About Me

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I am a SAHM who does work from home occasionally, dedicated to raising 3 Godly, independent, healthy children. Loving the home building process though it is not without challenges. I have fairly free reign over the creative aspect of the project...just not the financial side!

Friday, December 20, 2013

Some green for Christmas

Our lovely landscapers gave us some green for Christmas time - it makes such a difference which excites us for the rest of the greenery yet to come. Brad & I have not had lawn in our 12 years of marriage, in fact I have NEVER EVER had lawn. I know that the novelty may wear off when it needs mowing constantly.

And in other news, the plumbers were out this morning to fix a flooded undersink cupboard. Turns out that our pullout tap mixer is completely 'shot to pieces' (his words). He has put in a temporary one until mid-January so we don't need to deal with flooding every day.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Landscaping photo update

New letterbox

Ready for travertine paving

Extra alfresco area

New table tennis table being put to use by the sleepover girls!

Friday, December 13, 2013


The children's bedrooms have been decorated by yours truly. They were able to pick their own theme. For some, it was easy to decide (Seaweed & Sand and Sports) and for another not so easy. I wanted to keep the walls as neutral as possible, just using furnishings for colour.

Sports room for the middle child (8yo)

Babooshka dolls for Miss 6.5 - nice afternoon sun floods in

Seaweed and Sand for Miss 10

Am I dreaming?!

This looks suspiciously like Concept Pool workers! WOW! Sadly, they said it is a quick & easy job and should only take about 2 hours to complete. Why on earth did it takes 7 weeks to get here then?

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Landscaping photos

As requested by someone - laundry photo

The gorgeous wreath given to us today by one of the teachers at school - excuse the dusty door!
The start of our letterbox

Monday, December 9, 2013

Another pool non-update

Following the no-show on Friday, I contacted the owner of Home Option Gallery. HOG have a display room where various companies (such as Concept Pools) can provide fittings and finishings for Eden Brae Homes. Not knowing where to turn and having spoken to Alan before, I gave him a call. Today, we had a discussion surrounding the issues and he promised to find out what was going on. Within an hour, I had an SMS letting me know that they would be on site to do the plumbing on Thursday or Friday. I won't hold my breath. The rain we have had this evening might delay them another 2 weeks (hint of sarcasm to be noted) What puzzles me is that on Monday December 2, I was given an estimated date of Friday December 6. Without more than 2-3mm of rain hitting the ground, it has now blown out to a week later???
A  big thankyou to HOG for listening to me and validating how I am feeling about the situation. Here's hoping that we can all work towards a solution ie. a completed pool!

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Pool update

Just joking! There isn't one! Concept Pools are still too busy to get out to see our site. November has been the wettest in 6 years so there is a backlog. Not sure how that happens - our landscapers have been working here every day bar ONE in November. They just continue to work in the rain.
Unfotunately this now means that there is very little work for the landscaping guys to do until Concept Pools have shown up and they may need to pull up stumps for the time being.
6 weeks and counting since we informed them that their services were required.....

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Landscaping progress photos

Driveway getting ready to be formed up

Side path

Extra alfresco area outside family room window

More things for the 3 month check

Just wanting to keep a visual list of things to raise when we have our 3 month check in January. Here are some more issues to add to it. My personal favourite is the stairway wall, most visible in the morning sun.

Ooops! Hole was cut too big.

Anyone else see the bubbles and the timber behind?

Looking good, eh?!

Very obvious and only just appeared. Nothing in the bathroom capable of doing that so my guess is it was done by a tradie and they tried to patch it unsuccessfully.

Vanity pop-up waste won't depress

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Travertine pavers

Our new pavers arrived today. Loving them! Felt sorry for the guys who had to lug them oh-so-carefully from the front to the back of the house. Half way there today but a pity it is forecast to be mid 30's tomorrow.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

General update

So it seems getting Eden Brae involved does net results from Concept Pools. Within 30mins of finishing my phone call with EBH Management, I had a phone call from the Finishing Supervisor that I have been trying to contact. (He should be able to get to us sometime next week, weather depending.) Thank you for following up, EBH. I was at my wits end with them.

A great segue into how FANTASTIC Eden Brae have been post build. The level of service has been nothing short of fantastic and we aren't even at the 13 week maintenance period yet. All the issues I highlighted in an earlier post have been addressed and today I even had new fans installed to replace the ones that had been acid washed by a tradie. I have never been made to feel that I was not important or to 'move on' as my house was finished as you often hear about the building experience.

And today saw our home turn from cool white to warm white. Yay! What a difference it makes to the feel of the house. So much cosier. The sparkies also installed an extra downlight for us, fixed the motion sensors and put the new fans in place. Yet to come back with the stair lights that they didn't have the globes for.

This morning also saw a guy from New Fidelity come out to double check on our requirements and our cabling for the media room. All looks good to go ahead with a tentative install date of 11/12/13
* 70” Sharp HD TV
·           Custom programmed New Fidelity Smart Remote control system (with colour touch screen) that allows equipment to be controlled through joinery + charging cradle
·           Monitor Audio wall mount speaker package – 4 x white cube wall mount speakers with matching subwoofer in white – centre speaker will sit on joinery
·           Wall mount brackets for above speakers
·           Denon Home Theatre Receiver
·           Apple TV
·           Internet switch for media room
*          Humax Digital TV Recorder with ICE TV
Can't wait to watch some movies and great sporting matches in this room.

Monday, November 25, 2013

Pools continued

I have had replies from a couple of previous clients of Concept Pools.

"Kerith, I didn't realise that was who you used. We used them too as they had a relationship with our builder as well. We didn't know what we didn't know and our pool was not free from issues and required some intense management to get finalised and fixed. That being said, we have been using and enjoying the pool for a while now! It is frustrating that one spends all that money and still have to deal with frustrations and oversights. I can't remember names but they put the wrong gemtex inside our pool! I rang them during the install and they wouldn't admit it was wrong- then finally agreed it wasn't what we ordered and said that it was a more expensive product do we should be happy!! We weren't and made them change it, then the pool was leaking and other frustrations .....I have gotten over it all now but it wasn't delivered on time and had issues all along the way!! We didn't know we needed to ask for the fountain to have a switch inside, weren't offered options for filters and the light positioning is terrible. We didn't know and weren't asked where we wanted them and of course once we saw where they were it was too late to change!! Wasn't happy Jan!"

"Don't like to say it but "I told you so!" You should be happy with the end result though."

Seems like I am in for a battle to get things finished. Another day is another day without ANY communication from them despite messages asking for a call today. Not sure what to do or where to turn??

Friday, November 22, 2013

Concept Pools

I have been asked by a few people about my experience so far with Concept Pools, specifically if I would recommend them. Publicly, my answer is that the jury is still out on that one.
I would change the way I went about the whole process. In my naivety  and desire to make things easier on myself, I made the assumption that engaging the services of Concept Pools would be a good move. Concept have an office at Home Options Gallery and build the pools for Eden Brae's display homes so I thought there was a link there between the two. Nothing could be further from the truth as confirmed in an email from the owner today. I went with Concept thinking that the two companies would help to make the process smooth and didn't even shop around for competitive quotes.

I have found the people I have dealt with to assume that I have knowledge on pool building and get frustrated with my questions; I have found communication delays to be less than desirable either by email or phone call; I am unsure about the quality of the build as to date I only have a concrete shell; I have been asked to keep Eden Brae management out of my email correspondence (I CCed one into my last one) as it has 'nothing to do with them'; I was told before signing that it would take a week to finish off the pool once the house was completed. I was not told that 'week' would be over stages with long gaps due to situations outside their control from other companies. One week is now in an ideal world, according to them;

So to date, we are still waiting for the Finishing Supervisor to contact the landscaper to schedule a time to start his work laying pipes. We were expecting that to be done about 2 weeks ago.

Read this and make your own decision about whether you would use them. I'll keep you posted.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

PHOTOS - landscaping progress

Beauty in building - The Ruby Room!

I have been trying to work out how I can incorporate beauty/grooming treatments into my building blog and I got stuck - no idea apart from needing a good massage to relieve the tensions of building. My friends, Mike & Jemma, have recently taken over The Ruby Room in Westfield Hornsby (down near Woolworths) Jemma has managed the place for years and looked after me VERY well. The beautiful couple have bought out the previous owners. Nothing like starting a business and planning a wedding at the same time. If you are in need of a little pampering or deforestation, call in to see Jemma (9476 6672) - she will look after you even more so if she knows I sent you.

Things I love (and not so much) in the bathrooms

After living in the house for a week or so, I thought I would tell you what I think about the bathrooms. This will be particularly helpful for those building themselves.

I love the handheld shower heads. Brilliant for hair washing with young daughters and easy shower cleaning.

Hmmmm - we cannot have an open window and fully open slats. Design error.
Best thing ever! Nightlight near the toilet. Actually gives enough light for the whole landing upstairs.
The narrower design of the internal bowl means we are getting a lot more, um...skid marks!

I was going to add that the height of the shelves means that larger items cannot stand up (eg. hairspray, moisturiser) but I then discovered that the shelves are actually adjustable.