We like this house, but we are changing things, small, medium or major, in every single room and corner, and inside and out. Oops, poor little house, I pat her now and then and reassure her that we do love her, and that we are making things better. Yes, yes, I know it's slightly eh... off-normal... to chat to a house, lol. But houses have personalities and needs too. And reassurance has never hurt anyone, right?
We have been "gathering" in the lead up to actually doing things. Not much, but a nice start to the things we need to buy. Our local big hardware store has had a bit of a sale, and we've scored a few treasures, much to our delight and to the delight particularly, of my Scottish husband... nobody loves a bargain more than a canny Scot! He sometimes goes slightly wobbly and white when I'm talking about what I want to do to the house, but I just pat him and reassure him. Actually, several of our friends have gone slightly wobbly and white too. But faint heart never won fair maiden, so I'm willing to have the brave heart and carry everyone along with me on this fabby, messy adventure.
Background before bargains: The Pavilion (which is what I am calling our outdoor dining area) is paved with slippery ugly mottled beige tiles, definitely not outdoor floor tiles. We have been thinking of decking the whole thing in either hardwood or pallet wood. I mean, slippery, for a start... and beige? They show every little speck, of which there are many in an outdoor setting. Sweep, sweep, sweep...
Throughout the top two levels of the house, we have lovely hardwood floors. We aren't certain what timber it is, but Coastal Blackbutt is a favourite contender. The living room and hallway have polished floors, the kitchen and bathroom have been covered over with tiles and the bedrooms all have carpet. But the timber is under all that cover up, hopefully in good condition. It feels solid anyway, but we aren't quite ready to take up the carpets. Blackbutt is fairly commonly used for flooring, decking, etc in Queensland, and is really attractive, with a warm brown to slightly pink tone. Luckily for us, it's termite and fire resistant, which is another reason to hope that's what we actually have in place.
Now, onto the fun bit: bargains! We went to the local big hardware store just before Christmas, to pick up a couple of punnets of flowers, and ended up having to hire a ute to bring home the plunder! While I was dithering between lobelia and alyssum, Duncan had wandered right up the other end of the place and he sent me a text, "Found some flooring for the deck, come and see". Well, I don't need much encouragement.
It was pretty. It involved no work taking pallets apart. It was cheap - reduced from $80 a pack to $28.90 a pack, oh my! We ended up buying the lot, 19 packs, each pack covering 1.92 square metres (don't ask me why they couldn't round it up...), even thought we probably only needed half that. But at that price, I was happy to fling it about in all sorts of places. Visions of a plank wall in the dining room, etc floated in my head.
I turned slightly to the left and found stacks and stacks of tiles also reduced to clear. I didn't have a plan for the bathroom tiles, but I had a feeling I was about to make a quick decision! We ended up with big plain white tiles teamed with some gorgeous blue and green glass tiles for a feature stripe. The white tiles were reduced from $12.99 a pack to $8 a pack and the glass tiles were reduced from $20 a strip to a lovely $2 a strip! I overbought, of course. Better to have too many than to find, six months down the line, we didn't get enough. The plan (hastily cobbled together while I stood there) is to do both the upstairs bathroom and the new downstairs shower room the same. It makes it a lot easier and will give the place a sense of continuity. Also, it simplified the whole choosing tiles thing. The more I look at them the more I like them.
Since then, we have bought our cooker hood for $300 off, a gorgeous little handbasin reduced from $342 to $37... yes, $37! That one is the perfect size for the downstairs shower room. It wasn't what I had in mind, but sometimes the Universe knows better, lol and who am I to argue?
And yesterday, the kitchen and living room windows came home with us. Oh sooo excited about them! All the windows in the house need to be replaced, they are really disgusting old corroded aluminium sliders - ick. I'd love to replace them all with timber sash (double hung) windows. As in... I will, haha. Yesterday we went to a demolition/renovation barn to see if there was anything that would fit any of our windows. And there was, approximately.
We found two matching timber sash windows exactly the right size for my new kitchen (when it's built) and a set of three obviously from the same demolition that we can use for the living room. We will have to modify the frame for them, as they will end up wider, but that's just perfect in my eyes! I was wishing the living room window was wider, so woo hoo, now it will be :-) Total thumbs up. And the best bit is that the windows are only varnished, not covered in twenty layers of old paint. Bonus! I will be painting them, but avoiding the stripping stage suits me just fine. I forgot to take a photo of them, but I will.
It'll be a little while until all these things are in use, but I'm glad we found them at their bargain prices. Our budget is tiny for all the things we have to do, so bargains are a must.
Oh, and guess what? Excitement! The flooring we bought matches the living room floor! I can use it in my kitchen extension, and there is enough for the downstairs room too. Oh my goodness - JOY!
love Heather x To the question of your life, you are the only answer. To the problems of your life, you are the only solution. ~Jo Coudert