When we arrived, we stayed with friends of friends. They are lovely people and it's a great home, a good place to stop and take a breath. But it's never very comfortable staying with people I've never met before so we were in a rush to get a job and move into our own home.

Sol got a job at Catalyst IT two weeks after we arrived. This was a blessing descended from a long chain of blessings that started with an email post about postgresql. With the help of sol's best friend and her husband, we searched for a house to rent, drove around for three weekend-days looking at homes (thanks Julius!) and finally found the perfect little home from a web advertisement (thanks Arlene!). Our debt to Arlene and Julius are no longer within reach of our ability to repay, and as Jun Yamog says, the best we'll be able to do is pay it forward.

Our home-to-be wasn't going to be ready for another two weeks (it was being renovated) so we stayed on for two more weeks at our homestay, and we spent a heck of a lot of money buying our bedroom suite (Queen Anne bed, base and headboard, along with two bedside tables and a great dresser).

We were able to get the bed into the house two days before we moved in. When we moved in, all we had in the house was the bedroom suite, Timmy's crib, and the oven and dishwasher (which came with the house, although they're a bit old). We'd previously ordered a refrigerator, washing machine and dryer though (brand-new since we intend to stay here for a few years, and bring the whiteware with us when we move). Those arrived the afternoon after we moved in.

TimmyHad to eat on the kitchen countertop

I continued to model my CamiguinAction t-shirts in the empty living roomwhile timmy modeled cuteness
Sol modeled the kitchen's walk-in cupboard

Quite a few snacks later...

Our second purchase from Trade Me (our first was the bedroom suite) was the dining set

On the same trip that another friend, Barry, helped me pick up the dining set, we also picked up a pair of lounging chairs. One is a lazyboy/rocker. The other just rocks, it doesn't recline. We use the second (rocker only) in Timmy's room because it squeaks less than the recliner. Both are in good condition, but less squeaking is important since we rock Timmy to sleep in it.

A week or so after that, we also bought a living room set, one 3 seater, two single seats, and a single rocker (not shown).

We still need a double bed (or two single beds) for the other double room and then I think our furniture buying Trade Me days will be over. Although Sol is still on the lookout for better looking curtains and I'm currently on the lookout for a Linksys NSLU2 :-).


Trademe and carlessness

We've been on Trademe a lot lately. That's New Zealand's dominant auction site (like ebay, but limited only to New Zealand). We've bought a few things, dining table and chairs, coffee table, living room suite, a lazyboy/recliner and its partner rocker (looks the same, but doesn't recline), a bedroom suite (bed, dresser with mirror and two bedside tables). We've been pretty limited in what we've bought though. There are incredible savings to be made by buying on Trademe, but we can't really participate in a lot of those savings since we don't have a car.

For the large items, we're lucky to have made the acquaintance of a kiwi (who is married to a filipina) who has a van he uses for trucking large items. For a fee, we transported the bedroom suite, the dining table and chairs, and the lazyboy pair. He's very nice, but we can only contact him for large pickups since the pickup/delivery fee is substantial (but still much less than the fees for commercial services). The coffee table and living room suite were delivered.

For small things though, we can't really make any savings since generally we'd like to purchase locally, so we could just go over and pick up the items, but since we have no car yet, we can't pick up.

In 6 months or so we might have bought a car already. But by then, likely, we'll have the opposite problem. We'll have too much stuff and will be posting them on trademe and insisting on pickup only :-).

Thanks to Trademe and Barry though (the kiwi with the van), we've got a house that's pretty much complete. We have two single beds to buy yet, for the extra room, for when my mother-in-law visits. We'll ask for Barry's help for those.

A car would be helpful too, for some things that are large but cheap. For instance, we've been here for two months and haven't ironed any clothes yet. We bought an iron, but we haven't got an ironing board yet. It's too large to walk up the mountain with, but too cheap to ask for Barry's help with :-). We've got some very good friends who could help with transporting it, but they've been so nice and helpful we're now reluctant to ask for more help. Sol has a workaround in mind though and if all goes well, we may have an ironing board by next Tuesday or so. And then the house would be complete :-).

There's no TV, no bookshelves, no books. But we don't really need any of those. WE'VE GOT BROADBAND! :-)