The 92.36% completed flooring

We started on the flooring right after the handover. Based on the dates on the pictures, we took about 3 months to get most of the flooring done. 8 months on, it still isn’t quite done because the scotia isn’t finished on some areas of the house XD

Got side-tracked. A LOT.

 Anyway, here’s how it progressed with the flooring:

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L-R: Living area, living area, pantry, scotia

The biggest challenge was the stairs. Couldn’t quite work out how to perfectly fit each plank in with perfectly cut edges without the scotia to hide ugly bits, and also had trouble hiding the grooved edges to get the perfect lines. But we did it. Took a brand new blade to do them all.

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I know the scotia isn’t quite done around the house, but I think I will cross out “3. Laminate flooring in the house” just so I feel like something’s been achieved in the past 8 months XD

 

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The move

I was about to apologise for not updating in the last 6 months, and then I realised that it is becoming a trend for me to keep apologising in my posts for not updating regularly. Yikes. I’m not really sure who I am apologising to anyway, but to whoever’s still out there scanning through my posts – I’m sorry, again!

6 months is a pretty long time to be missing, I guess I had better have some good excuses for that. In the past 6 months:
I’ve had friends and family visiting.
I adopted 1 dog, then another.
I adopted 2 chooks.
I’ve been on a few trips.
The flooring is almost finished.
The curtains are up.
Paving in alfresco done.
I got a bathtub!

But I still owe the blog a description of what happened during the week we moved. So, here it goes!

2nd week after handover

By the end of the 1st week, I was really getting quite sick of doing/watching the floorboards. Mostly because I wasn’t too good at it, and also partly because I find it hard to not measure/cut the floorboards accurately. In the end, I found myself spending most of my time trying to coordinate tradies and getting things happening to the house quickly.

A lot of things happened during that week that it’s pretty much a blur to me now (and also because it’s been about 4 months since it happened haha). Here’s sort of what I remembered:

  • Air conditioning
    I organised for the air conditioner to be installed as quickly as I could, because we were all freezing our asses off in winter. I’ve always loved big open areas with high ceilings, but the one time I would curse that is when it’s winter and when I’ve only got little blow heaters trying to keep us warm.
  • Fencing
    The wrecked retaining wall post was fixed (they had to dig out the concrete base and re-pour it!) at the expense of the builder, and they were certainly not very happy about it. As for me, I’m glad they didn’t go back on their word and was happy that I got to arrange for the fencing to be installed in the same week.
  • Driveway
    I must say, the driveway is the greatest disaster in my entire house building “career”. I organised for the driveway to be concreted right after I knew when my house was going to be handed over to me, because I wanted to be able to utilise the driveway to move things during the muddy winter season.
    It worked out fine at first, in fact, it looked gorgeous.IMG_20150724_152327
    Coloured concrete driveway. I picked charcoal, to match the colour scheme of the house! I even paid more just to get that colour. However, after it was done, the contractor told me he had to rip it all up again because there was something wrong with the mix, and he wanted to re-do the driveway because he wanted to do a good job of it.I could hear my heart being ripped out when he said that. Oh well, I thought, I’d give him a chance to do it right. He spent a great deal of time cutting up the driveway by himself, removing the concrete pieces, etc. In the end, due to our tight schedule, he couldn’t get it done before we moved in. Bummer.

    However, that’s not it. The driveway has been re-done, the colour looked right for the 1st week or so. And then it faded. Faded so much, I swear it is nothing like charcoal. It was so muddy and wet then that he couldn’t connect the drains up. He said he would come back, but I haven’t seen him for months. It’s a bit heart-breaking when you’ve paid so much money for a driveway but get nothing like what you’ve paid for. 😦 I’m not going to put up a photo of the current state. Still makes me sad thinking about it.

  • 20160404_180312Skylight
    The supervisor did not know that our skylight is supposed to be a window. Honestly, a week after the handover and he realised it is an actual window, that was yet to be put in. They had problems fitting the window, scratching the paint in the process, and had trouble getting a painter in to tidy it up. It wasn’t 2 weeks after the handover that it was finally finished. Here’s the sort of effect with the skylight. Pardon the ugly quilt and pillow cases.
  • The move
    I must say, what we did that week was quite impressive. Moving every single thing from the rental place and cleaning it up before returning the keys, while trying to organise the tradies and also getting as much of the flooring done as possible. If I were to ever lose my job, I think I will take up event planning haha. I deliberately took pictures of the mess so my excitable mum wouldn’t think about crashing in when I was so highly strung. Check out the mess:

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I made my brother paint his bed frame black because I wanted more black in the house, even though he’s the one who has been sleeping on the bed lol.

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And, we lived happily ever after.

Not yet, because us smart-asses took on some really big projects in the backyard.

Post-handover

The 2 weeks post-handover was unbelievably intense. It’s unbelievable because I simply just cannot believe I made the choices and end up doing what I did in those 2 weeks.

Our lease was ending 2 weeks after handover. Here’s the list of things we had to achieve in 2 weeks:

1. Install floorboards in all the bedrooms first so that we can move in
2. Complete aircon installation
3. Fencing installation
4. The actual moving
5. Cleaning of rental property

To be reaaaaally clear, those were all done in 2 week-nights, because, well, we work during the day.

What we did in the 1st week after handover

So, the day after handover, I went to pick up my floorboards with the help of a couple of friends. We spent pretty much every single night for over a week, just to try and lay the floorboards in BR 1, 2, 3, Entry and Living.

Just to refresh your memory (again), this is what the floor plan looks like:

Floor plan

Floor plan

We tried to make the floorboards continuous throughout the top level of the house because it looks nicer that way, that’s why we had to lay the boards in the Entry too. For the before and after effect, have a look at the empty house first with the bare concrete floor. Here’re a few pictures coming up:

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Coco oak

This is the floorboard I picked from Power Dekor. I am really happy that I had finally found the colour and grain that is closest to what I was looking for, without that hefty price tag.

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The guys laying boards in BR 2. 

It’s a really messy business laying floorboards, trying to get the measurements right, doing the right cuts on the boards, covering ourselves in sawdust. Thankful to have the 3 of them helping me out. 1 is most utilised for his incredible strength, 1 is remarkably good at the Math, and 1 is the mastermind of it all with his amazing tools. I mostly look on and sweep sawdust off the floor lol.

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BR 2 completed, and used to put the equipment in.

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Living room, where my bro is living in right now.

The living room is in fact, the first room we worked on because it is the smallest “bedroom” in the house, and we thought we should “experiment” with laying floorboards in there first. Haha.

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Entry

We laid lots of cardboard down because it was still winter then and lots of mud around the house. There were lots of tradies coming into the house to complete the aircon installation and fixing the skylight into BR 3.

At that time, I was told that the range hood and stove cannot be delivered until we were living in the house, for fear of those items being stolen. It was quite a bit of a drama, because I was trying to put the fencing in as quickly as possible, so that the house will be more secure. However, the fencing couldn’t happen because the installer needed to weld the fence to a post on the retaining wall, which so happened to be the wrecked post that I was waiting for the builder to fix. To add to stress, we realised that we need to have the flooring done in the kitchen area so that the stove could sit on it. So we had to start working on the kitchen quickly.

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I’m glad they knew how to have fun amidst the stresses lol

My friend is an engineer, and he’s got 2 sets of hi-vis outfits that we had on when we were laying the boards. What’s with the hi-vis outfit, you say? Pick an answer from below:

1. We were trying to protect our clothes from sawdust.
2. We secretly wanted to be minions.

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Kitchen done just enough to put the stove in.

It all worked out in the end, and I was so excited the day the stove was delivered.

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I panicked when I saw that it was a white stove! Then I realised it was only a protective covering for delivery haha. I have been spoilt, spending the past 4 years in a rental property using a stove with 5 burners, so I can’t go back to 4 burners now!

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Pantry

I probably could have hired someone to do the laying and not agonise over it every day about finishing it quickly, but every cent I save could go to my brother’s education, a new Breville BES920BS coffee machine, furniture in the house, curtains, blahblahblah. The conclusion is, one can never have enough money. Be cheapo frugal where you can.

More #throwback updates next post! I’m sorry the info is so backdated… You guys will understand as you read on. xx

Noooo I can’t believe I’ve abandoned my blog for a good 4 MONTHS!!!

I really do suck at multi-tasking.

Anyways, here’s the announcement:

I’VE MOVED INTO THE NEW HOUSE!

What, you say? The doors went in the last you heard, and now the house is complete?! It’s no sorcery, trust me. Well I couldn’t blog for a long time, because they locked up the house and I couldn’t get in to take pictures.

Here’s what happened over the past few months.

Spent part of June on a road trip to Canberra and back (sorry I don’t know how to make the images smaller!):

Thredbo

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My attempt at snowman. 😡

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Australian icon – Dog on the Tuckerbox

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I had my birthday celebration in July, and even had the privilege of two old friends visiting me during the same weekend, where we had a staycation at Port Elliot, hoping to spot some whales haha.

The #handover happened on the 24th of July! Let’s just say that I’m more relieved than excited. It was so uneventful, the keys came like this:

IMG_20150724_095936nopmIn a ziplock bag.

Spent 2 good weeks after handover trying to clean up the rental place and get started on the flooring in the new house. Yes, I had just concrete to start with! I’m glad I decided to DIY the flooring because I got what I wanted from Power Dekor at much less of a cost, thanks to my friend’s recommendation.

The entire August and September so far has been about the flooring mostly, and remodelling my bed frame (I dictated, and got the guru to do it ^_^). Will attempt to post up more pictures of progress soon!

Knock knock. Who’s there?

20150523_114809The front door is in! Now I can play knock knock!

Before I go on, I just want to say don’t panic, the door isn’t going to stay green. They are made like this, then you pick the colour you want to be painted on the door. Haha. I think mine’s gonna be grey.

I’m sorry I jumped the gun, because that was quite exciting for me. Here’s a few updates for you!

20150516_150525Plaster boards have gone in!

It is absolutely incredible seeing what goes into making a wall. We’ve seen the timber frames that make the shape of the house. We’ve seen the insulation that went into the walls. (At least I’ve seen it haha. Sorry I haven’t got pictures because it’s always dark by the time I get there!) Now we’ve seen them put the plaster boards up. They put the nails in, they tape the gaps between each board, they patch over the nails and the tape to eventually give it a smooth finish so that they can paint over the wall. I feel like a new mum swooning over my baby, looking at every detail and loving every bit of it. Down to the nails.

20150516_150554Cornices!

I can proudly announce that I have actually measured and cut and put up cornices before. In fact, I’ve made a set of cornices cut in different ways and angles to illustrate what angle to cut in which direction, so that I know if the cornices make an acute angle (like the picture above) or obtuse angle. I didn’t make these ones, but I sure can appreciate how difficult it is for a novice to get the angle right and to finish it without much gap in the corners. My advice is: Get a mitre box. It works wonders! And make sure it allows you to cut through your stuff, not halfway.

20150523_115119Skirtings delivered!

Pardon my excessive use of exclamation marks, but it is quite stimulating to find things happening with the construction all the time. Who needs coffee!!! (Ok I take that back.) I’m hoping that the next time I visit, they would have all the skirtings installed 😀

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Doors delivered!

When I was doing selections for the house, I didn’t know most of what I want to go into the house, but I do know for sure that I wanted white walls and ceiling, to go with black window frames, sliding doors, and doors. The internal doors are usually just normal flush panels, but I decided to go with some simple molding on the doors and have them painted black, hoping to bring out their character / elegance. Can’t remember the door handles I picked, but I hope they are good.

Last but not least, standing on the bottom level, seeing the back view of my entry door. Thanks for visiting everyone!

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