Tuesday, August 30, 2011

A Quiet Lull Descends

The build has hit a point where nothing appears to be happening in comparison to all the recent activity of the last couple of weeks where everything was happening at once. There was no sign of progress with the cladding yesterday despite the weather being glorious but we think some more architraves may have been done upstairs. We were locked out so tried peering through the windows, even went up the scaffolding to see if anything had been done in the bedrooms.

Left Overs?
I do have a question though.....there are about 7 stacks of bricks that haven't been used does anyone know if we get to keep them as they'd be great for landscaping retaining walls etc. Any ideas?

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Rain Rain and Mud

It's been raining almost non stop, the site is a mud pit and work had to finish early on Friday as the cladding crew didn't fancy getting wet. The forecast for next week is mixed it may be sunny or it might rain who knows? We really want another dry spell so they can finish the cladding and get it painted. They have started the front area over the garage and have half finished cladding over the beams in the outdoor room. Once they are done and painted then the scaffolding will come down and the pool can be excavated, we were originally planning to have been digging early August now it will be mid September which isn't a drama. However, the people who were going to take our excess soil don't want it now so we will have to advertise and make more arrangements which is a bit of a pain.

I think from my sneaky look through the other day that all the cabinets in the kitchen and bathrooms are installed now and just waiting for their bench tops. Not really sure what is next on the agenda but Tom our SS thinks the tiles should be in the country tomorrow and then on site a couple of days after. Well the tilers are going to have a lot of cleaning up to do before they start as you can't see the floor for dust, saw dust, bits of wood, left over gyprock and empty packets. (Yes I can't stand the mess, Sandy wanted to go and sweep up yesterday but thankfully we are locked out so had a lazy TV day instead!).

It's odd isn't it but the more that gets put in the house the bigger it seems?! I think we will just all huddle together in one room to start with as that is what we are used to doing in the apartment. I think we'll need a map and GPS to start with once we move in. But oh boy it's going to be awesome for hide and seek!

Have been looking at wallpaper for a feature wall in our boy's room thought this would be cool....
Map Wallpaper

Friday, August 26, 2011

Snuck In

Managed to sneak in to the house, I don't think any of the tradies noticed us. Here's some photos of what has been done.
Vanity in the Middle, Now Doesn't That Look Better?

The Sliding Doors to the Ensuite, Mmmm Nice


Linen Cupboard with Doors

Skirting Boards

More Eaves

And Some More Eaves Only This Area to Clad (?) Now

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Locked Out

Sandy went on a quick spy mission early morning yesterday to check on progress however she didn't have the camera with her.
But I can report that the exterior cladding for upstairs has been started, along with the sofits (the eaves bit) and the vanity unit is in its rightful spot, taking pride of place in the centre of the ensuite wall. Phew they did it and apparently it looks perfect. The has been some explorations through the boards as they have been searching out the electrics so as to put the socket and light over the vanity in the correct places too. A bit of patchwork to the boarding will be needed so that it looks like nothing ever happened.
The architraves are finished and more of the doors have been hung.
Later in the afternoon we returned with camera at the ready only to find we were locked out! (Did contemplate trying to squeeze through a window but its so muddy on site after the rain that the likelihood of a slip and fall moment was to high so gave it a miss).

So we'll all have to make do with a couple of cladding shots instead.

Rear of House Cladded

Cladding Close Up and Sofits

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Lots Of Activity

While we've been away it has rained a lot but the tradies have been busy on site doing lots of little things and completing tasks that were already underway. There were about 8 blokes working away at the house when we went in on Monday. So what progress did we see?

The kitchen installation continues
The cabinets have handles on
Doors have been hung (some not all)
We have door handles and locks on the exterior doors (our son wants his keys now!)
The floor prep has been done for the bathrooms
Laundry sink is in
Holes for lights, switches and other electrics have been made
Architraves are being cut and fit
The brick work is finished
A new kicker has been made for the ensuite vanity
Ensuite vanity has been moved (amusing photo to follow)

The tiling should start soon however the last we heard the tiles are not in the country yet so no guaranteed timeline can be given on that one.
Its looking good and really starting to come together as a house and not just a build now.
Front Door Handle

Rear Garage Door Hardware
Translucent Glass Door to Powder Room

Butler's Pantry Left Kitchen Right With Cavity Slider Middle (No Doors Yet)

Laundry Sink, Laminex Seal Bench Top

Island Bench With Space For Dishwasher

Close Up of Door Handles

Island Bench From Another Angle Note Silver Kicker

Bathroom Floor Prep

The Balcony

More of the Balcony

Cut Out For Light (This One Is Patch) In Wrong Place

Look They've Repositioned The Vanity!!!!!

Friday, August 19, 2011

Vanity Solution

The vanity position will be rectified but it will cost us more money as they will have to make a new kicker and alter the carcass. It is to be moved over 500mm so it will be centred give or take 5-10mm either side. Our SS said it would be done yesterday because the tilers are starting to prepare the floors today but as I'm away I can't go on site and check it out until Monday so here's hoping its done properly and that they don't make a botch job of it. We have no idea how much it will cost at this stage however we did get a bonus of a $255 refund for the pot drawers that couldn't fit below our different specification ovens. Fingers crossed that will cover the vanity moving costs.

Please Move 500mm to The Left

Well done to our SS for sorting it out the vanity as at first he said there wasn't much scope to move it by more than 300mm but I persisted that there had to be a way to rectify the problem. I explained that I didn't want to spend all that time, effort and cash in planning a home the way we wanted to have to compromise on something that would royally pee me off every time I went in my ensuite. He was pretty understanding and didn't mess about coming up with a solution that suits us and the build. He'll have to draw up some paperwork now for both the refund and the additional charge on the vanity - there better not be any admin fees.

So floor prep for the tiles starts today and the holes were being cut for the electrical sockets and lights (hope they move the one in the ensuite over to be in the middle of the vanity!!!). I will be having a very good look around when we get back.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Vanity Insanity

OK who thinks having your vanity way off centre is a good idea?
Who thinks having your vanity finish 6cm from your shower screen at one end and over a meter from the bath the other is a good idea?
Obviously the drafting department at Metricon do aaahhhhhhhh ahhhh and ahhh again.
Also the cabinet maker/installer also thinks that this looks nice, is practical and works well as he fitted it without questioning whether it was right.
Now let me explain. Had a lovely look around the house yesterday was enjoying showing it to my mom who is down visiting and having mini break with us and getting to appreciate my amazing kitchen and how great all the cabinets are until........I walked in to my ensuite. What the expletive is the vanity doing there?!!! Why isn't it centred between the bath and the shower etc and so on. No it looks like poop its not what I want I'm unhappy I'm calling the SS. Whats on the plans? Drive back to house dig out plans and oh poop and double poop that's how its been drawn. Noooooo how did we miss that!

The Vanity - Note Big Space From Bath (Left) and No Space To Shower (Right Where Black Waterproofing Is)
Quick call to the SS to very calmly and gently explain that it is not what we wanted we had asked for it to be centred in the space, no we didn't have that in writing we assumed it was basic common sense. Duh that's how they are in the display homes. Yes I admitted it was drawn on the plans and we hadn't noticed after all we only checked the cabinet design not where it was going to be positioned. How annoying, how did we miss that!

Take note guys check the drawings over and over and over again put them away and then look at them several more times before agreeing. The problem is they don't give you the elevations until final contract and then you are so busy reading the small print you don't notice the vanity is a Siamese twin with the shower frame.

Anyway SS said he'll go take and look and get back to us. I told him if it wasn't changed I would cry every day and ring him to tell him I'm still not happy. Let's see what happens as so far they've been really good at sorting things out. I figure if they can erase pot draws without breaking into a sweat they can just amend our plans, post date them and move the vanity. Voila everyone is happy.

And now for the good stuff - Happy Birthday To Me 42 Today oh and some kitchen pictures

The Island Bench Being Constructed

The Kitchen Cabinets

And From The Other Side

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

11 Weeks Since Build Started

Its 11 weeks since we started the actual build process and from site scrape until now so much has happened.

First Fix Electrics and Plumbing
Roof Tiled
Front Door
Bi Fold Doors
First Floor Bricks
Wet Areas Waterproofed 
Doors  and ...................

Now you can pause for breath! What is there left to do:

Finish Cabinets
Caeserstone Bench Tops
More Doors
Tiling of Floors and Bathrooms
Air Conditioner

Oh and we have to do the pool, fencing and landscaping.
Feels like we are about a third to almost halfway through now. Initial guesstimate from the SS is that the build would take around 25 weeks, I though he was mad at first now I'm actually thinking he may have been right.
Bets that we move in November anyone?

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Kitchen Creations

The kitchen is taking shape so is the butler's pantry, laundry, powder room and bathrooms. The cupboards are in, doors are on and the laminate bench top in the laundry has been fitted. Wow this build is on fire. I still haven't been able to see them in real life but from the photos taken earlier today I am impressed. Obviously the Caeserstone bench tops will come later but the cabinet maker says he will be finished in two more days.
It's show day here in Brisbane tomorrow so I will be having time off and will able to have a leisurely stroll around on site and take in all that has happened. Actually we are going away for a few days for a mini holiday and a couple of work seminars so won't be back until Monday. Oh no I'm going to miss things happening!

As a point of interest, the drawings for the kitchen had to be amended to allow space for the 2 big ovens we've had so we have lost 2 pot drawers, no problem we had quite a lot so they won't be missed. However, we have asked if we get a refund on those as we have paid for them and had them priced in 2 pac.
It's with the finance department so should hear back in a few days.

The brick work is almost completed and then it'll be time for cladding. Not sure if they paint it before or after installation. Once that is finished the scaffolding comes down the pool company can come in and make a start on the excavation and pool works. Must order some temporary fencing to go around that. Its so exciting - can't wait to be in a swimming in my new pool in my new garden at my new home.

Squatters - The Cabinets Have Moved In

Blackened Linewood Doors

Upper Story Bricked


Laundry Linen Cupboard

Butlers Pantry

Powder Room Vanity

Monday, August 15, 2011

Cabinet Fever

The house has been infested!.......with kitchen cabinets and bathroom vanities. As promised they were delivered to site and are now chilling out in the family room. I haven't seen them yet as I was at work and our son wouldn't let Sandy take any photos as he didn't have his camera as well. Sandy is very excited as the cabinet colours have turned out better than expected, personally I think she is relieved as she twisted my arm to go for a finish in the bathrooms that I was slightly unsure of. We went for a relatively new laminate called Brescia in the bathrooms and Blackened Linewood with white for the kitchen.

The carpenters have started doing the mouldings for the window frames, the door jambs and installed some of the doors. Hopefully I'll have some photos of them soon so for now here is a reminder of the cabinet laminates.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Glorious Garage Door

Well it is official we are supremely happy with our choice of panel lift garage door and the colour as now we have seen it in real life we personally think the dune works great with the bricks. Phew and double phew as we are having the cladding painted to match and the downpipes and the water tank so it would be disastrous if we decided we hated it.

The cladding boards have been delivered and are currently lying down on the driveway covered in black plastic.

Here are some happy snaps.
Garage Door - Colorbond Dune

Close Up


Cladding Delivered

Cladding Boards

Friday, August 12, 2011

Brickies and Unexpected Arrival

The brick layers are back in town and have been very busy, when we arrived on site this morning they had nearly finished the 4 brick columns in the outdoor room and were frantically sending loads more bricks up the conveyor belt on to the scaffolding ready to do more work on the upper story.
Had a quick peek through the windows but it didn't look like we'd had anything else delivered to site yet.....
Brick Piers

Brick Piers Near Completion
The SS rang me later on today and told me the garage door is on. (Already!?) [no photos yet I couldn't get back on site today]. He also informs me the bricks will take about one more days work and then we will be at enclosed stage. That means Metricon will be wanting a very big chunk of money soon.
I asked him about how under the stairs will be finished and it turns out this will be boarded and will have a door on it so we will have a nifty storage space, cool! seeing as we had no idea about that as there is no indication on our set of plans.

The carpenter is back on Monday to start on the exterior cladding and the inside joinery and hopefully the kitchen cabinets will arrive the same day. I asked if he could give us a rough estimate of a finish date he explained he couldn't at this stage but said that once the painter starts it would normally then be another 6 to 7 weeks. Will we be in before Christmas? Most definitely will be (yes! yes! and yes!) and if not he has told us we can stay at his house so he must be very confident it will be completed by then.

We have been pondering what mail box we can have as we'd like something quite contemporary. However as we are not allowed to do any construction in the nature covenant at the front of the land we will only be able to have a post going into the ground, hmmm not much scope there then when you see what they have in the local hardware stores! Some serious web surfing later and we have come across these designs by a company in Noosa, what do you think?

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Stairs, Sinks, Waterproofed or Whirlibirds Are Go!

It was all quite on site when we went for a nose around yesterday afternoon, more doors have arrived and all the sinks have been delivered. The railings have been finished on the stairs and we are really pleased with how they look, it's very difficult when making choices at Studio M to envisage how it will all come together and what it will actually be like once it's in your home. At this stage we are not sure how the area underneath is to be finished off - is it filled in or just simply left open? There is nothing indicated on the plans and as we have never seen a Nolan in real life before we have no idea, maybe a look on the Metricon website might give us a hint.
I love my stairs they look and feel beautiful it was totally brilliant to be able to walk up and down them, they will be even better once they've been stained.

The wet areas have been waterproofed so now it looks like black tar has been spread all over the bathroom floors, shower areas and sides of the bath.

And much to our son's excitement we have two whirliebirdies on the roof! (cheep, cheep)

Upstairs Wrapped

Stairs and Railings

Everything and The Kitchen Sink

Stairs With A View

Top of The Stairs

Banisters From Leisure Room

Waterproofed Bathroom

Ensuite Watertight

Shower and Ensuite Toilet Waterproofing

Whirliebirds Are Go!

There is one tiny thing that has been bugging me and now I know what it is......the down pipe for the garage has been positioned so that it will be coming down over the front right side directly in the front of the house over the first column of bricks. I'm worried it will end up blocking out the position of the outdoor feature light and will be the first thing you notice about the facade when you come up the driveway.....in a nutshell will it be ugly, ruin the aesthetics and symmetry of the house and hide the outdoor light? On the plans it is supposed to be on the right hand side of the garage towards the front. I must speak to the SS about the possibility of moving it. Sandy says she thinks its been put on the front as that is the lowest point of the roof and I think she may be right on this one. However I'm still going to ask the question can it be moved as you never know.