It’s been a stressful few weeks (months? year?) but our build seems to be back on track. After a lovely night away with hubby at Bingin a few weeks ago, we headed back with our munchkins in tow. Not as relaxing this time, but still lots of fun with the kids.
Counting our pennies
Money is getting short these days. As we reach the final stage of our build and there are lots of unexpected bills, we need to make our funds stretch as far as possible. We also need a lot of storage solutions for our villa.
Originally, we’d planned some fancy new built-ins for the kids’ rooms, but that will have to come later. The guy who did the master bedroom’s built-in wasn’t particularly good, particularly fast or particularly reliable, so I’m not keen to use his services again. The kids will keep their existing chests of drawers for the moment!
However, we also need a bunch of simple shelves for our pantry and 2 big storage rooms. We’d been looking for simple shelves at local shops and online. Surprisingly, the best options were from IKEA. So we ordered 6 sets of shelves from Jakarta and they were delivered less than a week later. Still gotta put them together but that’s a job for a rainy day.
Double the bathtubs
I love a bath. Sadly, I don’t often get to have one these days. But we can all dream about having the time! I’d planned a bathtub in the master bathroom from the moment I started daydreaming about this project.
On my daily commute to and from my favourite places, I’d seen some gorgeous freestanding terrazzo bathtubs for sale. But the prices were crazy. A couple of months ago I happened to find a shop just 10 mins away from my house that customises bathtubs. I popped in, loved what they do, and left a deposit that very day. A week later they delivered it to the build site. It was perfect! It was still action stations at the build so they left it in the offices downstairs.
Fast forward to now and we have a small problem. The bathtub is very heavy and the stairs are very narrow. Getting it up will be extremely challenging, and may damage the walls. We can bring in a big crane to lift it into place but that’ll cost the same as making a new bath on site. The solution? Move the first bath into our guest bathroom downstairs and then get the guys who made it to pour a new bathtub into a custom mould upstairs in the master bathroom. Hey presto – now we have 2 tubs.
You gotta laugh…
It’s pretty clear that I love arches. You can see them in our massive feature wall in the courtyard and in the doorways. You can’t have too much of a good thing, so I decided to use some leftover bricks to make a new wall in our courtyard. We gave the instructions to our worker and set him on his way. A few hours later I stopped in at the site to see how it was going… and found that some of the arches were upside down……. Ah, the joy of building!
Sometimes what looks good in the plans, doesn’t look so good when built. Then you need to change plans on the go. This is one of the reasons I must be at the build everyday. If I see a problem, I can change it before it becomes serious. This happened recently with the big planter boxes we have next to the pool. Originally, we had planned to build 3, but as soon as they started them, I knew it looked wrong. So we redesigned on the fly, made 2 and didn’t lose much time.
Sometimes I feel like a jailer carrying all the keys to the cells. Every door in my current villa has a different key. I need to simplify, so for our main door in the new villa I’m getting an electronic lock. Being Bali, I had to make sure it could handle our semi-regular power outages (though there have been fewer these days as the island hasn’t reopened for tourism).
Action in the courtyard
Plain walls can be pretty boring. They can also feel a bit prison-y. I’m jazzing it up by creating a staircase feature wall that we can put plants on. Meanwhile, at the other end of the courtyard, we’ve been building an outdoor sofa. I’m trying to create as many living/relaxing areas in the villas as possible!
Looking out from our open plan living/dining, you can see the pool and a pool deck right next to it. All this time visiting our site means I’ve spent a lot of time on that deck admiring the view of adjoining rice field. It’s a stunning view no doubt, but I’ve also noticed another thing – how hot it is!
I’m not a big fan of laying in the sun and getting a tan. I used to when I grew up in Argentina and we spent our summers at the beach. After moving to Australia at 18, I soon learnt about the dangers of too much sun. So I don’t think I’m likely to lay out in the sun on the deck. If we don’t put something here, we’re unlikely to use this incredible space and that would be such a shame. I’m thinking about some type of gazebo, but not sure what design I would like.