Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Yes we moved in and we didn't drop of the face of the earth

I know that it's been a long time between posts - I was trying to make a point with Derek (since it was his job to put the photos up - yes it was!) but I've relented.

We moved into the house in the middle of July, which was really good timing since I started working from home at the end of June, so I didn't have to spend too much of winter in the hard to heat house in Huonville.

There is still a lot to do before we get the certificate of completion (hopefully in April), but we're in and we're comfortable and slowly working through it all. So here are some pictures of the (semi) finished product.

Slightly blurry photo of part of the pantry - Derek did all of the cabinet work
The open plan living space is fantastic - so light and airy with the cathedral ceiling but still feels cosy
And of course the fantastic red stove - the hero of the kitchen
The window seat is the next on the list to be built, and the old lounges are gone now
Derek now has a reclining chair with footstool in place of the old lounge - lots of sleeping in front of the TV planned
Still working out what to have as our bedhead - too many choices
A few little bits to finish in our ensuite
And the vanity needs to drop about 10cm so I don't have to stand on tippy-toes

My studio - not as it will finally look. It's doubling as the guest room since the guest room isn't rendered yet. It also has everything we're planning on storing the guest room, so very cluttered. But the bookshelves are fantastic!
The main bathroom - or the guest bathroom as we call it
The woodland grey painting has now finished, so the downpipes are hidden against the house

There is still a bit of final coat render to do outside, but we will probably get someone else to paint it.
And the view of the house from up the road, with Lily in picture of course.
The house is extremely well insulated, so the extended winter that we've had this year has been very comfortable for us. Of course we've still had fires of a winter's night, but there were only a couple of days I had to have a fire during the day.

And it's just wonderful living up here. It's so peaceful and I occasionally get wallabies outside the window I work at. Of course we always have wallabies around the house at dawn and dusk, which can send Lily off on a chase, but we discourage that behaviour.

We also have a resident echidna, who I have named Ernie. I usually know he's around because Lily runs up to him and barks at him. I think she put her nose a little too close once, because she doesn't get too close to him, she just likes to let me know where he is. He's great as well because once I shoo her away he has no fear of me at all, which is how I can get cool photos of him.

We do have other wildlife - lots of birds, quolls, (we think) devils, rabbits, these odd little marsupial rats, and the odd snake. Fortunately we haven't seen any yet this summer, but the dog in the house up behind us was bitten recently so we're being vigilant.

And on other things
Derek has been enjoying his job, although I know he wishes he was still working on the house every day rather than driving into Hobart to deal with an office environment. I keep telling him if he can find someone who will pay him to finish the house then feel free :-) He hasn't managed to black out the State yet, so I think he's going pretty well.

I've launched my business 'dinkylune' (it's an anagram of my name), and am fortunate enough to have a job working from home that gives me time to work on it. It's a bit of a soft launch at the moment, since I still have a lot of work to do before I can really get things going, but since I published the ebook and have been making jewellery, I thought it was time to make the first move.

We hope that you all have a lovely festive season!!! We will be eating too much at the Taste of Tasmania again this year - some traditions are too good to break - and then I believe we're contemplating getting that final coat of external render on.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Certificate of Occupancy

It has been a while since we have posted anything.  Things have been pretty busy with us.  Between continuing to build the house, me starting a new job and Kylie starting a new job this week, it has been hectic.

Today we had our Certificate of Occupancy inspection.  It went as expected and we will be issued with a certificate with conditions.  The conditions will be simple things like external doors with too big a drop have to be locked.

So we can now move in.  Yeah!!!

Thursday, June 6, 2013

The Kitchen (and the Stove)

These are fairly low quality photos, since the light was poor this morning and they were taken on Kylie's phone, but since we're both at work at the moment we don't have time to take a better one so here is a preview of the kitchen. The bench is about 3.4 metres long, and will have the same tiles put on the back of the bench as we have in the fireplace (hopefully that will happen next Tuesday).

And of course there is the wonderful stove, that we have had sitting in the garage for two years just waiting to be used. It's a mainly induction cooktop, but has a ceramic hotplate so if you have non-induction friendly cookware you can still use it. Can't wait to start cooking up a storm in this kitchen.

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Floors Sanded and Sealed

Last week saw the floors sanded and sealed.  The sealing uses a gloss coat whilst the finish coat will be a satin, so the final finish won't be as "shiny" as the photos below.

This week also saw the ensuite tiled.  There was a lot of discussion with the tiler on the best way to achieve what we wanted, we're really happy with the final product.

Last week was a big week for both of us and not just for the house.  Firstly I finished two weeks of full-time work (behind a desk) and that has been extended into a 6 month contract.  They are happy for me to work part time for June so that we can move into the new house.  Big change from the house building.

Secondly, Kylie resigned from her public service job, talk about not even waiting for the dust to settle after I returned to work :-) She's been struggling a bit with the job for a little while now, so she's decided to leave to try to pursue something that will be more creative, or at least get her there.

All in all a big week for everyone, even Lily had her first full week of day care. Next week we should have the kitchen installed, which includes the big red stove. We'll try to get photos up as early as possible.

Monday, May 27, 2013


Last week saw the tiler make some significant progress.  Only has the shower recess in the main bathroom and the ensuite left to tile.  This is the fireplace

and this is the sunspace.

This week the timber floors are being sanded and sealed.  This is the main living area before the sanding and sealing.  Hopefully in a few days there will be photos of it sealed

All going well the kitchen will go in next week and it will be getting just that little bit closer.

Friday, May 17, 2013

Studio Floor

Finished laying the floorboards in the studio.  We are really happy with how it came up.  All going well the floors will be sanded and sealed in a week or so.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013


This week the painters were in.  They have done the ceilings and first coat of colour on the walls.

The builder and I have also been busy laying the timber floors.  Have done the bedroom, kitchen/lounge/dining and pantry.  Should finish the studio by the end of this week.

Everything is happening very quickly now.  Hard to keep up and with the shorter days even harder to get photos with decent light.

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Help with Rendering

Over the last two weeks we have some professional help with the rendering.  They have rendered the block work inside and out.  Much faster than us and a better finish.  Also means that we could continue with straw bale rendering.

This is the garage wall completed....

This is the internal block wall rendered.  This is very close to the final colour as well.

Internal rendering is going well.  Had Kylie helping the last four days and we have finished the laundry, pantry, studio, lounge and our bedroom.

We have acknowledged that we cannot render the guest area before moving in, so that means we have completed the internal render for the painters.  Just have to wait for it to dry.

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Final Render Coat

Kylie took some more time off work to help with rendering.  We continued with internal render and on Tuesday and Wednesday we had some extra help so we took on the final coat on the outside.

In two days we managed to do three of the four gable walls, which reduces the number of levels I have to carry render on my own.

On Thursday we took a day trip to Devonport and picked up the last of our lights.  Now we just have to finish plaster, render and painting so we can fit them.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Plasterers Busy

The plasterers have been busy the last few days.  I finished with the electrician last Thursday doing the electrical first fit and we have only just kept ahead of the plasterers.

Despite today being a public holiday in Tassie they worked today and got a good portion of the living space done.  This shot is taken from the window seat.

All very exciting and has resulted in Kylie saying "can you just finish it now" about 20 times.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Lock Up

Kylie and I fitted the last two windows today getting the house to lock up.  Very exciting!!!

Plasterers return this week to start on the rest of the house, so some future pictures will be of the inside.

We now have a whole heap of decisions to start making about skirting boards, tiles, kitchen, taps etc. although as of today we have sorted out all of the internal doors, and on Friday we sorted out all of the lighting. So we feel like we're on track to meet the June deadline, let's see how that goes.

Friday, February 22, 2013

It has been a while

Has been a while since we posted updates - too busy doing!

Two weeks ago we put in the last straw bale.  A few days later the wall was wrapped and ready for render.

Once the wall had a single coat of render, we had the builder come back to help put in the windows into the guest area and finish the eaves.

At the same time we had the plasterers put the ceiling in the garage

Since then the builder and I have finished the blocking the plasterer needs in the rest of the house, I have nearly completed the second coat of render outside, we have dry fitted one of the two garage windows and I have got two coats of paint on the garage ceiling.

All going well the garage door will be fitted next week and if the weather holds I can get the two garage windows in.  We will then be at lockup which is very exciting.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Guest Area Progressing and lights

The guest area has progressed with one and a bit of the three sides having two coats of render.

Work will now begin on the straw walls on the other two sides of the guest area.  Once they are done I can get the builder back to help me install the windows and do the eaves.

We're waiting on the electrician at the moment so we can get the plasterers in for the garage. The panel door is ordered and in about six weeks will be ready to install and get us to lock up (everything else going well).

We also had a big breakthrough last Friday when we were in Devonport. We visited a local lighting store and finally found a store with a great range at a really good price - Halley's Lighting if you want to know. Kylie has found the perfect light for her studio and our kitchen lighting is pretty cool as well.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Happy New Year

Well it is the new year and the neighbour has had his excavator home.  Which allowed for some larger scale earthworks to occur.

We moved the original drain which was closed and open, open bit shown below.

The new drain is a little longer but it is all underground.

And once it is covered in gives us a little more space.

We also had the mountains of soil moved so now the ground is a little more even around the house.

Now we just need to get on and finish the last of the straw walls. (And by we Derek means he!)