Putting money aside for a new building project

Hey guys, just an update. Currently we are saving towards a new DIY project. We will be putting around $700 away each month hoping to raise about $10k to build a log cabin at the bottom of our back yard.

This is a bit of an ambitious project because the ground on the area we’ve been granted planning permission is uneven and will require some form of digger to help us level the land to make it suitable. Then of course, you have the extra materials and so on on top of that.

So coming soon, we will be posting a step by step journey of how we went about building it with pictures, videos, the lot. So keep an eye out for updates.

There is so much to be done, but so little time available to do it in. I will have to recruit some friends to help out if I want to get it done by winter.

Posted in DIY

Getting a new toilet installed

Next up on my to do list is something that has been on my mind a lot recently. And that’s to upgrade my old toilet with a newer model, that is highly efficient. If you haven’t already heard the start of my bathroom renovation journey, you can read more about me putting up my new shower heads here. This is just another step in reaching the design I want.

Well, the good news is, it came today, delivered to my front door a day ahead of the date I was expecting, which is great as I can make a start on fitting it tonight as well as making the appropriate preparations.

The toilet I ended up choosing was one from TOTO that I found using the helpful toilet reviews on the Toilet Brains website. They seem to handle a lot of the research process and filter out the units that don’t meet certain performance criteria, which is great. This unit comes from the Drake II range and has a 1.28 gallon flush which will really help us save money each month on any water bills we may have. Then you have the fact that it’s slightly taller than your average product making it more accessible, and much easier to sit on for a member of the family with mobility issues.

There will also be a need to remove and dispose of my old KOHLER unit, which is something myself and a plumber friend will be handling over the next couple of days. Although it has served our family well over the years, there are just too many modern improvements to turn down, and we want to move with the times.

I do hope I found the right rough in size, I believe having measured it correctly, ten inches seems about right. If not, it’s going to be a bit of a set back to send it back, but I will do what needs to be done.

Once it has been installed, the combination of the new shower, toilet, and coming soon, a bath and sink combination, we will be getting closer to what we feel is the ideal bathroom. And it’s been a long time coming let me tell you.

After that has been completed, we will be moving towards improving other areas of the house which I will almost certainly be providing updates on the home page.

However, the work is not completed as of yet, and with a long evening in front of me and busy work schedule over the next few days, I will have to work hard to find the time to complete it.

Posted in DIY

Fitting the home gym

Something happened about a month ago that was the final straw for me and my journeys to my local gym. I don’t want to go into detail too much, but it seems many people lack common courtesy and it was beginning to irritate me and cause me to have negative feeling towards working out, which isn’t something I had ever experienced in the past.

So what I have decided to do is build my own gym full of cardio equipment right here in the house. It’s going to help me in more ways than one. For example, saving made on gas, saving made on time, and savings made on gym membership. If all goes according to plan, and nothing breaks early on, it should pay for itself within a year.

We are still in the process of renovating the old garage, and turning it into this fitness playground idea I had, and the other DIY tasks I’ve got going are eating into time I would otherwise be dedicating to this, but it’s moving in the right direction.

I’ve been looking at several elliptical machine reviews online on Gymbrains.com, which has helped me out in picking one for my needs. The Schwinn 430 does look promising and although I’ve heard conflicting views about the striding position one takes when training on it, there is enough resistance and programs to keep you challenged, which is just what i’m after.

Then in addition to the elliptical trainer, I’m going to want to look at getting some weight plates, a flat bench, and a barbell for heavy lifting, and potentially a rowing machine. That’s not 100% guaranteed yet, as I may decide to conduct my cardio outside in the great outdoors. There are plenty of good trails to run through in this area, and it would be a shame to let them go to waste. Maybe indoor cardio will be something I end up doing in the winter months.

However, before I can actually fit my first workout session in, i’m going to have to work towards finishing the lounge and bathroom, which are arduous tasks themselves, and proving difficult and time consuming. But hey, I’m up to the challenge, I’m really looking forward to my very own man den, full of fitness equipment.

Who wouldn’t want a massage chair?

Evening all. Well, after some though and discussion, we have decided to make the next step of our home improvement journey. This will involve careful planning and special attention being paid to user comfort because it’s one of the only places in the house that is made for relaxation. If you take that away, your house isn’t going to feel very homely.

We will be sorting out the under flooring, simply because there seems to be too much heat lost and we feel like there is a draft that needs to be handled. So we will be doing our best to insulate this as a base layer to improve upon.

Then, we will be worrying about the look and feel of the lounge as a whole. We will be doing away with the wooden floorboards, then putting in a new navy blue carpet. It’s much better to walk bare foot on carpet than it is on wood, and it’s warmer and comfier.

We will then be painting the walls a certain color. Which I hear you ask? That’s still undecided and something we will be looking into further as we go along. We don’t want it to clash with the colors already in the room, so we want to ensure we’re making the right choice before we make any kind of decision.

Then finally, we will be getting the right sort of furniture and couches in the room. The basics will include a coffee table, lamps, and sofas that are leather and stylish. It’s a throw up between brown and black leather currently, and that’s also dependent on the color we paint the walls.

We’ve also been looking into a few other ways to make the lounge a bit more homely. One of these ways discussed is getting a good massage chair. Paying a masseuse can get a bit expensive, and it’s nice to know that you’ve got something like this at home to go back to. We’re looking at several of the mid range massage chairs, like those listed on Themassagethrone.com. They have some helpful reviews that are helping us choose. We are not certain, but we think we may end up getting a Panasonic. It’s zero gravity and has all kinds of heat therapy options and rollers that work your whole body. Sounds like my idea of heaven, especially coming in from work.

A few other things being discussed involve letting more light in through a bigger window, and heating options. The plans are coming together, the shower is looking great and once we know the colors for this room, work begins! I also have plans in motion for building my own gym too, so that will be a nice challenge.

Posted in DIY

New shower head came today

For the past few years myself and the wife have been talking about improving the interior of the household. So that’s something I have been working on. I say I, but what I mean is talking a few friends into helping me out too. And it was well worth doing that as the bathroom renovation has proven tricky and expensive so far.

The floor used to have a carpet, which as you can understand is pretty unhygienic for such a room. We ended up tearing that up and putting in some tiled flooring that are going to be much easier to clean. They look pretty good too with a hexagonal shape and a cream finish.

Another suspect bit of decorating for this room was some old fashioned wallpaper that didn’t match anything in the environment. We spent a day peeling it off, and added several licks of white paint over the coming days. The result? A beautiful, bright bathroom that looks fantastic. As a bonus, the wife is happy.

bathroom-blindsNext up was the shower. Whilst we wanted to get one of the best shower heads on the market, like one of those professional ones over on Showerhq.com, we just don’t have enough space to do that. So we had a look at some reviews for some of the leading brands including Speakman, Delta Faucet, and KOHLER. After much research, we ended up choosing a Moen shower head, which looks great and has some great spray settings that will boost our apartments lower than average water pressure.

Now that it’s been fitted, i’m quite impressed with the variety in power you get through the jets. For such a small head, it’s quite high performance.

We have a few finishing touches on top of this to do over the next week or so, namely the bathtub and sink installation. After that, we should be able to get an idea of what the finished product is going to look like. We also have a blind installed that lets us have more control over the amount of light being let in and privacy.

Currently we feel we’ve got the colors right, it just looks more friendly and inviting as opposed to the old style carpet and wallpaper. The upgrades made to the shower and bath will, of course, improve our experience and bring it all together hopefully.

It’s been quite a long time in the making, but we believe we’re finally getting towards the end of this project which is a great feeling. It was getting expensive anyway! Onward and upwards towards the lounge, and that ever elusive gym.

Posted in DIY