A bedroom for the boys

Until we decided what we’re going to be doing with this house, the boys (middle and youngest) are sharing the front main bedroom.  This room actually needed  a lot of attention.  The plaster ceiling was quite bad and the old ‘horse hair’ walls needed replacing.  The room had a really peculiar smell too.  It was a strange sickly, sweet smell.  Fortunately it’s gone now.  We really had no clue what the smell was but this is what it might have been.  As we pulled off each wall panel ‘this stuff’ was waiting behind.  It was thousands and thousands of tiny pellets.  We think it might have been cockroach poo but if anyone out there knows what this was, please let me know.

 .Old Pearly Jenkins

Mr F also did a lovely job of replacing the ugly aluminium windows for much nice casement windows.   We used Dulux White on White again.  In fact this will be used throughout the whole house.  Gone are the days for us, when each room was a different colour.

Old Pearly Jenkins

When we pulled off the plaster sheets from one of the walls we discovered some very nice ‘untouched’ VJ!  Except they were a bit crooked, prehaps the original builder was quite keen to hide his wonky walls. It didn’t take Mr F to put things right and with a good smearing of builders bog, you’d never know the difference.

Old Pearly JenkinsOld Pearly Jenkins

It was hard to decide what to do with the windows. We wanted to keep it really simple. We decided on ‘old fashioned’ retractable roller blinds. We had a few different quotes and Vista came in at the cheapest. To be honest, I’m not sure if I’d ever put retractable blinds in a child’s room again. They’re not that easy to put up.

We also brought a cheap chandelier from Early Settlers. We got it for a good price because someone had returned it and it was’nt in a box.  It looks fine and does the job. The electrician we used for the installation would have to be one of the nicest electrician you’re ever likely to meet.  He’s so incredibly honest and genuine. We’ve been using him for years now and would recommend his services to anyone. His name is Shannon Drysdale and his business is called Drysdale Electrical.  He is based on the Southside of Brisbane but doesn’t venture to the Northside for work.

The boys needed a chest of drawers as the last house had them inside the wardrobes.  I’d been looking on Gumtree and Ebay for something suitable for ages.  When we were at Restoration Station looking for lights for the lounge, I found  these drawers downstairs.  The owner of the shop told us that they’d come out of a deceased estate in Paddington.  Supposedly the owner of the house had never married and the house had been his parents.  It’s a great story.. but the drawers were in a sorry state.

Old Pearly Jenkins                                                  Old Pearly Jenkins

I brought the drawers  and I  decided  that I didn’t want to strip them at all.  In fact all I did was scrub them, repaint the inside and give it all a quick coat of white paint.  the mint green on the drawers  is the original colour.  I’ve left them as they were, animal scratch marks and all.  There were a few knobs missing but luckily Restoration Station sell these too

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Old Pearly Jenkins

So now the boys have some drawers.  They’ll do for now!  It was fun to buy a few bits and pieces for their room.  I brought the whale cushion covers from a great shop called Three Two One by Kim & Judi  at Coorparoo.   I also enjoyed making the felt pom-pom garland.  I brought the pom poms from ebay and strung them onto the thinnest red cord I could find at Spotlight.  I also brought from ebay two cute lamps for each of the boys.  I was just about to buy one from a shop at Fortitude Valley and decided to look online.  I found them on ebay, the seller was in Holland.  For the price it was going to cost me to buy one here, I brought two, plus the postage and the convertor plugs. BARGAIN!!

Old Pearly JenkinsOld Pearly JenkinsOld Pearly Jenkins

The Moose ‘Norbert’ came from  Green Grass Home and Body at Bulimba.

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A NEW CHAPTER!

I’ll start from the beginning!!

Before I do start this blog. I have to quickly say that I am a complete novice. I’ve never done anything like this before. So please excuse the odd sized photos, photos that are placed haphazardly. It’s all new to me and I will be learning as I go.   Some of the photos may not look the best either, I’ve used the camera on my phone.  So here goes nothing….

Late  2011 we brought a new house to renovate.  It’s a little house, a very little house and  we are a family of five (three sons), two cats and two possums (they were here  when we moved in).

We moved from a bland yet spacious brick and tile, four bedroom, two bathroom, media room, swimming pool etc… in an equally bland suburb. To a much smaller two bedroom + sunroom, character house. But this house is oozing with personality.  It’s in an older suburb closer to Brisbane city that’s bursting at the seams with vibrant, interesting people and beautiful older homes. We love the house and the location but the house is just a little too small for us lot.

So… the renovations began!  We started with clearing the back garden. The house has been a rental for many years.  The previous tenants had kind of  let things go.  Please don’t be fooled by the photograph above.  It was sent to us by our lovely real estate agent.  I think it has to have been taken at least five years ago.  As there is now an enormous tree by the back steps.

This is what we were up against on a stinking hot day in January.  It was quite a satisfying job. The neighbours on one side didn’t seem too impressed though, the overgrown jungle had given them privacy and she told me so.  I felt bad for a few moments, then took the opportunity to explain to her in  the nicest way possible that we’d brought the house to live in. It was going to need some work,  but hey ” No more tenants ” !!

Old Pearly JenkinsOld Pearly Jenkins

She   just  snorted and walked away.  But you’ll be pleased to know that since this first meeting we’ve got to know her quite well.  It took a while for her to warm to us (remember the three boys) .  so anyhoo we’re  keeping  our neighbours well-informed of whats going on and I think she’s secretly pleased that the ‘old girl’ is getting a makeover at last.

It might not  look like much when you look at the photo above  but it was a great start.

A month or two later the lovely neighbours on the other side gave us some fence panels that had been removed from their place and they had no need for them.  A couple of bottles of wine, a dozen beer and the new/recycled fence was  passed over the fence .

We cleared the mess down the back, demolishing the bits and pieces that had for many years been some sort of property divider. Then replaced it  with the new/recycled back fence.  A few trees from the house behind us  needed a few limbs cut off and one particularly ugly one that had been planted too close to the old fence line had to go. We were given the thumbs up from the owner, we just needed to find the right person for the job .

We decided to try using ServiceSeeking.com.au to find a suitable person for the job. We placed a job description and waited for the quotes to come in.  We decided to go with a man called Grady Simon.  His passion and knowledge was incredible and he was extremely well priced.  I would recommend his services to anyone needing something done in the garden anywhere in Brisbane (North and South side), Ipswich etc.

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The next job to do was to build  a low retaining wall to level out the garden.  We wanted to put a small swimming pool at the far right hand corner.  The cooler winter evenings set in and it was harder to motivate Mr F to do anything outside.  But with a little encouragement and acting as his labourer, we completed the wall in time for the hole to be dug for the swimming pool .

The new recycled back fence and the markings for the new pool.

The  company that we chose to construct our swimming pool was Thomas Pools. They’re based in Capalaba but have been putting in pools all over Brisbane for many years.  They did my parent’s swimming pool in two of their houses.  My dad, who does everything ‘by the book’ was very impressed with them and so by late August, Brian from Thomas Pools  ( thomaspools.com.au ) came over and measured up and sent the diggers in.

I think I’ll just fast forward this week. We had a few hiccups with Brisbane City Council, we had to get a permit to have a fence over two metres on the boundary. As usual the paperwork disappeared and then ended up on the wrong person’s desk. It was a massive delay but FINALLY last week we got the certification and started to fill the pool.

Woo hoo its been so hot these past few weeks and looking at an empty concrete hole was pretty rough.

We did use the time however to have Indo, from Pro Fence ( profence.net.au) build a hardwood deck around two sides and install the pool fence. In our previous house we decided to have glass panels installed instead of the standard powder coated type. We found it to be a bit of a pain to keep clean. So this time we have gone with the  standard powder coated type. Pretty boring, I know  but its one less job to do on a weekend.

It’s nearly done. We just have to clean and seal the pavers, clean up the decking (tradies just don’t seem to care about making a mess), lay some turf and we are set for Summer. Bring it on!!!!

So this is what the pool looks like currently.