Yesterday was moving day and we are now officially residents of Werribee. Before the move, we’ve been busy lock and light fixture shopping. We’ve been doing a lot of work on the house lately that there seem to be no room nor time for anything else. In fact, I think we’ve been dealing with door knobs and locks all of last week that it has the makings of a bad joke, how-many-programmers-does-it-take-to-change-a-lock sort of thing.

We purchased a variety of deadbolts, privacy sets, patio locks and sliding door locks at Bunnings and Mitre 10 over the week and tried changing everything ourselves. Unfortunately, in our haste we neglected to match our new locks with the old ones. Only after attaching one privacy set to the ensuite did we realise that we should have bought locks with a polished chrome finish instead of the ones we got that have a satin finish. D’oh! There was also this problem with door hole being too close or too far from the edge of the door that we either have to plug the hole, drill another one then paint it over afterwards or leave them be. Another d’oh moment. Fortunately, both Bunnings and Mitre 10 agreed to a refund or exchange despite the packaging being torn in one case. Re-keying the old locks would have also worked but seeing that there’s nobody at home most of the time to deal with the locksmith, we thought changing the locks ourselves would have made better sense.

After the locks fiasco, we decided that the bare bulbs in each room leave a lot to be desired. Off we went to Beacon Lighting to get some DIY batten fixtures. While we were at it, we thought it might be a good idea to change the globes as well and got ourselves some compact fluorescent lamps (CFL) to save on electricity bills. Of course, not all CFLs are created equal and different brands have varying ideas of what “warm white” means. We got some Nelson and Philips lamps, reused some old GEs and found out when we got home that we couldn’t use 2 different lamps for the open plan kitchen and dining area because it just looks too different. We also realised that we preferred a warmer light for the living areas and the whiter ones for rooms such as the laundry and study. We thought the GE lamps gave off the best light, followed closely by Philips and lastly by Nelson. All our lamps would have been GEs if we could find them but only Nelson and Philips are widely available, with the Nelson Aladdin minis being small enough to fit the closed ball-shaped DIY batten fixtures we already got. This resulted in another trip to Bunnings to exchange the ones we already got and went back home to put in the lamps.

As we only bought a few lighting fixtures, we also went back to Beacon at one point to buy more. While there, we took advanatage of their lighting design service to plan the downlights we wanted to have installed in the living areas and the kitchen. With only one light in the middle of the room illuminating the kitchen, it is not enough to cast light in the counters where most of the work would be done. We bought 13 downlight kits and 2 sets of security lights with sensors. Geejay was hoping that we could have an electrician install them even before we move in but no such luck with electricians very busy these days and quite expensive as well, so we had a re-think of the whole idea. Believing that we would be better off cooling our heels before getting the lights installed, we returned the downlights but kept the security lights.

On our initial trip to Bunnings, we also got a pair of solar-powered path lights to illuminate the backyard but these turned out to be a huge disappointment. With only 2 LEDs giving off a faint blue light, the area were we’ve put it in was still mostly dark. Bunnings took them back, fortunately.

Next, we thought of getting the carpets shampooed professionally before the move, but with nobody available to wait around for the carpet cleaners to show up on a work day, we decided to hire a carpet steam-cleaning machine from Safeway for $28 a day instead. We bought the cleaning products, read the instructions and did it ourselves. Or rather, Gj did the cleaning while I moved boxes out of the way. I don’t know if the machine cleaned as well as the ones professionals use but the carpet feels and smells clean enough. Hubby said the machine was easy to use and seemed to have sucked out a lot of dirt from the carpets so I’m guessing it still did some good.

We’ve been sleeping at around 1-2 in the morning for several days now and with still a lot of cleaning to do and most of our belongings still in boxes, there doesn’t seem to be an end in sight. No matter, at least now we have a place to call our own.

Published in: on December 12, 2005 at 12:21 pm  Leave a Comment