Q: Since you decorate/upgrade/reno your house for a living, do you ever feel like you are always working on your house but not ever getting to just live in it and enjoy it? Like when you spend all day cooking in the kitchen by dinnertime you aren’t hungry and don’t even want to eat half the time. If something (like your house) is never quite done and there’s a to do list longer than the purchase contract, is it hard to just peacefully sit without always thinking about the next project and thereby giving yourself low level anxiety? Or….am I the anxious one which is why this even occurred to me? – Rach
A: Haha, it’s a great question and we actually get it a lot. I really think because this blog and our DIY love started as a complete hobby (we did home improvement stuff on nights and weekends and started this blog just to keep our friends and family posted) it’s totally something that we still enjoy doing – and are thankful to have the opportunity to do full time. We actually still do most projects on nights and weekends since during the day we’re tending the blog/answering comments/writing posts/doing other office-job stuff like arranging giveaways and managing sponsors (and watching the bean) and then at night when Clara’s asleep we can actually get our hammer on.
Bit since fixing up our home wasn’t something we did to make money or start a business, and was actually what we opted to spend our free time doing without making a dime after a hard day’s work – it really is just the definition of FUN to us. To be very honest, the business side of running a blog can be pretty hard work – so the coding and the technical stuff and the other behind the scenes being-a-small-business stuff (like filing quarterly taxes and paying for our own health insurance, etc) can be stressful (more on that here). But the DIY stuff is always our favorite! It’s the fun part. The cream in the middle of the Oreo, if you will.
Even picture taking/uploading/sizing can sometimes feel like busy-work, but projects and planning and painting and all the fun physical you-see-the-changes-as-you-go stuff is the thing we always look forward to! It’s so rewarding and personal that it never gets old. I definitely don’t think it would be that way for everyone, but just as someone else might have a passion for numbers (and take great joy in being a professor or an accountant or a financial adviser) we have a passion for getting to plan/rethink/paint/upgrade stuff. It’s a fun challenge for us and no day is ever the same. I certainly think some folks would rather just do it as a hobby (maybe five hours a week is their cap) but we’re happy to do it day in and day out. Heck, for the last four consecutive Christmases we’ve taken on some of our craziest house projects (what’s wrong with us? haha). But honestly, we wouldn’t have it any other way.
It wasn’t always an enjoyable, balanced, healthy thing for us though. In our first house we found that in the first few months after moving in (about a year before we started this blog) we felt rushed and put all of this unrealistic pressure on ourselves. And it sucked! We wanted our house to be completely made over in a matter of months and anytime someone was visiting we freaked out and tried to do ten things before they arrived, which left us feeling burned out at best and frustrated and deflated at worst (when we didn’t get everything done in time). The freeing thing was realizing that it takes years. Our den actually looked like this eight months after moving in. And that’s more than ok – it’s par for the DIY course.
A house that needs serious love isn’t going to look amazing overnight or even in a month or a series of months. Unless you have a crew of people and unlimited funds. Plus, if you take your time you’re more likely to love the result since you actually think it through instead of rushing in and having all those shoulda-woulda-coula feelings later. This room took 4.5 years to evolve and was one of our favorite spots in our first house – not only afterwards, but along the way. Once we learned to chill the heck out and relax. Haha.
So “relax, it’s only decorating” is kind of our mantra. We’ve had family visit us in the middle of our most recent kitchen reno (there were no doors on any of the cabinets) and we all just laughed that there’s always something disassembled at our house.
Guests know it’s totally normal to come over our house and see something mid-project, and you know what? They still love us! It was a revelation. We don’t have to go crazy trying to finish every last detail when family and friends are en route. They will love us and enjoy our company anyway. Liberating, I tell ya.
In short: now we feel a lot less time pressure (haha, yes, even with such a long list and so many people watching) because we have learned that it’s not a sprint and it’s more of a journey that we need to stop and enjoy. We always say it’s not about the destination, it’s about the ride. And the ride never gets old to us since we get to switch things up and tackle different tasks all the time (painting trim for five years would definitely get old, but getting to do a bunch of different challenges and have various adventures along the way really is our idea of a good time).
Plus we get to live IN our progress, meaning that everything we have accomplished surrounds us and reminds us how good it feels to get ‘er done. I suppose it’s like hanging your degrees on the wall in your office, and putting up photos that make you smile – the environment is a good one because it reminds us how far we’ve come and how rewarding it is when we get our hands dirty and make something lackluster into something that we find beautiful and functional. Even when we’re living right smack in the middle of a project, we try to enjoy that time, snap photos, revel in the fact that a doorway might exist where one didn’t a few months ago, etc. Even if the counters aren’t in and the new floor isn’t down, there’s something nice about enjoying each step of progress as it comes.
So our #1 advice to folks is to enjoy the journey and stop rushing around. Which means while you DIY your way to a new home, you’re required to stop to enjoy your handiwork and appreciate where you were and where you’re going and all that stuff. What’s a renovated kitchen if you can’t enjoy it? Since we finished that looooong project we have entertained a bunch of family and friends in there and every time we find ourselves beaming at a bunch of people milling around in our new space, this wash of gratitude and happiness comes over us. We’re proud and excited to share our hard work and so thankful that it’s functional and beautiful to us!
And not only do we get that giddiness when we entertain, but a quiet evening at home on a random Wednesday night might mean that John cooks while I read to Clara in the chair by the fireplace and then we eat at the peninsula. And this is the view.
Sometimes we take Clara outside to play on the patio, so we’re here:
… instead of here, which is what that area looked like before we got our DIY-loving hands on it.
So we’re soaking up the gratitude and enjoying our ever-evolving home all the time. The same is true when we work towards upgrading our bedroom or our living room or our curb appeal – all those spaces are areas we can enjoy and they fuel us and excite us and inspire us to keep at it. They remind us how much fun it is and how rewarding it can be. So try not to put pressure on yourself to get to this imaginary finish line and just have fun and take your time and tackle things one day and one small step at a time! It really keeps it manageable and spurs you on to make other parts of your home just as personalized and special.
What do you guys do to keep your DIY spirits up? Do you find that it’s possible to enjoy your home improvement triumphs along the way? Have you ever felt the it-must-be-done pressure that we put on ourselves in the first few months of living in our first house? I’m telling you, it’s crazy-liberating to just say: it’ll be done when it’s done and we’re going to have fun getting there. Booyah.
This is a great post!
We’re still renting but when we first moved into our new flat I found it hard to sit down and relax because I’d see something I wanted to re-arrange or tweak. And right now I’m sitting at my desk but I’m all antsy because what I really want to be doing is at home finishing a curtain for this weird dresser to cabinet project I’ve got going on…
Jess @ Little House. Big Heart. says
Thanks for the perspective. We’ve been in the Little House for over a year and haven’t “finished” any single room… in fact, we haven’t even touched three of them! Sometimes it’s really discouraging that we have to take things so slow, but it’s great to hear that we’re not the only ones that have had to take their first home slow.
PS. We’re still in love with your built-in fridge! It’s at the top of our to-do list (but we’re thinking about adding a pull-out cangoods drawer between the wall and the fridge).
That’s totally normal Jess! We’ve been here 16 months and haven’t touched two bathrooms, the sunroom, and the playroom! Let alone the crazy nightmare basement! Haha. We’ll get there someday…
Stephanie Phillips says
OOh, Jess, do it. (The can rack, that is)
I love the pace that you and the Petersiks and others take in your DIY projects. It makes things seem much more attainable to the rest of us folks. :)
That’s a great attitude! It’s always better to live in the house a while and figure out what you really want/need rather than try to do a bunch all at once just to be “done.”
I think my parents worked on the house I grew up in nonstop for about 19 years. They just kept making loops around as tthe family changed and our needs and tastes changed. And they really enjoyed it.
Haha- that totally sounds like fun to us!
Our DIY adventure has slowed down quite a bit since we bought our forclosure a year ago and got most of it fixed up (besides decorating here and there). Now we’ve decided to buy a new house. A little move in ready but I can’t wait to take this new place and make it our long-term home. Putting all the special touches in like you guys are doing.
What a great post! I wondered about it as well and am glad you are enjoying it :)
This post was perfect timing for me. I am closing on a townhouse today (like in 3 hours… omg I’m so nervous.) and I came to the realization that everything I want to do will take time. My number one focus will be on being smart financially. But in the meantime, I can just enjoy the little things I can do and the fact that it’s mine. :)
we tend to cope with it in bursts. I find it exhausting to be always spending weekends/evenings on DIY so we go hard for a few months make some big changes and then back right off and enjoy other parts of our lives for a few months, then when we are back on it again it’s much more enjoyable.
You are lucky because you have so much space, we only have 4 rooms total (kitchen, livingroom, bedroom, bathroom)so decorating one usually means chaos in the rest of the house, and thats what gets really tiring.
Oh yes, I know what you mean about the chaos seeping into other rooms! The funny thing about having more space is that there’s more to do (and more chaos to go around) – haha. We can’t believe we still have three untouched rooms and two untouched bathrooms after 16 months here! It definitely takes time!
Karen J says
We only seem to be “inspired” to complete projects when we know we have guests coming. It really motivates us, but can be a total drag when tackle too large of a project and are wiped out when said guests arrive. I just like our house to be “perfect” when we have guests which can be a stressful way to live. I’m going to try to have someone over when our house is a wreck!
Yes do it! It’s liberating. I promise you they don’t even notice half of the chaos that makes you cringe! I think people are most critical of their own spaces anyway, so if they’re over and the conversation and the food are good (even if it’s takeout) everyone’s happy!
It absolutely sounds familiar, the pressure and stress of getting something done asap! But like with anything else in life, it’s about enjoying the little things along the way, isn’t it? Thanks for a great post reminding us of that!
Chelsea @ ridingescalators.blogspot.com/ says
I love it! I’m definitely one of the ones who enjoys taking on a DIY project around the house in my time off – because it’s fun! And it’s always fun to see what you can do with your own two hands to improve (well at least in my opinion!) a space and put your spin on it! I’ve been loving updating our house from the retro 50-70s vibe that it had when we bought it and bringing into the 21st century! Case in point – I just revamped the guest room!
Looks so cheerful and welcoming in there! Such a sweet guest room.
Rebecca @This Nest is Best says
Love this post :) Really helps remind me to enjoy our space now and what we’ve done now and know that we will get to the other areas…eventually! We’ve lived here for five years, but DIY/upgrades were not always at the front burner, so sometimes it feels like we haven’t done much, but that’s simply not true!
Thanks for the reminder to live in the moment and appreciate it!
Colleen in MA says
I’m here to tell ya, watching you live what you write about in this post has made a huge difference in tackling my own home projects.
We recently redid a room from top to bottom and during (frustrating) delays I just told myself, “This is ‘processing’ time. Go stand in that room and take it in.” And it was still productive. Took a breath and enjoyed the progress and thought more about design decisions. Hubby and I made two trips to IKEA in which we didn’t buy a single thing but looked at tons of options … and kissed a few times in a corner or two to remind ourselves this is supposed to be fun :)
And I’m glad for the delays and the trips in which we didn’t buy anything. Because if we had gone with a few of our original design decisions it wouldn’t have turned out that great. Took a few times of standing in the room in progress and using it even while it was not finished to think some things thru.
In the past (before YHL) I would have been either paralyzed with fear of making a mistake or bullying my way through delays and making half-baked decisions. So thanks for the reality check!
Aw Colleen, that makes me beam. I’m so happy for you.
This is so true. The best thing I have done along my DIY journey is to take pictures. Because, after a while you do sometimes feel like you haven’t really accomplished much….then you go through your photos and see the changes. For me, I especially notice it in my landscaping. I bought a foreclosure 3 1/2 years ago and everything was pretty much dead, except for a few bushes and a giant tree (Planted 5 feet off the patio!!) that put a crack we fondly call “the great divide” down the middle of our patio. Now we have grass and plants! The great divide is still there as well….but that’s a project for next year as it’s going to cost some bucks, as we are going to have to hire someone to sledgehammer it up, (We know it’s beyond us physically to get it done.) before we pour the new one. Mr. Tree also got cut down before he caused anymore damage.
Amy @ this DIY life says
Over two years into our house, we are definitely not as far along as I thought we would be. We joked when we bought the house that it was going to be a 10 year project…it was rough(http://thisdiylife.wordpress.com/tour-from-the-beginning/). Now we realize that not being able to DIY full time and refusing to go into debt to renovate our house 15 years is probably more realistic ;) Sometimes it’s discouraging to know we have soooo much to do and some of it is boring stuff and not making the house pretty. Sometimes we just need a break. But then I decide to throw a party and have people over and we’re magically motivated again :)
Reading blogs about what other people do helps motivate too. Must be my competitive nature :)
This is such a GREAT post- I wish I had read it when we bought our house almost 4 years ago. We’ve accomplished little things in each room along the way (kitchen floor, bathroom & bedroom redo) but I always felt stressed & behind. It really is a journey. When you take it slower- I’m finding I wind up loving the results more and I’m less likely to get sick of a trend I followed. Now I set goals for our house by season– and NOT huge ones (this summer we’re just turning part of our front yard into a garden). I don’t know if we’ll every have a “finished” product on our hands but I think that’s how houses are– once you’re “done”, you’re starting something else.
Jamie Heard Smith says
This is just what I needed to hear! My husband and I purchased a house this past winter that had to have major work done before we could even move in, so we felt rushed to get it done – especially considering that we were paying both a mortgage and rent at the time. Because of the financing situation with the house (it was a foreclosure), we also had a 6 month time frame to make some major improvements, so – again – rushed. Of course, there are a million things that we still need to do, but now that the large-ticket items are out of the way (like flooring and painting and some work on the siding and roof), I think it’s time to slow it down a bit. See our progress at senatobiasmiths.blogspot.com
How long do you think it will be before your current house is “done”? Do you then have to sell it and move to another fixer-upper in order to keep the blog a-chugging along? How long do you plan to keep that up? I started reading after the new house, so I don’t know why you ended up moving after you poured so much of yourselves into it, or whether you plan to do so again. Do you ever miss something you put so much of yourselves into?
Our first house took us 4.5 years and was not this big (and didn’t have as big projects on the list, like a deck, garage conversion, etc) and we still have three untouched rooms and two untouched bathrooms so we figure we have a while here! Haha. We have talked with family members about going in on a rental or vacation home with them in a few years if we ever get restless (it’s a good deal for them since we’d do most of the labor), but we think we’ll be here a nice long time!
Christine @ A Merry Journey says
Thank goodness for this post! We moved into our house last November and we have been DIYing our little hearts out. I have been completely stressed out that it doesn’t match my idea of what it should be. I am glad I am not the only one! My husband is always trying calm me down and enjoy our home the way it is. I’ll try to take a few breaths make “It’s a marathon, not a sprint” my mantra.
Thanks so much for the words!
Alex - Old Town Home says
I like your point about guests coming over and seeing things mid (or before) project. It gives friends and family such a great perspective on the time and effort we put into each and every project. People who don’t often come to the house say “You’re *still* working on your house?” But people who know, who’ve seen it before, and then are sometimes shocked at the after (even if the after takes months to years) say “Wow, you should be so proud, you’ve done so much, it looks great.”
Blogging has been a great way to show friends and family the extent that we go to during renovating. We don’t get the “what’s taking so long” questions nearly as much now. Instead we get the “I saw your post on your front door, wow you went to a lot of effort, but it looks great!”
I think everything in home renovation is about vision. From the vision of seeing something that isn’t, to the vision of seeing what will be when in the midst of the mess, and even to the vision of being able to see what you’ve already accomplished in spite of the rooms or areas that are mid project.
Well, in addition to vision, it’s sometimes about being able to just shut the door and forget about a project for a little while. That also helps keep it from overwhelming.
thanks for posting this. we’ve been in our house for just under 2 years and have yet to do anything at all with the bathroom that we (and all our guests) use the most. we lived over a year with spackle spots in every single room until we got around to painting them all, and for the longest time our house looked like it had just been robbed when you walked in the front door, because we dont have enough furniture to fill the space! its easy to get discouraged with how slow our progress is going, but its nice to know that even DIY rockstars like yourselves cant get everything done in a day :)
Rebecca @ the lil house that could says
Currently feeling the “it must be done” pressure in our nursery since I’m due in 4 days! But I know the smaller things like hanging artwork can be done after the baby arrives… I hope….
It’s funny, I was watching House Hunters the other day and it was a young couple who were complaining about not liking the paint. When the realtor reminded them it was an easy fix, they said it was too much work. I looked at Mike and I was baffled like, what do these people do on weekends? The house IS our hobby so I never think of it as something I don’t want to do in my free time!
Haha, isn’t that funny? Cracks us up too!
Centsational Girl says
Great perspective you two! I feel the same way, we’ve been “remodeling” for six years now, tackling spaces or projects when we find the time and energy but can’t ever stop! When you’ve got DIY DNA, it’s just plain FUN!
Jennifer I. says
Thank you so much for putting things in perspective! I am completely Type A! We bought our house last August, so it hasn’t even been a year yet and I always feel like I’m in a rush to make our house “presentable” or straight out of a magazine…. Right now our yard is dug up (working on redoing our irrigation system and planting grass), curtains and art aren’t hung…..and sometimes it can be overwhelming! I try to tell myself look at what it looked like before (we’ve already redone all of the flooring, painted the whole house, gotten new windows and redone the crawlspace…with a little help…). So thanks again for telling me to SLOW THE HECK DOWN. I really love posts like this!!
So glad to help Jennifer! Good luck with everything!
Thanks, John and Sherry!! We bought our house at the end of February and got married the end of March. So I knew we took on a lot at the same time, but it has been hard to live in such an unsettled place.
He’s been telling me to just enjoy the process and take it one step at a time (we both work full-time and don’t want to make the house our entire life), but this was a good reminder that other people go through this too. And I can write down as much as I’d like on our weekend to-do list, but sometimes things take longer than planned or just don’t get done.
I have a friend who says “are you ever going to be finished with this house?” Shocks me every time.
I just don’t think that way. My house is something I love, so I take care of it, improve it, dress it up. Her question seems as weird to me as if she said “aren’t you done eating yet, you’ve been eating for 35 years now”.
Hahahaha, that’s a really funny comparison- so true!
Our old house is such a fixer-upper that sometimes I can get bogged down in just how much we have to do.
Case in point: the nursery. I sometimes get jealous when people post their nursery reveals online and all they really had to do was paint and buy furniture. We had to scrape 7 layers of paint off of 4 8 foot tall, 18 pane windows, scrape and skimcoat the popcorn ceiling, refinish floors, repair baseboard trim, etc. And when we finally did get to paint and buy furniture, there are still other little minor (and major!) repairs and renovations that need to be done.
BUT! Sitting in the finished Nursery (Phase 1) gives me so much joy. It’s my favorite place in the house. And I love how I saw it emerge from a truly hideously ugly old room. I can’t wait to get started on another room to do the same thing….
… when we have the money to do so… but that’s another story.
We know how much work that is- wow! Congrats on your major major major accomplishment!
Wom-mom Ethne says
I am totally impatient when it comes to projects. We haven’t had too much DIY to tackle at our old place, and our new place is in pretty good shape – for now I plan on doing some work in the yard and making it colorful with flowers. I do quite a few crafts and gave up on quilting because it took too long. I have a short attention span. But I know I will enjoy making our yard have a little more curb appeal and color.
I have a question for you..I am pregnant (4 months..yay!!) and was wondering if you ever did paint jobs like painting furniture when you were pregnant ? Did you paint clara’s nursery as well..cos i know you guys use no-voc paints ?
I always used no-VOC paint and left the nasty stuff up to John (ex: he demoed our bathrooms and sealed our basement with oil-based stuff since I couldn’t when I was baking Clara). But yes, I helped paint the bathroom and nursery when I was prego, we just used no-VOC stuff and ran fans and opened windows just in case. Hope it helps!
Heidi S. says
This is a great advice (although sometimes hard to follow)! We have lived in our house for 11 1/2 years and it is still no where done. We have redone rooms multiple times now and just when we think we are at a stopping point, life changes and so must the house! Heck, we even put off having kids, so that there would be a suitable (i.e. not dangerous) kitchen. Now a days I just try to break up the hardcore DIY with some quick and pretty accessories (so that I have something to smile at).
kaycee parker says
I loved this post! Like some other people have commented already, you guys give us the motivation and courage to tackle projects. Humans naturally thrive on the before and after results, that’s why we love all those HGTV shows and your blog!
I was fortunate enough to be able to renovate everything in my house when I bought it. Fortunately, I am good at making big decisions and I have a great mom who dedicated way too much of her time. I think I would of been restless if the we didn’t dedicate the 2 months to fixing it all up.
I still have empty walls, so now i’m taking the time on the decorating & purchasing furniture part. Still, I can’t wait to send you the before/afters :)
This is my most favourite post from you guys yet.
I thought for sure that our 1899 farmhouse renovation would be a quick few months – we’re now a year and a half in and haven’t even finished the first room.
I needed to read this today – we’re hosting a get together at our house for the first time tomorrow and I was panicking that our bathroom isn’t finished, but not anymore. I’ll at least hang the door back up for our friends, though.
Aw, I’m so glad this post came in handy! Good luck with your gathering tomorrow- all you need is good company! The rest is extra!
Maureen @ This (Kinda) Old House says
I have been living in my house for 7 years. We have done very little to our home in that amount of time. We are only now really starting to do stuff because I realized I didn’t need a ton of money to do so (thanks to you guys). But, I am extremely impatient about it all. LOL I have the mindset of “I need this done so I can enjoy my house”. Probably not the nest mindset, but it kinda pushes me to get things done.
Maureen @ This (Kinda) Old House says
^best mindset I mean.
My dad would call a lot of what you guys do the “joys” of homeownership. Buy a fixer-upper, and it’s even more so. Blogging about it is the part that’s extra, in my mind, but it’s great that we live in a time when such a thing is possible (especially when you can turn it into your income, too). It’s so fun to watch somebody else’s process, and thanks for leading me to lots of great ideas!
The den in your first house is still my most favorite room ever. Exactly what I want. My house is so dark. Banish the dark and bring in the light!
Krystle @ ColorTansformedFamily says
I used to freak out and worry about having guests over too. But true friends don’t care what shape our house is in or how it looks. Plus if you ate always working on projects it will I’ve you something to talk about when they come over.
As far as renovations… I love thinking about it over time and coming up with solutions in my head. We may not be able to afford all my “solutions” but I just enjoy the problem solving aspect of it. We have been planning our kitchen reno for five years now and it’s fun to see how our dreams for it are constantly changing. Thankfully, this is the year we are actually tackling it!
Kelly Mann says
Such a good post! I feel like everyone thinks this of us, with all the renos we’ve done on our house and I feel the exact same way!
I love this post! This is totally how we operate too. We have lived in our house for 7 years and we have just about finished everything we wanted to do. It has been non-stop since we moved in and we have loved it! All our friends and family always joke about how we always have some project going on (I think if we are ever done they won’t know what to talk to us about haha). But we enjoy our home so much, even through the chaos. We have pretty much rebuilt the house, inside and out – except the foundation, and (most) of the framing and drywall. We work well together and we have different strengths and there is something so rewarding about seeing an idea you have come to life.
That’s so awesome Tracie! Sounds like such a great adventure!
Cathleen Pearson says
Love this post. Keeping it real.
I was a perfectionist in every area of my life. Then I got fibromyalgia and lamented the fact that my house wasnt’ perfectly clean or organized or whatever. I had no energy to do anything but work. After 4 years I’ve chilled. A friend of mine told me I was the voice of “progress, not perfection” and that has been my motto ever since. Enjoy the moment, it doesn’t have to be perfect to be beautiful.
I love that! So inspiring.
You have some great insights here, my favorite is about your friends and family loving you even when things aren’t done. I had a similar epiphany in college when I realized my friends liked me for me, even when I looked gross. (crazy, huh?!) I ran track, you see, and so I was sweaty, grimy and stinky several hours every day, and guess what? My friends still talked to me! I worried about how I looked so much in high school, it really was freeing (and wonderful). Maybe not home decor related but that’s where my mind jumped from your little comment. Thanks for having such solid heads on you and passing on that wisdom! Happy weekend!
Haha, it’s so true! I was a hot mess in college, and I didn’t even have track to blame for it. Haha.
Kim @ Yellow Brick Home says
I loved this. Thank you.
I think your revelation that your friends en route will still love you even while there may be a few loose ends was SPOT ON. We also tend to try and wrap up the mid-process projects when we know someone is on their way over, and it’s just not always possible. I’m going to try and remember that the next time we’re running around like crazy people, and hopefully, we’ll feel liberated, too.
Aw, I hope it does!
James Malone says
That’s why I love your blog, sometimes you watch hgtv and get unrealistic expectations that in a day or two, even with commercial breaks and a word from other people’s sponsors, boom!!! You place is done and it’s time to have the party while the credits roll. You guys keep it real, and it doesn’t hurt that you do it with a genuine love for what you do. Keep it authentic Petersik’s, you guys ROCK!!!!
PS I can’t wait for the book!
What a great post! It’s nice to read about the heart behind all the DIY. We’re in a rental that I’ve finally decided to embrace and make home after almost a year of living here. It’s amazing how much I’ve been able to do without even spending any money! The greatest lesson I’ve learned from reading YHL for a couple years now is to see things through to the end. No more half-a**ing around here! Thank you, J&S. Have a wonderful party weekend!
Haha, that’s too funny. I love it.
Laura C. says
Great advice–just when I’ve been trying to slow the DIY down and enjoy it. Easier said than done though, especially for perfectionist personality types! I know you know what I mean!
You’re so right that’s it’s hard to take a step back from full-metal-jacket DIY. Surprisingly hard, actually.
Thanks for the reminder! :-)
Such a great post for a Friday.
Happy Mother’s Day, dear Sherry :)
xox from Minneapolis
Aw thanks Renee!
[email protected] says
This is a great post for all DIYers to keep on file. A lot of our friends (including us) have bought houses in the past 6 months and all of the wives have hit this wall where we feel so discouraged because there is SO much we want to do, but no time (or money) to do it. I know we’ll get there one day, but the funny thing is by the time we’re settled and it’s all “just so” I know I’ll want to change something else ;)
I bought a 1972 built home 2 and half years ago. I have done a ton to it since I bought it with the help of handy family and friends (I am a singleton.) I still have a ways to go, and new DIY ideas are always popping up. Even simple things like adding a fan where there wasn’t one before, switching out lighting, or painting the trim work in my sunroom put a huge smile on my face. It is so satisfying to see my ideas come to life. Homeowners on a budget should never be afraid to learn new things and get their hands dirty!
I just made a list and it is pretty long, but I know that soon enough it will have lines through plenty of the tasks, just like the list you guys keep. :)
Awesome timing and exactly what I needed. We closed on our first house a week ago and are frantically working (last week and next) to get a few things done that are needed/easier to do with nothing in the house (roof, furnace, painting, refinishing the floors). I have a huge list of things that need to get done or that I want to do, but we’re going to be limited by time and money. I’ve been trying to tell myself that we need to live in the space first to really understand what will work best for us, but it’s not always easy to believe that!
You wrote this at the perfect time for me! We’ve only lived in our new house for a month, and I’ve felt that pressure from day one to get things done. I didn’t want people to come over and think this was my idea of a perfect home. But then I realized that I want people to see the before as well as the after, so they can celebrate the transformation too! My family is coming to visit from out of state at the end of the month and I keep having to tone myself down. I can’t accomplish everything before then – chill out Jenna!
Thanks again =)
Just what I needed to read! I am just in the process of renovating the baby room and it is really highlighting just how miserable the hallway is, and the mater bedroom, and the bathroom and that paint that needs to be touched up and, and, and… I need to chill out!