Tuesday, December 28, 2010

TaDa – Colour Choices Begins

 Shadow for the Doors

I know, unlike my fellow bloggers who are so organised with their choices, I have been putting off the inevitable and doing the old Scarlett O'Hara as in "I'll think about it tomorrow." 

Well, now we are owners of this block of land and with contracts, permits and approvals looming, decided that I had better get a wriggle on and start doing something.
Travertine Malt for
the benchtop

I know its only the beginning but at least its a start.
One down heaps more to go!!!


Friday, December 24, 2010

2010 - The Year in Review

As this year draws to a close I would like to reflect on what has happened in our lives in 2010.
Firstly, we took the plunge and bought a block of land in a new area where we could only imagine what it looked like in a paddock.   We chose a lovely new house design to go on it.   We endured the very long waiting game for it to become ours.   We ventured into the blogging world and started a blog to chart our build, along the way decided to have a look at this forum thing called The Avenue at Casey.   We have since met many "friends and neighbours" on the forum all with a common interest at heart.   We have met up with some wonderful people who have also taken the same plunge and will be our neighbours when we move.

On a personal note, we had our first family holiday for years with all five of us travelling to Hawaii in May.  We've relived the old days and seen some amazing talent live with visits to Carole King & James Taylor, and only this week to see The Eagles.   Our three football teams that we support did not set the world on fire this year.   Janine's tennis team won the premiership in Section 5 WDTA Midweek Ladies, with the dicky-kneed captain watching from the side-lines.   The furry member of our family has now turned 16 and still pretty fit for a 78 year old human equivelent feline.   I've only read 31 books this year which is a 6 year low for me, but absolutely love my job at the Library.   David & I have continued our involvement with Waverley Tennis in our roles on the committees, and this year I was made a Life Member of Endeavour Hills Tennis Club.  David and I celebrated 34 years of wedded bliss, and we just get better with age.  We have enjoyed catching up with lots of our friends during the year, and look forward to seeing more of them when we finally move next year.

We just want to say Thank You to everyone who has enriched our lives with their friendship and want to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas and lets hope that bloody house starts soon in 2011 - or else my next reflection may be that of a mad-woman!!!!!

Friday, December 17, 2010

Growing and Growing....

Here's another nearmap photo update as at 20th November 2011

At Last.....

After 300 long days of patient waiting, our land has finally settled this morning.   For a short time we are multiple property owners!!   Now to get this builder moving!!

Monday, December 13, 2010

Builder update

David called James from Premier Homes today to find out the status of our house plans. Apparently the soil test results are due Tuesday. The have had a lot of tests to do with so many blocks either just settled or due to settle like us. Once they have the results they will work out our site costs then we will be able to sign our contract before Xmas,apply for developer approval (let's hope they are not all on holidays), with a January site start we hope!

Settlement on land is Friday, so I have to organize 5 bank cheques and visit the bank to do the loan stuff so this week is a productive one.

Made the Xmas pudding yesterday fruit is soaking for the cakes which will bake next weekend,then shortbread will be made next week. I am on holidays from the 23rd for 2 weeks so it will be work around this house to get it in shape ready to go on the market next year.

Must get back out and continue with colour choices. The range of laminates is just too massive to choose from.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Do you measure up?

David had another RHDO (rostered house day off) today, and we had the task of going down to our lovely block of land and measuring it to make sure it is what it says on the plan, so we could sign off on it before settlement next week.     Armed with only a 10 metre tape measure we had fun measuring and marking and came to the conclusion that it was pretty close to exact.   Interesting to note that William Thwaites Blvd was open all the way through now, so we can access our road a bit quicker, which will be good.

We also called in on Kylie up the road, who is overloaded with boxes at the present  and had the man installing her Foxtel while we were there.  Nice to see she is finally in her house, and she promises she will find some coffee cups for our next visit!!

On the way home we stopped off at Ultimate Tiles in Narre Warren and started the mammoth task of starting to look at tiles and laminates. So there Reinsey - I have started with my colours!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Thursday, December 2, 2010


Received another call at 7.00pm tonight from our conveyancer who advised us that our land will settle on Friday 17th December 2010 - Yippee.

Just out of interest and using Reinsey's example did the calculation on how many days between purchase, couldn't believe my eyes when it came out at exactly 300 days as well!

Is this Karma or what?  We were meant to be at The Avenue at Casey.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

A great Xmas gift!

At last today we received the official call from our conveyancer that we will be the proud owners of our land for Xmas! We need to get our soils done, sign the contract get developers approval and the building permit and after months of being in denial about colours tiles etc I now have to start seriously thinking about all these things ready for a start asap in the new year!

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Happy Talk

Today we met the delightful Deb & John more great future neighbours on The Avenue, I had to have a laugh at this, when Deb, Reinsey & myself get together there will be a lot of "Happy Talk" - and David says the guys can leave us to it and pursue other interests!!!

Tarred not feathered

A little bird told me there was movement at the station, so we tootled off down to The Avenue today to find this:
 Ooh we feel so near now - surely soon I will get that magic call from the conveyancer with a settlement date.   Then the fun will really begin!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

I am having an affair!

Yes, it's true, while I have been incapacitated with the knee I have fallen in love! It's about 9 inches long & 6 inches wide and it's black and keeping me very satisfied!
No, its not what you may think, but it is a toy - it's my new IPad! I have officially out-geeked myself and I am head over heels in love!

From the comfort of my recliner chair I can surf the net, answer my email, order online screen covers for my IPad for $2.78 a pair (what a bargain as that includes postage) on E-bay from China! I can listen to my 15 gig of music or listen to an audiobook, or now I can read an e-book. I can catch up on Facebook - in fact the only thing it won't do is put the kettle on and make a cuppa - thank god David has not become totally redundant! Seriously, he is doing a great job keeping this woman in her chair after recovering from Manflu and stepping into carer mode - ain't love grand!

On a land related matter I heard today that Linda has told our builder he can get onsite to do soil tests in a couple of weeks - one little step forward for us.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

No more Dicky Knee

Well, had the arthroscopy today!   I am sure we are all in the wrong business, we should become surgeons and anaethetists.   Saw the surgeon for a total of 5 minutes, and the anaethetist for a total of maybe 8 minutes.  My "quote" for out of pocket expenses is around $2,000, oh and also my specialist has an "assistant" as well, who claims a fifth of the fee as an EXTRA!   I was only under for around 40 minutes, so on an hourly rate that's a nice little money earner.   We should give up building houses and go back to school, then we won't have to worry about those EXTRAS anymore!   Seriously though, I did get actual colour photos of the inside of the kneee and the torn cartillage, which he has fixed, he said he doesn't know why I left it as long to get fixed. He said I am to take things easy for the next few weeks - HA for those who know me well, they will know that won't be easy to do, as I have only 2 speeds - fast and very fast, but I will do my absolute best to be a good girl and rest the knee as much as I can, so David will now have to take over from Manflu sufferer to carer, at least for the next couple of days, and I have at least a week off work, so probably by next Monday, I will be roaming the internet looking for ways to pass the time - maybe more Quizzes Reinsey? 

  In all honesty didn't realise it was that bad, and besides my lovely tennis team finished top of the ladder and the finals start this Thursday, and I didn't want to let the team down mid-season by having it done then.   Fear not, my team, I will be there on Thursday armed with Pillow ready to cheer you, and watch you clean up the opposition which will put us into the Grand Final in 2 weeks, which will by then mean I can be the purveyor of fine champagne to toast our win - and yes we will win, no negative thoughts allowed!!!

Also have finally got my computer back with new hard drive, so have the onerous task of restoring all my files and photos and music back where it belongs.    And I will from now on back up all my email and sort out all those photos properly, and copy them onto disc as well.   Have you all backed up your computers, I ask?

Monday, November 8, 2010

The Avenue is growing....

Here's another update from NearMap (20th October 2010) - you can see the difference!!!  We are all starting to stand out on the map!

Friday, November 5, 2010

R.I.P. Sad news

I am officially in mourning, my dear hard drive in my computer has passed away, am I in tears yes, because, although I did back up the 13gig of music and all the photos, plus my important personal files onto the external hard drive, I have lost all my email addresses and all my email, including all the emails to Premier Homes - arrrggg.   I am getting a new hard drive put in as we speak, and although nothing really major has been lost, its now a pain in the butt to re-download all the shareware I had installed and to get my email addresses back.I would be crying buckets of tears if I hadn't backed up my photos and music.   So to all you people out there who think they are ok - you are NOT - BACK UP YOUR FILES, MUSIC & PHOTOS IMMEDIATELY.
I had no warning, it just went KAPUT!!!

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Progress, Progress

Took a trip in this lovely Melbourne weather down to see the block, and surprise, surprise - that huge pile of dirt is no more!!
The gutters and footpaths have been done and the block has been levelled. The houses building at the back of us are really flying along too.
I can now smell a December title date - yahoo!!!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

New Nearmap Update as at 3/10/2010

Here's the latest view of the estate - what a difference!!

At Last – Something is happening!!!

Went for a drive today down to the block, as I have just got back from a weekend of talk, red wine, coffee and more talk with my long lost friend Kaye, meanwhile David had escaped to Cobram for the annual pilgrimage of golf with the men.   As David had one more day of leave to go he offered to take me out for lunch to spend quality time together, so we had the chance to take a look see. They are finally busily digging and preparing formwork for the footpaths and have done the gutters on both sides of the road and as well have started putting in the light posts. So after months of nothing finally they are doing our stage.  
The blocks behind us on William Thwaites are also building with slabs down and frames going up. I don't recall these blocks being actually available for sale even though they are Stage 6, as the slabs are identical in size and shape as seen by the latest Near Map picture of the estate as of 3/10/2010, and I suspect that these may be builders house and land packages or will be display homes in the future. Anyway here are the pics.It's nice to drive down William Thwaites now with the grass established under the trees, which are now growing well, and it will look like an avenue when they are established. Makes you all warm and cosy just thinking about it. Anyway, at long last I can start to see light at the end of the tunnel


Thursday, September 30, 2010

When the body doesn’t cooperate with the brain!!


Nothing to report on the house front, but today visited the Orthopedic Surgeon about the troublesome knee which has threatened to put my tennis career on permanent hold.

All good, after having an arthroscope in November to repair the torn meniscus, he sees no reason why I cannot continue to play – which is fab news, as although Sam Stosur needn't get worried yet, I do enjoy my MidWeek Ladies Comp. and the lovely ladies that I play with, and I want to be one of those 70 year olds that we play against that make us run the baseline, while they just stand there and position the ball to within ½ an inch of the base & side lines!! And as those who know us well, tennis is a big part of our lives, so even though David doesn't play anymore, his executive duties keep him very busy, as do my tennis duties as well.  

This is my most recent premiership (that's me 2nd from the right) – hopefully not my last!!!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Please sir, I can't afford any more!!!

Posting has been a little slack lately, but then again there hasn't been much to post about! Last week we saw the builder and decided on the final list of EXTRAS for the house.   Here they are:

  •   Steel Lintel to both garage doors
  •   Tiled shower bases to both bathrooms
  •   Upgraded oven for kitchen to 900ml freestanding dual fuel
  •   Cabinet made shelving & benches in walk-in pantry
  •   Cabinet made bench in laundry
  •   26 down light package
  •   Beautiful timber floors throughout entry, kitchen, meals & family rooms
  •   Cavity sliding doors to study
  •   Cavity sliding wardrobe doors to study, B2 & B3
  •   Upgrade to kitchen Series 1 Vinyl Wrap
  •   Window locks to all windows
  •   Awning windows throughout (Edwardian feature windows to B1 & Lounge)
  •   Finials on all 3 gables
  •   Upgrade skirting to 85mm replica
  •   Shelves in study wardrobe instead of hanging space
  •   9ft elevated ceilings throughout
  •   Fantastic gas fireplace in loungeroom (for Janine)
  •   Picture rails throughout
  •   Alternate brick banding around centre of house
  •   Bullnose bricks to front sills & verandah
  •   Brick piers & small fence to front verandah
  •   Lengthen size of toilet and relocate bathroom door  (Thanks to room 4 a cubby)
  •   Swap ensuite window with family room window (then I have room for the loo paper)
  •   Install door in hallway between loungeroom and family room  (for David)
  •   Wider bi-parting door for entrance to Alfresco area
  •   Upgraded Corinthian front door
  •   3 Feature Walls
  •   Ducted evaporative cooling
  •   Panel-lift roller door  & remote controls
  •   Dishwasher (finally David will have a rest)
  •   Ducted vaccuum
  •   IXL Tastics to both bathrooms
  •   We will supply our own taps (we know someone who gets a good discount)
  •   Owner supplied deadlocks for doors

Phew, what a list!!!   And when "I was thinking" all those months ago, I thought it was going to be such a simple process.

Our plans are now in the process of being drawn up for the final time, then we need to seek developer approval - and then we wait until title is just about ready for the price of site costs.
Hopefully it won't be too much as the block is pretty much dead flat, but as I have learned, nothing in this building adventure comes cheap, so I have to keep my fingers crossed that its not too much EXTRA.

As an aside – Janine is currently learning Word 2007 properly and having fun exploring all the options that are available, so stay tuned for more amendments to the blog posts!!

Sunday, August 29, 2010

The Block

Today, visited the above for the first time in about 3 weeks, very disappointed to see that the huge truck that was there three weeks ago, is still parked on our block.   But there seems to be some progress and it looks like they have started putting services in and the road has definitely been levelled in preparation for the real thing eventually.  

I also met our neighbour down the road Kylie at her house which is just at lock up stage.
What a lovely lady, in the future I can see many a late night will be  spent down there in her purpose-built scrapbooking room!!

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Everybody needs good neighbours

This week we received another letter from the conveyancer to advise that "Due to unforeseen circumstances" our stage will not settle until December!!!  Talk about waving that carrot in front of someone's nose then taking it away - bummer!!!  Oh well, patience is a virtue I suppose.

On a brighter note,  we met the most delightful people today and had a spot of afternoon tea with Raelene & Laurie (aka Reinsey & Loz) who are building on Stage 11.   We clicked immediately and shared our experiences with the building process to date.   It is so nice to know that we will have such nice neighbours in our new area, and we all look forward to meeting more as time goes on.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Title date notifcation.

Today we received a letter from our conveyancer.   This had attached a copy of the engineers report for our stage and also a letter from the developer's conveyancer stating that our land will title in November.    This is a month earlier than we were originally advised so we are very happy people.

This means we can move along with our house selections and plans and hope to start before the end of the year - yay!!!

Friday, July 23, 2010

New Nearmap Image Update

This is the estate as at 16/7/2010 taken from Nearmap.   Isn't it amazing the difference between the previous update in April to now, so many houses on the go!!

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Ka-Ching Ka-Ching goes the cash register

Today we had a meeting with Premier to analyse the specifications of the  house and discuss the little "extras" that we desire.   Over an hour later, I now know the meaning of lintel, finial, what reveals & madison boxes are.

Also discovered the EXTRA  costs of awning windows instead of sliding, the cost to have the original facade including colour bricks around house, bullnose window sill bricks, twin brick piers and brick fence inbetween, the cost of having a small piece of steel lintel over the back garage door is $320, even though we have already paid $370 for the same over the main garage door which is more than twice as wide!!  Picture rails to lounge, hall, family & master.   Can you hear the cash register ringing???  About $5,000 for all this.

We will have to wait to get the EXTRA cost of awning windows at the front including side light windows in the bay to the master (because that is extra!), the cost of having a larger bi-parting sliding door in the alfresco, and the cost of having a zone put in for the ducted heating, putting a door in the hallway to shut off the kitchen/family from the lounge room, turning the coat cupboard into a half & half shelves & hanging and having 2 doors to open instead of one. 

I wonder why I ever uttered those immortal words "I was thinking" and started all this.
What you see when you see a display home is not what you get, anything nice is always EXTRA, you never see basic inclusions, they always upgrade the display house to the hilt.

So I now wait for Premier to get back to me with all those other EXTRAS, and the sound keeps going ka-ching ka-ching.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Its just bricks, tiles and mortar - how easy is that?

Today David and I had a great day, on his rostered day off spending a day with the one he adores, what did we do?   Well, his car was in for a service so we beetled off in my little Excel over to Reece at Burwood, Challenge Roofing at Officer, A & L Windows in Hallam,  and a visit to both Jamieson display homes today armed with trusty tape measure to check on things once again!!! 

The outcome is "ta da" we have finally decided on the bricks, tiles, and window colours:

Bricks are Austral Canterbury, with off-white mortar.

These roofing tiles are Monier Elabana Sambuca .

   And last but not least
  White Birch Windows.

On our way back home we called into The Avenue at Casey, to discuss the positioning of our driveway crossover which we want to be on the right so that our alfresco area will take full advantage of the northern sun.   We are happy to report that we have in our hot little hand the engineers report for our stage which luckily has our driveway crossover on the right hand side.   I asked whether our land is still due to title in December and was advised that is still the case!!!   Much progress was made today.   

Monday, June 21, 2010

Alternative facades for house

Both of these facades are good, all depends on cost of course!!!

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Preliminary Paperwork Received & Conveyancer Appointed

Today we travelled down to meet with our Premier Homes rep James and received this giant folder with all the plans, specifications, sample contract etc. for our new house.   We will need to go over all this paperwork VERY carefully over the next month or so to make sure we are happy with everything contained therein.   We have one more go at making any changes for free on the plans, and I will be investigating every fixture and fitting contained therein before we sign off on everything.  Big thanks to Room 4 a cubby for his tip on extending the toilet and relocating the bathroom door - a great idea.   James also had the idea of putting a cavity sliding door at the end of the entry hall so that when I have the gas fireplace (I decided I will get one!) on it will keep the heat in, so we will consider this in the final plan.

We asked him about having the Bungalow look above for the facade of the house, this seems to be quite expensive with different size gables needed for the garage and centre of the house, so we went off and snapped photos of different facades of other houses that we like in case the cost of the bungalow look is out of our price range - so many decisions to make.

We also need to visit the Kitchen guy as I want to change the layout where the oven is to get rid of the little cupboards and drawers they have as I need bench space on both sides of the range.

We have lots of decisions yet to make before we sign the contract, so I can see it will be a very busy month or so.

We went for a drive down to the block today, but it was a very wet soggy mess, with no action yet.   Amazed at the amount of building that it happening though, as its been 3 weeks since we have been there.

We have now signed with Maria at Superior Conveyancing as well, so I will contact her this week to find out if she is any clearer on whether our land is on track for December 2010.

Let the fun begin - I am glad that we have time to do all this work.   In a way it is good that we cannot build straight away so I can get this all done.    However, come December, if there is no action on the title - I may not be so happy.

Hope to be adding to the blog a lot more frequently, as more decisions are made.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

The Jamieson

Well, here it is, this is the front of our yet to be built new home.   We really love this home and it will be exciting to follow its progress once it starts.   This is the floorplan, which we have amended slightly to have the entry from the garage directly into the walk in pantry.   We are also converting B2 into the study by adding a set of cavity sliders so that I can yell directly at David, as that is where he virtually lives!!!
We are still undecided as to take 1 or 2 metres off the size of the Master Bedroom as it is huge!!   Premier are building another one of these up at Pakenham in a new display which will have the room at 4 metres rather than 6, so we will make up our mind once we see it.

UPDATE: Today we visited the new Jamieson that Premier have built at Pakenham. We have decided to take the 2 metres out of the master bedroom as it is plenty big enough. We really like the facade of this house and will find out how much it will cost to get this look. 29/5/2010

Sunday, March 28, 2010


Follow this link to the home page of the estate and look for the Charlbury Release, that's where we will be.  This nearmap image was taken on 16/4/2010, our block is still in a paddock!!

Saturday, March 27, 2010

The Avenue at Casey

After much research we decided that the brand new estate The Avenue at Casey was a nice place to live

So one Saturday we decided to take a trip down to check it out, 30 minutes later we are the owners of Lot 1023 Charlbury Crescent!!

In The Beginning.....

It all began when I uttered those ominous words.... "I Was Thinking"!

Six months ago I would have said you can carry me out of this house in a pine box. But one day when watering our sizeable backyard I thought, boy I am over this size block - and lets face it we are not getting any younger.

So off we were that very next weekend looking at Display Homes - very exciting and interesting to see how they have changed over 31 years since we built Charles Green. It didn't take us long to find that ideal home - the Jamieson by Premier Homes, it met our criteria for a new house, 3 bedrooms, 1 study, 2 living areas, nice outdoor area.

But first of all we have to find land to fit the house that follows our strict criteria: Must be in the City of Casey, must be flat, must be smaller than our current block - and so the search begins.