We Got Final Approval on the House Renovations

After about four different inspection and a few visits to the Townsville City Council offices we have received final approval on our house renovations!

We mad a lot of changes to our plans since the beginning that called for amended plans. The first time I amended our plans and changed the lower level from block walls to timber walls it cost me about $800.00.

For removing the rear deck, “sister” joists, and knocking out an internal wall I chose to fall back on my high-school drafting classes and draw the plans myself. It took me a while to get everything drawn to scale and ready for submission, but I reckon I saved myself about $500 – $700 by doing it myself. Council had no problems with the plans, so I reckon my high school drafting teacher would have been proud …

Because I am an owner builder I also needed to write up and submit a number of the forms myself. This also took a while as I had to find sample forms on-line and make sure that I understood the legislation and building codes that I was referencing in the forms.

So now the house is finished and we are ready to move onto the next big thing …

Track Cyclone Hamish Progress on Twitter

Tropical Cylcone Hamish Off the North Queensland Coast Cyclone Hamish has now been upgraded to a category 3 cyclone and is still tracking down the coast of Queensland. At the moment they are predicting that it will stay off the coast, but since cyclones are rather unpredictable we will have to prepare for the worst. It is set to be off the coast of Townsville about this time tomorrow.

An interesting way to follow and track Tropical Cyclone Hamish is using a service called Twitter.

Twitter is a micro-blogging service that allows users to post short, 140 character posts to it’s service. One of the features that is has is to set topics to the short posts, which people up and down the Queensland Coast are starting to do with Tropical Cyclone Hamish.

You can follow people’s posts about cyclone Hamish on Twitter here.

If you are experiencing anything to do with the cyclone and want to post about it, just sign up on Twitter and include “#hamish” in your post to add to the topic.

Since it’s after mid-night right now in Queensland you can expect things to be quiet on that topic over night, but it will no doubt pick up again in the morning.

Tropical Cyclone Hamish Forms off the Coast

I was really hoping that Tropical Cyclone Ellie was going to be our only tropical cyclone this year. I know that was unrealistic to hope for, but I was hoping …

Last night Tropical Cyclone Hamish formed off the North Queensland Coast about 200km North of Cairns. If you have a look at the tracking map below, you will see that Cyclone Hamish is expected to be a category 3 cyclone by tonight, and is expected to track down the coast of Queensland over the weekend.

Tropical Cylcone Hamish Forms Off North Queensland Coast

Tropical Cylcone Hamish is expected to be off the coast of Townsville by Sunday, but at the moment they are not expecting it to make landfall.

A category 3 cyclone can be a scary cyclone. Cyclone Larry, which brought massive destruction to Innisfail in 2006, was a Category 4 cyclone, which Hamish will be not too far off of.

The best that we can hope for is that Hamish will continue to track down the coast, and then turn out to sea, slowly loose strength and die. There is currently a tropical cyclone warning issued for between Cape Melville and Cardwell, and a cyclone watch between Cardwell and Mackay, which includes us here in Townsville.

About this time last year we had some wild weather and I was asked by some passers by if I wanted a cyclone, to which I answer a definite “NO!”. Upon hearing that they called me a “pansy” for not wanting a cyclone to hit.

Well, if that’s the case, then today I am again a pansy.

Tropical Cyclone Hamish, please stay off the coast …

You can track the latest updates on Tropical Cyclone Hamish on the Australia Bureau of Meteorology web-site here.