12 June 2013

House Arrest: Ball & Chain = Roller & Brush

I am a firm believer in the notion that the personal details, small or otherwise, are what make a house your home. The paint colors I've spent hours debating over in my head (and with my spouse.) The furniture, passed down from generations or bought by us newlyweds (I still like to think of us being filed in that category.) The pictures filled with faces of the people we love, memories we hold dear. Shelves filled with knick-knacks that we adore. These details carefully fretted over, decided upon, cherished are the things that in total make real the reality of  “home.”

I have lived without these now for a little over a month and a half. From vagabonds to a construction zone, my home has been and is still boxed up and stored in our new garage. I hadn't realized how much I missed “home” until this weekend. I looked around at the chaos of our quickly changing house and I wanted to just instantly transform it into the completed stage filled with our things, our memories.

I think it bothers me most because my career lends itself to being gone for long, frequent stretches at a time. So when I am home, I want to be surrounded by all the things (and people) that I relate to that. I want to enjoy the comforts of being home. But right now comfort is certainly the last thing our house exudes.

And I know exactly what triggered this pity party. A stupid chair (don’t judge me. This a non-judging zone.) I have kept 98% of our things in storage. No furniture (minus a couch and TV), no pictures, no decorations, not even silverware or place settings… until this past weekend. Kevin’s parents were coming for the weekend and my brother for the day, so obviously a set of mattresses on the ground and a couch were not going to make for a hospitable environment. They didn't expect it to be a model home or anything because they know what we have been/are doing, but I wanted them to be as comfortable as possible. So I brought in extra mattresses (obviously) and a chair. The chair was a wedding present from my grandma and granddaddy AND the first piece of furniture in our previous home. It was the “start” to that home and I just knew (looking at it sitting among drywall mud and unpainted trim) that it was going to be (or at least feel like) a long time before our current house started felling like a true home. It was like that chair opened a flood-gate of nostalgia that I hadn’t let myself think of because like the old adage goes: out of sight, out of mind. Once I saw the chair in it’s temporary place, I was ready to have all of my things out of storage and in their places.

But that brings me to an important topic of today’s blog post (and one I need to remind myself of right now): when doing renovations, especially ones that cause normal life to be disrupted, remember that this is temporary. Even though it’s annoying and uncomfortable, it shall pass. The mess, the chaos will go away and when it does, all that hard work is going to show a beautiful result that will be well worth the struggle. You will have a home filled with not only memories, but built from dreams, visions that you and your spouse had together. And that is a beautiful thing, creating the reality of your dreams together.

You also need to NOT get overwhelmed (Christie, are you paying attention?!) This is easy to do especially if you are doing the work yourself. For example, if I look at the whole house (all the rooms and all the hallways and all the windows and all the door frames…) it’s easy for me to get frustrated and feel like it is not even in the realm of possible for the trim to all get primed and painted. But I need to just continue to focus on small sections and before I know it a room is done, and then two rooms are done and soon all the trim is beautiful and white. Stay focused on the current project and not the long list of still-to-dos!

Renovations and fixing-uping (is that a real verb? I think not) are worth it, but it is a process! And like most processes you hit a point where it seems to be too much, but you push through and, boy, are you glad you did! So keep pushing, and keep those projects going because you’ll thank yourself when you have the home of your dreams.

The chair. And can you please appreciate all the beautiful white trim (yes, that still needs one more coat) surrounding it?! Plus the painted fireplace…sneak peak time!

If you have any specific questions for us about home projects (or anything), please let us know! Hope you all are having a wonderful week thus far and enjoying many home projects of your own J

Xoxo, Christie

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