April 10, 2015
I think I’ve mentioned my husband wants to retire. He’s doing his darndest to make it happen, and after thirty-two years, I’ve learned to go with the flow –to a point — then do what I want. Generally, I can write around chaos, but 2015 is the year he hoodwinked me into thinking, O.M.G. I give up.
Our house is almost 40 years old. Twenty years ago when we bought it, I thought this place was my dream house—still do. It didn’t occur to this girl from New Mexico that there was anything wrong with it, closed-in kitchen, white tile and paneling throughout. Hey, I grew up in a three bedroom, two-bathroom house in a five-person household, next to a graveyard. I’d never heard of interior decorating.
And then shows like Property Brothers, Love it or List It entered our lives. I’m not big into reality TV, but as I sat with my DH and watched these programs, I realized, people really were huge into home improvement.
But what made me laugh or sigh depending on my mood, was the characters the producers brought through these homes. Generation Xers or Millenials, some even younger, entered these homes for sale, saying, “O.M.G. I couldn’t possibly. Look at these outdated appliances, the bathrooms, they’re so small. I Must. Must. Have a place for my baby grand.”
Talk about instant gratification. I waited 17 YEARS for my first remodel.
Which brings me back to my husband and his retirement fetish, he wants it to happen sooner than later. We’ve already gone through one remodel, as I mentioned. We did the kitchen, den and entry of our home. But the bedrooms and bathroom were still 40 years old. And in my mind they were perfect, until we listed the house and people walked through saying, “O.M.G. I couldn’t possibly.” Because Les wants to downsize, and HGTV had gotten under his skin, one day while watching HGTV, he said, “Donnie, we’ve got to do it.”
“What?” I gasped.
“Remodel the rest of the house.”
And so it’s happened. Right now as I type this every room in my house is under construction. The old paneling is gone, the brown woodwork and doors have been torn out, and I have access to one bathroom – while two are under construction. Because the doors are missing doorknobs and a hole exists where the hardware will soon fit, I plan my bathroom visits and showers accordingly. Six men, other than my husband are traipsing around my house, and although I like them very much, I’m still into privacy. It’s loud, it’s noisy, it’s inconvenient, and to a writer it’s maddening.
The remodel’s going to be nice, I admit it, and with the kids gone, this house is more than we need. But as my deadline for my next book approaches, I’m not in the best of moods. I don’t know who I’m more mad at – my husband or HGTV.
Have you ever done a remodel? And then did you do it again—on purpose? How did you survive?