Are we there yet?

When we first imagined unchaining ourselves from our urban lives of rushed neighbours, parking stress, and feeling like we were stuck in a rip while the Bondi Rescue boys were looking the other way, it all came with a dream.

This included fat chooks (tick), a luscious veggie garden (a bit scraggly after winter, but tick), a big backyard for growing boys (tick), meeting new people who had time to chew the fat (tick tick tick!) and a home that we could never have afforded in the city. Ever. Unless we won OzLotto. Thrice.

This latter part of the dream took a slight detour when we bought a sad old house that no-one else really wanted to buy. When we first showed the kids I begged them to ‘put on their thinking caps really tight’ and imagine a wonderful home. They cried and ran back to the car.

Reigniting the dream began with some doors upcycled from a house in Paddington


I spotted these 12 footers on Instagram looking traumatised and confused on a dusty rack (thanks @rescuesalvage). I knew they were the ones we needed for our still non-existent extension, and dragged Leo there to prove it. He agreed on the spot. We had no slab, no walls but hey, we had the doors!

I am fond of Paddington. My friends Adam and then Joseph used to live in Norfolk St and we’d regularly squeeze into their skinny run-down terrace and talk shit all night. My 88 year old Romanian friend Olympia still lives there in a tiny house with thatched walls. As does beautiful German Monica who helped birth one of the hippest shopping districts in Sydney by following her passion (the most divine pre-loved shoes on the planet. Pelle in William St.) If you love good foot-ware, go there.

So there I go, sounding all Eastern suburbs again. But let’s face it, I am a city girl at heart. Or I was at least.

Now I’m from Kandos.

On a recent week off, I started painting the old house a lovely sage green


It’s going to take me a long time to finish and we’re thinking of having a working bee (free booze and paint supplied if you’re free).

Leo is working hard painting, digging, grinding and gritting his teeth. He’s learned a lot since he renovated the old house. But we are desperate to move our gangly boys in. Our little cottage wasn’t really meant for four 21st century people.

We started painting the interior this week


I can’t wait to polish the floors


Oh so close. But still so far…


What’s that thing they say about it being all about the journey and not the destination? It guess it’s a little bit true but let’s face it, there’s nothing quite like arriving somewhere comfy after a long, muddy trip that took 3 times longer than you thought.

Bring it on.

By Betty Buttercake

Betty Buttercake used to party likes it's 1999 (it was). Now she meditates whenever she can, loves collecting kindling for the fire and tries to keep it real and nice.

2 replies on “Are we there yet?”

Loving the trip. Am so ready for a chance for the working bee even without the booze Lib, you have enticed us with your great community


Libby, so many of us are still adjusting to the change. Last night with the rain and hailstorm (after aeons of waiting for rain), I was pacing my old house working out where rain might be coming through my roof into my ceiling. But for all that, we’re now living in a community which is such a different concept to our urban lifestyle. People being connected so intimately simply because they belong and that is something you don’t even consider in the city. Hard to imagine if you’re not part of it.

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