Day 26

Light & Warmth & Order. 

When my husband and I get stressed out in our house, the main reasons are because it’s too dark and too cold and too cluttered. So light and warmth and order have become our decision-making factors for this remodel, and I’m looking forward to seeing how well we do.

Order:

All of the practical issues we have fall inside these three factors. The foundation, for example, is our first issue of “order” while the last will probably be storage space. And now that the foundation problem is fixed we get to move on to stuff that is more fun (and more pretty) like raising/creating the floor and deciding whether to blow out a wall.

Warmth:

When the project is done, our kitchen floor will be insulated, and the kitchen, dining room, and living room will all be at the same level with matching flooring throughout. Ever since we moved in 3 years ago (a month before our daughter was born) we’ve been walking on a seriously cold, seriously marked up subfloor, which our son has dubbed “the sliver floor” for good reason. I remember telling my husband 3 years ago that we had to redo at least the floor before the new baby was 9 months old and started crawling. Well, better late than never.

Light:

Up until this point our dining room has been the darkest room in the house (sporting only one window and even that faces the alleyway), and, consequently, it is the least used room in the house. My husband is what we affectionately call “an outdoor cat” so he naturally wants to be in spaces that have a lot of natural light, so he preferred that we eat on room over in the kitchen (one of the brightest rooms in the house).

To change this up, we’re going to make the doorway double as wide and open up a big “window” or “passthrough” between the two rooms. On the bottom ledge of the window we’ll put a counter top. This we can use to put dinner dishes that we don’t want on the table during meals, or I can use it as a standing desk (finally!). And best of all, the new openings will allow a lot more light to spill into the dining room from the kitchen. So I can’t wait until our contractor starts cutting!

 

Over all, sticking to these three goals has already been really helpful, and I’m sure they will continue to be. Couples tend to fight most about the little things, like door knobs and paint colors, and that’ll probably be us too. But having the goals of light and warmth and order helps me to hold my preferences and opinions loosely. So bring on the paint!

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The new kitchen floor being built.

 

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Day 4

With Labor Day over, the contractors are back to work – ripping up the floors, I think. (They’ve already taken away at least 3 loads of debris from this project. Whew!)

I have a shirt with the word “EMPOWERED” on the front. I feel like I should wear it today in honor of my daughter’s first day of preschool. Rosey’s a brave girl. She protects her big brother from monsters in the dark of night. And, buckling her own seat belt on her first drive to her first day of formal education, she was all smiles, not a worry in the world. Which is fine because I was doing all the worrying for her.

When Augie went off on his first day of preschool I couldn’t wait to get rid of him. I feel guilty about that fact. It wasn’t his fault, I just still hadn’t come to grips with my life as PARENT and the lack of change-the-world-ness (and glory) it entails. I was still in denial, refusing to accept that being a mom was my identifying purpose at the moment, and refusing to accept that embracing it could ever be a good thing. I am not in the same place now (thank you, Jesus) but that causes other pain: it makes me ache for my snuggly daughter to be back in my arms at the end of today, and it makes me mourn the time I wasted not feeling that way about my son.

will have you know that the first couple years of learning to parent weren’t all bad, even if I was being a butt. The contractors ripping up the floors today reminds me of one of my favorite memories…

We are at our previous house, Augie and I, sitting on the kitchen floor eating yogurt out of the carton, sharing a big spoon. Augie is probably 18 months old, with blond wispy hair still and those big gorgeous blue eyes, and lots of giggles ensue as we share the spoon back and forth at our own private party.

I look forward to remaking that memory in this house when our new floors get done.

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