Life & Style Weekend - - OUR SAY -


The Block is with­out a doubt my favourite real­ity TV se­ries!

I love ev­ery­thing about it from Scotty Cam yelling “Tools down” to the un­re­al­is­tic time frames they give con­tes­tants to com­plete struc­tural work.

The ques­tion I have is, if a show about do­ing ren­o­va­tions is my favourite, why am I so rub­bish at build­ing stuff ? I re­mem­ber pur­chas­ing a TV unit from Ikea and had to build it three times be­fore it was sort of cor­rect. Ac­tu­ally, I lie, it never turned out to be cor­rect. You see there was one piece that kept on fac­ing the wrong way and by the third time of build­ing this one TV unit, I be­came so frus­trated with this one piece that I just painted it to match the front. My ac­tual DIY dis­as­ter comes in the form of a chicken coop. I found some free chick­ens on Gumtree and de­cided to pick them up. So I had to quickly whip up a coop. Some would say that in this case I counted my chick­ens be­fore they hatched, ex­cuse the pun.

So I grabbed some chicken wire, an old door and some wood and be­gan putting to­gether some­thing that re­sem­bled a chicken cage. It didn’t.

OK, it was no Cluck­ing­ham Palace, but it did the job; ac­tu­ally it didn’t.

The chick­ens es­caped. So from now on I just have to make enough money to pay for peo­ple to do the handy work around our house be­cause ac­cord­ing to my wife, I’m not al­lowed to. My wife has pulled a Scotty Cam on me and told me to put ‘tools down’ in­def­i­nitely.


Much to my dad’s dis­ap­point­ment, I’m sure, I have never pos­sessed any man­ual skills. A diesel fit­ter by trade, the old man can fix any­thing. This trait has seem­ingly passed onto my broth­ers and sis­ters, but sadly not to me. A trip to Bun­nings causes me anx­i­ety and when it comes to fix­ing a tap or in­stalling a dish­washer my emas­cu­la­tion is com­plete when my 13-year-old daugh­ter’s skills sur­pass my own.

When I bought my first house, I like most bul­let­proof 20-some­things thought ‘why not buy a fixer-up­per, do your own renos and reap the re­ward?’. This was my awak­en­ing to just how bad my man­ual skills re­ally were. In at­tempt­ing to knock down a wall I cut power to our house for three days. In chip­ping up bath­room tiles I lac­er­ated my foot re­quir­ing 13 stitches and in re­mov­ing the roller door to the garage I man­aged to smash a down­pipe, pull 3m of eaves and roof from its fas­cia, cause $1800 of dam­age to my Honda CRV and de­stroy the roller door it­self. Need­less to say a visit to IKEA for me is akin to Clive Palmer vis­it­ing a North Queens­land mine camp kitchen on Ve­gan Wed­nes­day. The thought sends chills through my core. Allen keys, flat­packs and im­pos­si­ble to read in­struc­tion sheets are not a few of my favourite things.

I ad­mire greatly those who pos­sess these skills and it is a timely re­minder that we all have our gifts and it takes all sorts to make this big wheel turn. Of course I only as­sume this cause I ac­tu­ally have no idea how the wheel turns or how to fix it if it stops.


Now that The Block is back on our TV screens, I don’t know about you, but I’ve been in­spired!

We’re talk­ing about DIY dis­as­ters and I’m cur­rently strug­gling my way through a DIY project that in­volves the wed­ding. I’m get­ting mar­ried on Septem­ber 27 and I’m su­per ex­cited. The only prob­lem is, I can’t for the life of me put to­gether a flower girl bas­ket. Not only do I have to make one flower girl bas­ket, but two! Our two lit­tle nieces are go­ing to make the cutest flower girls, but I can’t have them car­ry­ing a crappy look­ing bas­ket. It’s taken me three goes to get this right. First time I went to Spot­light, I got two bas­kets that cost me an arm and a leg then, got the flower twirling wire with some bright green fo­liage and a cute big rose for each of the bas­kets. While I was mak­ing the bas­ket, I re­alised that the bas­ket was too large and it was dou­ble han­dled so that’s not go­ing to work as well as I had hoped. The sec­ond time, I thought OK, let’s get a bas­ket that is a lit­tle more man­age­able, so I did. Picked up two more bas­kets, this time at Lin­craft, for $2.50, you beauty!

I’ve twirled the green fo­liage through the bas­kets and now it looks like it’s been hit with the weed whacker. There’s bits of green miss­ing out of the de­sign, and now it looks like I’m go­ing to have to get my grand­mother to fin­ish the job. When it comes to cook­ing and mak­ing things crafty, it’s just not my skill-set. On that note, I’m off to nan’s house for scones and jam, while she helps me fin­ish the job on these silly lit­tle bas­kets.


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