By Lana

We’re past the half-way mark for this reno and as with all big sporting events (I acknowledge this isn’t one of them, but perhaps it should be, is it too late for Rio?) we will be crossing down to the sidelines for a half-time report of the team’s performance. I’ll take a look at who’s been playing out of their skin and who needs to step things up in the second half. 

Before kick-off, Coach Cayless (a.k.a Erin) was giving nothing away but said the team had prepared well in the 6-week lead-up to this reno, “I’m really happy with our preparation for this house, everything’s on track and if we play how we’ve trained, the result should take care of itself” Cayless said with her trademark poker-face (let’s be real, it’s more deadpan than poker).

Now it’s well-known within the NRL (National Renovating League) that Cayless coaches a structured style of renovating – each Tradie knows exactly what role they are expected to play and when to come on the field. And for those of us who have sat in the Coach’s box (a.k.a Erin’s car), we also know she isn’t afraid to give her players (and coaching staff) an expletive-laden spray if they stray from the structure.

So let’s run the rule over Cayless’ team to rate each player and coach’s performance in the first half of this reno:

BUILDER (c) – Gary

Off to a flying start carrying most of the workload in the early stages of this reno. Word is Gary went gluten-free in the off season and geez you can tell.  He’s done more heavy-lifting in the first half of this reno than we saw from him all last season.  He continues to be a captain that leads by example and it’s no secret Gary’s a great communicator who has the ear of the Head Coach.

LANDSCAPERS – Steve and Glenn

This pair were injected into the game late in the first half and immediately made their presence known on the field... mainly because Steve forgot to wear a jersey (again)! You could tell they weren’t too happy when Assistant Coaches Hindmarsh and Taylor delivered the message that the deck had to be doubled in size. The audience at home would have been able to lip-read their response but after a few obligatory pats on the bum and words of encouragement they were taking the ball up with renewed vigour. These boys always have a strong second half.

PAINTER - Peachey

The team lifted when former best-and-fairest, Craig Peachey came off the bench in Wk 2 of this reno. As one of the League’s most likeable characters, he showed as much arse-crack as Nathan Hindmarsh and worked just as hard. Unfortunately he was penalized just before half time for unexpectedly leaving the field when he was about to receive the ball.  The penalty was reversed when he returned with a case of Coronas under his arm. Coach Cayless was worried about the team getting loose on the drink... so was the dog next door.


Mr Reliable delivered to expectations and didn’t drop the ball when Bonnie threw him two extra downlights that weren’t in the game plan.  It was an unexpected but necessary change to brighten up the stairwell. Ryan is only in the part-time squad as he moonlights as a Firefighter and word is he’s Mr February in this year’s “Fireys Hot Hot Hot’” calendar. *this is not a picture of Ryan. 

 TILER – Anthony

Hasn’t been utilized much but will have a big impact when he plays long minutes in the second half. 

 HEAD COACH - Erin Cayless 

This is Erin’s fourth reno as Head Coach and her experience is showing. Her trademark structure is paying off and she’s been able to handle some curve balls like when she discovered we’d made a coaches’ error with our measurements for the bedside wall sconces and when we thought we’d get away without a window (you can open) in the ensuite. They don’t call her “Cool Coach Cayless” for nothing, but Erin isn’t counting her chickens and knows there’s still a long way to go in this game.

 ASSISTANT COACH: Bonnie Hindmarsh 

Has brought her A-game to this reno despite giving birth to her fourth child just 18 days before kick-off. Something has clearly changed in Bonnie’s approach to this particular reno. In the past we’ve seen a more impulsive and instinctive approach to her game but since the birth of baby Dodge, she seems more suited to Coach Cayless’ structured style. Bonnie’s the first to acknowledge this and says the routine she's developed off the field for her baby has improved her organisational skills on the field. No dropped balls for Hindmarsh… yet… the fans and media are expecting a big second half. 


A little awkward doing a review of your own performance but in my objective and humble opinion it’s fair to say I’ve exceeded all expectations in the first half of this reno. There are too many examples to list and I don’t want to toot my own horn so you’ll just have to take my word for it. All I am saying is that if Coach Cayless gets a tap on the shoulder it’s pretty clear who will take over the clipboard. Just saying.  


We introduced a new set-play for this reno called the “HardieDeck”. The coaching staff decided to try this out instead of the timber decks we’ve always used.  HardieDeck is made from fibre-cement compressed boards so it’s not fake wood or mod-wood – it’s actually not trying to replicate timber at all (which was a bit hard to get our heads around at first). It’s completely different – especially when you see it in the flesh.  It’s got the strength and smoothness of concrete but with the look and feel of a modern boat deck. 

Another new move we tried out was using Scyon wall cladding in the stairwell and master bedroom to make those walls pop. Bonnie has been dreaming about interior wall cladding since House 1. It’s going to look amazing when the full-time siren goes – don’t leave your seats! 


If you haven't already jumped on the Snapchat bangwagon, you need to. We have just started using it during House Four and we are in love. We will be providing updates regularly from site so you can see the progress as it's happening. 

You can find us at THREEBIRDSRENOS.