A lot has happened!

Well it’s been a year since I’ve written a blog and a lot has changed since then so, I thought I’d better get up to date!

Firstly, we have sold the Lover Dreamer Beach House. That was a desire of ours and was on the cards for a few months before we actually put the house on the market. As beautiful as that house was, we found it too big for our little family, too much upkeep and we discovered as first time owners of a two-story home that two story living just isn’t for us. We had paid a small deposit on another block of land down the road from the Lover Dreamer Beach House and had plans drawn up to build a much smaller single level home.

Over that period, we (Andrew and I) were severely struggling with our Monday – Friday work-life balance. The demands on us both in our full-time jobs and lack of sleep from parenting had taken their toll and we were fatigued to a point where we could barely function anymore. (If you didn’t know – this house building gig is our “hobby”. We both work fulltime jobs as well.) At our weakest moment, an opportunity arose for us to relocate to the Central Coast NSW, which enabled us to have a much better work-life balance and would give us the opportunity to have family living within walking distance.  As much as we loved our life in New Zealand we knew we had to make a change. We could no longer sustain our Monday – Friday grind that we had been living. So, we sold our house and made the big move back to Australia, settling on the Central Coast, NSW.

Once we moved back we settled into the rhythm of our new lifestyle pretty quickly. We began looking for an older style home with potential to renovate. We were still adamant that we wanted a small single level home. In the area we chose to buy in, real estate is held very tightly and when something comes on the market – it sells fast. We put offers in on 4 homes and were unsuccessful each time. When we first moved over we had our eye on the block of land (the one we ended up buying) but at the time the asking price exceeded what we were willing to pay. After a few months the agent called us and notified us that the owners were motivated to move and drastically dropped their asking price. At that point we pounced on it.

And there you have it – we are now land owners again and planning to build another house! #loverdreamercoastalcottage is in the making! Our plans have just gone into council and in about 6 months we’ll be able to move in and completely settle in and enjoy our new home.



We moved in a month ago!

Holy Moly!!! It’s been nearly 5 weeks now since we moved into the Lover Dreamer Beach house. It’s been a whirlwind! We were fortunate to move into the house early but the house still wasn’t 100% completed when we moved in. For the first few weeks tradies were coming and going everyday to get it finished.

Once they had finished, Andrew and I (mostly Andrew) started clearing the building site outside and have been working non stop on the landscaping. It’s taking shape and I have to say I’m very proud of my husband! He’s worked bloody hard and has done an awesome job (love you babe). I help when I can but the little lover dreamers need mumma’s attention too. Anyway, a few more weeks of hard work and the outside will be complete.

There are a few painting jobs to be completed and the interior needs some much needed attention but that has been put on the back burner for now until the outside is finished.

After a month, it’s only just starting to feel like our home. We are finding our new routine and rythym in the new house. The kids love their new backyard. They love their ‘magic tree’ with their tree swing. They make camp hideouts in their tree and take blankets, toys and supplies over to their secret house. They love playing on the beach everyday and scooting up and down the path along the beach out the front of the house.

The most amazing thing about living here has to be the sunrises and sunsets. Every day is a different picture! Looking out over the water every morning and every night as the sun comes up and goes down is truly spectacular. Also, the sound of the water slapping the sand is so calming. We are in love!

Another few weeks of hard work and then we’ll really be able to settle in, relax a bit and enjoy our new home. WE CAN’T WAIT!!! 🙂


The end is near…

A year ago on the 9th March 2016, we purchased this little piece of dirt. It’s been just over a year of designing, planning and building and this project (our family home) is almost complete! It’s been a journey to say the least but we have loved every minute of it.

It’s been a busy month since I last updated with a blog entry. We finally finished painting (hooray)!! IMG_5867

The tiles in the bathrooms are done.IMG_6461

We have floorboards and carpet.IMG_6459

The gas fitter has connected our hot water and fireplace. The plumbers are doing their final fit off tomorrow. The sparkies only have a few things left to fit off. Our walk in robe cabinetry goes in tomorrow and then its just Mr Glass man to come and do his thing before the cleaners give this big white house a once over before the inside is complete!

The exterior has taken a bit of a step backwards thanks to this lovely summer cyclonic weather we have been experiencing. None the less our builder is working around the clock to get it finished as soon as they can.

The excitement levels are starting to ramp up around here now. We can see the light at the end of the tunnel…. the end is very near! We have loved watching the house of our dreams, that we designed ourselves come to life during this whole process over the last 12 months. Hopefully in the next two weeks, we will be able to move in and then relax and enjoy what we have created.


Our coastal, classic, relaxed family kitchen

The kitchen is said to be the heart of the home. I think our kitchen will definitely be the heart of our home. This was our largest focus point (and financial investment) in the initial design stage for many reasons. We are are young family and we wanted a kitchen that was practical, functional, lots of storage and fuss free. That was the number one focus, we had to make it work for us as a family.

We also wanted the kitchen to have a large open servery to our beach facing deck to enjoy the view, be practical and convenient for BBQ’s and outdoor entertaining. The choice of handle free cabinetry was for fuss free cleaning. Let’s face it, with a 5 year old and 2 year old there will be lots of cleaning but with no handles in the way, a quick wipe over will be faster and easier to do frequently. The choice of tongue and groove cabinetry was to keep the cohesive look with the rest of the tongue and groove feature walls throughout the house. I am a lover of all white kitchens but this time I wanted to add some dimension / texture with the tongue and groove. Being a beachfront home, the tongue and groove gives that timeless, classic, relaxed, coastal look and feel. The Caesarstone Frosty Carina bench top was a luxury splurge (our biggest splurge in the whole build) and at this stage I think it is worth every cent. The bench top really compliments the tongue and groove cabinetry.

Another big design focus was our beach front view and to capture the morning sunrises from the kitchen. Our kids are early risers and we will see many sunrises from this kitchen window. Morning sun and warmth in the kitchen was also a must have for us in the design stage.

As a family we all love cooking, baking and entertaining. I’m confident this room is going to give us many memorable memories and will be the heart of our family home.

Here is the kitchen installation progress to date –


I can’t wait to show you the finished kitchen in a few weeks!


Bathrooms in the making..

We are coming to that very exciting time in our build where we are starting to see internal transformation. Our bathroom and ensuite are now in prep stage, the walls have been lined, plastered, painted and now waterproofed. We are now ready for our tiling to begin!

As with the rest of the house, I can’t wait to see these two spaces complete. It is the first time we have had a double walk in shower in the ensuite and it is also the first time we have had a walk in shower / freestanding bath area in the main bathroom.

We had a major part to do with the design, layout and positioning for these two rooms. I’m very excited to see the bathroom and ensuite come to life, from our initial ideas and hand drawn sketches to finally be brought to life in our dream home.

Our tiler has gone on holidays for two weeks, so the suspense is killing me (just quietly), but all good things take time, right?!

Here is the progress of the bathroom and ensuite to date –





The Kitchen Installation Begins!

Today has been the most exciting day onsite in a long time! Today was the beginning of the kitchen installation. This time in any build marks the end is near but it was nice to finally see another piece added to the puzzle, a feeling that this place is starting to become a home.

The upstairs kitchen, downstairs kitchenette and laundry we designed and planned for many months ago. It was great to see it all start to come together today. Here are a few progress photos from throughout the day…

Kitchen –


Walk in Pantry –


Kitchenette –


Laundry –





Summer time… In our little backyard!

Anyone would think we already live at The Lover Dreamer Beach House… we are always there. Well me mostly 😉 It’s summer time here in NZ and we can’t get enough of our new little backyard!

We are on the final countdown now and will be moving in before we know it. We can’t wait to see the finished result of this beach house all come together and be brought to life. All the features and layout / design we chose to enhance and bring ease to our lifestyle on the beach.


Not long to go now!!! The kitchen, kitchenette and laundry install begins tomorrow…


Our painting hoodoo

Well I hate to say it, but i think we have a painting hoodoo…

On our last few projects the painting has been our loose wheels. Previously it was bad workmanship and a rushed ‘botched up’ finished job, leaving never ending touch ups. This time is a different story but it appears the painting is once again our loose wheels 😦

Don’t get me wrong, this time around there is nothing wrong with the workmanship of our painters at The Lover Dreamer Beach House. They have done an amazing job so far and the quality of their work has been excellent. The painter has been pretty slow and he is very particular but he has done a very good job. Our problem = white. Alabaster to be exact. It just won’t cover!!! We are up to 3 coats and it’s coverage still isn’t great.

This is the first time we have painted such a white interior. We were warned about this when we chose the paint colour, so it isn’t too much of a surprise. Unfortunately it means – another coat throughout the entire interior = more time + more money! Haha… the joys of building.

We feel like we have been very organised with this project, but with any build or reno there is always going to be things which are out of your control which you have to accept and budget for.

Oh well, in a week or so (let’s hope) i’ll be able to show you our beautiful white Alabaster, well covered painted walls.




Interior Lining


I have to admit, I have been caught up in the whirlwind of the festive season and am still in holiday mode. What day is it??? Hmm, this blog entry is a bit overdue….

In the lead up to Christmas the boys got cracking at the house! Our garage door went in, the internal doors went in, the gib went up, the tongue and groove panel feature walls went up (which I’m excited to see finished!), the plasterers came and went like the speed of light and the exterior weather boards started to go up.

This little guy and his big sister love coming to the house with Mum and Dad, especially now the walls are all up. They get so excited running in and out of their bedrooms!


We are coming to the end of our Christmas holidays now and are dearly missing our third child (a.k.a The Lover Dreamer Beach House). She will have all her weatherboards up and a painted interior by the time we get home. We can’t wait to see her in all her beauty.


Inside Prep!

It’s been a busy few weeks over at the Lover Dreamer Beach House. There has been a lot of prep going on for the interior of the house. Now that our windows are in and the roof is on, we are weather tight. So… mother nature can do her thing and not hold us back anymore!

There have been so many tradies come and go. The plumbers and electricians have been and gone. The gas fitter has come in and fitted all of the gas pipes for our hot water, gas stove and a gas fireplace. All of the bathrooms, the kitchen and laundry have all been measured up and their layout is now locked in. The internal doors have all been measured up in prep for the door delivery. The garage door has been measured and the design is finalised. We did go back and fourth for about a week on the design of the garage door but in the end we decided for this house – to keep it simple. We have chosen our staircase and our stair manufacture came and completed his measure up. The entire house is now insulated and it’s amazing how the echo in the house suddenly disappears when the insulation goes in.  The gib has just been delivered and will go up in a few days.


It’s all coming together fast now!