Before & After? idk – Around Here It Seems Like a Perpetual State of During
Living with Remodeling: It’s Hard to Make a Home, When There is Nothing But House
This post starts as a “annual” follow up to this post >> State of the Union; Address . . . but let’s see.
… and some may ask, “If you haven’t been blogging jb, what have you been doing with yourself?” Oh! you didn’t? Hmmmm – well . . . gonna tell you anyway, and in nutshell:
I had a lovely holiday with my family; thanks for asking. I went to New York City; (what? What?! and did I mention that GE has invited Building Moxie to visit Kentucky in June? – ahYeah! — What-what?!) I finished studying for, and have finally scheduled my Maryland Home Improvement Contractor licensing exam (that’s MHIC for short); yep, and probably more on this in a future post.
* Oh, and Mrs Moxie and I did some Remodeling . . .
In studying myself, too, though – I found I have become ultra self-conscious about the work around my house. Yes, and at times, this causes apprehension even (thanks HGTV & others). And I know – there’s no room for this.
Trepidation has no place in home improvement this hizouss, and you know what do they say about fashion, models, and the feminine image? I mean – I am amazed by just how difficult it has become to accomplish near anything around my house.
And this, in fact, is almost exactly why I never jump in on the Before & After groove that so many folks have so much fun with. I mean – a whole house renovation is a little different. Progress must be more simply, what you strive for. Either that or, well, Go Insane.
* On Our Old House
My house when purchased was far from “move-in condition.” And to me, it feels more that I am still working on the “house” rather than individual projects within this house. I don’t know if that makes sense, but by consequence, I almost never completely finish a (post-worthy) project.
I mean – “After.” ha! and I’ll let you know when I get there. Historically, that’s (knowing how my wife and I work) – right around the time that we have a contract to sell. Sad but true, and remind me to tell you about the HVAC upgrade in my first house … sometime.
Before & After :: That and I am almost never on top of it quick enough to take pics when a space is still clean, organized, and presentable
Just about this point, I’ll mention – our hall bath project is finally under way and, yes, the Other Man is still with us. He did a decent job in both the kitchen and the “master” bath >> that project clocking in right around 14K – not bad considering considerable plumbing changes and $2800 in plumbing expense.
*Remodeling Decisions Can Be Dictated by Property Value
Our priorities have been changing rather rapidly recently. I won’t say that we are bleeding, but Zillow has our property value free fallin’ (and not that you (general) should pay too much attention to that), and it is time now to just. get. it. done. And me, relegated to little things (well, some big things too), I do what I can do – but my weekend feels like it is slowly disappearing.
Those of you with children and a wife, who works in real estate … know what I mean. It seems difficult at times to have a fruitful convo with my wife about anything, let alone – things project-related. (But I’ll save commentary on that till another time.)
And anyway . . . I guess, for now . . .
During :: We Dance . . .
Thanks for reading, feel free to shake a stick at me, and I’ll be writing at you soon. ~jb
23 thoughts on “Before & After? idk – Around Here It Seems Like a Perpetual State of During”
Thanks for the picts! And, hey, at least the girls still enjoy the kitchen…even if the backsplash wasn’t done. Offer up cake mix and the rest of the world disappears. :)
yeah — that cake turned out horribly. but we had fun. and I was telling Barry this morning … I need to do posts like this every now and then just to remind myself that we actually do get stuff done around the house . . . despite everything that is always going on. Thanks Amy and happy Monday!
I think it is hard to remember how much we have accomplished because the list still to be done is so long. The pics are great, thanks for sharing!
thanks for the comment Ginny. it’s funny someone recently asked me how long my todo list is — I did them in the beginning of this remodel — but gave up like a year in. . . sad but true. But I should actually try to write it out — it would be long and the goal is to have it allllll done by next spring. Probably doable.
I like your pictures, JB! You have the stomach for living in a constant state of “unfinished” way more than I do. But your kitchen is shaping up nicely! I will soon be in a new house that I’m itching to tear apart, come summertime. I can’t wait! There is a bathroom with a dark green cultured marble tub that is just asking to be blown up. Soon, very soon…. :-)
you about nailed it. Hi-tolerance is right. The wife was brought up in it… I guess it is all I have known since I have been a homeowner. We bought this house as “an investment” (yeah, some regrets) ….in the beginning I felt like I was doing a service or something saving this old house or something — in the beginning I keep saying we need to hire out, we need to hire out … << wife finally listened, only after I became complacent. boy is tough to stay motivated, esp. when it has never felt like we have gotten the house to baseline. Seeing light and hope to make big progress on the exterior by end of summer.... attic, basement punch out and everything through the winter (ugg) and then we will be shopping. Thanks Tammy. and I'd probably pay to see this ... "dark green cultured marble tub that is just asking to be blown up." << I am excited for you. Rock on my friend. ~jb
Geez. Everywhere I go, I see that blasted sink I want. Want. Want. Want. Oh yeah, back to your projects…
Nice! Maybe it’s my ADD, but I was totally digging on the work work going on next to the fireplace. Like, our house isn’t that at all (like craftsmanship/ nice wood/details). So why did you have to do the floor repair there? The previous owners just leave it like that?
And, here’s to a great week!
http://www.buildingmoxie.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/11/inthebeginning-102×150.jpg >> I mentioned this in a comment in this post — http://www.buildingmoxie.com/2010/11/the-other-man-part-1-of-some-on-the-kitchen/
I don’t know what it was but 50s 60s they loved installing faux mantles around here. which imo is just flat stupid — dead space. we pulled it out when we converted this space which when we got the house was a “bar-type” area — pool table and all. We went back in forth on this floor patch and whether to install tile there. but salvaged wood from bath (and the wife winning) allowed me to patch it in. there remains the possibly that I rip out this entire floor anyway — so it was no thing really. couple cute bar stools will soon sit there. and I could go on sis… but your ADD would certainly start to kick in.
Love and thanks for your comment. happy week and see ya tomorrow. ~jb
JB, Where to start? It sounds like a typical builder’s/contractor’s home to me. I was married to a builder for over 32 years, we lived in the house, that he still lives in, for over 22 years. We built it, but it never quite got finished, somehow. You know, those paying customers ALWAYS come first, so our house was very low on the finishing totem pole.
When our older daughter got married in 2002, I told him that there were things that we *had* to get done before the wedding. That was in February, the wedding was the end of June. Fair enough, he has time to schedule crews, etc. In the meantime, I had just taken a position with Lowe’s the week before the engagement announcement.
I was wery busy at work, learning the store procedures, going to PK classes, 2 weeks training in Alpharetta, GA 5 weeks before the wedding… you get the way this is going, don’t you?
I had just gotten back from the 2 weeks in GA, it was now 3 weeks to the wedding… I had a off day from Lowe’s. As I was getting dressed for the day, I heard a lot of noise coming from the adjacent family room… you guessed it, they were in there taking up the carpet! I had not picked out new carpet, so therefore ad not ordered any… you can see this is not going to end well, can’t you? Long story, short, I would up picking out something had in stock, which was no where near what I wanted! Oh well, the carpet was installed, the wedding went off without a hitch and they have been happily married for almost 9 years, ave givien me 3 beautiful granddaughters and the house still isn’t finished! It is no longer my problem anyway.
I guess I got off on a tangent there, sorry. I have full confidence that you will have the house completed just in time to sign the contract on the sale!
On another note, I am thrilled to ave been included in the June GE Monogram, Kentucky trip. I look forward to meeting you and so many others in person!
Enjoyed the blog!
Brenda — your comment made me giggle … several times. and yes I have heard that many many times about builders — while it’s probably not fair to call me a builder/contractor at this point < I do hoard building materials like the best of 'em. And I'm sure the wife hates it. In my defense -- it does take 2 of us to make this remodel spin, and I have definitely seen diminished performance on her end too. just sayin' side note about the bath -- we can get 'er done when push comes to shove. we pretty much made all selections and did design-type stuff during about 5 of the 12 days of christmas -- though this one for sure has much more of her hand on it. and uhhhh . . .yep thinking about hosting the girls b-day party in July << we'll see how that goes, ha! but first GE in June. Yay! ~jb
Ahh haaa. Saaay, that looks pretty much like our place, only much nicer! When my husband (a former general contractor, now a teacher) proposed, he said “before you answer, recognize that as a contractor, any house I am in will always be in some state of remodel.” That sounded so seductive and fashionable that I accepted his fine hand in marriage 20 years ago. Just got a bathroom almost done.
all I am going to say is — This is just good writing >> “…Just got a bathroom almost done.” I Laughed Out Loud!
Here’s to twenty more. thanks for the comment Kymberly and cheers! jb
I LOVE THIS POST! I can’t even tell you how much I relate. Our home was not in move-in ready condition either. Everyday is a small progress, even if others can’t see. I haven’t blogged much either. Honestly, I have a lot to say/share/show, but I have been spending the time actually making things happen. A husband that works full-time, plus overtime, three children with activities, and a stay-at-home mother that jets off for a dance class here and there leads to a home very much in the ‘progress’ stage 7 years after purchase. Congratulations on your endeavors and accomplishments! You MHIC is most exciting! So, what exactly does that mean?
thanks! Christine. this post is actually 3 years old. I was ramping up to refer to it in an upcoming post, though always good to revisit. There have been changes and we have accomplished some, but really how’s it accomplished that hasn’t really changed, at all. I still enjoy home improvement above everything else, but frankly (given schedules) it’s hard. I tested for but never activated my MHIC (Maryland Contractor’s License), and if I would want to use it (which still isn’t outside the realm of possibilities) I’d have to test again. This time though, I guess I would know what’s involved. Cheers my friend and be happy with your progress. ~jb
How did I miss the date? Still, impressive. It gives me hope that my house will one day be finished. Well, well-progressed.