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Sunday, July 30, 2017

Renovation Frustration by Suzanne Rossi

Hi everyone.

I think I mentioned a few months ago that we were going to do some renovations to the house. We wanted to add a small room off the kitchen for casual eating and sitting, and the kitchen itself was tiny, not to mention outdated. So after doing copious amounts of research, we contracted with a very reputable, reasonably priced, local contractor the end of May. Work began the middle of June.

At first, it was exciting watching the rotting, warped deck and the ugly pergola disappear. Footings were dug, the slab poured and in a day I had new steps and a walkway to the pool. Then the hubster and I went to the gym one day. When we returned, my kitchen was gone. The one working appliance other than the fridge, was the stove and that only lasted a day. It was unplugged when they relocated the electrical boxes. Now, I like eating out as much as the next person, but not every night. So off to Lowe's to buy a microwave.

My lower floor has become a war zone. All the stuff that was in the cabinets is now residing on my dining room table (thank goodness it seats eight), on my sideboard, and on the hutch. My gourmet kitchen is set up in the foyer on a portable island. The fine dining area is in my living room. The table is shoved against the hearth.

Naturally, during all of this mayhem, my final edits for "Point of View" came in. With all of the nail guns, jackhammering, Spanish radio station entertaining the workers, and other assorted noise associated with a major building project, there was no way I could concentrate on edits. Luckily, I have an understanding editor. During the weekends I can manage to get four or five chapters done. So far, I'm nineteen into twenty-three. I'm hoping I can finish up today and get it all to her. It means my release date will be later than planned, but I'd rather have edits that make sense than try to do it through all the noise and have a garbled mess.

What began as an exciting adventure is now becoming a nightmare. Even with plastic covering the doors to the foyer, dining and living rooms, there's still drywall dust everywhere. I've learned how to navigate from room to room to get cups, paper plates, and drinks from the fridge. I would kill for a kitchen sink. Doing dishes in a pedestal sink in the half-bath is just not getting it. Did I mention that in order to move what was an outdoor spigot, which became an indoor spigot when they framed in the addition, back outside, they had to cut away part of that bathroom wall? And THAT meant they had to remove all the wallpaper, which was fine with me since it was the ugliest wallpaper known to mankind. Matching it would have been impossible. I think it had been in there since the house was built in 1981. Unfortunately, that meant limited use of the downstairs bathroom.

Needless to say, my frustration level over the past three weeks has risen. I don't know whether I want to cry, scream, bang my head against the wall or curl up in a corner and suck my thumb. Arrrgh! And the odd thing is, this isn't our first renovation rodeo. We've been there, done that, and with kids running around, too. Guess our advancing age may have something to do with it.

Forgive the cliche, but there is light at the end of the old proverbial tunnel. The cabinets have been delivered and the contractor informed us that the flooring will be laid next week. The trim around the new windows and sliding glass door is finished and looks terrific. The finish date is tentatively set for the third week in August. I'll try to remember to take pictures and post them here for you all to see.

Now, I think it's time for me to quit whining and do something constructive--no pun intended. The schedule for Monday is to paint the bathroom. Guess that means I should go pick out a color. As usual, my frustration leads to indecision. I'll be spending some time at the paint store this afternoon.

So I'll say goodbye until next month. I just hope I won't be typing this from the nearest sanitarium.

Have a great day.

Suzanne Rossi


  1. Wow, I've heard of major renovations but we've kept ours to new windows, doors, flooring, or painting and not a huge disruption. I love the shows on HGTV where they do what you're doing. Sound like it'll be worth it in the end. Hope you'll share photos

  2. Rain, I'm a big fan of those HGTV renovation shows, too. In fact, I've gotten some great decorating ideas from them and incorporated a couple into the new kitchen. Doing the same with the addition. Yes, things are a mess right now, but I know it'll all turn out just like I imagined. We have a master bath and backyard landscaping to go. That'll be next year's project. LOL

  3. I am envious in spite of the upheaval. I badly want to renovate our kitchen. My husband and I decided if we won a huge amount of money from anywhere, we would stay in our house but make the changes we'd like. After just helping our daughter move and remembering our downsizing move four years ago, we do NOT plan to move ever!

  4. I share your pain. Our master bathroom is being renovated right now, and it's affecting the whole house! Plastic tarps cover every surface in our adjoining master bedroom (including our chest of drawers), so we're sleeping in the spare room (queen-size bed versus our big comfy king-size). We also have a film of dust everywhere. The worst to me, however, is trying to figure out where I've put things temporarily.
    Sounds like you're going to have a beautiful new kitchen when the project is completed. I'm looking forward to pictures!

    1. I can totally relate. Spent 20 minutes one day looking for the checkbook. Finally found it under a bunch of unopened mail.


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