Furnishing a new start
We made the decision a couple of months back when mum fell over for the third time. It was time that she moved in with us. It’s for her safety but also I’ll sleep a lot easier at night knowing that’s she’s ok. Thanks to hardware, furniture and appliances from the Albany Lifestyle Centre, mum’s got a second lease of life and I have peace of mind.
George was amazing about it. I’m not sure I’d have taken the news so well if he’d told me that his mother was moving in. But when I told him that I want mum to come and live with us, he immediately started on converting the downstairs into an independent living space. Mum is 72 and can still look after herself – most of the time, anyway.
So it’s been two months of renovations and many trips to the Albany Lifestyle Centre to get everything we need. Fortunately, we already had a toilet and shower downstairs and the only work there was to add a washing machine and drier. Those were delivered by 100% Albany Extreme Appliances just before mum moved in.
The biggest challenge was converting the old laundry into a kitchen by knocking the wall out to the rumpus room. Since the kids left home, the rumpus room has been the storage area for things we no longer need. While George worked on converting the laundry I sorted the junk, taking most to the second hand store.
We purchased the Nouveau Flatpack kitchen from Mitre 10 MEGA. Despite the many packs, it was much easier than we expected. George spend the best part of two days putting it together but it was well worth the effort. It looks amazing and provides lots of bench and storage space. A new stove, fridge and microwave were added, again from 100% Albany Extreme Appliances.
With the wall removed, the kitchen opens up into the sitting-come-dining area. A coat of Resene low-sheen paint from Mitre 10 MEGA and a large Harum floor rug from freedom Furniture really freshen up the space and make it feel homely. Now to furnish the place. Mum has a few pieces but most of them will be too big for this space.
We head down to The Importer at Albany Lifestyle Centre. I love their stuff. It’s very stylish, unique and very well priced. We buy a Daven coffee table and a Daven storage unit, which mum’s TV can sit on. I see the most amazing vintage-looking Cambridge velvet armchair in an electric blue colour. Blue is mum’s favourite colour. It’s a little indulgent, but I know mum will love it, so I buy it. We add a Keros floor lamp from freedom Furniture. This will sit next to the armchair as mum’s always loved to read.
The last room to tidy up is the bedroom. It already has built in wardrobes so our main focus is on finding a bed. The Albany Lifestyle Centre has a number of bed specialty stores so we have plenty of great options to choose from. We settle on the Bronte bed and mattress from The Bed People. I love their range of options and I’m always keen to support a Kiwi business doing well. The main thing is comfort and quality and we’ve bought stuff from them before so we trust them.
Over the last couple of weeks we’ve been focused on the final dressing of mum’s new place and getting mum all packed up and ready to move. She moved in last weekend and immediately fell in love with her new space. She loves the armchair and it’s quickly become her favourite spot. She likes having her own space but also being able to pop upstairs and see us whenever she wants. And I have real comfort in knowing she’s so close.
George has been great. He got everything done so quickly and at a reasonable cost. Modestly, he says he couldn’t have done it without all the stores at Albany Lifestyle Centre. There is so much variety and having paint, kitchens, appliances, furniture, beds, rugs and everything else in one place makes it so easy. We’ll take mum back down there this coming weekend, so she can pick a few more things to make her new place her own.