The bathroom ‘reveal’ of sorts…

Well, I haven’t managed to paint it but I thought I would show you anyway. Remember what it looked like when we moved in?

 

 

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We decided to address what absolutely needed sorting. The floor was atrocious and the sink and bath needed straightening. Cue super Cousin and Michael armed with hammers (and other assorted serious tools!) The floor covering was ripped up, the cupboard taken out and the nails removed-there were heaps!

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I spent time digging out years and years of crap between the floorboards, I then had to clean said crap up from the laundry that is below the bathroom.

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When you stood in the bath, you would slide towards the taps-an odd feeling really so David put some new timber in to make it less wonky. I also cleaned out a rather large rats nest tucked in under the bath. It was stinky!

IMG_6831The floor was then re-laid with a a temporary solution. My lovely little Nephew Charlie is an absolute gun with a hammer (and put me to SHAME-I am terrible!)

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I had been to bunnings earlier in the week to get some lino so that went down next.

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This is what we ended up with…

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IMG_7672 IMG_7673To save space inside, towels are hung on a hat stand just outside the door and dressing gowns on a couple of hooks that were already there. This is the view from the kitchen.

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The sink no longer retains water in the bottom right thanks to a new bracket and you remain in the same spot when you stand in the shower. The white waffle shower curtains from Freedom were on sale so I got 2 for $20-win!

An old bedside table that Michael restored years ago has been repurposed as a bathroom cabinet, we reused the mirror that had been hanging on the wall and I put up a shaving mirror for Michael.

It may not be the most glamorous powder room getting around and it is indeed small but I rather love it. It takes about 4 minutes to clean and I can ‘mop’ the floor with a chux. The view is brilliant and the breeze you get when you are in the shower is delightful. Eventually we will have another bathroom but for now it is perfect for us. I may even get around to painting it one of these days!

MASSIVE thanks must go out to my Cousin. We would still be sliding towards the taps, the rat would still be residing under the bath and the floor would be worse if he hadn’t given up a weekend to help us. Thanks David xo

 

Dear self doubt, kindly bugger off!

I am what you would call an optimistic person.

My favourite saying is ‘She’ll be right’. I really do believe that things have a way of working out and will be FINE. I am also trying to install that in the boys-be happy, be positive!

I am learning though as I get older that this belief is easier to hold onto when I am in my comfort zone. When I am in control of what is going on (and I am confident of the outcome) it is easier to be positive. 

In my other life I am a Floral & Event designer. I LOVE it. LOVE (if there were a stronger word for Love I would use it!). I am always up for a challenge, relish the opportunity to be creative and adore working with people on their celebrations.

Sometimes however, self doubt creeps in and I have to talk myself down. ‘Can I make that work, will I get it finished on time, will they love it’ you know, the usual shit talk you give yourself when you aren’t feeling on top of your game.

I am planning on holding a floral workshop at our little ranch in the near future and nutting out the details has seen some doubt creeping in. Will anybody come, will it be good enough, would people come again!? GAH! I had a meeting with my graphic designer this morning so that has made it feel real…and edging out of my comfort zone…jeepers!

I have also learnt about myself that I do like a good natter. When I am feeling particularly self doubt-y I have a few people I will call to thrash out the issues with. Those people are invaluable and so very dear to me. 

So, to my tried and tested ‘listeners’ I say THANK GOD FOR YOU, you are LOVED, VALUED & APPRECIATED perhaps more than you know. 

Maybe I should put this on the wall next to my bathroom mirror to remind myself. How do you cope when the little voices in your head get a little rowdy!?

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On the home front, next doors Rooster has been taking liberties with ALL our chooks (we got 3 new additions over the weekend) I am a little concerned I will be running a nursery of the chick kind very soon!

(This print is from Honey and Fizz-she has lots of beautiful prints to choose from, you should have a look!)

So.much.rubbish!

We seem to generate a lot of rubbish around here. Seeing as we are a family of 6 I guess that is pretty normal but gees! We missed the first week of garbage collection here so spent a while playing catch up with a couple of loads to the dump before the housewarming (just to clarify it wasn’t 2 trailer loads of household waste, it was a few bags in with the building & garden waste). 

Divide and conquer is the way to go nowadays. The chooks get the food scraps, all paper and cardboard are kept to burn so the only things going in the bin are plastic (which we could do with reducing to be honest). I have also started a compost bin-also helping. 

I very nearly bought the bin on the left at Bunnings last weekend-I already own the kid on the right 😉

IMG_7551I don’t hate the idea of one of these getting around here, not necessarily for rubbish…maybe for nerf guns (actually that may very well solve the nerf gun storage problem as they are currently residing in packing boxes still).

In other news I got stuck into the overgrown mass of aloe vera next to the back stairs during the week.

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The chooks are loving a new spot to scratch around, my legs on the other hand were not thanking me the next day. Yeowch!

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The boys kindly helped load the trailer with all the crap that I pulled out.

IMG_7636The trailer is once again FULL and I need to work out how to get that stump out.

I am not sure what I am going to do with this little spot now. This could work…

connect-outdoor-seating-lI could just move all my pot plants over there and put up some more hanging baskets, I wouldn’t want to make the rest of the house jealous by making the back door garden so pretty! Well, must be off and finish the housework so when 6.30 rolls around I can sit on my arse and watch the block in a tidy living room (also so I can do jack in the morning!). Hope your weekend was lovely!

Send ‘er down, Hughie!

Michael had the day off today (which means he only did a little bit of work from home) so we could address the holes in our gutters-there is some serious rain predicted and we need to make sure that those glorious rain drops make it into our tanks!

As discussed earlier it really will be a large and costly job to make it all tickety boo so in the meantime we decided to buy ourselves some hardcore tape and have a crack at some DIY. 

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As you can see I was relegated to ‘ladder holder’ ( I have decided we will be shouting ourselves/asking for a new ladder for Christmas this year, this one was Michaels Granddads and is rather old…)

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Fox brought me the helmet because Michael kept throwing down old roofing nails and I value my noggin. My in-laws were out for the day so there was some supervising going on (and picture taking AND passing tape to Michael while on the ladder from the window or verandah).

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Here’s hoping this little running repair will see us through until we can afford to do a roof and gutter overhaul (which will also see the questionable down pipe you can see here relocated!).

We also had some sheep come visit us today. I felt like a legit ‘country dweller’ when I helped herd them back to their own house…it was quite fun really-they are bloody fast though!

IMG_7587Next doors alpacas were quite concerned at the new arrivals presence. They all congregated for a meeting, chatting about what was going on right next to them. They looked like a group of CWA ladies discussing a suspect cake entry at the show. Hilarious! 

So, rain, we are ready for you-bring it on!

 

Yesterday kind of sucked

Yesterday was our Ekka day which of course means no school. Here is a run down of my day in dot points…

  • Cleaned up toddler poop from living room floor
  • Wiped up toddler wee from the bathroom floor
  • Yelled A MILLION TIMES to JUST BE NICE!!!!!
  • Got told I made the day suck (because I wouldn’t let the boys go to the neighbours)
  • Broke up stick fights
  • Banned the boys from starting fires (for which I was called lame)
  • Washed up for the BAJILLIONTH time
  • Did the washing
  • Did the folding
  • Helped tidy the boys room
  • Supervised tidying of the toy room (which was a DRAG!)
  • Drove eldest son into town for training (and got asked why it took SO long)
  • Spent the car trip home yelling STOP HITTING YOUR BROTHER
  • Hand stitched two scissor cuts in a school shirt (thanks kid!)

Lordy, lordy, lordy. It was a DAY!

Thankfully some relief came with dinner. They were all super happy with toasties (that they made themselves) Thank God and they went to bed quickly with no mucking around-small mercies!

Oh and Fox decided he can also shout SHUT UP MAMA! Parenting win right there…

I went to bed feeling rather crap. Then Michael snored the night through-I tried to imagine it was a cat purring then remembered I am not a cat fan and most certainly wouldn’t have one on my bed…ugh!

Then this morning I woke up to this…

 

IMG_7554These two had made hot chocolates and were chatting. Super cute (and thank god cause I may have lost my freakin mind if the day started wonky!).

Some days are diamonds I guess and others are well, shite. I guess the ups and downs make it worthwhile (crickey Mary it can be hard to remember that!). 

 

Vive le France!

I had a dream last night that I was celebrating my 40th Birthday with Family & Friends at a restaurant in Paris with a view of the Eiffel Tower. It was a pretty rad dream. This morning has seen me googling the be-jesus out of flights, places to stay, eat etc etc.

Paris has always been high on my list of places to live.

I speak not a scrap of French beyond Bonjour, Au Revoir & Croissant (Although now that I can’t eat them I may as well forget they exist!) but the romance of the city, the age of the architecture, the history, scenery and wine & cheese of course seem (to me at least) like heaven on earth! French films also help with my French love Midnight in ParisPopulaireAmelieMood Indigo and more make me excited to one day visit their beautiful country. Michael will tell you I watch such films ad nauseam.

After following Design Moms family move to La Cressonniere in the Normandy region, spending an extended period of time there has felt like an attainable goal. I also recently heard a lady talking on ABC 612 about her families one month long vacation to the land of Wine & Cheese. That seems even more doable! So now my plan has blown out from a Birthday dinner to a 6 week French jour férié. It is 8 years away after all so plenty of time to plan (and save!). We would all need passports to start with…Mon Dieu! The expense has already begun! Michael asked if I was sure I wouldn’t just prefer to pop into Milton where we can sit under the ‘Eiffel tower’…I reassured him that would just  not cut the mustard! 

I came across Rue Amandine who promise to  help ‘Get a taste of the real Paris like only a native of this city can offer’. I think we could become fast friends while planning my milestone birthday together! I also found this dinner option http://www.grayline.com/tours/paris/dinner-at-the-eiffel-tower-seine-river-cruise-5875_45/ Formal dress is required…oh good god yes! I fear I may put more effort into planning this jaunt than saving for it…must do a budget ASAP!

I declared my intention on Facebook today and people have been chiming in with their ideal 40th destination-it has been nice reading other peoples dream celebration location. Where would you go?

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It didn’t take me long…

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So I survived my first day…and got myself a job. 

Yep.

You are now in the presence of the school tuckshop convenor. I should have known that expressing any level of interest will end in the job being given to you! It is one day a week and I have been told I will pretty much have free reign (they also assured me it is ‘hardly any work’ which is the usual thing said to volunteers…)

I am now putting together ideas to present to the P&C in a weeks time. I am thinking theme days, hot chocolates before school, chalkboards and floral aprons-you know, the important stuff!

Here’s hoping it will help me make some friends and get me out of my yard clothes more often 😉 M might have to hit up Chantelle over at The grounded kitchen and Kate of Lunchlady fame for some help.

 What about you, any tips for me? What was your favourite thing about tuckshop day?

 

Tuckshop ladies unite

Tomorrow will be my first day on tuckshop duty at the boys new school.

I am (super) nervous. 

What should I wear!?

I have spent the past 4 days wearing the same yard clothes (fresh underwear each day just in case you were wondering…) and dragging my hair into a ponytail.

Of course I hit up pinterest for some inspiration and I think I will go with something like this:

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Tell me I’m not the only one who worries about this kind of thing?

(Yes, I am totally aware this is not a real problem 😉 )

The inspiration for Green Valley

Once upon a time I had this as my computer backdrop…

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It is the Airstream at Atlantic Byron Bay and I had come across it in Australian Country Style.

One year for my Birthday, bless his cotton socks, Michael booked us in unbeknownst to me. It was a lovely weekend and also the first time we headed into nearby Bangalow. It was love at first sight. While Byron’s beach is beautiful, Bangalow is something else. The scenery, the vibe, the shopping. Even thought he majority of shops are WAAAAY out of our price range it is lovely meandering down the main street and stopping for coffee/food/wine etc etc…

Mostly I head over the border without children, and a lot of times without Michael. A group of us girls go each year and just relax, it is heavenly!

So, why all this jibber jabber about Bangalow? Well, this year we spent the last week of Summer at a holiday house down there (nearby Possum Creek to be exact) and that house turned out to be our inspiration for buying our Green Valley Renovator.

Basils Brush is set on top of a hill on an old dairy farm and is just delightful. It used to be a thai restaurant in a nearby town and was relocated to this spot about 10 years ago. We stayed with another family and just ate, drank, swam and relaxed. I HIGHLY recommend it (and as it sleeps 10, going with another family is a good idea-and splits the cost). There is also a fantastic cafe at the bottom of the hill that sells sourdough and great coffee.

img_70579_edbb7782769d7d1e1a3e9c5e1ca40664_max800x600The room we stayed in has 2 sets of french doors that we didn’t close once and the boys loved sleeping in the custom made bunks (and getting to them through the secret tunnel). Waking up to the sound of cows mooing and seeing kangaroos hoping across the hill from bed was magic. There is also a house yard fenced off so we always knew the kids were close by. The sky is clear, the air crisp, the pizza oven easy to use, the bookcase almost overflowing with novels, kids books and games. So so good!

Even though we had already been looking at bigger blocks and older houses, the week we spent at Basils consolidated our resolve to keep searching.

Not long after our return we found our little gem. It felt like it was the universe telling us we were on the right track*, it also gave us a good glimpse at what was possible when you give an old house some love.

I have been dreaming of Bangalow lately which is a sign I should return soon. Must check the calendar for when I can make my escape!

*The doorknocker is a Fox and as it turns out the owners sons name is Fox as well…uncanny I say!

Working on the colour of my thumbs.

While the placement of our soon to be vegie patch gets more thought, I figured I could get stuck in with some herbs. I picked up a couple from down the road at a cute florist/nursery/coffee shop and some others at Bunnings. We have some drawers left from the previous occupant and since they were doing nothing I pinched them (and Michaels drill 😉

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So for now we have a lemon tree (a lovely housewarming gift!), coriander, mint, parsley, garlic chives, rosemary, 2 mini roses, a climbing rose, a couple of gums and a hydrangea (all gifts from the same lovely lady!). I am hoping the flamingos and peacock (another gorg gift!) will have a bit of a scarecrow effect and keep them safe.

IMG_7455I am absolutely not a green thumb so I am hoping by keeping these close to the back door they will fare better than previous attempts. I do need to get the lemon and gums out of pots and into the ground but I am having ‘planting anxiety’! Gardening Australia is getting a weekly watch to give me some tips. I am also giving much thought to how we can utilise our grey water to keep these suckers alive-I am growing tired of bucketing it after standing under the drainage pipe…

Meanwhile Pinterest continues to fuel the ‘beautiful’ fire…here is my vegie patch inspiration-

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I also took out the marginata that was growing outside the dining room window (that was SUPER fun with a chainsaw on a pole!). So this is the view outside the back door right now. Luxe I know! Eventually the plan is to have a deck replace the stairs so you won’t even see the ground here.

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In the meantime,I have had the pic of this lovely little courtyard in my file for yonkers…do-able?

ff33575d7b3c232a1356ca161d120168Some hard yakka pulling out the aloe vera and yukkas but then just some pavers and maybe a cherry blossom in a pot? Wanna come help?