he.len·ticu·lar (he len tikyo̵̅o̅ lər): of or pertaining to Helen


Sunday, 13 June 2010

Sale of House Shennanigans

Well, the DIY has finally been finished and I never want to see another pot of paint, sheet of plaster or anything at all to do with plumbing ever again.  Or at least for a long while - though my Dad has other ideas, as he has work lined up for me once I get to Aus.  Bitch's work ain't neva done. 

What does all this mean?  It means it's time to sell the house. And we're doing it all ourselves - sans real estate agent.  So my work over the past two weeks has been organising all the advertising, signs, paperwork etc needed for the sale.  The photos have been the most time consuming part, but they have turned out pretty awesome, even if I do say so myself.  We're using the N.Z. equivalent of Ebay to list our property, which has it's own real estate section and gets the most traffic of any website in N.Z.  We listed our house on Monday 7th June at 3pm and had two showings the following day.  

The first one was all 'oh, there's only the two bedrooms?" and "was that the price listed on the website (in manner suggesting we were out of our scones)?' and I said "ah, yeah, it does say it's a 2 bedroom house on the internet you twat, and of course that is the price, and it's very fucking reasonable for where you are looking, you sour-faced cow'.  Actually, what I really said was, 'yes, just the two' and 'yes, that's what it is listed as", while trying to sound confident and self-assured.  So once she departed without taking any info and obviously not keen to buy, I did feel a bit deflated. Perhaps we had got our figure wrong, even though we'd done our market research thoroughly and even paid (handsomely I might add) for a bona fide market appraisal.

The second viewing was a young couple, very similar in age to me and B, who basically walked in the door and fell in love with the place, wanted to know if we were accepting offers straight away before holding the open home on the Sunday. I said that for the right offer, we would consider cancelling the open home. So, they put together an offer and we received it on the Thursday morning. B and I had a good think about it all, went back with a counter offer and ended up signing the agreement on Friday evening.  Only downside is it is conditional, so we have to wait for those conditions to be met.  On the upside they are standard conditions and very hard to back out of unless their finance doesn't come through, which is not likely as they are both professionals.  We are still having the open home today, though we'll be advising people it's under offer and that they are welcome to put in a back up offer. That way we'll hopefully not have wasted all our money on advertising and have a list of interested people to contact about the house if it all goes to custard.  

All I can say is fuck that was fast though!  Once it's unconditional, they will give us their deposit and we'll be busy planning our exit from Wellington and be gone in around 5 weeks.  Just like that.  Jeebus I hope it goes through without any shennanigans, because I do not want to have to go through the negotiation process again.

It has been a bit stressful and will continue to be for me (natural born worrier, not to be mistaken with warrior - I am decidedly a big sook) until that agreement is fully binding with no conditions and their deposit in our bank.  One good thing is that I can't really do anything about the relocation stuff until the contract goes through, as I won't be able to organise the removal company or book flights until I have confirmed dates.  I genuinely have nothing to do, other than read, knit (yes, yes, I am a Nana) and to work out how we're going to spend save our money.

Sunshine here we come!

Sunday, 30 May 2010

Putting the strange in strangers

Going for a quiet drink in the pub with B this evening after watching a movie, and we get approached by this stranger. I don't mind having conversations with random strangers - some of the best experiences from our travels have been with strangers who shared their wonderful stories with us.  But I am sick of 'strange' strangers striking up random conversations about shit I have no interest in whatsoever.  Particularly when the strangers start being all racist.  It makes me sick to my stomach that people still hold these views - it doesn't give me much hope for humanity if in this day and age we can't even get along with our neighbours, regardless of where they're from.  We are never going to grow as a species if we don't get over this whole 'my tribe vs your tribe' mentality.

I think one of the things that also really gets to me is that these people assume I hold the same opinions as they do because I'm white.  Fuck them - if it wasn't for the fact that I was in a public place (and due to their drunkness and higher risk of stabbiness) I would tell them that to their face.  As it is, I'm all frozen faced and giving them no response, due to the shock that people still seriously think like that. It is, for me, truly baffling.

Well, I'm yelling on here instead.  Fuck you, you biggot.  How dare you say that about living breathing people, who have just as much right to be here as you do. No I don't agree that these people should be 'put down' like dogs (I don't believe dogs should either for that fucking matter) so go take your fucking nasty opinions away from me and stop assaulting me with your presence.

At the end of the day, really, I mostly feel sorry for these people because their world is full of hate, distrust, jealousy of others, and they live in fear of anything different to what they know (the more you know, the less you fear - simple really).  I would think it would be so isolating, but then again, they surround themselves with like-minded people who continually validate their points of view, so I guess not.  My only hope is that at some point in their life, they realise what an absolute dicks they have been holding views that have only ever served to cause pain to both themselves and others.  Though maybe their tiny little minds would explode if this ever happened.

Friday, 28 May 2010

Too cold, too wet, too Wellington

The following is one of the strong reasons to NOT live in Wellington anymore...

It is too. fucking. cold.

I am currently sitting inside my house wearing the following: A thermal t-shirt, a regular t-shirt, a merino jumper, a fleece vest, a woollen scarf and a woollen beanie, pants and ugg boots (the calf length version) and I am STILL cold.

I am about to crack out the gloves so that I don't get frost bite (yes I am feeling all dramatic today), just so I can go finish the painting out in the cold, cold laundry.  I want out.  Now.  And some sun.

Me being all sad and shit.

Thursday, 27 May 2010

Done and Done. Well, almost.

The DIY is officially finished. Well, except for a little painting, sanding, varnishing, picture hangning...ok, let me rephrase that - it's almost finished. But it is completed enough for us to have had the property valuer 'round to give us a market appraisal. Waiting with bated breath for the results of what our house is actually worth. I almost don't want to know, in case it is significantly lower than I think. I will be out of my misery by the end of the week and until then, will have to keep myself busy.

Which isn't hard, considering in the past week the following has happened:

1. B and I were in a car accident. Not our fault, as we were merrily trucking along (well, car-ing, but doesn't quite the same ring to it) and some twat plowed into the side of our car. If it wasn't for the fact that I was awake enough and possess awesome cat-like reflexes to swerve out of the way, I might not be sitting here writing this due to extensive injury (or plain deadedness). Thankfully no-one was hurt on either side. Also, we are insured and by some act of Jeebus, don't have to pay any excess. Phew!

2. The cat has re-developed her urinary tract infection due to all the stress in her life. I mean, all that cat-napping, cuddles and good food really takes it out of a feline. But really, it's because our dogs are now in Aus and are not here to scare away all the other neighbourhood cats, that she is getting bullied by a little boy-cat over the back fence (who has also taken to spraying on our property). Awesome. That, plus the constant changes going on in our house equals one stressed widdle puddy tat. So she is now medicated and on a strict diet to keep her Pee-H (ha, see what I did there with the funny! I know, I know, I make myself sigh too) correct, and a room diffuser containing cat pheromones to keep her calm. The vet loves me; I have practicaly paid off his mortgage with my vet bills over the past two years.

3. And lastly, the oven died. The stove top still works, but the oven has died. And this just in time for Winter, when I need it more than usual to cook all the stodge required at this time of year. Like casseroles, roasts and puddings. At least B is very handy with electrical equipment and will most likely be able to fix the problem. My guess is the fuse on the element has gone, so it will just be a matter of replacing that....yawn. And as long as B doesn't do to me what he did last time he fixed the stove "you know CPR, right" just before touching the oven case to see if it was live. Talk about scare the shit outta me. He is a card, as they would say in Aus.

So it seems as though the universe does NOT want me to relax.

But really, now I (theoretically) have time on my hands and don't have to go back to work for a bit, I get to play. I am going to attempt to teach myself programming (yes, I am that much of a nerd) and indulge my every cooking whim once oven is sorted. I stumbled upon a site the other day Bakerella which has inspired me to get creative with the baking. I particularly love the cake pops Cake Pops - these are the cutest!.

Here's to a working oven, so I can get onto making some cake pops!

Thursday, 13 May 2010

Gardening. Yup - I can see why I quit doing Horticulture...

Ack. It hurts to type - too much gardening has been going on in these parts for the past few days. Admittedly, the garden is 100% better and actually resembles a garden rather than lots of shitty stones and weeds, but man it has been very physical work.

The kitchen is just about done now too - only new taps to install, fixing up a few patches of paint and putting some contact liner on the shelves. It actually looks really good right about now - along with the bathroom it is the cleanest (read: tidiest) room in the house. The rest of the house looks like an earthquake already hit it. And I would NOT eat anything off our floor - not even a 30 second rule in this house - very likely there would be all manner of dirt, disease and death waiting for the unsuspecting victim.

Tomorrow it's painting the master bedroom time - can't wait to get that done as it's the last of the big things left to do and it will be nice not to be sleeping in a peach-coloured room. Oh the humanity...who paints things peach any more???

Well, that's about your lot from me today - to bed before I face plant the keyboard.

Monday, 10 May 2010

Coming to a close

I quit work about 3 months ago, with the aim of getting the house ready for sale within 6 weeks. What an eye opener it has been. Literally every part of me aches - my hands in particular - and I want to do nothing more than spend about a month on a beach somewhere reading books and drinking plonk. Even with me not earning and income, we have still saved ourselves literally thousands of dollars by doing the work ourselves (B when he can - I won't touch anything electrical!), probably to the tune of $6K. Not small fry by any means. And I have learnt so much - not only about DIY, but what I am seemingly capable of. All round, it's been a good experience.

But sitting on a beach (or anywhere for that matter) is going to have to wait for another couple of months at least, as I have about 2 weeks left to finish the house and garden (so excited to be done with it all!) and then at the very least a month for the actual selling/settling of the house. With any luck, someone will come and buy our little box on a hill, pay us some exhorbitant amount of money (a girl can dream) and we can finally leave for warmer climes and be reunited with our canine loved ones in Australia.

I just don't know where I actually want to live next - the plan is Brisbane, but I know virtually nothing about the place except that it is warm and it is a nice looking city. There do seem to be jobs there for both me and B, I just don't really have any clue outside of that. I guess there's always going back to Melbourne as an option as we love the city, but the weather can really be quite shite - one of the main reasons for leaving Wellington. Meh, I'm not worried though - in the end it just all tends to sort itself out.

I just don't know what I will do with all my spare time once I'm done with the house. I might even have time to read one of the about 10 books I have laying around being neglected - sounds like a plan Stan.

Wednesday, 5 May 2010

Popeye has nothing on me

3 Months of DIY and what have I got to show for it? Forearms that Popeye would be proud to call his own.

Thursday, 8 April 2010

Thank Crap for That!

I now have a working shower. It's only been SEVEN MONTHS but it's finally back to working.

A little background here - husband (henceforth know as 'B') dropped glass into vanity sink - glass didn't break, but vanity did (WTF?). Had to replace vanity. At time of going to replace vanity, decided to fix hole in wall of dodgy-arsed shower-over-bath (old house, so pre-dates showers). On trying to fix hole, noticed water had permeated most of gib (drywall). Fuck. Vanity installation on hold.

"Well, we'll re-gib" says I.

So off comes gib.

"Maybe we should move the plumbing to the other wall so the shower is actually bigger and doesn't have window in it" says B.

If only I hadn't listened. Dreaming about a luxurious shower with no curtain sticking to your arse every morning certainly impairs your judgement.

Talk about scope creep. I think B and I have the monopoly on that. We ended up:
1. removing/replacing majority of walls
2. completely re-plumbing the bathroom (ourselves no less - amazing what youtube can teach you)
3. replacing the bath, the cradle and floor under the bath (from previous leaky shower)
4. plastering all drywall/gib oursleves
5. waterproofing and tiling wall above bath for shower
6. installing new glass swing door and all shower/bath fixtures

I still have painting to do, replacing skirting & cornicing, putting in a new light fixture, shelf and towel rail and instaling the new vanity (yes, the very same vanity that started this whole sodding debacle).

Looking back at the progress photos I have taken along the way makes me very, very tired. But it is all worth it (at least that's what I am telling myself) and of course is all happening just in time for us to sell the house. Typical.

Eventually I will add the photies to here, and add posts on all the other crap I have been doing (i.e painting the outside of house, refurbing kitchen etc) which I have been doing for the past couple of months alongside the bathrom.

I am actually pretty proud of what both myself and B have achieved - but I never EVER want to do this much work on a house again. I think B is finally coming around to my way of thinking - that is: living in a fucking caravan.

Though could be hard with two dogs and a cat, but I'm sure we'd cope.

Thursday, 1 April 2010

Really new beginnings

Just starting this blog - probably won't make much sense for a bit until I get the hang of this not-so-new-fangled technology.

I shall endeavour to update all the informations soon - once I get this fecking grouting done. Yes, I am a diy biartch and know way too much about shit I don't need to.

*Note to self: add some interesting (?) photies of house being worked on, avoiding pictures of lardy bum.

That'll about do for now.