In mid January of this year we had a call from our landlord that really rocked our world. After living in our beautiful little two bedroom house for 3 and a half years they had decided to sell. We knew this was always a possibility, its the dice roll you play when renting a property but it didn't take much of the sting away, it came very out of the blue. I am due with our second baby very soon and with a busy wedding season (our busiest yet) we knew packing up, finding a house and setting up again was going to be a real challenge. We also had lived such a happy life in that house that we were sad to have to say goodbye. It was the first house we moved into alone, our yard was huge and Arie caved in pretty quick when I said it would be cruel not to have a dog to enjoy it, so then there was Bobby. I set up my babies first nursery in the second room & labored for 20 odd hours in and out of the bath/shower and bedroom. It was the house we brought our first baby home to & the place she took her first steps. We built our business in the tiny hot office upstairs. A place that we had to remind ourselves was a special but the memories got to come with us, they don't remain in the walls.

So our search began, the rental market in Hamilton is really competitive and we were on such a tight time deadline. we spent so much time online trying to find suitable places as well as looking into the possibility of buying our first home. Although we squirrel away money for our first home one day as I said this came very out of the blue and we weren't making a very conscious effort to do so. Even with a sizable savings account, kiwisaver and help from our parents we still fell short of being able to put our feet on that ladder. So back to the rental search we went. The challenge for us was finding somewhere that accommodated a dog. I'm not sure why but most properties dont allow pets and our search was refined down to about 10 houses in the whole of the Hamilton area!

We visited the a house that looked rather "out there" in terms of colours, but had a great yard for Bobby. It was in town and central so ticked a few boxes. We looked around the property and liked the feel of it but there were some things that put us off. The main one being the CRAZY coloured walls throught the house. Even still we registered our interest. We were surprised to hear back quite quickly that the landlord really liked us and was offering us the property. Although it seemed a tough (or rude) question to ask we decided we wouldnt agree to rent the property unless we could paint the walls. We usually arent the kind of people who dare to ask such questions but it paid off because the landlord was happy for us to do it & he agreed to pay for all of the supplies. In the end its worth it for him as what we have done has really improved the properties value.

So begun the late nights, sanding, peeling wallpaper, painting & in among that shooting a wedding every single weekend and running around after a toddler! Oh and I was heavily pregnant! It was the most stressful, tiring & rewarding time ever! Bunnings became a daily stop for Ruby!

We started with our bedroom. Red & Blue walls. Eeeek! The vinyl wallpaper peeled off very easily but underneath was a layer of old paper wallpaper that needed to be sanded and prepped with a coat of very smelly oil based solvent paint. The final coats of paint were in the colour 'triple sea fog' by Resene. The photos really speak for themselves!

My dad helped us out sooooo much through this process. We couldnt have done it with out him. And our mums too!

Next was the bathroom and toilet, both really dark rooms that were begging to be updated. These were painted in a slightly lighter 'double sea fog' to make them as bright as possible.

Next we tackled the "feature" wall in the lounge. We didn't have the time (nor energy) at this point to paint the whole room so we decided the neutral wallpaper on 3 walls could stay for a bit but we would get rid of the flower patterned paper. We painted the wall in the same basic white paint the middle section was painted in. Luckily the previous owner had left a tin behind! We added some shelves to make the wall a little more usable too.

The last room to do before we took a break to have a baby was the baby's room. This was my most disliked room of the house. Lime green walls with red curtains was pretty close to my least fave coulour combo! We pained it in the same 'triple sea fog' and its come up to be so bright and inviting. I cant wait to bring George home to see it!

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