-----In 2004 we bought a falling-down house and 30 acres. This blog documents our progress-----

Sunday, April 15, 2012

lakehouse is almost done, but not quite

We finished up getting about 95% of the way there with the lakehouse.  Which isn't bad going considering we lost Dave from the team after his accident.

If you take a photo from the right angle, it looks quite complete... (except we eventually do need to get some trees planted to shield the next door neighbors shed and house roof - they weren't there when we started)
lakehouse progress - 70

But from other angles, it's clear there's a ways to go lakehouse progress - 87

There are a few little bits and pieces left to do inside but nothing major.  The bulk of the work is outside - painting and some carpentry.  Dad has since got all the important stuff done so it's watertight and secure, but the painting I fear will need to wait for my next visit!  

Saturday, April 14, 2012


So I love the vibe inside the lakehouse, and the verandah is great... but the most wonderful thing of all is the view.   It is the most perfect spot to sit and relax with a glass of wine, the fire going, and just look out.  These are just a few of the sunsets we got to see ...  

sunset from lakehouse veranda - 1 sunset from lakehouse veranda - 2 sunset from lakehouse veranda - 3

Sunday, April 08, 2012

The verandah is amazing

So far I've not really talked much about the verandah of the lakehouse.  This was an impromptu idea of Dad's but a brilliant one.

lakehouse progress - 75

Rather than having it be the full height, he put in a lowered roof so there's a small loft above it.  That's great on the inside as it's extra storage - or even a sleeping area.  But it's also a bonus for the verandah as it gives it a far cosier feel.

There are glass panels either side of the verandah so that effectively it's closed in on 3 sides.  I must admit, I was horrified when I first heard about that - but it turned out Dad was right.  They are hardly noticeable, and it really helps cut down the wind.  He was also right about the balustrade - I'd been convinced I wanted it open so I could sit and dangle my feet off the edge; but it's such a small area that you really do feel safer having it.  Plus it turned out to be a great footrest :-)

The verandah floor is currently just stacked brick, although eventually I'll put tiles.  The roof is lined with an old metal fencing sheet which I painted sky blue.  Dad put that in so it was fire-resistant, so we could use the chiminea there, which is just lovely to sit around.

lakehouse progress - 55 lakehouse furnishing - 02

We still have a bit of work left to do on it - the floor needs laying properly, the architraving needs doing on the outside, and of course it all needs a proper paint job.  But we got close enough this trip for me to see how wonderful it will be.

Saturday, April 07, 2012

We finally moved in... (well temporarily)

OK, it's not 100% complete yet on the outside, but we got it to the stage that it was close enough.  I couldn't wait any longer to move in.  :-)  

lakehouse furnishing - 05 lakehouse furnishing - 01
lakehouse furnishing - 06 lakehouse furnishing - 04

It was furnished with a combination of things that I got out of storage.  The bed is a blowup one, believe it or not, but very very comfortable.  Some old chairs and tables that I cleaned up, along with some nice linen and paper window blinds and the odd book and nick-nack and suddenly it starts to feel very comfortable.  Still very shabby of course, as befits what is basically a glorified shed - but I love it.

The amazing thing about sleeping there is that it is so peaceful, the only thing that wakes you in the morning is the sun creeping in and the sound of the birds.  It's lovely.

Of course, we were only there a few days when it was time to leave, so everything got packed up so Dad can use it for his own stuff.  But I prefer to remember it like this.  :-)

Working on the lakehouse

We recently spent over 2 weeks at Amherst as part of our long-awaited holiday.  Originally the plan had been for the lakehouse to be ready for us to move into - but despite Dad's valiant efforts, that was still a long way off.  This is what it looked like when we arrived:

lakehouse progress - 01 lakehouse progress - 03

Yes, charming and visible potential, and some lovely windows and a ceiling... but no walls.  :-)   Thankfully we had backup accommodation - huge thanks to Tiff and Cal, Renee and Dave - or else I would have been a very unhappy camper!

The first day and a half we made great progress, with Dave putting on plasterboard.  Dad had cleverly rigged up electricity through the generator and so we had lighting, letting us keep working late into the evening.

lakehouse progress - 12 lakehouse progress - 13
lakehouse progress - 18 lakehouse progress - 16

Then disaster struck... Dave fell off a ladder.  He was really lucky - the only thing hurt was his ankle, in what turned out to be a severe sprain - but it could have SO much worse.  So we spent a day getting acquainted with Maryborough Hospital.

From then on Dave was out of action pretty much, so Dad switched his focus to help me work on the interior.  While I worked on the undercoats on the wall, Dad gave the ceiling a good wash.  He'd used old lining boards for it which looked amazing - but they were FILTHY.  Once scrubbed up though the end effect though was worth the effort - I adore them.  :-)

lakehouse progress - 20 lakehouse progress - 21

The next urgent task was to get the end somewhat sealed.  I'd bought some old stained glass windows that were still in frames, so Dad put them in... then did a quick patch job with old plasterboard, until he could get to the weatherboarding.  The architraving was made by Dad on-site hewn from some old weatherboards he saved from a skip.

lakehouse progress - 28 lakehouse progress - 40
lakehouse progress - 34 lakehouse progress - 38

And so it went on.  I painted and painted, while Dad did carpentry, and even Dave helped where he could - washing the floor which by then was filthy with plaster dust...

lakehouse progress - 43 lakehouse progress - 45
lakehouse progress - 44

Until at last... it was ready.