Cheltenham Crafting Surprises

hardware store Cheltenham

Hey there, cherished readers!

Ruby here, and oh boy, do I have a secret to spill today! I’m usually not one for whispers and winks, but this time, I’m bursting at the seams with excitement and I just had to share it with someone. So, here I am, turning to you, my dear blog family, to let you in on my big, bold, and slightly risky surprise project for Jess.

Now, before I dive into the details, let’s get one thing straight – Jess is not a regular reader of my blog. She’s more of a hands-on, less of a screen-time kind of gal, which works perfectly for my clandestine crafting. So, fingers crossed, this stays between us until the big reveal!

I’ve embarked on a project that’s close to my heart and, of course, it involves a fair bit of DIY wizardry. The plan? To transform our backyard into a serene garden retreat, a little slice of paradise where Jess can unwind and bask in the beauty of nature. Think cozy reading nook, fragrant flower beds, and a quaint little pond – a surprise sanctuary crafted with love.

To bring this vision to life, I’ve been making frequent trips to the best hardware shop near Cheltenham, my secret second home these days. The folks there know me by name now, and they’ve been incredibly helpful, sneaking me tips and tricks to make sure every detail of the garden retreat is perfect.

The Cheltenham store for timber supplies has become my treasure trove, providing the best quality wood for the project. I’ve handpicked each plank and beam, envisioning how they’ll come together to create the ultimate haven for Jess. From sturdy timber for the reading nook’s framework to delicate lattice for the climbing roses, every piece is a puzzle part of my grand plan.

It’s risky, talking about it here on my blog, but I just had to let out my excitement somehow! Plus, it’s a great way to document the journey, creating a digital footprint of this labour of love. Each hammer stroke and brush stroke brings me closer to the moment I can finally unveil this surprise.

So, dear readers, keep your fingers crossed for me. Here’s hoping the only thing Jess discovers before the big reveal are the usual bits and bobs from our daily life, and not the whispers of her surprise garden retreat. I’ll be sure to update you on the progress and, of course, share the moment of revelation!

With heart and hammer, Ruby

Robo-Wrench Ruckus

In the quaint suburb of Bentleigh, an auto electrical workshop known for its eccentric staff and unusual services was the talk of the town. At “Sparky’s Speculative Services”, the ordinary met the extraordinary. It was here that Sam, an adventurous mechanic, encountered a day like no other.

The morning sun gleamed off the chrome finish of futuristic vehicles lined up for the auto electrical workshop near Bentleigh. Inside, the air buzzed with the sound of robotic arms, each equipped with an array of tools, swinging wildly as they attended to the vehicles. Sparks flew, and gears turned in a rhythmic dance of mechanical chaos.

Sam, known for his unorthodox methods, decided it was time to introduce his latest invention: the Robo-Wrench. This AI-driven tool promised to revolutionise car repairs, boasting an ability to fix any fault with a mere twist. However, its sense of humour, an unexpected feature, turned the workshop into a stage for slapstick comedy.

As the Robo-Wrench set about its task, it playfully tightened bolts and loosened nuts, causing parts to spring out like jack-in-the-boxes. Sam, caught off guard, danced around dodging airborne car parts, his laughter merging with the metallic symphony of the workshop.

A customer, intrigued by the commotion, peeked inside. She was searching for a mechanic close to Bentleigh and stumbled upon this spectacle.

Amused by the sight, she asked, “Is this how you always operate?”

With a grin, Sam replied, “Only when the Robo-Wrench is in a cheeky mood. But worry not, it’s all part of our innovative approach to auto electrical solutions!”

The workshop was more than a place for repairs; it was a hub of invention and camaraderie, where every vehicle received a touch of the extraordinary. As the day unfolded, each client left with a well-tuned car and a story to tell, all thanks to the quirky charm of Sparky’s Speculative Services, a one-of-a-kind mechanic.

As the sun dipped below the horizon, the workshop doors closed, but the echoes of laughter and the scent of motor oil lingered in the air, a testament to a day well spent in the most unconventional workshop in town.

Nothing Wrong With Toolboxes

Two plane lessons, and I’ve only come close to crashing once! I told everyone that I’d make a great pilot, and here I am, living the dream. First Kramer in six generations to not be an electrician or nurse. It’s really regressive, if you think about it…like, I don’t think we’ve ever had a female member of the family be a nurse. Mum was an electrician, Grandma was an electrician, I’m pretty sure her mum was as well. And Dad’s a nurse, obviously. My older brother Kevin is training as a nurse. I don’t entirely agree with his career path, but I respect that he know what he is doing.

Pretty sure they all think this plane thing is a bit of a lark, like getting something out of my system before I announce that I want to pick up the family game and be an electrician. Nothing against that line of work, obviously…electricity is really important. But I got an custom aluminium toolbox for my sixteenth birthday. Like, a really nice one, supposed to be attached to my ute. That vehicle that I’m probably getting on my eighteenth birthday, the day I graduate from being an apprentice. Or rather, it would’ve been…I sort of had a row with the parents and I haven’t started my apprenticeship yet.

I just want to be a pilot. I even saved up all by myself for these lessons, and my instructor says I’m pretty good. Most people have a few near-misses, he said. So there, I’m forging my own path. Unfortunately, that doesn’t involve sparkplugs and tool box central locking.

I suppose at some point I’m going to have to explain all that to Mum and Dad. Kevin won’t get it, because he’s wanted to do nothing but nursing since he was born. Guess I’m going to have to explain to Grandma why I won’t be using this set of aluminium accessories from a company in Melbourne…unless they also work on planes.

Fruity Glass Clues

After the initial shock of the mysterious glass smashings, Pyro was now on a determined chase. As he followed the trail of fruit splatters and smashed boxes, he found that it invariably led him to more damaged glass structures, particularly glass balustrades. It seemed the spinning, orange vandal had a penchant for shattering the most delicate and intricate structures in the realm.

As Pyro pondered over the strangely targeted nature of the damage, he came across an ornate stair balustrade that had been shattered. The once elegantly swirling glass was now a jigsaw of shiny fragments. The sight of the destruction sent a ripple of frustration through the usually cool-headed dragon. This was more than mere vandalism; it was a targeted attack.

Every broken piece of glass was a reminder of the gravity of the situation. However, it also served to further Pyro’s education about the intricate art of glass repair. He learned that dealing with such delicate structures required the deft touch of a professional glazier offering service in Melbourne. These experts had a special understanding of the unique properties of glass, making them the only ones who could restore the delicate balance of the Glass Realm.

While Pyro was always an admirer of the realm’s aesthetic, he had a newfound appreciation for the painstaking work that went into its maintenance. Repairing a glass balustrade was no small feat; it was a labour of love, requiring patience, precision, and a deep understanding of the materials at hand.

As the dragon continued his pursuit, his resolve solidified. He would not rest until he’d found the orange whirlwind and restored peace to the Glass Realm. The journey was proving to be challenging, but with every repaired structure, Pyro was a step closer to solving the mystery.

What awaits our determined hero next? Will Pyro catch up with the elusive orange culprit, or will the fruit trail lead him on a wild goose chase? Join us next time to find out.

 

The Baron’s Staircase

‘Good evening,’ the Baron’s voice boomed down at us from his illustrious staircase. ‘I suppose you are all wondering why I have invited you here on this most auspicious evening.’

I shivered slightly at his intonation, and – for the first time – wondered why exactly I had travelled halfway across the world on the invitation of an aristocrat who I had never met or corresponded with before. A few of my companions shifted uncomfortably around me, leading me to believe that they might be having similar misgivings.

‘See here,’ said the stern man with the bushy eyebrows (whose name I did not yet know). ‘What’s the meaning of summoning us here?’

‘I cancelled a fox hunt for this,’ grumbled the older woman at his side, balancing on her cane. The Baron laughed, taking a single step down the staircase. His ornate rings clinked against the beautifully designed glass balustrade – installed near Melbourne, if my practised eye could be believed.

‘My dear, distinguished guests,’ he said, each sentence punctuated by a step. ‘Truly, there is no need to feel out of sorts. I have invited you to my grounds for a very special, very rare opportunity.’

‘An opportunity?’ Hugh, the young nobleman next to me piped up. Oh, great, I sighed internally. An entrepreneur.

‘Indeed,’ the Baron nodded, cloaked in shadow as he descended. ‘I need your help, dear friends, in testing a new proposition of mine.’

‘What sort of proposition?’ asked Abigail, the blonde American woman who I’d encountered first on the driveway. I felt an unexpected rush of nervousness as she spoke up, surprised at both my protectiveness of her – a virtual stranger – and the unmistakable sense of impending doom that had settled over us like a heavy blanket.

‘I’m afraid all I know how to offer are commercial glazing services,’ I piped up, to get his attention away from Abigail. ‘And I’m retired, as of last winter, I’m afraid.’

The Baron laughed, though no humour penetrated his smile.

‘Mister Rennings,’ he said, softly. ‘You will be the most help of all. Now, I do believe that the hour is almost at hand…’

As if on cue, a deep, mournful howling began to ring through the halls.

Window Tinting Mystery

Things have only gotten stranger since my last blog post. Almost as soon as I began my investigation into what is going on in the conference room, the boss started inviting certain employees to join him in the secret space. What’s even weirder is that I never saw any of the invited employees leave the room! It’s becoming seriously concerning. My co-workers are disappearing right before my eyes. It has never been quieter in the office. Almost half of the staff are gone already!

So, to summarise, a business for commercial tinting came to our office and made the windows to the conference room really dark, the boss disappeared inside the room for several days before inviting random employees to join him, and then those employees failed to return to the main office. My imagination leads me to believe that something sinister is going on in there, but I’m sure the reality is something much more mundane. After all, if the boss was luring my co-workers into the conference room for dark rituals or something, it would be much too obvious. It’d only be a matter of time before he got caught. 

I’ve been searching around the office for clues as to what is going on, but so far I haven’t found anything. Even the emails my boss has sent to my co-workers have been vague and lacking any useful information. I’m starting to think that I might have to head over to the decorative window film company based in Melbourne that did the conference room windows and demand answers. Either that or I could sneak into their main office and look for the file on this window tinting project. I’m sure they must have a briefing or something, explaining why the boss needed window tinting for privacy.

Although my mind keeps telling me there’s some dark secret, maybe the boss tinted the conference room windows for a good purpose that I just don’t understand yet. Either way, I need to get to the bottom of this– if not to save my co-workers, then to satisfy my endless curiosity.

Tight Drain Competition

Wow! What a turn of events. I’m Sue Ridge and I’m here with my co-host Shannon Gardiner. About forty minutes ago we placed our bets on either Darren and Heath to take out the trophy for Melbourne’s Annual Drain Unblocking Competition, but it’s beginning to look like neither of them are going to make it through the first stage. For those of you that don’t know, dealing with a blocked sewer in the Melbourne CBD takes a lot of skill and isn’t as simple as just unclogging it and moving on. By the looks of it, our favourites Darren and Heath didn’t realise that.

You’re too right, Sue. After messing around a bit at the start and copying other contestants, they’ve gone and started plunging the blocked drains like madmen. It’s starting to look pretty clear that they’re not up to the same standard as the rest of the contestants. I’m not allowed to say that I’m disappointed on air so I won’t, but off-air it’s a different story. 

Come on, Shannon. Saying that is just the same as saying it on air. Get a grip and start commentating like a professional.

Sorry, Sue. I’m really impressed with how George is performing. He’s putting on a clinic compared to everyone else. If I didn’t know the rules of the competition, which state that you cannot enter if you are a professional drain plumber, I’d guess that he was one! That’s a real compliment to him. The way he’s handling all the gunk that’s coming out of the blocked sewer is extremely impressive. I think it’s time he quit his day job!

You know what Shannon if he wins the competition like it’s looking like he will, he probably can quit his day job. The prize money is hundreds of thousands of dollars – part of me wishes I was out there competing against the men. 

Unfortunately, that’s against the rules, Sue! Join us after the break as we find out the winner. Oh, I can hardly contain myself!

Where’s the Tinter?

Can anybody tell me where I can get good window tinting around Melbourne? I’ve searched everywhere and I can’t find anybody who knows where I could find this service. See, I used to know where I could get tinting. I know I did, because the windows of my old house are tinted, and I specifically remember having that done. But that was years ago, and I haven’t needed any tinting since then, so I can’t remember who I got to do it, or where I found them.

In my search for a window tinter (is that what they are even called?), I first went to my boss. The windows of our office are tinted, so surely he would know. But then, as I walked into the building, I realised that the windows weren’t tinted at all. No, all we had was a thin layer of black cellophane, which simply made it appear tinted. Mr Krane is such a cheapskate that he wouldn’t even pay for real commercial window tinting! So, I figured that there was no real point in asking him about window tinting. 

Next, I tried going to my scientific friend, Sandra. I really thought she could help me out, but no, all she did was give me a long scientific explanation as to how window tinting works. I didn’t even think it was that complicated before. She really overwhelmed me, though, so I had to get out of there. My best friend Pat wasn’t any help, either, since he doesn’t have a job and practically lives under a rock. Desperate, I started asking random people around town, only for nobody to have the information I was seeking.

Frustrated, I looked up at the sky and shouted, “Doesn’t anybody know where I can get office tinting around the Melbourne CBD!” Immediately, thunder struck and a ghostly figure descended from the clouds.

This ghost guy started telling me about how he used to love tinting windows in his life. He showed me all of the cars he had worked on before he tragically passed away. When I managed to get a word in, I asked if he could use his ghostly magic to tint my house. He laughed and said that he only knows how to tint car windows.

So, I guess I’m doomed to never have my house windows tinted.

– Sergei

Speaker Bathroom Remodel

Something that has been severely lacking for me in my home is music. When my wife and I built the house we didn’t think to incorporate any sort of speakers or surround sound, and so we can only listen to music privately through our headphones. I feel like this has been at the detriment of our relationship, because we really like spending time together and dancing with music.

My wife and I have discussed it and we’re going to do a bathroom remodel so that we can add speakers into the ceiling of our bathroom. That way we can have the music playing whilst we’re using our double shower, and can really enjoy getting ready for work or events each morning. It goes without saying that music makes everything better. We’re more cheerful when we’re listening to music together, so I’m really glad that we’ve agreed to do this. 

Since we’ve agreed on remodelling our bathroom, we’ve been in discussions about bathroom design. Melbourne, the city we live in, has plenty of open homes available for bathroom inspiration. We’ve made sure to only visit bathrooms that have incorporated speakers into their bathroom design, so that we know exactly which style we like and where the speakers are best positioned. 

I’m really looking forward to having music in our house again. A home without music can barely be classed as a home. Music brings joy, laughter and friendship to any environment, and our bathroom is the perfect place for music to be. I can’t wait to have a dance party in the bathroom with my wife. We have such good times together that this will just add another ten years of good memories to our fantastic relationship.

In two weeks we are going to present our design ideas to the bathroom designer. I hope the designer likes what they see, or is able to offer us some suggestions.

Valentine’s Day Proposal

It’s Valentine’s Day coming up and I’m planning on surprising my girlfriend with a beautiful flower display. She’s the love of my life, the apple of my eye. I want to be with her forever and on Valentine’s Day I’m going to propose. I first asked her to be my girlfriend on Valentine’s Day a couple of years ago and so it will be great symbolisation for me to ask her to be my wife on Valentine’s Day too.

When my girlfriend arrives home she will be blown away by the stunning arch walkway of climbing roses that is just outside our front door. The walkway cost upwards of a thousand dollars, but the whole proposal needs to be perfect, and that means distracting her with beautiful flowers. 

Once she walks inside the house she will be confronted by hundreds of thornless roses lining either side of the rug that goes right down our hallway. Once she gets to the end of the hallway, feeling completely overwhelmed and in love, that’s where the real surprise will come in. All our friends and family will be waiting in the living room, and she’ll be surprised once again. And then, it’ll be the greatest surprise of all. I’ll get down on one knee in the middle of all our friends and family and ask her to be my wife.

I’m getting teary just thinking about it. This is only a week away and once I ask her, our lives are going to change forever. I know that we’re young but this is something that we’re both ready for and starting a family while we’re in our prime is something that I think we both want. 

I’m going to spend the next week planting seeds (pun intended) with my girlfriend so that she knows that something big is coming up. She would never expect that I’m going to propose, though.