Saturday, May 29, 2010

Lighting and other business

Heading into town today to select our ten lights for the builder to supply and fit. Of course we also have Soccer for the youngest ( UK football for those of you in the Northern hemisphere) and a bit of clothing shopping to do. Eldest  now can wear Hubby's best trousers, shoes and shirts as we discovered this week when trying to workout what clothing to get him for his week of "work experience" for school. He looked fabulously smart in  trousers, belt, long sleeved business shirt and... wait for it Tie!  Which he insisted on trying on.  So we need to find him some "business" shirts of his own and perhaps his own pair of good dress type trousers.

..................................  and on to the lights

To my untrained eye the ceilings look worse than they did before the repairs were done. The builder has agree we are entitled to some compensation for our ceilings which can not be repaired to a high standard. They obviously do not want to remove the ceilings in several rooms ( more than half the house)  and replace them so they have agree to cover the cost of 10 light fittings and the install of said ten lights.

I hope can talk hubby into the lights I want. The oyster light is one we were both able to agree on last year. But thoughts change.

So it will be:
  oyster light white with white surround glass large for kitchen ( x2) dining, family and activity room.  Smaller version for entry and passageway. Oyster light large with silver surround for office and a set of 3/4 spotlights on a bar in silver and white for 2nd light in office.
3 light Hermosa-vaucluse pendant for lounge or similar item. all supplied and fitting at builders cost ( yippeee)
We will look at buying a light fitting for the spare bedroom at the same time. Perhaps another of the same or something else and one of the smaller version with white glass surround for the laundry.

The Hermosa light is not from the lighting shop in town that the builder wants us to use so if Hubby likes it we might end up with a light for the spare bedroom  paid for by the builder and the lounge light bought by us.

Previous news
Yes, I know I've been very slack on posting lately. Things aren't likely to improve without some major event happening.  We still haven't heard from the fencing man to say when he is starting and I discovered he has a 2nd business/job as part of a large farm. I haven't noticed him advertising his fencing business recently either so perhaps that has taken over more. I'm going to have to call him and Developer be damned!.  If the Developer needs to take down a part of the fence top  put in the trees he owes us that will be his problem. I'm sick of waiting to plant things.

  On the ute:  The ute has developed a fuel problem,  Namely it's leaking petrol!  I guess you get that with old cars. It's in at the mechanics and hopefully will be repaired and functional ( meaning not losing petrol) sometime next week.  Here's hopping it doesn't cost us a fortune.

Mum has now moved and I spent Friday of last week and a couple of hours early Saturday unpacking. We plan to go and visit her this weekend for a cuppa. Yippee.  It will be nice for her to only be 55 mins away instead of 3 plus hours.  I am worried about her getting shopping done. But  hopefully she can get a lift into town with someone else from the retirement village where she has moved.  The village itself is gorgeous.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

I did what!!!

Updates for the week:
Well the Water Corporation sent someone out to test our water pressure and it seems it is exactly as the retic man said last week. So at this stage we will not be having reticulation put in for our lawn. Unless we end up getting a big water tank and a pump ( about $3k all up to do so)

Main Maintenance boss came for a visit on Friday and they are going to have one more try at our ceilings and then after that we'll have to get into some sort of negotiation/compensation deal.  Not saying anything more for the moment except that right now  to my untrained eye the ceilings look worse than they did before the repairs were started.

Spent pretty much all of the daylight hours yesterday in Balingup ona w work friends block picking olives.  :)   They have some awesome views, a wonderful new house( including pot drawers everywhere in the kitchen and one of those double farm house sinks I love and which it turns out DH hates  sigh)  3 mains ponds and a smaller pond/ sedge pond?  and gorgeous, beautiful trees. And... 180+ olive trees. I think there were about 17 of us picking and we spent from just before 10am until 5pm picking olives for crushing.  phew.   We had a short tea break at around lunchtime for scones and drinks and then stopped for a fast lunch at 3.  Oh my goodness my arms and shoulders know about it a little today.  But olive picking is very simple and the trees looks lovely. It all just takes time. :)

Today it looks like we'll be heading into Bunbury to buy some shoes for one of the boys and if they are open, to look at ceiling lights again.  No quiet life here today.

Found my original post with the light fittings in it.

the one below I like too but as we ended up with white downlights I'm guessing the first  fits better in the kitchen.  I'd love to have the chrome ones near the ceiling fans with the  chrome bits on them but since it's all one large room that would look rather silly.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010


Trying to distract myself this morning.

Had some terrible news about our water pressure yesterday from the guy who came to do the reticulation quote.  It seems as it is a.t.m. we can't have pop up sprinklers in our lawn area as the water pressure is less than half what it needs to be to be able to operate them. 4Lpm at 150kpa  it should be more than double that at least.  Not sure what we can do without paying out huge $$$ for a storage tank and pump system or subsurface drip system.  I still like the idea of watering the garden beds with  a retic setup.  Possibly a drip hose, I have to wait until I get a proper email from the retic man  to get the details.   Very disappointed.

No news on the ceiling solution yet.  Still like the first light below or something like it more than any other sort of light. Either with the chrome or a white surround.  As much as I would love to have more decorative lights at least for the main living room this light is more practical. There are already downlights (3), ceilings fans ( 2) and airconditioning vents (4).  The last thing the area needs is fussy, standout lights as well.

 I might consider something different and perhaps a little directional  for the office and perhaps something  prettier for the lounge however.  not as keen on this one.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

It's Mother's Day

My request for Mother's Day was to get some trees for some of the spots we have had dug. 

We now realise we will want another 5 holes dug for some of  the trees we want to plant. Unfortunately most of the trees from our list that we can get at the moment  are for the holes not yet dug,
 We had a bit of a dig where the extra hole spots are wanted and an auger will definitely be needed.  It's far too rocky to dig by hand unfortunately. 

At this stage the plans are for 5 silver birches, a maple of some kind, a flowering plum (nigra) -hole still to be dug, deciduous magnolia- hole still to be dug, smoke bush ? - hole still to be dug and 2 other deciduous leaf colour changing trees.  And for the back, a hole for the mulberry tree and one for a Liquidambar styraciflua. I keep coming back to the Liquidambar.  I have looked at dwarf forms and other varieties but it's the giant original that I love.  Luckily we have the room for one. There are several in the grounds at work and I just adore the leaf shape, colour of the leaves, the nuts and the tree shape.  I do wish they didn't grow as large but thank goodness we have the room.  I've given up on a weeping willow. It's something I've always want to have in my garden since I was a small child.  The liquidambar is my new dream tree. :)

So yesterday I made a quick dash down to  the local nursery to see what they had in stock.
Spotted 2 lovely trees  that had been on my short list of  ones I'd been considering and 2 lovely silver birch trees. Looked promising.  Found out there there was an avenue of one of the trees planted on a property on the edge of town that was worth checking out as well.
 I couldn't buy them then and there as DH had to see the 2 new possible tree choices first. 
 Had a few things to do including taking R to soccer. ( they won 15 to 1)  and then later in the day Hubby and I took the ute for a drive to check out the avenue of trees.  They looked gorgeous and Dh was hooked. 
So off the the nursery we went. 

 We've brought home 1 Tallow wood tree ( this was the avenue tree) , 1 Manchurian pear and 2 rather large Silver Birches.  We will need another 3 Silver birches but we'll wait until they get in some more large stock as the other 2 they had  were much smaller or else buy them from The Small Tree Farm  in Balingup as bare rooted stock in July.  No maples in stock at the moment.

Of course once we got them home we had to try them out in the holes, tree bags an all.   Photo below.

Tallow wood tree is closest to the camera and the Manchurian Pear is behind it. The two silver birches are also in the picture but they can't really be seen from this angle.

  Today we'll plant them.  The house looks so different with some trees out the front.  Very pleased with our purchases.

Bark of the Silver Birch.

Manchurian Pear Tree

Tallow Wood Tree ( Above and below)

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

trundling along

Still waiting to hear the outcome on the ceilings. It's with " the boss" atm. One person at work said we should insist on new ceilings but...

Imagine the mess.

I don't want
        -textured ceilings ( same person pointed out that especially in the country and with a wood fire to be       installed the dust would be horrendous)

         -tinted ceiling instead of white. I dislike the "chalk dust" colour of our door frames being a not "white"  white. I dislike it against the beautiful wall colour as it is. It looks dirty even though it's not. No way do I want to lose the white contrast of the ceilings against the walls by having the ceiling paint  tinted.

          -more downlights.

I do want oyster lights of our choosing. The trouble is it would be 8 lights and there are 4 others that I would want to match so they would need to be purchased at the same time even if not fitted.


Our retaining wall man came today and attempted to dig 8 tree holes and to spread the organic soil for the lawn. Soil area looks great although I need to get some more soil

. BUT he had a slight problem with a couple of the tree holes. oops. Seems we will not be able to go for the super large sized trees as he wasn't able to dig down far enough to get the holes started for us. ROCK!2 of the tree holes in our "avenue " of 5 trees are now out of line as it was the only way he could dig down to at least 600mm. :( we were hoping he could get down a bit further)

2 of the holes out in the front garden area are also a bit more shallow that we would have hoped for so it means smaller specimens than originally planned. We'll just have to wait for their roots to grow and find their own way between the rocky sections of ground.

Not looking forward to the fencing man appearing as he might have some fun digging the post holes which means additional $ for us. :(

Our man today charged us $180 for 3 hours work. about 1 1/2-2 hours of it was spreading the dirt. The retic quote we had quoted us $800 to do the same job. You see why I was so disappointed with their quote. I figure if they over charge that much for that part of the job what amount were they planning on over charging us for the retic section. Plus their quote didn't include the plumber or the sparkie they'd originally said they'd organise. So that would be on top again. If it had included that we would have been happy for them to do the work even with a 2nd day of bobcat work at $800 ( well maybe)
Their lawn laying price wasn't too different to what we'd been quoted from the lawn place anyway but they knew we knew the price on that.

another retic quoted booked for Monday.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

What next?

1. Only 1 Retic /landscape quote came back and it was Over priced. :( need new quotes.

2. bought a ute. woohoo

3. New downpipes work beautifully. :)

4. Painter was here again today attempting to repair the ceiling work.

He told Dh it's the worst ceiling he's ever had to deal with. They've even put a few more pieces of timber in our ceiling! At the end of the day he's hoping that the final coat he's done in the office will be ok. Fingers crossed when it dries as atm it still isn't brilliant.

There is now talk of either tinting the ceiling paint so it's not a standard white colour or of using textured paint which I'm not keen on at all.
( over my dead body could have been the phrase that went through my head)The painter is also going to talk to his boss about suggesting they offer us downlights
in place of the standard batten lights as these would mean the flaws would not show up. Sorry I'm not interested!
2 lights are in the office, one in the lounge ( our pretend home theatre) 2 in the main living area ( hmm nope, don't want downlights there as we have feature downlights in our kitchen in the same area) and one in the kids playroom. downlights are not appropriate for any of those areas except maybe if they swapped the 1 light in the lounge for 4 downlights. ( like that is going to happen. Plus more patching? I think not)

Once we have the $ to put in proper oyster lights the shadowing that really shows up the flaws
in the ceiling might not be there. We'll have to wait. I doubt they will pay us to put oyster lights in.

Our painter went across the road to check out the build by the same company which is currently at paint stage. He wanted to see what the ceilings were like over there. DH went with him to "check it out" and said he came back muttering that although they were better than ours they still were not great.
The problem it seems ( this is being relayed 2nd hand so how much is exactly what was said...) lies with the original ceiling fixers and then the painters who didn't stop when they must have/should have realised that the ceiling wasn't good enough to do a good paint job.

He can only come Fridays to work on the house. grrrr