Life goes on

Hello strangers. It's been like dominoes falling during these passed weeks. One thing lead to another and sometimes we didn't know if one domino or 100 would fall. But we followed our noses, did what we had to and I've come back to you with a newly renovated laundry, a freshly painted toilet, three new house guests and a cat.

I got this metal trug from Odgers and McClelland. It's very handy for storing napkins, salt, pepper and flowers on the kitchen table.

As you know, Kerry, Sunny, Jamie and his cat moved in with us to wait for work on their new home to be completed. The house is moving along nicely, the roof is on and walls are going up so that now, even if it starts raining, work can go ahead. They've been told they can move in before Christmas.  They've decluttered, cleaned out their apartment and moved in here. Their belongings are stored in our big shed, so a big portion of the work has been completed and the excitement is beginning to grow. In our newly established family of five, I've taken on the job of chief cook, not a job to be taken lightly with two chefs and a six year old to feed, and I'm slowly getting used to shopping for a family again.

Cinnamon tea cake. A great cake for lunch boxes and morning teas.

I had wondered how it would all go. I thought there'd be problems with Gracie and Ec, the cat, and I wondered how everyone would cope with me wandering around during the night when I couldn't sleep. Blending families is never easy but so far, it has been. Beds still need to be made, food cooked, shopping done, the garden and floors need tending and every day, by the time our regular home chores are done, our guests return from school and work and we all settle in again. It feels familiar and different and so far, it's been easy.

Hanno asked me to thank you all for your well wishes.  He's still not 100 percent, he's on a second course of antibiotics but says he's feeling better, although I can see he tires easily.  However, at 77 years of age, with a small amount of help from me and a handyman from Airtasker, he renovated the laundry.  That job started when I noticed that our eleven year old washing machine was leaking. Most of you know we're going through a period of reorganisation and preparedness. We're updating appliances and replacing them with water and energy efficient models so we can hopefully sail through the next decade with household equipment that supports the way we've chosen to live.



So we had a new washing machine installed, then I noticed the laundry sink and metal unit it sat on was rusting from the floor up. Hanno ripped that out and discovered there had been a leak in the wall so I was very pleased he found it and fixed the problem. A new unit was bought and he connected the waste pipes from the washing machine and air conditioner. When the new unit was up, the existing tiles didn't cover the area behind the unit so we got a handyman in to add more tiles.  He also replaced the water damaged plasterboard behind the sink unit and painted the laundry and toilet. I was so pleased to see the work completed because at one stage I was wishing we'd never started it.


We sold the old machine on Gumtree and replaced it with the Bosch model recommended by Choice magazine. For overseas readers, Choice is an Australian consumer advocacy organisation which tests and recommends products and services used in our homes.

We're all catching up on the washing that piled up for a week and the new machine is coping very well with the task. Now I'm starting to think about Sunny's 40 birthday next Saturday. We're having a cooked-from-scratch family lunch for seven adults and three children. I'm still finalising the menu and trying to decide on the birthday cake. I'll let you know more about it later and, of course, they'll be some photos on the day.

Life goes on.

29 comments

  1. Oh so much happening Rhonda I don’t know where to start. Happy to hear everything is working well having everyone together - including the pets.
    Hanno has done such a great job with the laundry. I hope this second lot of antibiotics helps him further and he gets some energy back too. It can be frustrating when you are a ‘doer’ but your body says no.
    Looking forward to reading about your family cook from scratch birthday for Sunny. Wishing her a very happy 40th.
    Kylie

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  2. I use a wringer washer! Seriously, I simply use the bath-tub to wash clothes! I do live in an apartment and I save money by doing clothes by hand ;)

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  3. It sounds like a very busy but joyful season in your life Rhonda.
    Rhonda did you have a front loader before? Because if this is your first front loader, I wanted to mention to you to wipe the rubber door seal on the inside after every wash with an absorbent sponge. I failed to do this with mine, and now I have black mould growing on the rubber seal, water just pools there after a load. I"m in the process of researching how to get the mould off the rubber, but the preliminary research suggests wiping the seal after every load and leaving the door slightly ajar to dry out the tub prevents it. Sorry if you already knew this, I was just trying to avoid you falling into the trap I did, I wish I had know.

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    1. Oh, that happened to me too, Cheryl. I now place a clean rag folded over a few times into that little "recess pool" to soak up the excess water and dry it out. I leave the door open whenever there are no clothes in the machine. Meg

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    2. I have had the one Asco front loader for 22 years & even when I purchased it, I was aware that cats loved getting inside the open door.
      So I made a fitted cover for the machine out of an old curtain.
      It fits snugly enough that even with the door left ajar, there is not enough space for a cat to fit up under the hem of the cover to get inside the machine.
      Yes to wiping the rubber & leaving the door ajar to dry the bowl. Very important advice.

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    3. Yes I did know it Cheryl, we've had front loaders for over 25 years. It's good to have the info here because many readers are using front loaders now and they may not know. Thanks!

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  4. Goodmorning Rhonda,
    So lovely to “hear” your voice again again, and so happy that everything is going smoothly. You are a blessing to your family. Have a lovely day.
    Fi

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  5. It's so nice to see you back Rhonda. I'm sure you are relieved that laundry renovation is over. Renovations and repairs at home can sometimes be stressful.

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  6. Congratulations on all that has been accomplished! And serious good health wishes for Hanno!

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  7. Goodness me you have been busy, Rhonda. I am sure Jamie is enjoying staying with you. I do hope Hanno recovers soon as it's not nice feeling below par all the time. Obviously Miss Grace is getting on well with the cat.

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  8. I'm so glad to hear that Hanno is feeling better. Your new laundry room ansd washing machine look fantastic. It sounds like a quality washer. It always helps to do your research. Congratulations on the family situation. I bet the time will fly...

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  9. Glad to read you are back and that Hanno is on the imrpove. Your new laundry looks wonderful. As much as laundry is a chore, having a nice laundry makes that chore a bit easier.

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  10. Morning Rhonda, good to hear that life goes on, and it does. That laundry photo was just shown to my husband as ours needs updating badly. Look forward to your menu for the birthday celebrations. Enjoy.

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  11. Our dishwasher is a Bosch and it is a very hardworking dependable machine, I hope your new washer works just as well.
    You are very smart to be preparing your home for the future. My husband and I are a bit younger than you 2, but he has number of health issues and we have slowly been changing our home for our future too.

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  12. Glad to hear that Hanno is on the mend! It is always so good to get those projects done and life back to normal. All our projects of late have been outside for which I have been so thankful.

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  13. It seems that you've had lots happening, Rhonda. I'm glad Hanno is improving, I hope that full recovery is not far away. It's lovely that you have the space to offer Kerry, Sunny and Jamie a place to be while their home is being built. I'm sure it takes some reorganising but I'm sure too that it's lovely to have them close. Meg:)

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  14. Well! You have had quite an eventful mini-break from blogging! I am glad to read that Hanno is feeling better, and that ultimately your home repair story had a happy ending. Whew! That was a lot of work in a short period of time. We are also in the "plan for the future" mode, but we have some basic things that need to be accomplished first...like the roof replaced. It is way past due!

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  15. I hope the dominoes are all stacked neatly again Rhonda, so you can enjoy every minute with your house-full of family. I have laundry envy now!

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  16. So happy that Hanno is on the mend. Make sure you get some time to rest and relax too. My thanks and I dare say from many others that you have still had time to send this post.I asked your advise a while ago on grandparenting, I am happy to say our grandson was born a month early last Wednesday his name is Archer. :) Thank again. Donna

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    1. Hi Donna. What a wonderful time for your family. Congratulations on the birth of Archer. xx

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  17. Thanks for the update Rhonda! I know the feeling when you wish you never started the job, but such a relief to have it done too :)

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  18. Lovely to hear from you again Rhonda, your laundry is looking spic and span. I am pleased to hear Hanno is recovering. I feel a little envious that you are lucky enough to have your family living with you for awhile, I am on my own now and even though I talk to them very often I really miss seeing my family. Enjoy this blessing they will be in their new home soon . How are you preparing for the coming Christmas season? I have read a few of your previous Christmas posts and know you are often very busy, how do you do it all? Judy

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  19. We moved into a smaller house, here in the mountains of Tennessee, USA and purchased the Bosch washer and dryer stackables, two years ago. Great machines, do a fantastic job and we love them. I make sure to wipe any lingering water from inside the rubber ring around the door and occasionally wipe it with vinegar to keep down any mold or linger smells.

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  20. I've been thinking of you - and appreciating you as I read though you books once again. I am so thankful for your contributions to the world, and I'm very glad you are doing well.

    The cake looks delicious... enjoy your family and I hope all of you stay/get well!

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  21. Glad to see you back this morning! Also glad that Hanno is feeling some better. Life in your home sounds very exciting right now. Blessings to all, Carolyn in Florida

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  22. Pleased that Hanno is improving. Renovations can be trying and your laundry looks very clean and functional :).

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  23. Wow things have sure gotten busy since I last popped in. A hug for Hanno and my wishes for renewed health. A hug for you, just because you are such a warrior and help to encourage me to take things in their stride.
    Blessings always,
    Vicki
    Trinidad & Tobago

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  24. Lovely to see you back!!! Hope Hanno continues to improve. The laundry room looks so good.
    Enjoy having your family with you. :)

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