The construction site in my head.

My brain has been all over the place this week.  The Three Little Pigs have been on school holidays.  If that is not enough to rattle my head, the world news has been drawing attention to my current backyard (South Korea), interfering with my focus.  Fortunately, my months of obsessing about all things house-related has paid off, and when I go to sleep at night my dreams have been about our new house and not missiles.

In my dream, our new house had a glass stair well and stairs, so we could see the canal from the stairs.  That particular idea will not be making it to the real thing.  (Photo from:

In my dream, our new house had a glass stair well and stairs, so we could see the canal from the stairs. That particular idea will not be making it to the real thing. (Photo from:

On the subject of building, here’s a snippet of what I’ve been thinking about this week:

  • Adding a laundry chute to the house plan.  Straight from kids’ bathroom to laundry.
  • How to make a 900mm oven, plus a 600mm oven work, with minimal disruption to our favoured house plan.
  • Whether or not I can live with tiles for a kitchen splash back.  Is cleaning grout going to be an ongoing problem?  The Nice Wolf cooks a particularly messy spaghetti bolognese on a regular basis.  Is glass daggy these days?  I’d love stone (to match kitchen bench), but probably that is an exorbitant cost.
  • Window treatments for energy saving, mosquito exclusion, privacy and aesthetics.  (This one is big.  It might make it to a blog post of its own.)

The Nice Wolf raised the idea of asking for a named Site Supervisor (who comes with good references) to be included in the building contract.  Has anyone done that before?

The lovely sales rep at company X (builder currently on top of our shortlist) sent me lots more photos of our favourite house.  The house used to be on display, so they have many pictures.  Lots of the details you don’t see on websites – laundry, WCs, inside the cupboards, exterior fittings, garage interior.  This is as close as I’ll get to browsing display homes for a little while.

So much to think about….

11 thoughts on “The construction site in my head.

  1. mariashumptydoo says:

    So impressed by your dreams, my dear Johanne,
    I must say even though the size of one or two ovens is not of interest for someone like myself doing limited cooking, the glass staircase is ‘beautifully… smashing’. A pure creation.
    Your dream house is going to be “something”!

  2. May says:

    Definitely fantastic dreams and I am sure many of which will come to fruition. Keep dreaming. Laundry chute is an EXCELLENT idea. I wanted one, but hubby thought it not necessary as the kids had left home. After doing it myself for yonks, I now make him carry the laundry basket downstairs himself and he has been known to comment – “we should have put that darn chute in”. On the subject of ovens, have you thought of (I am sure you have, but anyways) having the big oven 900mm (I have that and don’t regret it at all) and a Microwave Convection Grill Oven. It has a dual function – microwaves, thaws and works like a normal oven/grill as well. Ours goes up to 220degrees C. And yes, I agree your dream house is going to be absolutely fantastic. Enjoy your planning and your dreaming too.


  3. Tiles behind stove /bench are fine. Mine get a wipe over occasionally. Glass splash backs are inherently greenish and are very difficult to keep ‘unstreaky’. But then goodness knows what wonderful things are available now. Maybe a pully system from an indoor mast with bosun’s chair would solve the laundry problems.

  4. Eva Abbinga says:

    Hi Johanne,

    your posts have been very fun to follow. Thought i would help get your mind off the missile business and add some extra reading/research for you to consider when planning the layout of your house… I’ve been doing lots of research about feng shui in architecture for my art at the moment and lots of it is actually quite logical and practical, aimed at bringing harmony and balance into the home. I found this website a good starting point, but also wikipedia gives a pretty decent summary. Anyway, worth considering as 3000 years of living in homes has given the Chinese some good ideas on house layout.

    Keep me posted.


    • Thanks Eva. I think we’ve got the westernised basics of feng shui covered. We may be needing a nice Eva Abbinga original artwork in the hallway to completely get it right though.

  5. Tiles would be nice – there are probably advances in grout that make it easier to clean? Depends how much of a feature you want it to be…I’ve seen some lovely vintage/portugues type tiles ( ) and I sometimes ponder over the idea of glass with an interesting texture behind it…a beautiful textured vintage wall paper, painted pressed tin. I have a dark granite behind my stove which cleans pretty well, but the fat/oil splats over the years seam to have soaked into the stone so it’s darker around the stove than other parts now. I don’t think I’d recommend granite to be honest.

  6. Kathryn says:

    Jo, we have a tiled splash back at the moment and it is really easy to clean. After 12years the grout is slightly darker behind the stove but not too bad. I think you would need to have the right tiles though.
    I also know of quite a few people that have paid for an independent person to perform building inspections at key times throughout the process. We will definitely be doing this and writing it into the contract at the beginning.
    Laundry shoot sounds good and we have seem a few plan that include it, but to be honest, I have been carrying the washing up and down stairs for years now, and it never worried me…..until I was pregnant…..then it got awkward!

  7. Hi Jo. Last weekend we went to a friends house for lunch (oh, such a lovely, funkily decorated house). It has to be said they are childless by choice and they have such things as spears in large urns, glass coffee tables, lamps that curve up and out etc. It is such a treat to go to their house and they are so good at playing with our children (maybe so the kids don’t wreck their house). Anyhow, back on track. They have stone bench tops with a very funky deep red glass splashback. Their advice was to NOT get a dark colour if you go for glass. Streaks of fat constantly annoy them. The window next to our bbq outside is covered in fat streaks also (okay, so the windows don’t get cleaned very often, that job had to go when the 4th child came…or was it the 3rd?). It is not a good look.

    Having just been at the tile shop on the weekend, I reckon there are some beautiful options for tiles $30-$40 sqm. Larger tiles means less grout to stain. I might just choose ‘fat stained’ coloured grout too!

  8. Regarding the laundry chute, your comment got us thinking about this again. We quickly unrolled the plans to find that our ensuite upstairs is directly above the laundry. It’d be a crime not to put one in, wouldn’t it? Finding it hard to price at the moment. Matt tells me there is one with washing falling directly into the machine, thats neat. The cost of a laundry chute could come out the kids toy budget I’d think.

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