Friday, July 27, 2012

How's that for timing?

A week from right now, we'll be snuggled up in our little house, falling asleep together for the first time in the little house we've spent the last 3 months building. Today was supposed to be a day of great achievement - Annie and Peps and Brett and I, busily finishing bits and pieces on said little house, getting it ready for move-in-able-ness. First thing this morning, Annie was removing some items from within the house in order to make room for ladders and such and, misjudging the depth of the newly-excavated front step, rolled her ankle in quite a serious way. Cue instant swelling of the foot and almost-tears from me - do we really have time for an injury right now??
gratuitous shot of bruising and swelling
Luckily, after some ice and some nurofen, Annie was back up the ladder, finishing off the little fence-paling details that have finally closed up the eaves. 
fiddly in-between rafters bizzo made from recycled fence palings, which will stop breezes and cover up sunnily-toned but outrageously itchy fibreglass insulation

They do look lovely (though it took quite a while and several false starts before we worked out how to actually get it right), but it seems to us that pretty much anything, made out of old, lichen-covered fence palings, looks lovely.
Peps, meanwhile, was digging these immaculate and perfect steps heading down to our soon-to-be-constructed fire pit.
 They correspond delightfully with the immaculate and perfect tyre retaining wall and steps that make up the front little level bit in front of the house. Hmmm tyre retaining wall...It was quite the discussion topic for quite awhile. I get it, I get, they are a waste product and they're free so yep we should be finding ways to use them. However they are so damn ugly! And it seems that the jury is still out on how much they leach, which is a concern given they contain volatile organic compounds such as benzene, and metals such as lead. So it's true, I would have much preferred a retaining wall made of sleepers or delightful rocks or some such. However in the end I couldn't get past the importance of using a waste product that we produce so much of and the free part was a little enticing too given how much this house building shenanigan costs. The tyre retaining wall is not looking it's best right now, despite the fine efforts of my dad, but come Spring it start to emerge as a site of loveliness. Due to concerns about chemical leaching there are to be no edible plants growing in or around the tyres but they will abound with perennial beauties which will hopefully render most of the tyres invisible, or almost so. 
After all these months slipping and sliding and rolling and tripping all over the slightly chaotic slope that used to be immediately out front of our door, it's unspeakably luxurious to have a decent-sized level bit. It's also kind of ironic that, through all the aforementioned slipping and sliding and rolling and tripping everyone who has visited the site managed to avoid injury and now, the first day it's level, Annie manages to do a number on her ankle, just while things are really hotting up. Hilarious.
The whole thing's coming together now, and actually feeling like, yeah, we can move in in a week and, yeah, it's going to be kind of un-polished, but essentially, it'll be a cozy little house Yesterday, Brett and I finished off the corrugated iron patchwork of the ceiling inside, and now, with the almost-completeness of the eave-bits, the house is pretty much wind-and-draught-proof, which is a very good thing, and essential to our impending comfort given that Bega's still reaching sub-zero some nights.

Yes, the ceiling is still looking a bit space-age, but soon we'll be painting it a Porter's colour called 'attic' and then, hopefully, it'll feel like a combination of being underwater and flying.

Rustic lunches on makeshift strawbale furniture continue,

And Olive just keeps on taking beautiful photos, from her very special little person point of view.
Today she took a photo of the string-line that Annie put up to mark the position of our pergola posts. "I'm taking a photo of this dirty string because I want to represent the fact that there is a lot of dirt around here at the moment". Can't help but love a 5 year old who uses the word "represent" like that...


  1. I like that tyre retaining wall...Jackie Frenchs' tyre retaining wall looks brill. I have started propagating and will send some plants down for your garden.
    BTW you know your steps will be absolutely the most perfect steps in the whole of the Bega Valley shire. If you need some steps built, you just gotta ask Peps. You should see the amazing steps he built for Wayne...perfection!
    Keep icing Annie's injury. RICE (Rest, Ice, Compression, Elevation).
    Love xx

  2. What a gem you have in Peps!
    I'm excited for you imagining you in there in a week! Yay!! The whole thing is looking awesome.

  3. You go Girls!
    Wonderful to see you moving so swiftly and staying upbeat.