

Now for those of you who suggested leaving the bench tops bare and just lacquering them, I have disappointing news. Almost impossible. Why? You see, when we stated that we’d be laminating the bench tops, Bob suggested making them out of chipboard and creating a ply facade in order to save money. Ply is actually quite expensive. It’s not too late to change our minds as the bench tops aren’t in production yet but it would probably put the job back a couple of weeks to change materials now. It would also add lots of $$$$$$ to the kitchen price tag. So what does a girl do? I’m stuck! This is the first time I’ve halted at decision making during the entire project.

Rachael x

I've been wearing these clothes for two days now. Considering I've used about 8 tubes of No More Gaps, there's relatively very little on my shirt!

Hello you lovely Blog Readers!

I spent my day (again!)  with a no more gaps gun and a paint brush. I’ve now got  a nasty heach-ache and neck pain from doing the ceiling. BUT I did manage to go outside once or twice just to look at the sky and the garden and breathe.

Just one of the objects of beauty in my backyard.

Thanks so much for your feedback regarding choice of colour for laminate in my kitchen! I’m hearing you loud and clear – Colour, colour, colour!

So, tomorrow I’m going back to the joinery to check out their colour samples. I’m pretty excited and I have to thank you for your feedback that has inspired me to be bold, well, bold enough to pick up a few more samples! Anyway, here’s a picture of the kitchen coming together.

Cabinets are coming together. It's taken our builder two days to get this far. Imagine if we'd tried to do it ourselves! Yikes!

Oh yeah… I dropped in at The Salvos yesterday after going to the dentist and look what I scored for $60! There’s only two in the picture but I actually got four for that price.

Check back in soon because I might need help again once I have a few colour samples.

Rachael x

Hi Everybody!

I’m having trouble deciding what colour laminate to put on our kitchen benchtop. The draws and door fronts will be a matte black and the bench top will be made of 3mm ply. I’m posting some pics below of a friend’s kitchen with ply benchtops. They’ve left their tops bare but I’ve decided to laminate our for durability. The big question is what colour should I go with?

These drawer fronts are Ikea Aplaad white. Ours will be Aplaad black.

Will white be too white, given that the walls are white? Will back be too heavy, given that the door fronts are black? What about a non-descript creme?

Please tell me your thoughts!

x Rachael

For anyone who read the post below, it seems my body isn’t the only crumbly thing about me. So is my will power! My resolution to eschew week night drinking? Out the window!

As I type this post I’m sipping on a glass of chilled white because I decided to listen to the wise words of my Aunty Pat who commented on the post below. She says that it’s silly to fight genetics and time. They’re only going to win anyway. She’s right. A glass of wine in the evening makes me feel human.

And besides, I worked my butt off today. Sugar soaping. Check. Sanding check. Filling the gaps between VJs. Check. First coat of paint on the area that used to be the toilet entrance. Check! Check! Check!



After the first coat