Sunday, December 31, 2017

First open house

First open house is done and dusted and we had a pretty good turnout, given it's the Christmas period. The people sent their gelato cart, giving away free gelato to visitors that came to the open house. It was good publicity and loads of people stopped (who wouldn't for free gelato). Don't think they were buyers though.

I had the rose milk and pistatio. Delicious!! But back to the open's a few more pics from the photo shoot. Everything looks so...neat!

I can't believe how open and airy the dining room and balcony look with all the windows, doors and blinds open. One of the selling points of the home is that it has loads of natural light, but that also fades the floors, so I generally keep the blinds down in the morning and I always have the screen doors shut. This just looks...weird.

The guest bedroom looks like it always generally does. Aside from a few staying guests over the years (and some of Josh's drunk mates), this room doesn't get used that much.

We styled the room that Josh uses as his study/media room/mates hang out, as a baby's room. It's a family home after all and it looked really lovely.

Ohh the ensuite is so sparkly! And I love that you can see the new charcoal curtains in the background. I love this house so much...I'm still a bit sad to not be living there, especially at this time of the year when we used to have the beautiful Christmas tree up and people around for Christmas Day lunch.

Saturday, December 30, 2017

We are on the market!

Yep, Karina's House Project is up for sale and it's a mixture of sadness, excitement and looking forward to the future.

There's so much love I have for this house, so much love that's gone into this house and so much love that's been in this house. I really believe you can feel it and saying goodbye makes me sad. On the other hand though, it'll be interesting to see exactly what the property is worth. There is nothing like it in the area - 4 bedroom, 3 bathroom and 2 living areas on a 506m2 block. Most small lot blocks are 405m2 and because the house and the bottom level are incomplete, there's still potential to extend the house and have loads of outdoor living under the house. So actually getting to a price is exciting. And finally, once we move on I'll be looking for a new housing project - either reno or build new again and that really makes me look forward to the future.

The real estate photos have come up amazingly and the house looks showroom perfect. We've moved out so we don't have the hassle of needing to clean up every week and so it looks pristine at a moment's notice if the agent wants to bring someone through outside of open home times. I also hate the thought of people rifling through our cupboards and stuff while they're there - not to sticky beak, but if I was a buyer I'd be looking through to see what sort of capacity there was and configuration of drawers. So moving out was an obvious decision and also depersonalises the spaces so people can more easily imagine themselves in there.

It was also a great opportunity to see the home (and have it photographed) without all our crap in it. Not that we were messy or hoarders, but you know, we had to live. Without all that, it's a house, not a home, but still a nice house :).

And now it's really like a brand new display home. It wasn't that old and we've taken really good care of it,  but just because of general wear and tear we gave it a good spruce up. Jansen resiliconed all the showers and we had all the grouting in the bathrooms cleaned, the house washed from head to toe and all the windows and window tracks cleaned. The place is sparkling and I'm so proud. I hope someone falls in love with it like I did and wants to buy it.

Sunday, December 17, 2017

This sweet little tea set ❤️

I'm SUPPOSED to be decluttering and downsizing the house in preparation for sale, but I saw this sweet little tea set about six months ago and I kept seeing it whenever I was in Kikki-K.

Then it went on sale....

It's sooo cute isn't it? And in my defence I don't actually have a teapot, so I WILL actually use it. There was a little tea cup and saucer in the set as well but it's sold out. Sad face.

Monday, December 11, 2017


I was watering the gardenias the other day and noticed this not-so-little fella. And then another, and another, and another until I lost count. There were hundreds and they were HUGE!!! They were devouring the leaves at a rapid rate leaving (pardon the pun) not much in their wake.

While they are slowly killing what I've spent so, so many long hours tending to, I really didn't want to kill them. They become beautiful butterflies and help pollinate other flowers.

So I'll be picking off these little suckers one by one. I'll never get them all but I can reduce the impact somewhat and they should be happy munching on the mulberry tree in the vacant lot next door.

Friday, December 8, 2017

Backyard Update

Thought it was time to give an update on the backyard, five months after the makeover where we put up the fence, laid turf and created some garden beds.

You'll see that the turf is well established, and believe it or not, no one is more surprised than me! We did this on a super tight budget, with the cheapest (and possibly nastiest) of materials and zero hired labour - just me! A recipe for disaster really, but months on, here we are and the grass is lush and thriving.

While we didn't start with the best of materials, I did spend a LOT of time tending it, like copious watering, fertilising and applying weed and feed, in an effort to get it established. It worked, but certainly cost me - I only just got the water bill for those two months and it was DOUBLE what they normally were. Oh well, hopefully it's a one off.

The plants haven't fared quite as well, with all the cordylines succumbing to too much direct sunlight. The bromeliads are still OK, but I feel will always look a bit sparse.  While I did set myself the challenge to get all the plants for free, I really think I may need to spend some money to get some plants, shrubs and trees that will have more height and create more shade and privacy, especially given next door will start building any day now.

However, I always try and look back to remember how far I've come and given this was the backyard really not that long ago, I'm super grateful for the progress we've made so far.

Saturday, December 2, 2017

New charcoal curtains for the master bedroom - huzzah!

Finally...after many years I've upgraded the 'temporary' curtains in the master bedroom to these divine  charcoal coloured ones and they look ah-mazing!! I was worried that they may be too dark but it's such a large bedroom, it was completely fine. They're made from a heavy, textured wool with matching rubber backing so they totally blocked out prying eyes and the sun.

When I first built the house I didn't budget for window furnishings. I just thought I'd grab some blinds from Spotlight or just whatever not realising how unbelievably expensive they were, even from the discount stores. Collectively, there's almost 20 windows in the house, some double, some triple and not all are standard sizes. One blind alone was $300, so it became an ongoing project that I would just get one at a time, when I could afford it or when they went on sale from the online store I bought all of them from.

This was the temporary curtain for the master bedroom. It was super, super cheap from Spotlight, but did the job for three years so I'm totally grateful. This bedroom faces the front front road so in terms of priorities, this one should have been at the top of the list. But ironically, cause it did the job, it ended up being the last one we changed out. I'll admit, they were pretty nana like, but they kept the space private so no complaining.

Loving these new curtains now though!