Monday, November 5, 2012

Before and after - kitchen

We finally, finally found our stash of before shots - taken before any demolition or removal of old desks and shelves happened. They have eluded us for ages - filed away safely - so I'm a bit excited to finally have them back. Expect the before and after posts to come thick and fast now. Consider yourselves warned.

This is a picture of the bedroom that became the kitchen. There was no internal access to the room - only this door that was accessed via and grated gangplank over the internal courtyard.

The view out from the bedroom to the courtyard.

On top of this contraption custom built set of drawers was the previous owners mattress. Behind that back wall was the only bathroom in the house (now our upstairs powder room). 

There was one long, thin rectangular window letting light into the room. I think it is fair to say he would never have had a problem being woken up by the early morning sun.

This is the view back out to the courtyard now. The wall where the bench and louvers are is the wall he had his bed against.

(You know how I've said I am always rearranging? Well, I've since turned the outdoor table so it runs the other way. I think it gives us a little bit more space outside.)

The louvers let an enormous amount of light - as well as breeze - into the kitchen. Even without the glass doors to the courtyard the kitchen would be full of natural light all during the day. It's beautiful to be in.

I used to keep my cookbooks on the benchtops, but because we don't have huge amounts of bench space I decided they would be better off out of the way on a shelf. Until we put in our permanent kitchen, this wall was just wasted space so it was the perfect spot.

This shot gives an idea of the 'temporariness' of the kitchen. Nothing is built in and the oven and dishwasher just sit side by side. The wooden board on top of the dishwasher is a handy bit of extra bench space for when I'm cooking. It's surprisingly functional for all its temporariness, so we're no longer in a rush to get something built in.

The wall above the oven has seen several incarnations and this is the current one. Puddleduck quite likes to get the blackboards down when I am cooking and doing some drawing. Which suits us both. Actually, I suspect part of the reason I quite enjoy our kitchen not being 'final' is that I get to change this wall whenever the mood takes me.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Gratuitous flower photos

I don't think it is any secret that I love flowers. They hold such happy memories for me. I remember visiting my grandparent's house and Grandad was always growing something. Every time I see gladioli or old fashioned single gerberas I think of him.

Similarly, my Dad has always grown roses, pansies, sweet peas, gladdies, chrysanthemums, carnations and a myriad of other plants and flowers. Even in the NQ heat and humidity he perseveres and our house was rarely without his beautiful blooms.

I think the first time I realised how beautiful hydrangeas were was when we visited my Uncle and Aunt in Melbourne when I was about 12. They had massive bushes out the front with huge heads of flowers. Gorgeous. I'm trying to grow my own now ... I've not killed them yet.

Peonies are another favourite. I love them at every stage of their unfurling. From tight buds to flopping petals revealing the bright yellow stamens. Our peony plant remains - shockingly - alive, although hasn't flowered since we've moved to Sydney. Poor thing.

Roses are so classic and David Austin roses are simply magical. They are both beautiful to look at and beautiful to smell. My local flower man always has some in stock and I can't resist them. The heady scent of rose in the mornings after the house has been closed up for the night is one of my favourite things. It's amazing how it wafts around the entire house - even outdoors.

Here is my own meagre rose offering. Our first crop of Pierre de Ronsard. They mightn't grow quite like weeds as they did in Canberra, but I hold out high hopes for my little roses this year.

Halloween ... and Christmas

Halloween doesn't seem as big in our new suburb as it did our old one, but we still managed to celebrate ourselves - and even carve our first pumpkin. Now that Halloween is over, however, it's definitely the countdown to Christmas.

I'm a huge Christmas tragic at the best of times, but the thought of our first Christmas in our new house is inordinately exciting. I'm struggling not to whip the decorations out right now and decorate the house.

It's our third Christmas in Sydney and the first we can actually use our big tree. Gosh I hope it hasn't gone all mouldy! Mr Puddleduck is - I suspect - heartily sick of me 'workshopping' ideas for where we should set it up. By workshopping I mean yammering at him about possible spots while pretending to take on board his thoughts. I mean I really am interested in his thoughts, but I just know he's not quite as fussed as I am.

There's no actual point to this post, just, you know, random excitement about Christmas!