It’s been a while since my last post in December.   We all enjoyed a very long summer break where house renovations were the last thing on anyone’s mind as it was time to enjoy the short-seasoned summer and all that it offers:  BBQ’s, the beach, basking in the sun, Kiwiburn, and holidays.

However, after a nice eight-week break, Pete made it up in February for two weeks.  And a busy two weeks it was, with him working on the outbuilding and us helping when we could; us having a week of woofers and also a three-day visit from SF friends.  More on the latter in other posts as this one is about building da’ house!

During the February visit, Pete finished the interior of the first bedroom in the outbuilding.  We finished insulating and Pete finished putting up the plywood paneling.  He also wired up the room for internet connectivity and added a few new electric sockets.

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Pete also re-built and re-framed the doorway entrance and started work on making new doors.   I had bought a large quantity of NZ grown redwood 2×4’s at wholesale prices last year with the idea of building a deck with it; but since scrapping the big renovation plans, I’d had no further ideas for it.  Pete thought it would make beautiful doors for the outbuilding rooms.   He cut and glued the 2×4’s which took a few days to cure and dry.  Then we applied two coats of tongue oil to bring out the redwoods’ colour.  Each application of oil requires a week of drying time so it’s taking a bit of time to get the doors finished.  After the oil is on, then we apply a hard wax on top to finish it off.   We’re trying to use eco-friendly products whenever possible and so we’ve splurged on buying natural oils, waxes, and paints, sourcing many of our products from The Natural House Company in Motueka and from Mainland Paints in Christchurch.


The remaining jobs for the first bedroom are to put up molding around the floor and windows; strip & paint the windows; sand and wax the floor, and paint the room!  Just a few tasks which will probably take another few months to complete as we’re gearing up now to focus on getting in a new heating system before winter sets in.

We also managed to get the insulation and plywood floor down in the middle bedroom of the outbuilding.  This room already has a nice interior timber finish and all we’ll need to do to the walls & ceiling is sand and repaint.  But the floor was old and not worth fixing and finishing so we decided to put down a layer of insulation and cover with plywood.   We were able to knock this out in a day.


First we pulled off the 8” molding along the floors and what a surprise we found behind!  In one area came pouring out tons of walnut shells (we’ve know we had mice/rats in that building, but now here was proof);  in another area we found an old rats’ den complete with mummified rat carcass;  and in another was the strangest of all – grass seed.   Several buckets of grass seed came tumbling out of a section of the wall which perplexed us.  It did not seem to have gotten there by 4-legged creatures and we suspect it may have been used as insulation a long time ago.   Who knew what kind of treasures we would find!


Oh, and P.S., we love our Total Span garage and have had no problem filling it with stuff.  And Sexy Beast fits perfectly in it too!