I have to be the most obsessive/impulsive person I know. One day I'm talking about the possibility of replacing my massive desk with a smaller one, the next day I pick one up from the oppy. I got this little gem for $55 at the Salvo's. It's got so much character.  Much better than the stale office furniture I had from 'Hardly Normal'. I'm not going to paint it, stain it, polish it or even wipe it down. It's perfect just the way it is. Desk dilemma solved.

PS. Apologies for the tragic wallpaper. It's a rental. 

new 'old' desk

A 'Desk Debacle' is on my mind at the moment purely because the room that we decided to make my/Kims office is a little on the 'cosy' side. Which means my current Titanic sized desk will have to go. Which is a good result, I finally will be forced to scale down my office crap. Most of which is completely unnecessary. I want to keep the room uncluttered but even with only two desks and a book unit it's going to be like peak hour in a corporate lift. We will be installing a heap of shelves to utilise the high cellings and this is where I can put my 'junk', well what's remaining anyhow.
Here's a few lovelies from various other blogs, notably Emma's design blog and Desire To Inspire.

PS. Thaw issue 3 is back from the printers. Oh yeah!

thaw in da flesh

As you can imagine we are itching to get into our house and start the process of renovation. In the mean time we will keep our anticipation contained to a dull roar with little projects. We found this hideous plastic cuckoo clock on eBay and didn't like it silver so I painted it Black. We also restored a lovely antique cabinet that my Mum gave me years ago. It was made in Melbourne by 'European' hands only, check out the makers mark. It had a heap of stains on it and the gloss had worn off. We intend on placing a stand alone basin and fitting on top and using it as our bathroom basin unit. We got special oil based water proof paint as it will be exposed to water splash's. Here's (above) a picture of something along the lines of what the basin will look like.

Cuckoo clock (Before)
clock before

Cuckoo clock (After)
clock after

Cabinet before
cabinet before

cabinet before

cabinet before

Cabinet After
Cabinet after

Cabinet after

Cabinet after
The cabinets Makers Mark
makers mark

Deer (before)
deer before

deer 'Ed' Finished

Well, I have to say that it is not quite the same in our household at the moment, without Ro. Helena is prone to fits of "I miss Daddy. When is he coming home?" followed by tears and cuddles. The alarm isn't going off in the morning, at 6am (when Ro normally walks the dog) so I am woken by Helena or Tia at what ever time they get up, and find it very difficult to find the motivation to get up, so stay in bed with them until Helena gets bored and insists on us all getting up. Even the dog is acting weird. She barks at anything that moves. I am going to have to take her for a walk today. She must be missing those mornings with Ro. The other reason that it seems weird around here is the fact that we have finally gone to print for issue three. Now I don't have so much to do every day. Dad has been popping over for visit sake, not just to babysit while I run around doing errands. What a change!

On the house front - I spoke to the Real Estate agent yesterday, and hopefully we will get an update today, on when the tennants will be leaving. They still haven't been able to tie them down to a specific date, and we really need to know, so that we can make plans. Will keep you updated on that front.

Missing you Ro.
Hurry home.


Bushfires have ravaged parts of Victoria. It's been the worst loss of life in the states history caused by a natural disaster. I've been waiting for the phone call to be dispatched and it came late yesterday afternoon. So off I go. Finally I feel like I can contribute where it's needed.

See you soon.



We have a little backyard at the new place, only 8x8m, which some have expressed concern over the lack of space, but I have seen some pretty amazing results of backyards with small spaces. One in particular that I was inspired by even had a small 'man' shed installed complete with walls big enough to be lovingly decorated with soft porn.

I'm more of a green thumb than Kim, but I think as we get back to having our own garden she'll get mesmerized by the wonders and beauty of a backyard alive with it's own personality. So many rentals I've set up with a cute micro cottage garden and then had the heartache of having to move for what ever reason had raised it's hideous head. But now I can plant to my hearts content and watch it grow. And kids love that, especially Laney. We go out to the garden now in the morning and pick the tomatoes off the plant for breakfast on toast with grated Pecorino and Olive Oil....best summer breaky ever! Each year she sees the tommies grow from punnet to mature and fruit baring. It's a valuable lesson to understand how much hard work it can be to grow your own food. It hopefully will develop a sense of appreciation for the natural world.

In any-case I figure for most of you it's a no brainer that I'll be putting in a special little veggie patch, so I won't ramble on about that instead I'll tell you what ideas I have for other parts of the garden. I love busy overcrowd gardens that are designed with contrast of colour and texture in mind. Our garden will consist of three main ingredients.

Medium Height Tree cover
Ground cover/shrub

Even with the challenges of space we will be growing as many fruit trees as possible. It reduces our ecological footprint and they are ornamental to a certain extent. We'll use the method of 'espailier' which makes the best use of available space. Most backyards should do this, and get those fruit trucks off the highway. Here's a short list of the food producers we'll be having:
Citrus, Olives, Passion fruit, Fig, Apple, Peach, Grapes, Cherry. But on top of this I have some more pretty stuff in mind. Japanese Maple is one of my favorite of all and we will be having a variety that will turn red every Autumn. I could go on.

Less words more pictures. Some colour, contrast and textures for the yard.


How cute?

This is the garden we'll be leaving behind. My little cottage/herb garden is going to be appreciated by someone new. Well I guess it only took me a year to get it looking snazzy, still I will miss her.

Patiently waiting until we can get into the house. In the meantime, foraging the web for inspiration is a joy. I'm not sure we'll know ourselves finally moving in to our own home. No more shifting or rent. It's going to be weird, but totally cool. Kim often say's to me that she still feels like a Kid, and moving into and renovating your own home makes me feel as happy as I was as a kid, nothing brings me down. Well maybe work, and bills, and speeding fines, tax, being time poor, the inevitability of death, being fat, baby poo, running out of milk, a yappy dog, non lick stamps and envelopes, a slow internet connection........

I'm a bag of mixed emotions today. As I figure most Victorians/Australians are. We're all feeling the pain of the great loss with the bush fires, it's just devastating. However while all the bad stuff was happening I was working at the bridal fair in town and getting little snippets of news here and there. While it was a sad day for us it was also a pretty good day as we got a bunch of wedding bookings for the next twelve months, which means we will actually have money to renovate in a real sense. We should be able to get all of our projects done, although I'm not sure how much time I'll have working during the week and on weekends! We'll just get things done when we can, we're in no real hurry. 

We've talked about our white ideas for the interior but we haven't mentioned our exterior colour scheme ideas. We both kinda like the same colours for outside and we are set on having white for the trimmings (window frames, front door, gutter, veranda poles etc).
We both like pretty dark greens, blues, maroan and browns and we also like the lighter grey/green. Here are some pics to give you a little idea. We're not set yet.....love to see what you think. I'm completely colour blind which makes the process a little tricky.

OK, so I have to come to my defense. We are currently looking at all the things that we know we want to do at this place (it's a long list) and trying to prioritise. We are trying to decide what should be done first, with the money we know we will have when we settle. And if Ro keeps going the way he is, we won't be able to do anything. But we'll have lots of stuff to fill the place with ;-)

From the looks of the budget we will be able to paint the interior, including kitchen cupboards and benchtops (just to freshen up before we do full kitchen reno), and polish the floorboards throughout the house, before we move in. We will also put up the shelving we want which will take up one whole wall of our living room - will look awesome! We need a wardrobe in our bedroom, and then we will get a quote on the bathroom. Looks like we will be knocking down a wall or two.

Fun, fun, fun.

I'm in trouble. Well not really, just with Kim. I keep finding little gems at antique shops or on eBay and I just grab them thinking, 'this will look great in the new house'. I think I've gone a little excited crazy because I'm a very impatient person (massive understatement) so this way I feel like I'm actually doing something. But in fact all I'm doing is spending money we need for the real reno's!!! Okay I'll stop......unless you have a real bargain for me....I mean no!

I got this gem for $10 at an Antique store in town. It was really dirty and had a broken hand set which I replace with another. Now it's in really good condition, and these things fetch good money if complete. Why do we need one? Well it looks rad and Laney has a ball calling me on it.

I've been a fan of industrial lighting for a while, and we could get a replica from ikea for half the price but this is a real antique factory light, baked enamel over heavy metal. I'm hoping to use it in the study or lounge. And it's massive so it will be a centerpiece.

What house can't benefit from a real working Cuckoo clock? Imagine this one contrast on white walls. And it's silver! Completely unnecessary. Completely Rad.

Your probably thinking, gee aren't they eager.......they don't even move in until April. Well yes your right. But I'm reminded of my days as a Cub/Scout, and the good version not the bad one (Cashed Up Bogan). 'Be Prepared' was our motto, and it's served me well so far. Nothing like a little bit of planning, or in my case imagination and obsession gone wild.

The recent spate of lovely summer weather takes me back to Tuscany, relaxing under the shade of the olive groves at our lovely Villa, or dining in at a Ristorante under the shade of a veranda or umbrella, cool wine, creamy pasta and cheese out of this world. (what a wanker)??
Inspired by these memories we plan to utilise whatever outdoor space we have for relaxing 'al fresco' with family/friends. We have a concrete section just around the back of the house where we plan to build quite a large deck and veranda giving us an 'outdoor' room well protected from the weather and able to be used any time of the year. There will be space enough for a BBQ section, outdoor table and a small day bed/I can no longer sit up to drink this wine I need to lie down bed.

I've been collecting some great pics from various sources, mainly the brilliant 'Desire to Inspire' blog.

I know it's hard to visualise with the back yard in it's current state, but with some time, hard yakka and a viable line of credit magic can happen!


This is pretty well much what I have in mind, only a little wider. How good does that day bed look!

There will be plenty of plants on the back veranda.
I want those doors for sure
Ahem, this is pretty well much perfect.