14 February, 2007

i heart chocolate

i heart chocolate

Happy Valentines Day to y'all.

I heart you too, B.

12 February, 2007

as forecast

the heavens opened.

syd radar 11022007

Having taken the guttering down from the rear of the house late Saturday in order to attach rafters to the eves of the house and stabilise our work, we woke Sunday to the sound of torrential rain. So much so that at 5.00am we were up scrambling for towels to slow the flow of water coming in under the french doors.

It continued to rain on and off through Sunday, although we didn't let that slow us down. With Mum and Dad's help and enough sunny periods throughout the day we trimmed the Bottlebrush, erected the remaining two timber posts, a beam and 2 rafters. It probably also helped that we didn't make one trip, let alone the five we did yesterday, to Bunnings.

It has rained solidly pretty much since we packed up last night. In fact it was a two bathsheet under the door night, and two beach towel under the door day.

verandah before and mid-construction

10 February, 2007

construction zone

the construction of the verandah is really happening this weekend, it is nearing the end of day one and the boys* are on their fifth trip to Bunnings. So far we have the two cast iron posts up and one of the cedar ones, with one of the beams temporarily bracing one cast iron post to a cedar post. I think I will share progress pictures when all posts, beams and rafters are in place. This means that there will be no pictures before the end of next weekend as we need to get more timber for the rafters, purchasing only enough to brace the posts and beams at this stage.

Next week we shall have to start sourcing someone to do the roofing and guttering. Tomorrow when we fix the rafters to brace the posts and beams we are going to have to remove the guttering from the rear of the house. I can guarrantee that the 'worst drought in 100 years' that we are experiencing will be broken, so I want to line the roofing and guttering guy up pretty soon.

Although we got off to a bit of a shaky start this morning with holes drilled in the concrete slab not lining up and the special dyna bolt thingys getting destroyed in the process (those little suckers are unforgiving, once they're in they're in and get wrecked when you have to force them out), it would seem like we are actually going to pull this verandah construction off.

Other items on the list for this house are:
  • Convert laundry; completely gut, retile, waterproof, and rearrange layout to fit a toilet and shower.
  • Fix plumbing in the bathroom; this is going to be a big plumbing job but will need to be done before the next task.
  • Rejuvenate bathroom; if the budget is not completely shot by this stage, this will mean a new bathroom in keeping with the house (ie late federation-early californian bungalow), otherwise new vanity, mirror, showerscreen, and get someone in to reenamel the bath and repaint the tiles.
  • Replace laundry and bathroom doors with the leadlight doors purchased at an auction last year. This will let more light into the hallway, with the added bonus of knowing if someone is already in the bathroom.
  • New Kashmir White granite kitchen bench tops, new stove and rangehood, and retro SMEG fridge. All completely frivolous requirements at the moment as there is nothing wrong with the kitchen or the appliances at this stage, but I like to plan ahead.
  • Rainwater Tanks; these are planned to be installed as soon as the laundry is converted.
  • Repainting the outside woodwork, this is going to need to be done in the next five years, at which point we will hopefully have decided on a colour scheme other than the existing primrose and heritage green (boring).
  • Install post for side gate.
  • Fix cubby house, it is in dire need of help now, but, well as you can see there is so much to do already,

And, if this were a ten year plan, I would probably suggest that a new front fence might be in order, and somewhere in all this is a concrete slab for the spa which is becoming more of a necessity with each job.

*JF kindly offered his services, and we are very grateful. I am grateful it gave the opportunity to get out of the sun, heat and humidity occassionally.

04 February, 2007

don't call me auntie

some people (my family) can be so insensitive, and I can be self-centred....

My two sisters are having babies, due a fortnight apart, in August. I am really happy for them, really I am. I love babies.

B and I have been trying for a baby for a few years now, but I have a pituitary adenoma, and my hormones are stubborn. STUBBORN! And, I have recently been told by my specialist that I will have to start a routine of daily injections, if I am to have any success. SOOOOOOO..... can you blame me if I feel a little out of sorts by the following comments:-

Setting - my parents house this evening, for dad's birthday. Walking in from the backyard to the living room full of family (grandparents, mum, dad, auntie, brother, SIL, my two nephews, and my two sisters and their husbands. I am the childless /non-exectant one).

Grandmother (very loudly and over enthusiastically): HELLO AUNTIE.
Me (looking around, who is she yelling at, I mean talking to? me????): Hi Nan and Pa.
Grandmother (very loudly and over enthusiastically): HELLO AUNTIE, Aren't you going to have a busy year, this year? AUNTIE.
Me (feeling a bit confused, overwhelmed, and in my head saying to myself) STOP calling me that, and get me the hell out of here.

Retreating back outside to get some space, only to have ten minutes later, my grandmother join me and the conversation to go something like...

Grandmother: You're a bit quiet this evening, are you alright?
Me: Yes, thanks Nan, maybe a bit tired.
Grandmother: It is going to be a busy year. How many greatgrand children will I have this year? (not waiting for an answer)
Me: (please get my barren arse out of here whilst my grandmother painfully counts those greatgrandchildren up)
Grandmother: Ten, I will have ten greatgrandchildren, that's pretty good and something to look forward to, isn't it?
Me: Yes it is.

I don't mean to be self-centred, but, enough already. We were out of there as soon as the presents were open and the candles blown out on the cake.

02 February, 2007


it is day two of no hot water at our place, and I am desperate for a shower. It is hot and muggy, and definately two showers* a day weather. I am lucky that I am able to work from home (I am on a morning tea break at the moment, ok), although it is probably luckier for my workmates that this is possible. I feel I stink!

The electrician and plumber are working away as I type. We are going from the rusty Rheem electric hot water storage to the Rinnai gas continous flow. I am quite excited as we shall be going from no environmental star rating to a 5.6 environmental star rating. We are environmentally minded, and had this on our list of things to replace in the future. However, with water gushing from our old unit discovered by B when it had got to the point of overflowing the overflow and via the garage was rushing down our driveway somewhat like Niagara Falls, the future became now.

Break due to power being turned off, and on....
1.31pm ~ I am showered, and it was good. But back to work, and strangely enough I feel far more productive!

*short ones, I know we are in the worst drought for 100 years.

31 January, 2007

January all but gone

January goings on

despite the photo mosaic (l just had to try this one out) not a great deal has been going on, well actually not a great deal of variety anyway. Except when it comes to food. We have been spoilt with Sri Lankan curries and rice thanks to our dear friend R. The photos show a seriously spicy beef curry (B's mouth was on fire, but I like it hot), potato curry, and the most delicious yellow rice I have ever had. Cooking classes have been requested because it was just too good.

We have gardened, stripping out the vegepatch and topping it up with cow manure which Macc has delighted rolling in, Harvested passionfruit daily, from which we have made icecream and more icecream. It is icecream weather here. Sanded and painted the wooden columns for the back verandah, Visited officeworks and discovered the eco bags with the cute designs, and the bag tag.

B and I have also had a few doctors appointments, in between which I did a bit of footpath loving, grazing and bruising my toes, ankle, knee, and elbow. But you would have already known about this, as the howling and sobbing was almost as spectacular as the fall itself.

We have also had quite a few trips to the hospital to visit a friend who could really do with our prayers, A (not of 'A and D' the one who just had a baby) but our other friend, has been paralysed down her right side (kinda like a stroke) for the last three weeks and has a six week rehabilitation program ahead of her. Unexplained and all very mysterious, and also kinda scary, that this sort of thing could be a pinched nerve one day and well paralysed the next. She needs our prayers.

And if you can spare a positive thought I have joined all the other fatty boombahs at Weight Watchers, cause we have big things planned for sure in 2007.

17 January, 2007

fabric express

fabric for 'Sophie's Quilt' from Patchwork on Central Park

thank goodness, this arrived in the post, if only to save me from having to see the chook (in the previous post) one minute longer. I was seriously on the verge of going vegetarian.

The fabric in the pile includes the front and binding, and the white dot on green that the pile is displayed on is the backing for Sophie's Quilt (see Jan 12 post). I can't wait to get started although I am trying to finish a x-stitch that has been a work in progress for too long now.

Not much crafting will get done at the moment either it is too hot, and is only to get hotter with temperatures of 38 degrees C on the weekend apparently.

The warm weather was much appreciated though on Monday night when B and I enjoyed The Queen at the Open Air Cinema at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Sydney with the littlest sister and her friend from Broken Hill. The two times, in previous years, it has rained during the movies we have been at, so this was a pleasant suprise. It was also nice to share the experience with the littlest sister, who congratulations is 11 weeks pregnant. It was a little disconcerting though as she is terribly sick with it, and spent a good deal of the time with her face in a towel she carries with her to deal with the acid.

15 January, 2007

ethically eating

With words like ‘bum’ banned our newest culinary success is no longer being referred to as ‘chicken with beer up its bum’ but ‘drunken chicken’.

I like the new name it’s less confronting for the eater. After all we buy free range eggs round here, we care about the chickens.

Drunken Chicken was a great hit for dinner, when my parents, the favourite brother, SIL and kiddo’s visited on Sunday night.

Drunken Chicken
Put an opened can of beer up the cavity of a chicken and BBQ till cooked.

Drunken Chicken

We also tested our newest (sort of homemade) Banana and Passionfruit icecream on them. It too was a success. The Passionfruit Vine continues to drop more fruit than we can keep up with, so I guess more passionfruit icecream is on the way.

Proof Positive Dinner was goood!
It was a great evening, and isn’t that a happy face.

waterlily cups and saucers

And I had a happy face when mum gave me these waterlily cups & saucers from a Salvation Army Store. Too cute.
And just because I don't like the photo of the chicken on the beer can I end my post with a photo I do like.

"I'll remove those excessive neck hairs"

12 January, 2007

best wishes

just a really quick one (as I am at work) - best wishes to A and D who are about to be wheeled into theatres for the cesearean delivery of their first baby. Our thoughts are with you.

***Stoppress 1.34pm***
born 9.53am at 36 weeks, 50cm, 6.4 pounds or 2.8kg, a precious little boy Brody John, Mother and baby doing well.


And carried away with the celebratory feelings I have ordered me 'Sophie's Quilt' from Patchwork on Central Park, as seen on the cover of the February BH&G. It has been eating away at me since our copy BH&G arrived in the mail earlier this week and as I was viewing this blog and her quilt when I got the news of A & D's arrival, I just couldn't help myself.

Sophie's Quilt

09 January, 2007

work (not) in progress

craft buddies

is this not a picture of tranquility? I managed to work on my L'ete cross-stitch most evenings last week however, this week is not off to a good start. My craft buddies have been present for most sessions. Today, however, we have a forced stop work as the site foreman was tired and felt it necessary to sleep where the principal worker was set up.