Monday, December 29, 2008
Sunday, November 23, 2008
Gallop the Horse: he's covered in buttons! He's grey like a Grandpa-cardigan!! Ooo, and on his other side:
A love heart! Because he loves you!!!
Next in the line of favourites:
Abernathy the unicorn: Am I not the hugest fan of unicorns????
He has a rainbow on him!! With a little rain cloud!!
Oh my my my... I'm so smitten with these two!!!
I just don't think my heart will be content until I have my very own Skunkboy Creature... Little tree-ornament owl arrived on Friday, and she helps, but she's just so little, my craving will not be satisfied. *sigh*
Tuesday, November 18, 2008
Today I was trying to get inspiration for our wedding menus and bombonierre, and Etsy'd the word Love Heart... some very cute stuff, but I found a Heart-able artist called Shelbey Healey!!
This is so cool! And re-affirming, once again, my absolute love of collage and mixed media!!!
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
(Token bum/arm shot!!)
Wednesday, November 5, 2008
In other news, Skunkboy Creatures has turned 4 of her adorable creations into Christmas tree ornaments!
I've been hanging out for a Skunkboy Creatures toy FOR EVER but have held off. I still would like one, someday, but for now this little one will tide me over! Yay!!
Friday, October 31, 2008
1. I am so so so jealous of anyone who's my age and can build a house already. House fixer-upping is not actually fun at all. It's great to have a place, but it's my dream to be able to move into a place and not freak out that the shower's going to be scungey, or the toilet's going to be stained and disgusting, or the window sills aren't going to be sealed. *Sigh*
2. (Thanks Hatti for this one): In 5 weeks, I will be the woman of a house. I will no longer be living in the room I've slept in for the last 18 years, or enjoying the company of the family I have always belonged to. I'll be all 'grown up', cooking every night and living in a space that's half-mine! This is really exciting, but maybe a little more terrifying than I'd anticipated, now that it's so close (to clarify, I definitely don't have cold feet!! I just haven't ever experienced an adventure like this!)
3. I wonder why it has taken me 5 years since finishing high school to get my butt back into creative gear? I've always pined to draw, paint, sew, etc... so why the heck did it take me so long to just buy a sketch book and start trying it out? In high school I worked solidly during every private study period, doing things I should not have been doing, but which kept me alive and excited... drawing, creating stories, cartooning... And for the last 5 years the evidence of this has hung on my wardrobe door as a weird tribute to my finest moments in study period. Why did I stop?
4. I have a pretty cool name. Klara Kamilla. When I was a kid, I hated my middle name. It's my Grandma's name (not why I hated it, I just thought it was old-fashioned and embarrassing!!) But now I really like my name. It's unique :)
5. There are some things I do not tell anyone, for all kinds of reasons. I wonder if they really matter that much? Sure, some things are secrets for a reason, but some things I hold onto are a bit silly!!
6. I'm pining for a large pack of connector-pen/textas. I just discovered this artist, and I actually can't stand to look at her work. It's incredibly crude, and ugly, and very in-your-face, which I'm sure is her aim, so fair enough. But the cool thing about her is that she does a lot of colouring-in with connector pens!! So now I want to :)
7. House-painting is such a painful, slow process. Ergh. We're still working on the first room we started on! It's a little dis-heartening, although last weekend we were able to unwrap one couch and put it against a finished wall, along with a new end table & lamp from Ikea. That little corner of our living room honestly keeps me going. It looks so picture perfect! So I can't wait to see the rest of the room hopefully very soon.
8. Money is not as stretchy as it should be, especially when you have a shiny new mortgage to adjust to, and a wedding.
9. Not everyone you know makes sense. Different people are different. Sometimes I feel like me and my close friends are the only sane people on the planet! But I'm pretty sure everyone feels like that once in a while :)
10. Assignments suck, and I'm so over uni. Lucky it's about to be the Summer break, but I still have a semi-long haul before then (at least classes are over).
Tuesday, October 28, 2008
Thursday, October 23, 2008
This week she posted up an interview of sorts, where she and 3 other artistic-types basically talk about the highs, lows, beginnings and ends of their lifestyles and jobs. The blog post is titled Things I Wish I Had Known and if you, like me, are pining to just let loose and be an artist (in any way, shape or form) this article is a very dangerous read!!! It's very long and wordy, but if you can get through the whole thing, you may well find your little heart pining to live like Elsie does. I'm not talking about the little bits that make up her life, but the essence of it itself - creating. Elsie has all this time to create, and experiment, and do little projects, and dream.
If I could have anything in the world, I'd ask for that (provided I get to keep Chris too, of course! He's the real love of my life...)
I will be an artist. Sometime, somehow. It may not necessarily be my full-time job, but I just have to create. Because there's so much inspiration out there, so much romance and beauty in my life, and I do nothing with it. *Sigh*
Rather than admit defeat, I will say I have bigger plans for the store next year when life settles down again :)
1. Hot weather: I realised the other day that I love Summer because it constantly reminds me of Christmas. However, come New Years Day, I kinda hate Summer! It completely loses its charm!
2. Christmas Decorations at the shops: Especially Myer. They have the most beautiful Christmas display *happy sigh*
3. Our new Christmas Tree, Chester: Having mentioned Myer, I figured I'd have to confess that on Sunday I fell for the charm of Myer's Christmas display, combined with their 20% off Christmas Trimmings Sale and... impulsively bought a 6-foot Christmas Tree. I've named him Chester.
4. Home-baked Shortbread Cookies: My Mum always makes piles of yummy shortbread cookies, all cut out with Christmas cookie cutters. Unlike any other baked good produced in our house, which usually disappears with 8 hours, there are so many of these cookies that they literally last us till after the New Year!!
5. Baguely (no idea how to spell it): It's a Hungarian loafy cake which you put aside a whole day for, and bake in bulk quantities. We make both poppy seed and walnut varities. We don't do it every year, because it's soooo time consuming, but on the years we do, it just feels extra Christmassy!!
6. Christmas Wrapping Paper: It's just so wonderful to look at a pile of freshly-wrapped gifts, decked out in bells and reindeer!!
7. Christmas Music: I can't wait to pop some Christmas CDs in the player at work :)
8. Tarhogna (again, who knows how to spell it?): A Hungarian side-dish which basically consists of tiny little 'balls' or even 'seeds' of pasta mixed up with onions and olive oil and I'm not sure what else... It's soooo yummy!! We only ever have it at Christmas time, and it's worth the wait!
9. Decorating: I'm especially excited about decorating this year because it'll be my first Christmas living away from home!! It means that I have a new space to work with, new decorations (although nowhere near the quantity I've grown accustomed to!) and I can keep my tree up just as long as I want! (Right Chris?)
10. Christmas break: Our office is closing from December 25 - January 5, which gives me 10 days to just hang out and enjoy a freaking good break!! Hopefully my spunky new husband will get a good Christmas break too :)
Monday, October 13, 2008
All day yesterday, my brain was filling up with ideas. There was way too much creative juice happening, and I couldn't quite keep up. I'm now trying my hand at creating a 2009 Planner, as well as a handful of notebooks and a Christmas Organiser for my store, and possibly Made On The Left coming up in November (Eeep! Will I ever have enough stuff???)
Last night I finally drew and coloured up a bird I've been dreaming of for quite some time. I'd done a make-shift little drawing at work, and was pining to put it on paper. So I finally did!!
It has not scanned nicely at all, but basically I'll be cutting the little guy right off the page, and sticking him onto a digitally-created background, maybe stick a few buttons on... I'm hoping this project works out, and am regretting scanning that pic in now as it just does not do him justice!!
In my head, little pictures are starting to swirl... Russian dolls, tea-cups, ghosts, reindeer... Ach! My priorities are way-skewed at the moment, as I still haven't even made my wedding invitations. What to do??
Tuesday, October 7, 2008
Basically, with me going to Melbourne today (in a few short hours! Yay!) Chris wanted to treat me to a very special dinner. He'd been planning to take me to this place for aaaages but couldn't get bookings for the times we were free. Well, he struck gold and managed to get a booking for us last night. Where did take me?
Here's a picture of the restaurant:
And here's a picture of the stunning view we experienced as we dined:
(I can't take credit for the pics, you can find them at the C Restaurant website or WA tourism sites)
As you eat, you're slooooowly revolving around, giving you a 360 scope of the entire city. Wow. Wow. Wow. I could hardly take my eyes off the view the entire time.
And the whole experience? Well, we had a REAL FRENCH WAITER who was snooty to boot, and combed (yes, combed) our table between courses. I had a cocktail (so chic!) and the food itself was... insane. So they come out with our mains and I think "Typical fancy restaurant. You pay through the nose for tiny portions". It may have been a tiny portion, but the food was SO RICH, I was pretty darn full by the end of the meal! I had the gnochi, Chris had the beef and we were pretty smitten.
One thing I loved about it is that, you know in the movies, when people go out for dinner at fancy places and say "I'll have the beef, she'll have the fish."??? THIS IS ONE OF THOSE PLACES! Most restaurants have a big selection of beef dishes, or fish dishes, so you have to be specific. But we literally got to use the words "I'll have the beef", because there was one beef dish. Very glamorous!! Heh.
The finest part of the evening was dessert though. Ohhhh boy. We both ordered Chocolate Moelleux (we were upfront with our waiter, and explained we weren't even going to try and pronounce it, and he rolled it off his tongue probably just to rub it in, hehehe. It's "Mollay" for the record, like "Ole!" with 'M' at the start) We received a plate with green pistachio icecream, the plumpest, juiciest mascerated strawberries (Oh wow in itself!) and this Chocolate cakey-looking thing. Take a forkful of cake and this avalanche of muddy chocolate goo starts flowing out. Oh my word. I think that was the very most wonderful form of chocolate I've ever experienced in my life. Hence Chris's very vocal appreciation.
All in all I had the most AMAZING night! Seriously, it was so good. I can't believe it, but I've sold my soul to the world of fancy, pay-through-the-nose dining. *Squeak*
Sunday, October 5, 2008
Thanks to the clan of 'secret-surprise-planning' bridesmaids out in the kitchen, I've been sent to my room for the first time since I was 6 years old, and to distract myself I've opened iTunes and am bopping along to Christmas music. Yay! I've actually been pining for Christmas alllll dayyyy for some reason so this is a perfect way to wind down :)
Saturday, October 4, 2008
Thank you kindly for doing us this favour. We so enjoy internet that crawls along like a snail, and crashes every 5 minutes when we try to load a page with pictures on it. We are especially thankful that you've done this for us at the time when 2 of us are working fervently on numerous uni assignments.
Email? Who needs to check that reguarly anyway? If a group you're doing an assignment with are SOOOOO desperate to send you bits of their work that you are compiling, heck, it's practically just as easy for them to print it off and send it through snail mail, especially since this would be quicker than waiting for your email to load up. Thank you for helping us to remember the value of this.
Oh, and don't worry about cutting off our main source of information. News, events, searches... we actually find it very soothing to be able to meditate as we watch pages load a pixel at a time.
As for the ability to open numerous websites in new tabs: thank you for disabling this annoying feature of our web browser. It really gets a bit distracting having to flick between tabs to view several pages at once. It's nice to know that these days, if I do happen to click "Open in new tab", luckily for me, nothing is capable of loading with such a slow internet speed. Things are much more simplified.
You have brought us much pleasure. Enjoy your 8GB of new porn... it's clearly all you've got going for you.
Friday, October 3, 2008
This week I lost 3.6kg... that's 7.9lb if an American happens to chance by this blog :)
So I'm pretty happy, and suddenly I have a renewed like for the shakes (I won't say love - no matter how great the results, at the end of the day they're packets of insanely sweet powder, mixed with cold water, and they will never replace a good savoury meal.)
I finally went and tried on the wedding dress yesterday. I was pretty freaking scared, to be honest. I never got to try it on in my size - they pretty much just measure you and choose a size, then someone in a factory makes it. So there was no guarantee of a good, flattering fit... but it was perfect!!!! Yay!!!
I'm a very happy bride :D
Tuesday, September 30, 2008
Since Saturday, I've had nothing but shakes, yoghurt & fruit right up until dinner time each day. At dinner, I'm allowed a little bit of meat and some vegetables. In the last 5 days, I have discovered the following:
- Life is not full and good without savoury food
- Many, many different shake flavours are available - but at least half of them will trigger your gag reflex
- Dill pickles are life-savers when you crave savoury-ness
- When you can't eat bread, pasta or cheese (3 of my favourite things) you think about them, lots
- It hurts your soul when you make dinner, almost cry in anticipation of some solid food... and
discover that your new recipe is foul, and there's nothing left in the fridge that you're allowed to eat!!
- Food smells freakin' amazing. Even toast.
I'm not looking for a pity-party, because this is all self-inflicted and I can quit whenever I want to... but I just want to complain for a bit :-P
One good thing is I haven't even slightly craved chocolate, so if nothing else perhaps this horrible diet will help me shake that addiction. But I really, really want savoury food. I slipped and had a piece of pepperoni pizza the other day... Oh.my.goodness. Yum!
Anyway, enough of that. This bride is in a last-ditch effort to get smaller, so thinking about all the yummy food out there just won't do!!!
Monday, September 29, 2008
One person who I am laying some blame on for awakening my desire to draw is Kate Lightfoot at Scarlettcat!! Her work always makes me pine for drawing/sketching/colouring - basically any pencil-to-paper action.
I love to see an artist who adores coloured pencils, and I've been a huge fan of Katie's work ever since I discovered it about a year ago...
She also has a blog where she posts her sketches - I love to see her work gradually take shape.
NOW I WANT TO DRAWWWWWWWWW!!!!!!!!
How could I list anyone else before I list my wonderful Mum??? Not only did she pick up AND pay for pizzas for the whole crew, she also set herself about the kitchen, cleaning dirty shelves and washing all the kitchen-y bits and pieces we got for our engagement party!!!! I now have a fully-stocked glass & mug cupboard (it looks so so SO good, I meant to take a pic but I forgot...) and there are cookie sheets, muffin pans, baking trays and all kinds of goodies drying off around the room (we don't currently have clean tea-towels, oops!!) However, I do believe her finest achievement of the day was the magic she worked on our little saucepan. Chris decided to cook chilli for breakfast with one of our new saucepans, and on its maiden voyage of good cookin', the little thing was left on the stove to boil, and forgotten once people started to arrive. There was smoke, a slight burnt taste throughout the chilli, and a very black, ruined saucepan at the end! Mum spent a good part of the afternoon boiling water in it, scrubbing it, and even taking it home and treating it with stainless steel cleaner of some description... and what we have left is a just-like-new little saucepan which I probably would have thrown out, had my Mum not shown me what to do... Yay Mum!!!Member #2 of the Dream Team would be my sister Nahn, who copped more paint than anybody else in the whole house... for some reason we just can't seem to grow out of the thrill of wiping a big wet paintbrush down someone's leg/arm/back/neck/toenail... and poor old Nahn was so covered in paint by the end!! We'll call the pic above a "progress pic"...
Good ol' Mac (who's Nahn's boyfriend) showed up with Nahn not too long into the day. It should be noted that Nahn and Mac are about the most willing, helpful, wonderful people. I'm pretty sure they've helped us with every step of this big process - whether it's been coming with us to pick up obscure pieces of furniture and appliances from various houses, putting in a huge amount of effort towards our engagement party, painting, all kinds of things!! Mac even tried his hand at contacting shelves today, and he did a damn good job - even taking on the most horrible, cramped little corner cupboard which I'm pretty sure no one else would've volunteered for in a million years. Of course, he also painted up a storm and even contributed some of his Dad's brushes and rollers to the cause.
Brad here was the first to arrive and got straight into it - he got to do fun things like applying masking tape to alllll the skirting boards & powerpoints, as well as applying a sealant around the cracks around the ceiling and windows, before painting could even commence. He was also one of the last to leave, so you can be sure he worked damn hard, and even gave us the impression he was enjoying himself!!!
I just had to end with Pottsey, so that I could finish this post with that fab picture!!!! Although it looks as though he doesn't know what to do with a paint brush (it's white and drips... it must be something that slightly resembles icecream, surely!!), he actually stole the show as the painting master today. He knows stuff about painting, which we're so grateful for because we've never done it in our lives!!! So, hooray for Pottsey!! Also, he made a notable joke about a lemon today. I didn't say it was a good joke, I said it was notable ;)
The very much honourable mention goes to my Dad. I didn't think to take a picture when he was working yesterday, but the last couple of times he's been over he's replaced every powerpoint in the house, changing them all from 1-switch to 2-switch plates. Yay!! I don't know why anyone would opt for 1-switch in the first place, but whoever built the house obviously did. Luckily, my electrician Dad was able to save the day and set things right :) Yay!!!!
CJ also popped by today, and I didn't manage to get a pic of him but he helped us with some painting in the afternoon! Plus, he brought a large amount of food with him! Yay!
Amazingly, Chris and I managed to evade my camera so I have nothing to show of us in all our painted glory. All I can say is that after Nahn, I was probably the most painted person in the house. I had paint alllll over my feet, from sitting on the drop cloth... Also, both arms were covered and I even got a bit in my hair! Ergh!
By the end of the day, we had primed the lounge room, main bedroom, and front entrance. Whew!!! Here's one pic I took of the primer on the walls:
That's the 'reading room' section in the lounge room (I'm kind of dividing the room into 2 sections with a couple of dangly curtains, which I'm so excited about!) Can't wait till we're ready to put colours on!!!
Thursday, September 25, 2008
Wednesday, 10.30: Carpets cleaned
Thursday, 10.30: Couches delivered
Friday, 10.30: Uni group assignment work (this will be an achievement when it's done!!)
Saturday, 10.30: Gift registry at Myer (yes, we get to use those fun little scan-ny devices! Yippee!)
Who knows what Sunday, 10.30 will bring???
(on a sidenote, why is it so hard to find a picture of a clock displaying "10.30"??? I wanted a cute little picture to go alongside my post, but alas!!)
Sunday, September 21, 2008
There are so many things up in the air - shelves need contacting, holes need filling, walls need sanding & sugar-soaping (and obviously painting). The house looks like one huge tradies' camp-site! (See Figure A below for an example...)
One thing that is completely done though? My lovely laundry cleaning cupboard!!
And this here makes me alllll giddy:
That, lovely blog-reader/s, is my Mum sitting on the world's SWEETEST Day-Bed at IKEA!! I soooo badly want this... but maybe in a couple of pay checks' time perhaps?
In other news my parents are away in Mandurah for the next few days, so it's 3 girls and a dog fending for themselves this week! Should be some fun times ahead...
Thursday, September 18, 2008
Tuesday, September 16, 2008
So as a pre-home-owner, I started going a bit nuts over furniture. Look at what I bought...
Window seat! I picked this up at Thingz House and it looks boring as all get-out in the picture, I'll give it that. But in real life it's very beautiful, and a little vintagey... perfectly designed for lazy afternoons, sitting by the window with a good book. My heart leaps at the idea of this... mostly because in 12 weeks, I'll actually be able to do this, just sit in my house, potter around, make things look nice, read all day. (What? You're not going to work in the weeks after your wedding? More on that further down the page...)
Mmmmm... Couches. Soft, squidgy, wonderful couches! This is a picture of the display model at Harvey Norman - our actual couches will look like this, but in a lovely chocolate brown colour, named "Raisin". (Ugly name to call a colour, but whatever...) These couches are like heaven to sit on, and as soon as we have contents insurance, we'll be able to order these babies in. Yay! So happy. I look forward to sitting in them often.
Unfortunately I can't put in any more pictures, but I'll girly-squeal about our bedroom set for a little while. We've got a beautiful bed on layby, with a matching chest of drawers and 2 bedside tables. Oh my. They're so beautiful. I love love love them! Now all we need is a matress... and another $1,900... and they'll be making for a wonderful night's sleep. Oh yes.
Now, here I'm going to yelp and carry on about how very much I'm looking forward to December!! So I get married December 6, and I'm taking the couple of days before that off from work, for last minute preparations and stuff. So, my leave starts Thursday the 4th. We'll be on our honeymoon until a weekend a couple of weeks later - so I'll be back at work Monday 22nd December, just in time to work 3 days and then go on Christmas leave. We're closing up the office the whole week after Christmas, so I don't go back to work until Monday, January 5. Um, yay?!?!?! That means I only work 6 days in December. Which is why I'll be reading books by windows and such....
Sunday, September 14, 2008
I've just been so caught up with all the house stuff at the moment, but the lovely Miss Kirstin kicked me up the bum and got me crafting again yesterday. Yay!!!
I'm trying to see if I can get enough gear together for Made On The Left - a craft stall coming up in Mid-November. So I went a bit nuts and cut out 14 patterns yesterday - I picked 7 designs, and did them in 2s. My craft table's looking a bit like Noah's Ark!!
After cutting them all out (the easy part!) I set to work... and I can proudly say that 4.5 new toys are designed, put together, and ready for stuffing. Yay!!!
I'm really excited about a new turn that my work's gradually taking. Aside from the usual uber-decoratedness of my work, I've worked some more artistic concepts into a couple of pieces... I'll have to show soon!!
In other news, if there was anyone out there wondering what I would look like in a Gladiator helmet, this is for you...
Yeh. My man likes his women burly!! *snort*
And see that behind me? That's a deflated bouncy castle. Time: midnight. On Friday night, I was trying to help Chris set up some gear for filming (he's in charge of the creative side of the upcoming Gladiators Jump promo).
First we had to pick up the 2,000,000kg inflatable device from the church building, and the weather looked like this:
Yes, that is the carpark, flooded, in the midst of a downpour. Sweet. We had to sit out the rain before we could take the trailer out, so we did. 30 odd minutes later, we took off for our destination (luckily just around the corner!) and I did some manly work, helping Chris move all 2,000,000kg of plastic and rubber out of the trailer and onto a waiting trolley. Then we set it up, I learnt stuff about tying up the random flappy bits at the sides ("as if you're pulling up a pony tail"), and he inflated it! Anyone ever bounced on their own personal bouncy castle at 1 in the morning? I have!!! Wish I'd taken pics, but meh. Needless to say, I felt like the coolest kid in town.
So it was a long night. But the bouncy castle (and Gladiator helmet) made it alllll goooood!!!
Monday, September 8, 2008
With home ownership at our fingertips, I’ve chosen today as a time of reflection. A fun way to do this is with a A-Z list of the journey. Whew! Without giving anything else away, here it goes…
A – Agents. MAKE SURE you find yourself an agent that you really like. Our agent Brett rocked – he was good fun, and made me look forward to house-hunting a
B – Broker. Mortgage broker, that is, and a good one at that. They make finance as easy as possible. Our mortgage broker, Leteisha, is very cool and never made me feel stupid, with all the dumb questions I asked along the way!! She knows stuff.
C – Council rates. Who knew it could be so expensive just to live in a suburb?? Once a year you pay the council a hefty amount, and it covers things like rubbish trucks, vandalism in the community, road works, and other random things that your suburb requires. So I can see the point of them, but they’re going to be a pain!!
D – Documents. For a while there, we were getting 2 – 3 packages of paperwork each week. Our hands grew tired of signing, our eyes grew tired of reading, and our brains grew tired of processing information. Be prepared!!
E – Elderly people. For some reason, some of the best, cheapest houses are over-55 villas. If you’re house-hunting on the internet, before falling in love with anything read up on it in the description, and make sure it’s not an over-55 villa. You’ll save yourself a lot of disappointment! (Unless you’re elderly yourself).
F – Finance approval. You need payslips, group certificates, bank statements and all kinds of other junk to get your finance approved. A huuuuge pain!!!
G – Grants. We qualified easily for the $7,000 First Home-Owners Grant, and after settlement we’re applying for a $2,000 REBA rebate. Any extra money helps, so do your research!
H – House hunting. Look at heaps of houses before you pick one. It’s fun, gives you a great idea of what you can get for your money, and it’s important to see the good, the bad and the ugly. Plus, you want to know that the house you put an offer on is definitely right for you!
I – Inspections. Lots of them. Keystart did a value inspection, someone else did another generic inspection, there was a white-ant inspection, my Dad did an inspection, and last week we did our final inspection. If there’s something wrong with the house, make sure it’s found BEFORE settlement – or it’s your problem to fix, and your bill to foot!!!
J – Junk. Don’t bring all your junk with you when you move. Moving is the very best opportunity to be ruthless. Don’t try and convince yourself that, just because you have to squeeze something into the top of your wardrobe in your current dwellings, you’ll certainly find a good place for it in the new home. You won’t. If it’s squeezed into the top of your wardrobe, you can obviously do without it.
K – Keystart. Their shared-equity scheme is the one and only reason we could afford to buy at all. They own 30% of the house, which means we’re only paying off the mortgage on 70% of it, until we can afford to buy more off them J
L – Look and Listen. Do your research. Check up on how various suburbs have been gaining/decreasing in value. Decide what you need in a house, and what would be nice. Listen to your friends, and their experiences (especially those that are 20+ years older than you!) The more knowledge you gain, the more you’re benefited in the long (and short) run.
M – Money. Don’t ever think that you have more than you do. Based on our earnings, Keystart would have allowed us to purchase a house up to $375,000 in value. The house we purchased, we got for $284,000 and I can tell you that we’re going to be scraping by some months. On top of mortgage payments, there are tons of other costs – insurance, rates, bills, maintenance & improvements to name a few. Then there’s the cost of plain ol’ living. So don’t take out a mortgage that’s going to ruin you!!
N – New. Not only will the house be new for you, but it’s possible you’ll be in a whole new community, with new people. Get involved, embrace it. I can’t wait to find my place in our new little neighbourhood!
O – Offer. Here’s my take on making an offer – you offer 5,000-10,000 less than the owners want. They counter your offer, asking for 5,000-10,000 more. You counter their offer, upping your original offer by about 3,000. They counter yours, lowering theirs about 3,000. This goes on for a while until someone makes that golden offer that everyone’s “happy” with. I’m quite sure that the agent just bounces the buyer and the seller off each other for a while. It’s a tricky game.
P – Parents. They know stuff, so listen to them – whether it’s about rising damp, money, first home ownership tips… they might sound like they’re worrying too much at times, but it’s probably for a good reason!!
Q – Questions. Ask lots and lots of questions. First home ownership is a huge deal – you don’t want to sign up if you’re even remotely uninformed!
R – Rising damp. It’s sneaky, and if it wasn’t for my Dad’s cleverness we could well have signed up for a place without a care in the world. Rising damp occurs when water gets into the walls. Tell-tale signs are bubbling paint, rusty doorframes and cracks. It looks like a small, easy-to-fix thing. $10,000 later, you might reconsider. Watch out. Dad picked up on it in one house I was keen on, and that ended that!!
S – Settlement Agent. They’re expensive but essential, unfortunately. They make the purchase legal, and they do all the hard work with rates enquiries and stuff. Our settlement agent is pretty good, but I wish I’d know our friend Mike does settlements, before I signed up for this agent!!
T – Time. It can take a while. We found our place at the end of June, made our offer in early July. With inspections, negotiations and finance approval to sort out, we just had to sit and wait. Finally, we get the keys this Wednesday, September 10. Patience is a virtue. You will most likely learn all about it when going for your first home!
U – Ugliness. Sometimes you have to accept ugliness in your first home. Like floral carpets, or bright green bench tops. Suck it up. If the house is fine other than the daggy, peeling wall paper, you’ve got yourself a great deal! You can always change the way it looks, so focus on functionality.
V – Vendors. They are the ones selling their house to you. You learn their names, you inherit the bits of junk they don’t want to take with them – yet you never actually meet face-to-face. Weird.
W – Walls. They’re more expensive to paint than I realized. That’s pretty much it.
X – Xcitement (sorry, X is such a pathetic letter to start a word with!) These are exciting times – once you can see over the pile of paperwork, once those keys are in your hand, things will start to get freakin’ exciting!!!! Enjoy yourself, and don’t lose sight of the fact that this is your VERY FIRST HOME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Y – Yonder. You’re going to live yonder if you’re anything like us and can’t afford to live where you grew up. The cheapest houses are typically not where your church, workplace, family & friends are – so be prepared to up your travel costs!!!
Z – Zoo. Do not convert your new home to a zoo, as you need lots of licenses, as well as 20 zillion times more space than your block can offer.
Thursday, August 28, 2008
Basically, some very clever people have been competing to create the weirdest, whackiest cross-breed - using images of 2 different animals!
A few of my faves....
Brought us a chuckle at the end of a fairly run-of-the-mill boring Thursday!!
Tuesday, August 26, 2008
Gah! Despite the fact that my heart is being tugged by every little ray of sunshine that dances through this enormous office window, I'm in a really good mood! I believe there are a number of contributing factors:
1. Chris cuddled me to sleep last night before he left my house :) So lovely!
2. I'm back home! Love house-sitting to pieces, but it's also a good feeling getting back home and catching up with the sisters and parents
3. Leon is the most adorable little chap, and now I'm home I see a lot more of him. He's learnt how to sit AND stay!!
4. I'm working 9-4.30 days at the moment, as opposed to my usual 8.30-5.30 days. Uni mini-breaks are wonderful!!
5. I'm really looking forward to seeing little-sister Steph performing her original monologue at school tonight. She's used a concept I threw at her as a joke - and apparently she's done darn well with it!
6. Only 3 hours left for my work day - perhaps I can still enjoy a teeny bit of sunshine after all?
Saturday, August 16, 2008
Sunday, August 10, 2008
I'm trying to work out how to get my Etsy mini to show up down the side of my blog.
"Huh?" You might say. "You already have an Etsy mini.
Well the truth is, it's not real. It's a print screen of my Etsy mini, with a hyperlink. But I really would like the real thing, I just can't fiure out where to paste the HTML code!
I know, I'm a bit technologically screwed up which is why I'm marrying an IT guy. But anyway. Can someone help me? Pretty please? :D
Friday, August 8, 2008
Wednesday, August 6, 2008
Tuesday, July 29, 2008
Sunday, July 27, 2008
And now the Jurys have their very own little Felon of Love!!!
My HOT Mum...
HOT sister #1...
HOT sister #2...
My COOL Dad... (On no count is it OK to say your Dad's HOT)
HOT sister #1's COOL boyfriend... (Again, not OK to call your sister's boyfriend HOT)
I would like to point out that a fair number of my photo subjects found the flash more powerful than they predicted... I think it's obvious which ones....!!
Wednesday, July 23, 2008
Settlement agent. You need one to finalise your sale and they cost a looooooot of money.
And all the random fees? To name a few: Registration Fee ($138), Title Searches ($33.75), Water Corporation Enquiry ($36.40), Approximate Local Authority Enquiry Fee ($65.00! Whatever the heck that is...), Land tax enquiry fee ($30.00), Clause 42 Enquiry Fee ($25.00), Approximate Landgate fees ($20.00 and only just introduced at the beginning of July, lucky us!!)... not to mention the fact that despite we're paying the settlement agent a big sum, we also have to cover phone use, photocopying, postage, etc (and we've got an email agreement with them anyway). Whew. Hello extra costs adding up quickly!!
Also, sellers don't have to account for their missing keys!? That makes me mad. The current owners of our house don't know where all the keys are. They've never lived there themselves, and were renting it out. I'm pretty sure we'd be stupid if, before moving in, we didn't replace all the locks and keys now. Pooh. Hello to another extra cost.
So I'm still excitedly awaiting the day when this is all finalised, but dang me! It's a bit of a headspin!
Anyway, I promise next time I'll post some cute cute pictures of what I've been up to... I'm hoping to track down a Nokia N95 tonight, and if I do, I will buy it and it will be my love! And I'll take photos with it (my digi camera is too temperamental!!)
Thursday, July 10, 2008
For those Etsy shoppers out there, this is the month to get into Christmas, oh yes!
Big W has started their Christmas layby.
K-Mart is selling Christmas trees.
And from July 20-31, over 200 Etsy shops are offering sales on Christmas stock! Get in super-duper early, and you'll save money (plus you won't have to think so much about Christmas at the end of the year!)
To make reduced stock easy to find, Etsy sellers will be tagging items with " christmasinjuly" (yep, one word) so you can do a tag search, type that in, and ALL the Christmas sales will be at your finertips.
*Sigh* I love Etsy for being Christmassy soooo early!! Yay Christmas!!
Wednesday, July 9, 2008
- You visit a lot of houses - never settle for the first or second one you see, you need to know what's out there (We visited 2 in Gosnells, then 6 in Parmelia)
- When you find that special place, you visit it 2-3 times, with parents in tow (this is for you first-home-owners). Parents know more than you do about houses. Also, the agent won't like the idea of you making an offer after only having seen the place once.
- After gaining parent approval, you and your partner go away and discuss it for 24 hours. It doesn't matter if you have, prior to visiting the house for the 3rd time, worked out a secret code to tell each other you want to make an offer right there on the spot. So don't bother.
- You make an offer and wait to see if it's accepted.
- If the offer is not accepted, discuss between the two of you, then return to point 4. If the offer is accepted, you wait for the government to approve. This can take anywhere from 1.5 weeks to 1 month.
- If the government don't like the house, return to point 1. Do not pass Go. Do not collect $200. If the government do like the house, then and only then is your offer safe. Until the government sign off on their bit, anyone can make an offer on 'your house' and even if their offer is less than yours, if it's accepted by the vendor, case closed. Go back to point 1.
- If the government signs off, and if nobody else makes an offer (whew!) you have a month to get your finance sorted out. If you don't at least try to get your finance sorted out YOU CAN BE SUED BY THE VENDOR. So making an offer is no joke!!
- Once finance is settled, an inspection is carried out. All electrical appliances must be in working order, and a white ant/termite certificate must be provided. If the termite inspection finds termites or termite damage, the vendor must pay for it all to be fixed. If they can't afford it, guess what? Return to point 1, again!
- Congratulations if you make it to point 9. This is settlement. I think settlement is roughly a month.
- Now, and ONLY NOW, is the house yours to move into.
Tuesday, July 8, 2008
There are big steps in life that change your reality, and this is one of them. Another perspective on the fact that come December 6, I'm marrying Chris. The wedding is falling into place, and now the future is too. It just makes me so happy! I'm kind of growing up, and it's spinning me out, but that's OK. It makes me smile to think that 2.5 years ago I was just a girl: working at a pie shop, terribly in love with a boy who I never dreamt would feel the same, convinced that I'd never find someone to marry and start a family with, and unable to see any future in terms of a career. Life has changed, and I'd love to see 2.5-year-ago Klara's reaction at seeing what's been going on!!
Monday, July 7, 2008
*Sigh* I love this movie sooooo very much. Giselle's dresses, her hair, the music, the dancing, the cute little Morgan girl, the fact that it so closely resembles the good-heartedness of the Disney movies I grew up with... Have to say though, that I'm not one to swoon every time Patrick Dempsey enters the scene!
In other news, I've been-a-creating and a pirate bunny and some little white ghosties will be entering the store soon... Still not a sale to my name, but I'm loving the creating process so much I don't mind... yet...!!
Tuesday, July 1, 2008
The man brought me this surprise yesterday! Woohoo! I've been trying to get my hands on a Wii Fit for weeks, but according to Harvey Norman, there's a "national shortage". I had my name down at JB, Myer have been telling me "call tomorrow, we may have it" and I did, 3 times. Big W won't have them until mid August. It seemed all hope of laying my hands on one any time soon was lost. But apparently not, when you have a fiance as wonderful as mine!!!
This is soooo much fun, and my legs are caning today. Surprisingly, my favourite activity so far (I haven't unlocked very many, so I haven't got a lot to compare to) is the jogging!! It's silly, because it's jogging on the spot, like on a treadmill. But you have to focus so much on the screen that you don't think as much about the jogging. You follow a little man through a park, and all your family members' miis wave at you and run along with you. So cute. So fun. I'm officially addicted.
Also, proud moment. I have the best balance out of everyone in my family :) and I'm really good at controlling my centre of gravity. Not so exciting is the fact that after weighing in, my Mii's appearance became very chubby! That was embarrassing but oh well. It's a great game. I love love love it!!!
Monday, June 30, 2008
1. Type in "[your name] needs" in the Google search:
Klara needs to be spelled Clara. (Um, no it doesn't!)
2: Type in "[your name] looks like" in Google search
Klara looks like an old-fashioned toy
3: Type in "[your name] does" in Google:
Klara does not dispute that the partnership assets were set at fair market value at the time of dissolution (LOL)
4: Type in "[your name] hates" in Google search:
Klara hates it, and she's always trying to find out bad things about Gilmore Girls
5: Type in "[your name] goes" or "..has gone" in Google search :
Klara goes back to Tanzania to live with the wagogo tribe, singing playing the thumb piano
6: Type in "[your name] loves" in Google search:
Klara loves baby Adolf. Wiping his behind is a “dalliance.” She wiped him so carefully that his eyes gleamed. He discovered heaven. (UGH!!!!!)
7: Type in "[your name] eats" in Google search:
Klara eats broccoli. Klara eats peas.
8: Type in "[your name] has" in Google search:
Klara has an infectious obsession with bees and also happens to share the same source of genetic material as me
9: Type in"[your name] works" in Google
Klara works in a children's shelter in Brooklyn
10: Type in"[your name] lives" in Google search
Klara lives in north of Sweden on a big farm with her Mum and writes lyrics
11. Type in"[your name] likes" in google search
Klara likes to talks to Barni at noon time when it is quiet in the midst of chaos. Sometimes she even puts him in her palm and gently caress his ugly skin with tender words. Barni needs more than that.
!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Makes me laugh :D :D :D :D
Thanks HEAPS to bonghivestiti for giving me this chance, and for letting me know I was in there too! Yay!
For those who don't know what a treasury is, it's a hand-picked selection of items which have something in common, (in this case, everything's PINK) and are displayed as a kind of promo on the site for a few days. Some treasuries make the Etsy front page, but they can all be found by clicking on the Treasury feature in Etsy.
More exciting news: I have been working on a new design... an owl! The owls should be hitting the shop soon, along with some more little fuzzies I've been working on lately.
Oh! And the first ever Button Factory toy officially found a new home over the weekend - a black and pink whale is now in the possession of Miss Emily, who had her 18th on Saturday night!
So everything's exciting in life. This week I'm sending a special 'manly'(ish) owl to Steve in the army, courtesy of the lovely Kat.
Sunday, June 29, 2008
Friday, June 27, 2008
It's all so cute I just burst :D The coolest part about these little guys is that their little arms, legs and ears are KNITTED! I urge you to check out the store NOW!!
Wednesday, June 25, 2008
Sunday, June 22, 2008
Friday, June 20, 2008
Wednesday, June 11, 2008
All semester I told myself that the holidays were the time to do it. And it's the holidays. And you know what? I want to do it. I'm edging closer and closer toward the goal. I've made a handful of these little felt creatures, and the more I do it, the more ideas I get, and the more I want to do it!
(Making days like today, when I'm stuck at work till 4.30, ultra painful!!)
The much-groovin' Andrew (super dude, and with a hot design company!) is creating me a logo and a little swing tag for my creations. I've reserved my Etsy account username. I'm getting ready to learn all about postage costs.
And then? And then?
Button Factory will be officially alive!!!! And hopefully kicking, in time.
I don't have huge expectations, but y'know - why put it off? Maybe I'll make a sale in the first 2 months, maybe I won't. But at least I'll be trying - and I'll havea great reason to keep on creating!
I'm super excited about my new little friends... emphasis on the little! I'm delving into the creation of miniature versions of my designs. This morning before work I got started on a teensy pink whale. I think he's going to be a little bit cute. I can't WAIT to finish him!
In the meantime, I have to stick out my 9-4.30 day (hooray for being owed half an hour!)
My ultra plan is to finish little whale friend before Kat & Hatti head over for dinner tonight... Pining away here....
Tuesday, May 27, 2008
But speaking of Etsy La-ha-huv, I'm in it. I'm in love! I've discovered my new favourite seller of the moment. Her name is Katie and her store is skunkboycreatures. Freakin' adorable stuff....
Ella the owl!
Henry the Pig!
Penelope the Elephant!
Marbles the Penguin!
*sigh* I want one soooo badly!! Can't pick a favourite between Marbles and Ella... but I have enough will-power to ensure all that there will be no immediate purchases. However, if someone were to surprise me with one... ;)
That's all, along with a promise to update this thing more often. For the 1-2 people who read it :D
Thursday, January 24, 2008
Last night I settled on the fact that in order to create, I need to be inspired. To see something I want a part of, and take it and use it. I half-heartedly went through an old Dolly magazine, hoping to see something whimsical in the fashion spread, but it was just a grinning blonde girl in a white cardi at the beach. White cardis don't inspire me and surprisingly, the beach doesn't often either. So plan A failed miserably and I went to bed!!
Today I woke up and decided that if I want to create so badly, maybe I should actually push myself. I talk about wanting to paint and draw and make things pretty much every day, so much so that the creating process itself takes a back seat. So my (albeit a little late) new year's resolution is... to start AND finish one drawing per day.
This morning on the way to work I even picked out my inspiration. I was parked at the traffic lights and this lady walked past in a rainbow coloured dress, holding an umbrella (in full Aussie Summer sunshine) and carrying a tote bag with writing all over it. So today's task is to capture that look. So far I've got the umbrella :)