I’m at that point in “home renovation” where you start wondering why you ever thought it would be a good idea to change anything about the interior.
Typically, it goes like this:
You visualize. You dream. You find the perfect person to dream with you. You make plans. You do 3D simulations. You show them to everybody. You set them as the home screen photo on your phone. You can’t wait for your perfect life in your perfect house to begin. You see yourself cooking up cute meals on the stove (even though you never cook – Chris does everything) while still staying thin and gorgeous (even though Chris’s favorite food is lasagna) and wearing heels, just like the photos in interior design magazines.
You even go to the point of seeing yourself in a fancy dress, picking carrots in the garden.
Then the boxes start arriving, they start piling up, and the budget starts to pile up a bit too. You go into a few cold sweats but congratulate yourself for choosing Sarah who, unlike one famous decorator I met when I first started looking who told me “Well, let’s start by changing out all the windows in the house!” (mega cold sweats, hair standing on end, pulse at 180) – Sarah is realistic, grounded, and knows how to work with a budget.
Then you start meeting the construction foremen and the cold sweats come back all over again. There’s the guy who arrives four hours late (yep, apparently in construction projects, arriving four hours late is considered normal) (sometimes they’re two days late with just “sorry, I’m really busy” as an excuse) and they basically tell you nothing you want to do is even possible.
Then there’s the guy who shows up and tells me frankly, your house is ugly, so I guess you’ll have to reconsider some of your plans (yes, he seriously said that, I swear!)
And there’s the guy who shows up and says the whole project is nothing, and it’ll all be finished in two weeks. He’s a nice guy, too. And he seems like he knows what he’s doing.
All of these people were recommended by someone as being the best (or at least not as bad as the worst) and I’m starting to understand why.
So you go with the one who says it’s beautiful and easy and it will be done well and quickly – only to end up learning it’s going to take three months minimum. Between two weeks and three months, who knows what happened. This isn’t the kind of thing a foreman explains, I assure you.
So the boxes just keep coming and the house looks like the inside of a U-Haul, and we still don’t have anyone to do the work.
And we totally know the hardest part is still to come. The work itself. The delays, the
Airbnbs while we wait, the things that go over-budget, all the things no one talks about, that are still part of it. My neighbor Patty told me “Oooooh, with construction, you should always plan on twice the time and money.”
COLD SWEAT AND HAIR STANDING ON END.
So, to help me get through it all, fortunately there’s
tequila Sarah. Sarah and her team and my team and their experience and all the beautiful things they’ve already done.
It’s a good thing there are so many good moments, like when Sarah and I went to choose a slab of marble for my bathroom, which is going to be sublime, and I can’t wait to show you (I hope to be able to show you the renderings very soon!)
The moments when Sarah suggests new things I’d never thought about before.
The moments when we find new things for the kitchen that are so drop-dead gorgeous I’m probably really going to have to start cooking in an evening gown.
All those moments of creativity, beauty and camaraderie.
The moments when you think about how much of a pain it is, but how magical it is at the same time to become an adult and to be able to make a real home for yourself, one that reflects you and really fits your life.
So that’s where I’m at with the whole “home renovation”. What about you, have you ever renovated your home?
Translated by Andrea Perdue