Hey there, internet!
Sorry for the outrageous delay on this update, hope you didn't miss us too much.
Okay, news time! Let's go.
For starters, you'll be relieved to note that we're still here - despite the best efforts of no less than three freakin' tropical cyclones since we arrived. The weather has been far from cooperative, but we've managed to make steady progress on the house nonetheless. We're hopeful that things will dry out as we move into New Zealand's famously sunny Autumn/Winter period. Right?
You'll also be pleased to hear that our house has been safely secured - as per our insurance requirements - with a wheel clamp and a tow bar lock. Anyone with aspirations of boosting it will now have to do it the old-fashioned way.
With a heavy-lift helicopter.
Our investment safe, we moved on to the essentials of life.
And after we ascertained with relief that the espresso machine was working, we bought a gas bottle and an extension lead to get power and hot water up and running, and dug a soak-hole for our grey water. Our sinks and washing machine drain directly into the ground, so we're careful to use biodegradable soaps, shampoos and detergents.
Also high on the to-do list was painting the bathroom, as our walls are made from plywood with a bad habit of absorbing any moisture it comes into contact with. We used an anti-bacterial 3-in-1 paint to guard against mold.
After a successful night trawling Trademe, we were off road-tripping to the big smoke (Whangarei) to pick up a second-hand fridge and washing machine.
Then it was on to the rest of the prettying-up. Tiny house, tiny job - right?
With our walls puttied and sanded and the negative detail in place, we began experimenting with whitewash techniques. Eventually we decided upon a mixture of three parts water to one part white paint, applied in two coats with a roller, then brushed to tidy up the edges and smooth it over. We had to go very carefully, sheet by sheet to ensure an even finish.
Okay, walls: check.
We used a two-in-one water-based stain and protect by Cabots (Rich Teak), again applied sheet by sheet with a roller and brush to keep it even.
The finished product looks bloody good, if we do say so ourselves. The stain really brings out the grain in the plywood. The pictures don't do it justice. In the right light, it looks like our ceiling is a roaring sheet of flames.
Except, you know, in a good way.
Next, we had a choice to make. Would we paint the windowsills red, orange, or plum?
We got some test pots and painted a few up to see what we liked.
When we still couldn't decide, we asked the instagram follwers, who overwhelmingly voted red.
So, of course, we went with plum.
We wanted to get a little creative with our storage loft, and after some op-shopping, we decided upon a National Geographic floor. After our first attempt failed miserably, we tried again and had moderate success. We used "modpodge" to apply the pages (50% PVA glue, 50% water), carefully pre-soaking them to prevent bubbling. Four coats of Polyurethane went on top as protection.
Then Sam finally caved in to Georgia's demands to "fix the bloody loft stairs before someone breaks a leg!".
Right from the beginning we'd planned on having a gymnastics style ladder to the storage loft. You know, so we can do gymnastics and stuff.
So we built one. Twice (again), because the first one was crap.
And now, thanks to 1-day, we have the couch of our dreams! Not only does it fit perfectly, it also folds out into a guest bed, and includes a neat pop-up storage section to keep our yoga mats, exercise equipment, board games and many other cool activities. So many activities.
It's pretty much a transformer. Optimus couch? Megasofa ...?
Ugh, we give up. Couch naming competition? Winner gets a free night on it!
Aaaand that's us again. Things are still moving at such a blistering pace here that by the time you read this blog it'll already be well out of date, but, as a wise man once said: "sometimes, you can't have anything." So be grateful you have something!
We've been living full-time in our house for almost two months now, and it's generally going great. We're warm and dry, and comfier every day. There are certain challenges and frustrations involved with both living in an unfinished house, and with trying to renovate around your life, but by-and-large it's been a breeze. We'll post a more in-depth analysis of tiny living in an upcoming blog, when we've had a chance to really reflect on it.
In the meantime, why not come round for some tacky Spanish soaps on our new monster projector and screen setup?