Tips for Surviving Your Next Remodel. This isn’t the Chip & Joanna Gaines Show.

1. You are right, no one can afford this. Sure we come up with the money in various ways, but none of us know where the money is coming from most of the time. There is a constant tension of how are we going to do this running in the back of our minds.  Take it a day at a time.  It works out.
2. Yes, we all fight. Right? My husband breaks a pipe, I forget to pick up supplies, the house is a mess, the kids are left to play video games and fend for themselves. Tensions are high. We have fights.  Work through them, paint some more and keep moving on.
3. Did I say the house is a mess. We remodeled a room once for six weeks. Everyday after work and all weekend. I kept things picked up, but we didn’t have the HGTV crew working in the background to make the rest of our house look perfect. Guess what?  It’s okay.  Do what you can.
4. Diet and exercise, what is that? Try as I may I have a hard time keeping up my exercise routine during remodels and eat more fast food than I would care to admit. I do what I can, but have learned to accept that this is part of life. It’s just not like it is on tv. It’s real and what’s real is I am exhausted and don’t feel like cooking. We eat out.
5. Rest. We are getting our house ready to sell. This new remodel is being fueled by my husbands midlife crisis so let’s say it’s red hot important we get out of this house. The remodel has been added to my 47+ hours of work, two kids at home still, and working on my MBA. Rest is key to maintaining our sanity. There is painting I could do today, but it’s a day I need to rest. It’s not worth our health and mental stability.
6. It’s not a good hair day. I always start off our weekend remodels taking a hot shower, putting some makeup on and blow drying my hair. It helps me feel good and when I feel good I do good work. Six weeks later I will wake up, stick some crappy half-washed clothes on and start painting. My spouse will look at me like I am death and we will get to work in silence. We are remodeling, not modeling. Just deal with it.
7. Stay calm. Somehow the remodel god will shine upon you and it will all get finished. Seven years after our family room remodel I am still in shock it is finished. I thought we would kill each other, the kids would get sick from all the cheeseburgers we fed them, and that it was a perpetual pain in our life, but we finished it and it looks great!

If we could turn on real remodeling shows we would see a much different picture. It wouldn’t be the Chip and Joanna Gaines show with smiling clean kids, multiple projects, and our new product line coming out. It would be real. It would be mounting bills, stress, tension, fights, then silence, b.o., and a long list of things we have neglected to do.

You wouldn’t see my husband bring me some cupcakes while I spent time alone decorating the house. You would hear him gripe because we need milk, the trash needs to go out, and he’s hungry. I would roll my eyes and decide whether I had enough energy to start a fight or for the sake of our sanity just go get the milk.

Keep going. You will get through this and finish your project. Before you know it you will be searching Pinterest for new project ideas.

Marcy Pedersen

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