Home Is Where Our Story Begins (Part 3)

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This entry is continued from Home Is Where Our Story Begins (Part 2).

Let me summarise the progress of our house that I unfolded in the previous entry.

Ceiling : 🙂

Kitchen : DISASTER! 😦

THE KITCHEN

While I was not in the mood due to the kitchen disaster that I told you earlier, a friend of hubs’, whom we called, Abg Boy introduced us to another contractor, Abg Dol. We wanted to find another contractor for our kitchen cabinet and probably asking him to fix my kitchen disaster. Initially, I just asked him to do our kitchen cabinet, but after I interviewed him a lot more, he told me that he did renovation and table top too.

“Nak solid surface pun ada.”

Hearing that, of course I wanted to hire him to fix my disastrous table top!

So he agreed. I tried to be wise this time by choosing the white solid surface for our table top to replace the hideous black one.
Tips; always choose bright colours for the bigger room impact.

The instalment of the white solid surface..

The instalment of the white solid surface..

Just like what I want. :-)

Just like what I want. 🙂

Close-up!

Close-up!

The professional sketch..

The professional sketch of his. Haha. Mine was waaaayyy more professional right?

As you can see, I wrapped the black tiles to this silver formica to hide the inconsistent greyish line I told you in the previous entry.

As you can see, he wrapped the black tiles with this silver formica to hide the inconsistent greyish line I told you in the previous entry. At this stage, it was still not fully done.

 

THE FLOORING

Since we were so happy with Abg Dol’s work, we wanted him to decorate the whole house. What made it more fun? He was the guy who could do it all, the flooring, the cabinet, the blinds and the curtain etc. He was also very polite and professional. It was easy cooperating with him because every time we ran out of ideas, he would give us the solutions. Our saviour, he was!

Like I told you earlier, I hated the original yellow tiles for the flooring. I hate tiles, always do. They’re cold at night and hurt my soles. I wanted to change it to wooden flooring. Well, actually it is not really wooden, it’s like a rubber vinyl plank with wooden texture which in my opinion, is much better. It’s water proof and lasts longer compared to the usual wooden flooring.

The new floor!

The new floor! They covered the whole floor of the house (the hall and the three rooms), except for the kitchen and the bathrooms.

THE HALL

As for the hall decoration, I really like the idea of incorporating some wooden dark brown pillars as part of the partition and TV cabinet. The white cabinet at the front with the dark brown pillars at the back. How did I get this idea? I’ll tell you later. 🙂

Like this.

My first idea. Like this.

I was hoping Abg Dol would stick to this sketch, instead he came up with a few designs on his own which I finally agreed with. I mean, the guy knew better than me so I just trusted him.

Before the partition a.k.a TV cabinet a.k.a book shelves..

Before the partition a.k.a TV cabinet a.k.a book shelves..

That's Abg Dol, working on our TV cabinet..

That’s Abg Dol, working on our TV cabinet..

The TV cabinet (without the TV yet haha). White for the clean and neat effect on the whole space.

The TV cabinet (without the TV yet haha). White for the clean and neat effect on the whole space.

The back of the cabinet. No no, I wouldn't just leave it empty like this. I was thinking of some book shelves to be put here.

The back of the cabinet. No no, I wouldn’t just leave it empty like this. I was thinking of putting some book shelves here. Just the simple ones for my novels.

So you see, this isn’t just a mere partition, but also functioning as a TV cabinet and book shelves as well. Look how Abg Dol incorporated those dark brown wooden pillars together with the white TV cabinet. This wasn’t my design, but I liked it! Really really nice!

The plaster ceiling with hidden lights..

The plaster ceiling with hidden lights..

Me, choosing the suitable wallpaper for our featured wall.

Me, choosing the suitable wallpaper for our featured wall.

That's the one we chose, or 'I' chose.

That’s the one we chose, or ‘I’ chose. Sampai malam Abg Dol buat kerja nk kejar dateline.

The wallpaper chosen for our bedroom. These are the extra rolls. Does anyone want one?

The wallpaper chosen for our bedroom. These are the extra rolls. Does anyone want one?

THE MASTER BEDROOM

Now, we proceed to the master bedroom. The second most important part of the house, after the kitchen.

The sketch of the wardrobe and the mini TV cabinet.

The sketch of the wardrobe and the mini TV cabinet.

The problem with this bedroom is again, the space (told you earlier, bungalow doesn’t necessarily mean BIG). So we have to be wise with the furniture arrangement here so it wouldn’t look crowded. We chose warm colours as the theme, to match the whole spaces of the house. Hmmm… There’s not much to do here and the whole process was just a decoration process. Installing the customised wardrobe and make-up table, the mini TV cabinet and the wallpaper. Then, it was pretty much done.

The customised wardrobe..

The customised wardrobe, up to the ceiling and that’s my make up table by the window.

Yeah, make up without the mirror yet. Haha

Yeah, make up table without the mirror yet. Haha

The white bed frame with black lines to match the wardrobe.

The white bed frame with black lines to match the wardrobe.

The mini TV cabinet.

The mini TV cabinet.

 

THE MULTIPURPOSE ROOM
(PRAYER ROOM, IRONING ROOM, GAME ROOM, STORE ROOM, CAT ROOM ETC)

This is the only room that I didn’t design because I didn’t really care. This is technically hubs’ space so it’s the only part of the house that I allowed him to be fully in charge of. Hihi. Since the room was too small, we had to make use of all the space here. He asked Abg Dol to build lots of shelves and drawers, for us to keep our things like luggage, shoes, vacuum cleaner, ironing board and of course, his Tamiya car collection.

Sorry, this is the only picture that I took. This room is full of shelves and drawers as requested, so there is really nothing fancy about it. Even that seat by the window is actually a cabinet to store our vacuum cleaner.

Sorry, this is the only picture that I took. Hihi

This room is full of shelves and drawers as requested, so there is really nothing fancy about it. Even that seat by the window is actually a cabinet to store our vacuum cleaner. On your left, that is the place where hubs put his PS3 and TV for game purpose and on your right, there’s another wardrobe for my ‘extra extra extra clothes and scarves’, luggage, ironing board and other things. We put a grey silver rug in the middle, together with bean bags so then hubs can spend his time here comfortably playing games.

THE OVERALL LOOK

So now, let me share with you the overall look of our house.

The kitchen..

The kitchen..

The TV cabinet..

The TV cabinet..

The chillax space..

The overall chillax space..

This is the back view of the same TV cabinet. I asked him to install some shelves here, didn't really tell him how I wanted it, but he made me this!

This is the back view of the same TV cabinet. I asked him to install some shelves here, didn’t really tell him how I wanted it, but he made me this!

This particular picture was sent to hubs’ phone at 3 a.m. THREEE!!! #respect

The wallpaper and the curtain..

The wallpaper and the curtain..

The dining hall, or the reading section. Or both. Without the curtain yet at this point.

The dining hall, or the reading section. Or both. Without the curtain yet at this point.

The master bedroom. My favourite space of all.

The master bedroom. My favourite space of all.

Yeay! That’s all. I finally have written the three parts of the home entries. Pheww.

So, can I pen off now? Nope, not yet. Just a lil credit I wanna give to someone.

In the previous entry, I talked about whole process of the renovation, rough layout and also the theme of the house. Like I said, I chose modern theme, with white and dark brown colour combination. Have I told you where did I get the idea from?

Pretty much from here, my sister’s new house in U12, Shah Alam.

Dig those dark brown wooden pillars! Fell in love straight away.

Dig those dark brown wooden pillars! Fell in love straight away.

I can see 'me' peeking through those pillars! Hahah

I can see ‘me’ dancing ala2 hindustan in between those pillars haha. Yeay nak tiru!

Her white/dark brown hall..

Her white/dark brown hall.. Tiru jugak!

The plaster ceiling design.. Memang tire sokmo laa. Hahah

The plaster ceiling design.. Memang tiru sokmo laa. Hahah

Do you see the resemblance? 😀 The secret’s out. I went to my sister’s house, had a good look at it and went ‘Okay that’s nice, I’m gonna do that. What else do you have that I can tiru?’ My sister and I share the same interests. After all, we’re sisters. Tak kisah la rumah mcm nak sama kan? Hihihihi. Her new house was fully completed a year earlier than us. It’s a good thing that I could ask for her opinions on this matter every time we were stuck, blank and didn’t know what else to do with our house.

So there. That’s how we did it. That’s how we turned a house into our home. The key is to know exactly what you want and work your way to it. Some people take it slow, do it step by step and some people do the opposite, ‘sekali harung’ kata orang. Once and for all. Like us. We needed this to be quickly done so then we could move in faster. It was ridiculous having to pay our monthly instalment for the house and at the same time, pay the rent too, right?

Anyway, different people have different ways of doing things. You just need to do what works for you. Okay?

Good luck!

😀

Home Is Where Our Story Begins (Part 2)

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This entry is continued from Home Is Where Our Story Begins (Part 1).

Here, in the second part of the home entries, I wanna talk about the renovation and perhaps the decoration part will be in Part 3, the last part. As quoted by my husband, this is the part where we wanted to strangle each other badly! It was THAT intense, trust me.

So, first and foremost, when it comes to house decoration, you need to have a theme. You need to know what you like and how to incorporate all that into your direction. To me, this is very important. You don’t want your house to be all ‘caca marba’, do you? As for me, I like modern theme. It’s simple, neat, clean and elegant. Tho the house was still like a blank sheet of paper at that time (empty), I already imagined it filled with white and dark brown combination, mixed with a little splash of bright colours. That was so fun!

Well, at least that imagining part was fun. When we really looked at the house to start working on it seriously, we realized several potential problems. The biggest problem of all was the kitchen. It was the most important space that needed a close attention because it would be the place for me cooking for the family. It needed to be nice otherwise I wouldn’t have motivation to step in there, let alone to cook (that’s how I threatened my husband haha). The space for the kitchen was too small. There was no way I could fit everything that I had imagined earlier into the real space. You know, it was so small that we even considered to put the washing machine outside the house, to save some space, kununnye.

So we were thinking, by hook or by crook, we needed to break the kitchen walls to make more space for the kitchen. This was quite worrying because this process would cost a lot more. So what did I do? I bit my lips, closed my eyes and said,
‘Just break the freaking walls.’

The process of making the kitchen a big bigger..

Adding about 10 sq feet more to the original kitchen space. Just 10 sq feet but you really can see the difference.

There you gooo..

Wall, no more..

We moved the location of the windows to the side.

We moved the location of the windows from the back to the side, facing the front houses of the neighbours’, so maybe while I am washing my dishes at the sink, I get to see what my neighbours are doing through the window. Haha

The tiles we chose for the kitchen. Brown in different shades..

The tiles we chose for the kitchen. All brown in different shades..

It'll be easier if you sketch it first, or even colour it to see what it would look like.

It’ll be easier if you sketch it first, or even colour it to see what it would look like.

Two sketches. This one is the overall look of the kitchen.

Two sketches. This one is the overall look of the kitchen.

While they were working on the kitchen, we discussed what we were going to do with our next problem, which was the hall. It was too open, too big, no walls to divide the space, no partition. I didn’t like it when people get into the house, they could see everything in it from the front door directly. We really really needed the partition to divide the space into two. We? No, not ‘we’. It was just me actually. Hubs didn’t really mind about the partition so he came up with his own idea to which I rolled eyes at, and found it so blerggh! Then of course, the fight came after. But, after looooong discussion, we agreed to do it this way.

This is the sketch of the hall..

This is the sketch of the hall (I did it!). That’s the TV cabinet, as well as the partition.

First, we called the plaster ceiling guy and asked him if it was okay for him to give us two plaster ceiling designs for two spaces.

Dividing the space, starting from the ceiling down to the floor.

Dividing the space, starting from the ceiling down to the floor.

The design we chose for the ceiling. I was offered the one in colours, but I preferred all white to match my theme.

The design we chose for the ceiling. I was offered the one in colours, but I preferred all white to match my theme. I was very happy with this. Exactly what I had in mind.

So, ceiling : CHECKED! 🙂

Back to the kitchen story. After a few days, we went back to the house to check out the progress of the kitchen. No one was there since it was Sunday. I carefully got into the kitchen and saw this.

The then kitchen..

The then kitchen..

Hubby was all laughing, smiling and kept saying, ‘Cantik laaa B…’. I was just scratching my head and went silent. Hubby noticed something was wrong with me and asked, ‘Kenapa? You x suka ke?’ I didn’t answer straight away, but when he asked me again, I just told him,
‘This is not what I want. I x suka.’

What went wrong here? The colour? Yeah, maybe, but that wasn’t the biggest issue. It was a sore to my eyes to see the rough finishing at every edge of the table top. How do I explain this? Hmm…. Imagine, when the black/dark granite tiles are cut into parts to fit the measurement of the table top, you will see the greyish granite colour inside, right? So when you arranged those tiles together, it would form this inconsistent greyish line along the edges of the table top. So unappealing. Looked like an unfinished work. Just so you know, I have a lil bit of OCD, so the inconsistent greyish line made me wanted to pull my hair every time I looked at it.

Something like this. The greyish granite colour inside.

Something like this. The greyish granite colour in the red circle.

I tried to ask the contractor the next day, if he could do anything to fix it, he simply said, ‘Alaa.. Takpela cikgu, sikit je tu…’.

Eeeii.. Tak guna betul! Tak kemas!

Kitchen : DISASTER! 😦

I was already moody, couldn’t care less about the whole progress after that. I started fighting again with hubs. If I’m not mistaken, I did say I wanted to sell the house because I didnt like the kitchen. Haha. Drama queen much?

Will be continued in Home Is Where Our Story Begins (Part 3)

Home Is Where Our Story Begins (Part 1)

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It’s not hard to make an entry about our new house (not so new now I guess, it’s been 5-6 months since we moved in), the hardest part is to gather all the photos of the house since its first red brick. They are everywhere, Facebook, dropbox, hubby’s phone, my old phone, this disk and that disk. So, this is what I’ve got. It’s good enough to make a story I guess.

It all started from this sign...

It all started from this sign…

Do you see that Rumah Banglo 1 unit sign? That was the one for us. Actually, they built 2 units. One was already sold to hub’s 2nd boss, Cikgu Nazim. That left the other unit for us. Actually, Cikgu Nazim was the one who persuaded us to buy this house. It’s a cute banglo unit (it means we don’t share walls with others and have our own surrounding space. Mind you, banglo doesn’t necessarily mean big), it’s very strategic, built at the front row by the main road and situated at the Muar suburb, which is only 3-minute drive to the heart of the town. It’s a green neighbourhood and very close to the river. So serene. 🙂

You know how people are busy scouting houses to settle down? Doesn’t matter what kind of house, as long as it’s a house? You can no longer be picky when it comes to houses. Yes, because of the price is getting more and more unbelievable these days (unless you’re rich, then no point worrying).  Alhamdulillah, praise to God, that didn’t happen to us. In fact, when Cikgu Nazim asked us to check out the site, I was just ‘acuh tak acuh’, far from being excited. I was so comfortable renting the house then, and buying a property like this never really came to mind. We almost didn’t buy it, but thanks to hubs for persuading me that this was a good investment. The developer almost gave up waiting for our answer, thank God Cikgu Nazim was so nice to ask them to hold it for us. If we said ‘No, sorry, we’re not interested,’ to the developer, lots of the others were waiting in line and we might have wasted our chance, just like that (snap finger).

So okay, we bought it. I was still quite bitter. ‘Mehhh, there goes our monthly salaries!’ People were congratulating me for finally having our own house and I was just like, ‘Hmmm.. Kot.’ Silly ignorant me. Didn’t even realize I was so lucky. This was like, ‘bulan jatuh ke riba’. We weren’t even looking for a house, yet we got it just like that (snap finger again).

Thank you husband for rooting against me when I said ‘No’ on this matter. It might not make sense to me then, but it’s making more sense now. If it wasn’t for you, haha we might be still ‘homeless’.

Okay, enjoy the pictures.

The early phase of the construction..

The early phase of the construction..

This is our hall now... :-)

This was our hall then… 🙂

The almost-not-ours unit...

The ‘almost-not-ours’ unit because I was arrogant haha

After they've done cementing the inside floor..

After they’ve done cementing the inside floor.. That was the kitchen.

What is this eh? Our room maybe..?

What is this eh? The guest room maybe…

Our master bedroom.. I hate those yellow tiles btw.

Our master bedroom.. I hate those yellow tiles btw. At this time, I insisted that I wanted to change the flooring.

The fence! At this time, we only realized how big our yard was..

Here comes the fence!

I only realised how spacious our yard was.. Then i only got a lil bit too excited..

I only realised how spacious our yard was.. Then, only then i got a lil bit excited.

From the front view..

From the front view..

Me, trying to make sense the whole space... Haha

Me, trying to make sense the whole space… Haha

Almost there... Owh, there's a door!

Almost there… Owh, there’s a door!

Me, trying to play Jamie Durie or at least, Eric Deco.

Me, trying to play Jamie Durie or at least, Eric Deco. Haha. Failed because I came up with nothing at this time. :-p

That’s all the photos I could gather. I know there’s more, but not sure where hubs keeps them all. This was only the first part of having a house. The part where we just observed and monitored the whole progress which was easy. The real pain was to decorate the whole house, turn the house into a home. Yeah, real pain, real headache. Real hole in the pocket too. But what the heck, it’ll never be a waste of money, it’s an investment, it’s for the home, the place where you come back to when everything falls apart. I need it to be nice and tranquil. Geddit?

Will be continued in Home Is Where Our Story Begins (Part 2). Bye for now.

Fresh Flowers

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I woke up quite early today. It’s not something that I look forward to do on working days, but somehow it’s something that I always do on school break. When you wake up early and sort everything out for the day, you’ll feel some sense of achievement in you. Good feeling. So today I asked hubs to have breakfast outside, satays and lontong. Yes, having brekkie like a true Muorean! Haha. Next, we went to the market to buy some fish (for the cats) and some fresh flowers to fill in my big vase, then finally to the laundry to sent them my batik clothes.

You know, ever since I bought lilies for my open house the other day, I find myself so addicted to fresh flowers now. Hubs feels the same way too. He kept shaking his head whenever I showed him artificial flowers that I wanted to buy at first (in order to replace the dead lilies). Plus, since artificial flowers last forever and you don’t have to check on them everyday, don’t be surprised they’re gonna turn so ‘beautifully dusty’ some day. I know that’d happen to me, so I’m gonna root for fresh flowers.

Don't know what kind of flower this is..

Don’t know what kind of flower this is..

Fresh air in the house!

It complements the table and the whole space! Love it!

Will keep buying them more and more!