I chose to call this blog HouseHomeCastle after a brilliant quote from The Castle – It’s not a house, it’s a home. And a man’s home is his castle. The Castle is an Australian film about the strengthening power of home, family and community. In the movie, Darryl Kerrigan takes on the government to defend their right to stay in their house – their home, their castle. And that’s how LS and I feel about our place. It’s more than just bricks and mortar – it’s a place where family memories will be made, people will come together; it will become our site for sharing celebrations and sadness. The film was made in 11 days on a budget of $750,000. I think it’s inspiring that with a small budget, some hard work and the help of our friends, we’ll be able to transform our house into our own castle.
A lot of these kinds of sites show stunning transformations from dingy, decaying rooms made over into bright, airy spaces. Our house is not falling down (I hope). LS and I are not what you’d call “skilled”. We’re not builders or tradespeople. I’m not a designer or a stylist or a photographer. In fact, I write policy for the public service. But I am rather house-proud. We are very house-proud. This is a grand adventure for LS and I. The quote from the Australian classic, The Castle, resonates strongly:
It’s not a house it’s a home. And a man’s home is his castle.
Over the coming months and years I look forward to tinkering our little house into our own oasis – a place of refuge at the end of long days, and a site for family gatherings full of laughter and good stories.
My husband and I bought our (first!!) little house on the morning of celebrating our 30th birthdays. As we were having a big do that afternoon, a number of friends and family decided to come along to the auction (like, 13 people – more than the number of bidders). No pressure.
It was our second auction as registered bidders. We had our game-plan. We had our deposit. We had read the contract. We were all set to play it cool. Dear husband may not have stuck to the game-plan, but we did get the house, for about what we wanted. I was shaking at the end – we were pretty stoked with the purchase. Bottle of champagne in hand, we headed home victorious, to celebrate, and pack.
We moved in 1 month later, the same week I started a new job, and about the same time we found out our “guest” room would be occupied permanently in approximately 8 months by the first addition to our family. Team W (my family) and Team S (his family) were on hand with ute and truck and prius and barina to help us move gear in, and dead trees out. We met our lovely neighbours, enjoyed cake, dust, and dinner on mis-matched chairs. With all the help, we were in within two days. It was a whirlwind but great to have everything settled.
Special mentions: Pappa W who sacrificed his knee in the battle of the root system (ultimately a team affair resulting in a large hole and no ivy); Bro-Law JS – moved half our belongings in his prius, including a cannon (literally, a cannon!) and all our potted friends. Then he volunteered to clean our bathrooms for us before we moved in – what a legend); Team W and Team S for all their help; and the Fuvilles who came over for dinner, when we didn’t have chairs, to be our first guineapigs guests.