Friday, January 15, 2010


We have decided to remodel our 1950s style house that we have lived in for almost 40 years. Our plans began because nothing in our house is very accessible for the handicapped. My mother had trouble going up the two steps at every entry to the house. When I had both hip replacements I could not shower for a week because I could not climb into our tub-showers. We had friends over for dinner one night and it was very difficult getting his wheelchair up onto our front porch with the two steps even though she brought a folding ramp. And maneuvering the wheelchair down our hall into our bathroom was almost impossible.

About a month ago we began talking to a builder and decided to update one bathroom and take out the wall between the living room and den. The more we talked to the builder the more the project developed what our son says his company calls "scope creep." The scope of the project keeps creeping bigger and bigger. Yesterday my husband said our project has developed "scope leap" and now includes almost a whole house renovation.
The real crunch came when the builder said that we would have to move out of our house for the 4 months or so of remodeling. That sent me into a dither when I looked around at our accumulations over the years. We plan to pull a travel trailer into our backyard for the time we have to be out of the house, but I stayed awake all night trying to figure out how I was going to accomplish packing and storing all of our stuff. What would I need for the 4 months? Clothes for two seasons, a few dishes, my painting stuff (or would I have time or a place to paint??), bathroom items, computer (and how would I connect it to the Internet?). Would they disconnect our cable and my washer and dryer (probably)? So many questions and no organization forming in my mind. First of all, I did not know how much time I would have--today the builder said at least a month--WHEW! Yikes! Only a month??

A friend who does not live here suggested that I share some before and after pictures and keep a running report on my blog so that those who live away will know what is happening to us the next few months. An exciting adventure, but a bit overwhelming right now! Below are a few of the BEFORE pictures.

Our tiny den that is part of the den/kitchen area. We will take out the wall between den and living room (seen through the doorway).

My kitchen and kitchen table (which is now disguised as my art studio) and will need to be cleaned up before I serve supper. I will continue to post pictures as we progress through this project!


  1. Pat, what a wonderful adventure. The idea of storing everything for four months is daunting indeed, but you'll be so glad you did. You will love your new quarters, and probably be way more productive with space to leave things set up.

    I'm confident you'll find a way to stay connected, and hope you are safely back inside before it gets brutally HOT! Journal, journal, journal. You'll have so much to write about...

  2. How exciting and terrifying at the same time!! I watch those remodel shows on tv and I'm always amazed at the transformation but also the lengthof time and hard work and often frustrations that go into it.

    I will keep your project in prayer that all goes well and quickly and soon you'll be enjoying the comforts, conveniences and joy of your newly remodeled home.

  3. How exciting for you, Pat! I'm sure there will be stress, but it will be worth it when you see the finished product I'm sure! Best to you!

  4. This will be exciting to watch especially since my husband is a builder. You must really be doing some major renovations! We never heard of anyone having to move out during them and my husband did a zillion of major jobs up north. Is that for their benefit of ease?

  5. Where are we now? I haven't heard an update in a several days and keep meaning to call!! Hope all is going well:)

  6. Good luck with this! You've definitely got your work cut out for you, but it will make for some great blog postings, and your kids will really thank you for it some day. My mom would never part with a thing, and insisted on taking every bit of it (including at least 100 pairs of shoes!) from her home, to my sisters, to assisted living, to nursing home... I'm paring down now, so my kids don't have to deal with it down the road!