We’ve all been through it one time or another. It’s called re-modeling when a better description would be “my life in hell”. I’ve been in my house for about seven years now. This house means a lot to me. I bought it after my divorce and barely had enough money for the down payment since the other person involved in this divorce managed to come out much better financially than I did! But none the less, the house was mine, and mine alone! It’s just a track house in Long Beach (where I grew up) built in the 1950’s. I wanted a house that would still be a family house even though my kids were older. I wanted room for all of them to come back home if they needed to in the future. I also needed a house big enough for my stuff and a pool was important to me as well. When I found this house, the previous owners had put on some awesome additions and it was the size I needed, it had a pool and a few other extras. But it needed work.
So, for the past seven years myself and my son, son-in-law, and daughters have helped me with various projects. We took up all the nasty carpet, we painted, we had half the front yard taken out to make room for a garden, we ripped out ugly oak kitchen cabinets, and much more. I remember the time my son and I were building a “tiki bar” in the backyard. He was in the process of breaking up with a long time girlfriend and that bar became a daily head butting session. But now, actually, it looks pretty cool. I also had been saving money to have some “professionals” come in a do some things around the house that I wasn’t sure my family could help me with. So, I hired a contractor!
Okay, before I continue, this guy and “his guys” are awesome and if any of you are looking for a company that can do any and everything, get hold of me and I’ll give you their number. I had been saving some antique windows with old stained glass and chippy white paint, along with a couple of really old doors with the same look. I wanted to have two openings in the wall cut open for the windows an I have a huge great room in the back of the house with a darker, wood open beam ceiling. The room was always dark and needed some light. This was one of the rooms I wanted the professionals to do for me. The thing with country antiques is that not everyone gets “the look”. I was making a pile for the dumpster outside and very specifically had to tell these guys which pile was which since it all looked like trash to them!
Construction began, my cats were locked up in a room where they couldn’t escape as was the dog. Me and Riley (my baby granddaughter) hung out in my office. The dust and demo began as did the questions. I would scoop up Riley in my arms and join the crew to answer their questions. One of the guys told me that my house reminded him of his folks house in the poorer part of Mexico. I wasn’t quite sure how to take that comment but since he was so nice I just said “thanks” as I tried to explain to him what country primitive antiques were. When it came time to hang my awesome old doors, I wasn’t about to tell them how much I paid for the doors. I just watched hoping with all my heart that the original glass wouldn’t break. In the end, they did an awesome job and actually I had the same crew put siding on the outside of my house and paint it as well. We did have one moment when they were on my patio with the spray gun and started to paint my old, chippy white iron trellis’ that had palm trees on them and was shipped from Florida from an old house back there. They only freshly painted one tree, which I still need to sand, but everything else went well.
Remodeling is always a challenge, as we all know. I’ve learned to live with it since my house is always a work in progress. I like doing most of it myself, it is cheaper and rewarding. I’m always walking around with bruises from one project or another I’m doing around my house. No matter how tired or sore I am, when the projects are done it feels good and I “really” am having a dandy time remodeling!!