Thursday, December 20, 2007

Settling nicely into the new house

We've finally moved and had our first sleepover on 16 Dec last Sunday!

It is a challenge to relocate in Aussieland (or move house in Singlish). Nearly everything is DYI! That applies to coordinating the renovation works. Labour cost is so expensive too.

In other words, YOU are the main contractor. We had to coordinate the resources, the quotes, the timings, the task dependencies and the overall schedule. For example, the cabinets installations, followed by the electrical and plumbing works in which only certain people can do the cooker and hood, the oven, the sink... and then the electricity outputs/sockets, the cooker hood outlet, etc.

As a matter of face, I need to be in the construction industry to know what's going on.

One word - SIONG.

Back in Singapore, we just had to pay a fixed price to the main contractor. He will in turn assign and schedule the sub-contractors to install and fix the items up.

As usual, we had a couple of boo-boos. The plumber, who was doing the cooker vent outlet, would not install the hood. The hood is an electrical appliance, he said. So we had to call in the electrician who said he would not install the hood, or it wasn't part of the agreed contract with us. Anyway we needed to cut a hole in the cabinet for the vent outlet before he could connect the electrical wire to the hood. So we called in the kitchen cabinet guy who said it was supposed to be the hood installer's job, or in other words, the plumber's job.

Welcome to Australia, as my colleagues like to say.

*sigh* Anyway, praise God, we had a very good kitchen-cabinet contractor (a Chinese national) who helped us to coordinate. He also assisted with so many additional, nitty-gritty things without charging us. May God bless his soul and prosper him!

This renovation occurred while we were shifting from the old place. So you can imagine the big mess in the house - dusty (due to on-going renovation works), messy (with many boxes, furniture and tools) with half-done painting job (as I fell sick over the weekend and it was too messy to paint).

But thanks be to missus who cleaned and mopped the place up while I was at work. She also helped coordinate with the various parties and ran the administration and finance department like a well-oiled engine. I'd think she can set up her own company. I really thank God for her. Kudos to missus, she rocks big time!

Rachel, in her usual bubbly but sometimes irritating self (especially when you are busy and she keeps asking you about a subject), has been generally helpful in doing her own art and craft work. She had a sleepover at her friend's place the previous night as the place was still messy.

More like she needed someone to play with and kept on bugging me until I relented. Talk about the persistent widow and the judge. For the past few nights, she had been sleeping with us as her room was also messy. While she was at the sleepover, missus and I managed to fix up her bed and put away her clothes and toys into the wardrobe. Last night however, she slept in her own room for the first time (albeit with another SG friend who stayed over). She slept like a log.

Kids are kids. As long as they are having fun, they are unconcerned with anything else around them.

Me? I just pray. And pray. I kept looking toward Jesus while everything was falling apart. I had to remind missus that we made the right decision in buying the place, and doing up the renovations. I had to assure her that everything will be in place and we needed to hold hands as we walk THROUGH the 'valley of the shadow of death'. This was in spite of me wondering when we would ever see the light at the end of the tunnel.

Well, look at where we are now.

9 months and I am a proud owner of a two-storey house. And the land is mine. Not some 99-year lease.

The house is fantastic and spacious. We are enjoying every bit of it and the togetherness we have as a family in cleaning and touching up to make it beautiful. It is also conveniently located near to a huge shopping centre, and the most importantly - waking up to the beautiful mountain view each morning.


Hopefully I can upload the pictures. The internet connection will only be setup next week, 27 Dec and I'll be on company leave from X'mas till New Year.

Thank you, Jesus. You were cursed so that I may be blessed. You had nothing so that I can have everything good from my Father. Apart from You, we can do nothing; in and through You, we have everything.

Wishing you readers a very blessed Christmas and a great week ahead!


QQ*librarian said...

Woah, congrats! Actually, missus can set up her own business doing the coordinating job for other people. I'm sure there'll be people who will be willing to pay.

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