It took a while to get to the home stretch but it was worth it – the kitchen looks great! There are a few small pieces to finish – bits of trim, a little paint, reorganizing storage. But, overall, it was worth the effort and it’s really come together nicely. The process was long, but the end result is really lovely.
I debated whether to publish this or not. I’ve reworked it a few times. I’ve set it aside for a while. But, I decided to go ahead with it.
How do you keep going when life just seems to be a little overwhelming? This was me until a couple of months ago. For several months before that, everything seemed to be a little too much. I needed to find ways to shift the balance in order to move forward. One foot in front of the other … and I’m finally getting back on track. Some of this was physical, some psychological and some emotional. Once I was able to get the physical stuff under control, the other issues were easier to tackle. This will not always be the case and it won’t work for everyone, but for me at this time, I found what worked.
Between work and a virus, I’ve been flat out in November! Trying to come back now ….
I wish I was a more patient person. On many fronts, I require patience – with my mother, may cat, my renovations and life in general. I thought I was starting to de-stress as the renovations near completion and I feel like I can relax a bit more. Some stress has seemed to melt away, but the reality is that some stress has just shifted to other things. I don’t feel as irritated at little things but am still impatient with regard to the renovations. I don’t feel as angry that the renovations are not completed but still need to take some deep breaths to keep from screaming sometimes! I have cut down on the junk food but still pull out the Cheetos a little too often. And we’re coming into hot chocolate season ….
So on it goes …. Renovations are disruptive, dirty, disorienting and exhausting. Although I’m making progress, everyday I am forced to ask myself the same basic questions: where is the silverware, what can I make for dinner without dirtying dishes, where can I move a cabinet to get it out of the way, and so on. I cannot wait to have the kitchen completed.
When I moved into my new place last fall, my plan was to get new floors, paint, renovate the bathroom and create an office space. The kitchen would follow in the summer. My sense was I would have months in between the bathroom and the kitchen to relax in my new space. But, no.
My mother and I frequently watch Escape to the Country, a British show about moving to the tranquil countryside in England, Scotland, Northern Ireland or Wales. It’s a calming show and one that we can both enjoy. Unlike most of the U.S. design or real estate shows, the properties are unique and lovely in their own way. We’ve seen walls of every shade imaginable, doorways where even I would have to duck, staircases that cannot possibly meet a modern building code, and ceiling beams that are structural not decorative … and often are in the neighborhood of 400 years old. I despair of the reaction from the House Hunters crowd who would probably want to gut the place and install granite countertops, stainless steel appliances and an open floorplan. And I say this as someone with stainless steel appliances, quartz countertops and a largely open plan space in my last apartment.
I like old buildings. My home is in a building that is about 115 years old. I just watched Homes by the Sea, a UK show on Netflix about, well, living by the sea – those buildings make my 115-year old look like a “new build”. I invariably enjoy the (rather limited) offerings on HGTV more when the renovation or purchase involves an older house. Sometimes there is an updated, but not gutted, old home in another country, which is fun. I just find older buildings to be more interesting. Continue reading →
I had a plan: undertake a big project in my apartment every other year. It would take forever, but that timeline would allow me to pay off one project and save up for the next. First it was replacing the carpeting and the heating and air conditioning system (year 1), then replacing the kitchen appliances (year 3), then repainting the living room and bedroom (year 5) and then replacing the windows (year 7). The full bathroom was set to be next in year 9 (2013), but there were other things that needed to be done – replacing my laptop and some furniture. So the full bathroom renovation was set for 2015, with the floors scheduled for 2017, the kitchen in 2019, the half bath and new doors (and maybe the walk-in closet) in 2021. Just as we were ready to begin tearing out bathroom tile, my mother announced her plan to move in with me. Continue reading →
Finding room in a one-bedroom apartment for another sleeping area was a little challenging. After fighting with the cat for space during renovations, I held my breath about adding another person into the mix. But at least my mother doesn’t bite or scratch! Continue reading →