Category Archives: house

Reducing waste

For the last few months I have been thinking on possible ways that I could reduce waste in general personally, at work and for our household. I have done quite a bit of research on this, because you know… librarian. Whilst I am dedicated to reducing our waste in a number of ways I wanted it to be something (at least to start) that does not require massive sacrifices every day.

This has been an ongoing project for me. We started with our home. Whilst we still have all the creature comforts we could ever need we did consider a lot when building. For starters the house was supposed to have a fancy architectural void from upstairs to down which not only wasted power as far as aircon went, it also wasted usable space and the extra windows meant extra cleaning as well. So it had to go. Our toilets and two of our outdoor taps run off recycled water which I am so pleased about (even though it costs more and often doesn’t work for hours at a time) and our mailbox out the front is built from leftover bricks we have from our home. As far as air conditioning goes we have ducted air con in our house that is separated into zones, so on hot (or cold) days we can set the air con to only be on in the areas we are using which is awesome!

Image result for literary eco bags

I have been using eco bags for shopping for awhile, but I have been getting pretty slack with them to be honest. I have been recycling the plastic bags at the Coles supermarket REDcycling point though when we do our grocery shopping so that is something. For my Australian readers that are not aware Coles have a REDcycle program. You can drop off empty bread, cereal and frozen food bags, plastic shopping bags and other flexible plastic packaging and it is sent off and used to build outdoor furniture for Aussie primary schools and pre-schools. I have been making a much better effort with the eco bags though. They now always go straight back into the boot when we unpack the shopping. My aim is to stop using plastic shopping bags altogether.

One of the other big changes we have made is to stop buying store bought toilet paper. We now have a subscription to “Who gives a crap”. They send a massive box of forest friendly world helping toilet paper every 16 weeks to our door. The toilet paper is great and we feel good about the fact that 50% of the profits go towards building toilets for people who have access to none. Find out more about them here. Just now looking at their site I have realised that they now do tissues and paper towels too!

who-gives-a

Food wise to minimise waste I have for the past 2 weeks written a food plan for the week and stuck to it. This means I do not buy more than I will need which minimises the amount of food wastage in the house. The last two weeks the food wastage in our household has been almost nothing. Such an awesome outcome. Is it a bit of effort? Definitely, but I think it is worth it too. The flow on effect is monetary savings and rubbish savings because we are not buying all the extra junk we do not need.

Hubby and I have switched to paperless billing and statements wherever we have been able to. We have been using prescription services like STAN and NETFLIX and borrowing movies from the library instead of purchasing DVDs which has saved a LOT of money and as cheap as this sounds it means we can have a wine and popcorn night at home instead of going to the cinema which costs like $80 at Event these days! We are also planning to swap to rechargeable batteries for all of our remotes etc. We don’t have many items that require AA and AAA batteries anymore, but it would be nice to be able to reduce the waste these create.

 

Future plans:

I would like to have a veggie and herb garden up the side of our house as well as a passionfruit vine and a lemon and lime tree, but those will have to wait for a little bit. I am also considering a compost bin as this would help reduce the grass cuttings from our massive lawn. Currently we are not able to mow our front and back lawn in the same fortnight as the cuttings will not all fit in our council bin 😦

I plan to buy items like basmati rice and vegetable oil and cleaning products in bigger packaging so there is not as much waste.

Image result for carrying bulk rice bag

Well maybe not this big, but you get the idea. Buying in bulk reduces the packaging waste.

I have purchased a reusable BPA free water bottle. This encourages me to up my intake of water as well as not waste plastic bottles or drink as much soft drink or juice because I always have water on hand.

Cleaning wise I plan to do some research (AKA hit the library books) to look at some more cost and environmentally friendly options. Already I have swapped to microfiber cloth which often means that many marks on the walls etc. come off with just some hot water and elbow grease which is grand!

I would love to hear any suggestions that you have. I am pleased that so far my efforts have in general saved us money because we have some very good uses for that 🙂

 

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Inspiration boards – Front lounge

So awhile ago I started to put together images or rather inspiration boards for the different rooms in our home (OMG I have a HOME!). As you may guess I am pretty flipping excited about owning our first home. You may think that doing inspiration boards is a bit over the top especially because we are going to be pretty poor after the next few months. It will be so weird to see so little money in our accounts when we have been saving like crazy and had very healthy accounts.

Anyway I thought I would share with you my inspiration for our front lounge room. I have never had a proper lounge room before that was a separate area of the house. Here we go…

2 seater lounge

I’d like this in a 2.5 to 3 seater. I LOVE this fabric. The lines are great and the style is Ruby which is one of my favourite animated characters.

armchair

I love the armchairs too. Would love two for either side of the lounge either in a matching colour or something completely different like a turquoise.

bookshelves

We actually already have these bookshelves so this will cost us nothing. Have always loved these and can’t wait for them to be a feature in our home.

light

I love the look of this light and would love it for the corner of the room. It is a little expensive for my budget now so will wait for a sale or maybe birthday or Christmas.

rug

LOVE this rug and the tri knot pattern matches the pattern on my engagement ring and our wedding rings. Would be a great piece to really stamp our personalities on the room.

Because our place was built we had a lot of pallets hanging around and a few were really good quality wood. The plan was that I would use these to build us a coffee table as part of my “Try Something New” resolution. Unfortunately someone came into our backyard and took them. I still plan to do this project, but the plan now is to go for walks in our new neighbourhood and wait for someone to put a good one out for cleanup 🙂

coffee table

This is what I hope to end up with from the pallet. The larger pieces of wood I have already scored from offcuts from our build.

I plan to be quite industrious. There are a lot of off cuts around our neighbourhood currently due to everyone building. I am hoping I can save us quite a bit by knocking together some of our own pieces and you can get bottles of “trial” varnishes and/or paint for a couple of dollars so in all a coffee table like this might cost me $5 haha.


We got our house keys!!!

I have some amazing news. We got our house keys last Thursday morning. I know, I know, I should have probably posted before now to tell you, but honestly we have been so, so busy.

It was very early and we were very tired when we took this photo, but I swear we are ecstatic 🙂

we got our house keys

We have done a lot of work there over the weekend already and our tiles were starting to be laid today which is hella exciting 🙂

I also had to share with you my new little friend and first Pop! Vinyl 🙂 Dancing Groot 🙂

dancing groot


House update # 3

So a LOT has been happening house-wise. Before Christmas we were told there would be a 40 day delay.

So naturally I was pretty pissed. We have already been waiting over two years (from when the land was first purchased) and I think I have been patient enough. I decided we had been nice long enough and I started to make some noise. My first step was a scathing email in response to their 40 day delay letter with their “evidence” and I went through how this evidence was anecdotal and therefore completely unnaceptable as a reason for delay. They didn’t respond so I started calling. On the first call I asked why my email had been ignored, said I wasn’t impressed that my concerns didn’t seem important to them, then I said that from now on all calls, emails etc. were to go through me (not my Husband) because obviously I needed to keep a closer eye on the builder as their communication skills to date have been abominable. All of a sudden we are being told there will be no delay and our house will be delivered before time.

Haha. It’s amazing what happens when someone who is normally lovely to their builder all of a sudden becomes politely assertive LOL.

So it looks like we will be getting our keys possibly as early as next week which is just a little bit ahead of schedule 🙂 This works out well because we have to then get our floors done. Another last minute nasty surprise we found out we would have to pay for.

Here are some photos of the build:

 

getting close to lock up stage

Getting close to lock up stage!

 

IMAG0264_BURST004

Lock up time. LOVE our garage door!

We kind of snuck in the fence to do these photos 🙂

If you missed out on the earlier house update posts and want to catch up please check out Post 1 and Post 2.

 

 


House update #2

I know this house update is very, very tardy (sorry Amy 🙂 ), but it is here now and we have made some great strides. I believe last time we talked we had a slab right? Well after that we got some frames:

First one floor…

'scuse the porta loo :)

‘scuse the porta loo 🙂

Then two floors…

2 floors

Then they did all the piping and whatnot…

pipes and stuff... also the back view of the house

pipes and stuff… also the back view of the house

and finally started laying bricks woohoo

Little bit of brickworkThen a little more brickwork and scaffolding to keep the guys safe as they do the roof tiles…

scaffolding and stuffThe above was taken on Sunday along with the one below which shows our roof tiles have arrived woohoo. It is hard to tell from the photo, but we also have our gutters in.

our Babylon roof tiles.

our Babylon roof tiles.

Everything is really starting to slowly take shape 🙂


House update

We have progress! Progress you guys, PROGRESS! Can you believe it?!?!?!?! I almost can’t. In fact as soon as they rang us and said they had done something I said we had to go for a drive because I couldn’t believe it.

So the Friday before last we went to see our organised dirt…

Organised dirt woohoo!

Organised dirt woohoo!

Then the following Monday Hubby got the all clear from the specialist to ride his bike again and Tuesday morning promptly took off for a jaunt down to the lot and back and low and behold what did he find???

slab

Concrete!!!!

Slab party everyone… slab party hahaha.

Can’t believe we finally have movement on this 🙂 I finally feel able to have some excitement about our soon to be new home! Our first real home together 🙂