Archive for March, 2010

Swinging from the Rafters

March 31, 2010

Of course I didn’t take a “Before” photo. I’d have one, somewhere, showing what the house looked like with a balcony. (Ah, those were the days!) If I’d known that while I was out shopping my tradie mates and The Boyfriend were going to set the house on fire well I definitely would have taken another one, just to be sure.

Anyway, use your imagination – it used to have a big balcony overhanging the footpath. Here’s what The Money Pit is looking like today. All those support beams, the ones that used to have a balcony on them? Yeah, they all have to go. The whole front of the house upstairs needs the floor lifted up in order to do this. (Bye bye, original gorgeous wide floorboards, hello crap covered with carpet!)

I’ve been focussed on the inside of the house up until this point, when  my very sporadic renovation bug kicked in that is. I guess this is the universe’s way of telling me to get my butt in gear and get some of the outside done!

I’m listening, universe! No more! In fact, I think I might get a brick cleaner in to strip off any flaking paint so I can get the place painted as well. I don’t want to go overboard, but some new door frames and doors wouldn’t go astray either. Then… hang on, I’ll get my list. (List is LONG!)

It’s Raining, It’s Pouring

March 24, 2010

Ned has always been a very affectionate little thing. However since Saturday he’s been acting strangely.

Firstly, he wasn’t around all weekend. His food was getting eaten, so I didn’t think too much about that, figuring that 20 firemen running through the house might have scared him. But then when I finally did catch up with him on Monday night he was a bit smelly, like he hadn’t been washing himself properly, and he had a sore ear. I figured he’d gotten into a fight, and made sure he stayed inside yesterday to recover – although I was starting to worry, since my friendly little purr monster wanted to hide away in a spare room behind a box of junk. Not like him at all, so I went home early yesterday, to see how he was, and took him straight to the vet. His ear looked so awful – pus and blood and gross.

Whoops, he’s apparently got the worst looking ear infection the vet has ever seen. After worrying all day about the vet’s dire predictions of polyps in his ear that have probably grown through and destroyed his eardrum, it turns out to have been a abscess from a cat fight which has successfully been cleaned out, and he can come home this afternoon.

I am so going to have a little chat with him when he gets home about fighting with the neighbours.

Naughty Ned. (Seen here with his late step sister in the background. And man, I remember when there were no few weeds in the garden like that picture. Must do something about that!)

Late Last Night, When We Were All In Bed

March 22, 2010

This morning I strolled into work. Well ok, let’s be more realistic here. I dragged myself into work, eyes hanging out of my head and more than likely dried drool down my shirt from where I’d fallen asleep on the train. The conversation was, as it is most Monday mornings, about what people had been up to over the weekend.

I patiently listened to a few stories before casually throwing my news out there. “Oh, didn’t get up to much. House caught on fire on Saturday, you know, the usual…”

Yes, that’s right. My tradie mates who were doing some renovation work for me (replacing some dodgy wood on my upstairs balcony, redecking, pulling down old railings so I could put nice lace railing up) used a grinder on the railings before deciding to go and get more supplies. Only to find out when they got back that a spark had gotten into the wood, smouldered for a while and caught my balcony on fire. Of course, the part that caught on fire was around a main load bearing support beam that goes in under the floor of upstairs. I guess I am now replacing a little more than I originally hoped for. This job just got more expensive.

I paid the neighbour who called the fire brigade in true Aussie currency – delivered a case of beer to his house along with my everlasting gratitude. The firemen said if it had gone another 5 minutes it would have been much worse, as the fire would have spread under the floor very quickly.

So on Saturday there were 2 fire engines and 20 firemen running around my house. Damn, and I wasn’t even home to get photos.

Good and Bad

March 9, 2010

Good.

This weekend, The Boyfriend and I are headed to the South Coast of NSW with my baby (ok, not so baby – my younger) brother. The Boyfriend and I are going to a wedding in the area on Sunday and decided to shout my brother dinner at Bannisters – the new Rick Stein restaurant on the NSW south coast – on the Saturday night in exchange for a lift from the holiday house to the wedding and back on Sunday. That’s why the three of us have Monday off next week, for a non standard long weekend.

Bad.

Before the weekend away, we need to attend a funeral for a local.. how to describe him… a guy who lived a few blocks away that had different life choices than myself; who was in trouble more times than not (as in, the most positive story I can think of to illustrate this without getting all into stuff that’s not my business is that he just got allowed back in The Local after several years being barred for selling wacky weed in the beer garden), but that we knew reasonably well, and many of our friends knew and loved. It’s a respect thing in part, but I must admit when I walked past his house on Friday and he told me a few very funny (and inappropriate) jokes I would never have imagined a heart attack would have been the end of him by the Sunday morning. I had the hard job (“because you have that geeky internet thing at work, right?”) on Monday of emailing a few out of town folks to let them know what had happened – I am NO good at emailing bad news, my email even ended with “Insert some kind of non awkward closing sentence here”.

Good.

Well, funny at least. I went to see the COO of my division today. He had asked me to put together a 1 page summary of a specific work issue: status, what was happening to resolve it short and long term, etc etc. I put some hours into getting it right and headed over to my weekly catch up with the big boss. He was cross. He asked silly questions. After we got through only 2 sentences of text, he paused and said “Well, I have asked 10 questions already. That tells me this document is not clear at all”. I was really annoyed he wasn’t getting it, and answered with “Well, I understand it perfectly. Perhaps you’re just stupid?” Luckily he thought I was joking (which OF COURSE I was) and even ended the meeting by telling me I was a star as I left his office.

Bad.

Let’s forget any more bads, and just end on the good. (Am now writing this in permanent marker on my arm, just to remind me through this busy stressy week ahead!)

Short Weekend

March 1, 2010

I don’t know who decided we should all have 2 days weekend to 5 days work. 2 just isn’t enough.

The Boyfriend and I went to see a band on Friday night – Thirsty Merc, at The Basement. Great night, if only they had not finished playing AFTER the last train home had left. A rather expensive cab ride home later, we managed to get ourselves into bed. We didn’t get out of bed again except to grab food until 4:30pm Saturday afternoon. Perhaps that’s why my weekend seemed so short. (Perhaps we might have gotten up earlier if we’d not had quite so many “lemonades”!) Actually being able to sleep in so long then laze around watching TV all day was fabulous, I should do it more often.

Sunday was uneventful – the house is now clean and the grocery shopping is done. We nipped out to the pub while a casserole slow cooked in the oven. I should have taken a photo before I threw it away – let’s just say I don’t think I’ll be believed next time I say “Nah, it’ll be FINE while we nip out to get a beer, it won’t burn at all!” Yep, it burned pretty well alright. I’m just so glad it didn’t catch fire.