Another brick in the wall

Things are fairly slow on the renovation front as we have been plodding along only on the weekends. We have also had to juggle soccer coaching of our son’s under 8’s soccer team on the Saturdays, so it feels like we have had less and less time dedicated to these renovations as of late. Now at a fairly rocky stage, we are trying to approach removing these internal walls carefully. My husband is being cautious, while I’m being impatient. 

Anthony’s parents visited us for Mother’s Day, and of course his Dad’s time here was not wasted and Anthony made requests to bring some tools and helping hands to make some cuts into the walls.

As his parents said, we have to crack eggs to make an omelette. This rings so true for what we’re doing with these renovations. It gets frustrating at times though, because we keep having to make a lot of mess, cleaning it up, only to make more mess again. Sawing the brick wall caused a lot of fine dust to settle practically everywhere and even in our new bathrooms, despite us placing some plastic and cardboard over the doors. We were left with a large pile of 100 year old bricks and lime mortar, which we were able to salvage and add further to our pavement on the side of the house. The other thought was to pressure wash the pavement and then paint, as well as add crushed gravel on the sides to fill in the gaps.

Next steps will be to hire a demolition saw as the one we borrowed isn’t cutting deep enough into the brick. We found that Kennards Hire has a demolition saw that can cut indoors and reduce the amount of dust as it includes a vacuum. We’re planning to create more cuts, and dig a pier pad. We have the concrete slab to tackle, dig more piers and then we can look at demolishing the indoor walls. We considered hiring trades to remove the walls for us, but felt we would have to live with the exposed open area without a floor for too long.


Level ground

We had success with the mini excavator and it’s driver that we contracted on the weekend. Their little digger managed to get through the tight corner between the shed and patio stairs and get round to shift all the dirt around. I was so glad that we didn’t have to shovel dirt ourselves again, I think we’ve had our fair share of moving dirt so far.

The weekend was spent watching the ground in the backyard go from mountains to flat land, followed by family related errands, like taking our son to his friends birthday parties. Our weekends have never been so busy with trying to fit in the build and keep our children entertained.

When we got back from the kids parties, we started on the brick pavers down the side of the house. We managed to salvage the sand from the old sand pit and it was a good thing we did because it actually filled up the side. Score! We don’t need to spend any more money on sand and delivery. We had a stack of old bricks on the other side of our house and used those up. We’re now halfway and will be using the bricks that come out of the wall when we start opening the inside of the house. For us this was a good use of scrap material. It isn’t the prettiest of paths, but it does the job and we can now hang our washing without walking through dirt.

Another job to do out the back is to add some bamboo slat fencing that we bought at Bunnings. This should also lighten the common back fence as it is an ugly brown at the moment. We also need to add sleepers into the ground to border the bamboos. Then we can add some top soil and lay down some buffalo turf. We will also have a small garden bed to plant some shade tolerant plants. Again there’s lots of odd jobs around the house, but it’s slowly on the way to completion. We have this Saturday to break as my husband and I will celebrate our 10 year wedding anniversary and then back into it after the celebrations!