Blog #32.

It has been surreal.

To finally be living in what had been a figure of our imagination for so long.

I will preface this blog with the acknowledgement that we may be looking through rose colour glasses, and that our taste and style will not appeal to everyone. That is the beauty of building a custom home, it is for us, and has been tailored to suit our lives. And I am pleased to report: the house works for us.

It is well and good for things to look pretty, but their also needs to be practicality. The house needs to work for the way you live and can make the mundane day to day tasks that little bit easier.

Certain luxuries are taking some time to get used to, such as having a butler’s pantry with a sink and dishwasher or having a home office (this was the easiest of blogs to produce) and there has been some education required for the kids, for example, on the use of the drop zone, the pantry, and the placement of shoes (in designated baskets). But the house is easy to live in.

Everything has a spot, so we are staying on top and keeping the spaces clutter free.

It is performing thermally. we have hardly needed the ducted reverse cycle air conditioner. The sun streams in during the day and it is amazing how the warmth is retained long after the sun is gone. It feels as though we have slab heating in our main living area and notice the difference from areas that do not see the sun.

The house however is not designed for 28-degree days in May, so we have had the opportunity to test out the cooling mode last Sunday. In summer, the sun is high in the sky and our eaves have been designed to cut this out. This time of year, with the sun lower they allow full sun which on this rare occasion was not welcome.

Was good to play with the new AC, and Air Touch controller, which has all the main rooms as their own zone that can be turned off or the percentage of air adjusted. We have run the heat a couple of early mornings just in the living areas for instance. The big thing I notice (or do not notice) is how quiet the system is. It is silent and sometimes need to check if it is on, which is a big change from the old wall hung split in our old house.

The trades have been back and forth finishing things off and seem to be just part of the furniture now. Most welcome of course and we have still had the excitement and anticipation of new things to see when we arrive home.

Andre has been there painting our garage (including the floor – recommend), front door, alfresco area, and part eaves. He will come back and finish the eaves the once our new footpaths are set.

McKnight Concreting put the rest of our perimeter paths down as well as a concrete apron at our garage. We can now get Rob Farrer and his bob cat back to level the front and in preparation of lawn and tidy up our driveway.

The front of the house has not featured much on the blog. Seems like the house was built from the back, which was largely finished a long time ago. The front (apart from landscaping) has only just been finished this week.

Matt Coates has been back to install our deck lights, and these were a big hit along with the new alfresco speakers. I can now imagine entertaining here and my thoughts have turned to heating for the cooler months.

We are reasonably organized now and feel settled into our new home. We have a lot to do on in the garden, and I imagine that our work here will never be done. More time at home would be nice, but life is busy. I dream of free Sunday’s to just potter…

There has been a range of emotions. Mostly happiness, pride, and gratitude, but there is also guilt, embarrassment and anxiety. Guilty that we get to have a house like this. Embarrassed of how fortunate we are. And anxious about the debt we have got ourselves into. I have tried give an honest account throughout this blog and I would be lying if I said it was all beer and skittles.

But the positive emotions far outweigh the negative and the gratitude is immense. To all those who helped us on our journey, in particular our builders and trades.

It has been amazing to have KM Bray Building build this for us. Kristian is a fine craftsman, a builder of the highest quality, and I am proud to call him my brother and best mate.

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