Bathrooms, kitchens, sheds and cancellations

Over the weekend we continued to finish off the bathrooms just enough to allow for the shower screen measurer to do their job and for our plumber to come in on the Monday as scheduled and install the bathroomware. Whilst Anthony worked on cleaning out the shed in preparation for the coming asbestos removal, I continued to clean the bathrooms and also added the silicon in the corner and floor joints. I also painted the second and final top coat on the ceilings and the walls. So far it’s looking great.

We also had a visit from the Nobby’s Kitchens Designer, who came to look at our kitchen and price up a new one. He mentioned that our new kitchen was going to be pretty big, a lot bigger than your standard kitchen. I had heard good things about Nobby’s and when we visited the showroom last week I was happy with the quality and the looks they had to offer. We went through the design and what we could do to reduce the cost. Again we will be doing some things on our own like the tile splash back, the bulk heads, electrical and plumbing. Nobby’s will just be there to install the cabinets and the benchtop. We would need to find our own electric oven, rangehood, sink and taps. After a long chat about design, we got to business and discussed sums. Although the initial budget was $10K, we really had to stretch to get our “dream” kitchen. All things considering, I don’t think Anthony would want to build the kitchen himself, so in the end we had to expect that the kitchen was going to be 3x as much. Eventually, we went ahead with the quote and are really excited to know that we will be getting a brand new kitchen…well in a couple months time hopefully…This is the design that came out of our discussions with the Designer

We’ll be looking at a 2 tone kitchen. Grey base cabinets, a stone benchtop, white wall cabinets, a modern step in pantry and an additional pantry next to it. There’ll also be some really lovely wide drawers over 900mm and a breakfast bar that will fit 3 stools. On one side of our kitchen we will fit some open timber shelves. I was keen on a butlers sink but read about how impractical they can be. We even thought of an under mounted sink, but the Designer advised against it as we could potentially chip the stone benchtop as it is more exposed. Although the kitchen isn’t exactly how I want it, it does have a lot of great features and there will be so much storage, much more than we need! It is still a dream kitchen.

After the weekend had been and gone, we were really looking forward to Monday, knowing that we would be getting our bathrooms hooked up, but of course in the world of building, tradies can be unpredictable. Unfortunately, even with all our planning and hard work to get the bathrooms to a point, our plumber was a no show…something about truck problems. So we lost our booking and now have to wait until Saturday. I felt really disappointed and let down. But anyways, there’s not much we can do but just hope that the plumber turns up when he says he will. We have 2 more days till the shed is supposedly going to be ripped up and removed, but with the potential rain, I’m not entirely sure if even removal will happen.

So not really the best of starts for this week, but we will see..running low on some patience here.


Wall tiles – Night 9 to 10

Things with the house keep moving along at a gradual pace but it also feels like there’s no end. Probably because we are over tired and continue to do little bits at a time.

Anthony continued to do the tiling and just finished off the bottom tiles of the bathroom and then the following evening both of us got stuck into grouting and finished it really quickly. Definitely makes a difference with that extra person.

Over the Australia Day holiday we again tried to make the most of the day off and went shopping for the house. We went to our usual builders store, Bunnings – I think we visit the place at least once a week for the past few months… Picked up the laundry door as well as some ceiling paint. We also visited Beacon lighting and went through our list:

8 internal downlights

3 external downlights

8 pendant lights

2x 3 in 1 lights

1x fan light

Budget wise we allocated around $1500 on lighting. In the end we spent around $100 more than that but I think it was ok since we got some good quality lights and took advantage of a stocktake sale at Beacon.

The evening was spent painting the walls and ceilings of the ensuite and bathroom with primer. We are getting closer and closer to finishing these bathrooms off. We still have to put silicone in the corners and on the floor and put the top coat of paint on the walls and ceilings before the plumber comes in on Monday.


Wall tiles – Day 6 to 8

The weekend was pretty productive, we didn’t finish off the bathrooms, but we have it at a stage where the plumber can do his job and for the shower screen guys to measure.

There are still a lot of things needing to be done in the bathrooms such as painting and electrical but in terms of tiling we are pretty much there. The husband is finishing off tiling the last row of tiles at the floor and then we just need to grout and silicon the rest.

We even started setting up our laundry. Because the budget was for $2500 we decided to go with a flat pack. I read reviews that IKEA have thin back panels on their cabinets, so decided to spend a little extra and go with the Kaboodle range at Bunnings. To cut costs we also purchased the “paint your own” cabinet doors and bought a cheaper timber benchtop. The drawers are all soft close and went for Kaboodle’s own soft close hinges and drawer runners instead of the more expensive brand.

So apart from the bathrooms, this week we have another skip from Bingo bins arriving, which means this weekend we will be moving bathroom items into their rooms and clearing out the shed and moving things into the master bedroom. All of this in preparation for the shed to be demolished and the new one to go up.

We also made a visit to Nobby’s Kitchens on the Sunday. As they have a 50% off cabinets deal (mind you, it is actually only on base cabinets) for January, we thought we would see the showroom and potentially start the process of ordering a new kitchen. Making choices with colours came fairly easy as I’ve been wanting a two tone kitchen for a while now. The benchtop we want to go with stone considering Anthony and myself like to bake and make pasta from scratch. Our initial idea of a $10K budget has been blown out of the water due to the sheer size of our kitchen. Nobby’s does give you the option to install yourself, however the 10 year warranty becomes void. I think by the stage we get to redoing our kitchen, Anthony is probably not wanting  to lift a finger. We have one of their designers coming by to see our current kitchen and give us a final cost. If we go ahead on the day we can hold the promo discount for 12 months. We really want to give these guys a go as we have heard a lot of good things about their service. Will have to come back to this when we are ready…

Kitchen ideas


Wall tiles – Nights 3 to 5

After the weekend my husband has continued to work every night this week on the tiling to try to make sure we meet our deadline – the day that the plumber comes by to install all our bathroomwares.

The spacers we have been waiting for have arrived and during the wait we have been slowly building up the herringbone feature wall. The pattern took a bit of working out, so Anthony tried laying them on the floor first to get a feel for it. 

There’s been some odd cuts and a bit of fiddling around to get the wall of tiles straight. Although this pattern is not as straight forward as the floor, I have found these much easier to cut and lay.

Still a few more to go, but the plan is to complete this wall before the weekend.

In terms of how we are feeling, exhausted is an understatement. What with work and 2 kids, plus the tiling, it’s been a pretty tiring week and to think there’s still so much more to go makes me feel even worse. I know that Anthony is extremely hard working and will not quit till it’s complete, but even I’m wondering if he we will lose motivation because it’s just all getting too much. We are hoping though that before we make a start in knocking some of the walls down (the next big hurdle), that we can have a mini holiday with the kids. Till then, we keep working…


Wall tiles – Day 2

As per usual we make plans and well it doesn’t always go accordingly. Plans were to have all the large format white tiles up. Didn’t happen, but it is nice to see most of the ensuite tiles on the wall as it is a sign of progress. We had run out of some tile levelling spacers which prevented us from continuing (should be receiving some more over the next few days), so in the meantime and during the weeknights we will be working on the herringbone feature wall in the bathroom as we have the 1.5mm spacers available.


Wall tiles – Day 1

After what seemed like weeks of working on floor tiles we have finally been able to make a start on wall tiles, or at least make a start in the ensuite. I pictured in my head that installing the wall tiles would actually be a fairly quick process, well quicker than what we experienced with the floor tiles, and considering we were given some self levelling spacers for Christmas, that this would just speed things up. Well, day 1 and we’ve only managed to complete 2 walls…

We have now booked in our plumber for the 27th/28th Jan and so have 2 more weekends to complete the tiling. There is also a long weekend, which we hope gives us an extra day, but it looks like we can expect to be working weekends and weeknights.

On a side note, we have also had an asbestos removalist come over and provide a quote for removing our garage. We have a delivery of our kit shed on Feb 7 and so once the bathrooms are done and the bathroomware moved out of the shed, we have the arduous task of moving all the sheds contents and storing it in our master bedroom. This way the asbestos removalist will do his job and then Anthony and his Dad will be able to build the shed.

But back to the wall tiles…

The self levelling system is actually really handy we have found and I really wish we had known about it when we were laying out the floor tiles. The initial challenge with the walls has just been deciding where we start, because you don’t often start with a full tile due to the potential unevenness of the floor.

The next challenge for us was cutting holes. We found if you really don’t have the right tools it can be a bit of a nightmare. We tried a few cutters, Anthony used his newly bought Dremel and in the end we went with a circular bit.

It took a few hours for us to establish some sort of flow with tiling and that’s because we hadn’t worked with the large format ceramic tiles before. When we finally got a flow it was then a lot quicker for the tiles to go up.


Floor tiling complete

So finally after a lot…I mean A LOT of fiddling around, we got our floor tiles laid and grout in too. The finish isn’t completely as we hoped, but I think we’ve done a pretty good job for first timers. It was difficult considering we didn’t have level waterproofing and had to work around someone else’s rush job. The falls are all there and some of the lippage will either be hidden by cabinetry or shower screens.

I have to continue to commend my husband for all the work he has been putting into the house for the past few months. It really has been non stop for him since. Working full time and then working on the house in the evenings, not to mention trying to be there for our 2 kids and be a Dad. He hasn’t had a real break for a long time and I imagine this work has felt endless. We know there’s a light at the end of this tunnel and I hope that we can soon enjoy some time off.