15 months and counting
Back in April 2018, we set out with smiles on our faces and anticipation in our bellies, we were about to embark on an exciting journey that would result in our dream home and I for one was excited to document every step!
Fast forward 15 months, and with considerably fewer smiles (but probably noticeably more wrinkles) on our faces, our exciting arduous journey continues. Sadly, my endeavour to document each step of our journey on here was thwarted slightly by full-time jobs, life…and actual, real life working on the house. We’ve tried where possible to keep a photo diary of progress via our Instagram account…but the reality of documenting a journey like this is somewhat trickier than anticipated (much like the project in its entirety!).
Still…it’s not all doom and gloom…15 months in and we’ve made some really amazing progress, we’ve accomplished things, I never thought we would and we’ve learnt some invaluable skills – more than that, after 16 years together, we’ve learnt how to navigate good moods and bad, the ups and the downs – and despite some really tough times, our ability to bounce back as a team/partnership has been invaluable!
The hardest bits
So far, I think some of the toughest times have been during the winter – we’ve lived on-site (through necessity), and as part of the renovation has included a total overhaul of the heating system (which consisted of a few electric radiators that we merrily ripped out back in June/July 2018), we were without a fully functioning central heating system for all of last Winter. Now, we had the log burner which we installed the previous year, and strategically kept an oil filled electric rad in our bedroom…but the rest of the house was often colder than outside!
Memories of that winter consist of cooking in our spare bedroom/temporary kitchen – i.e. microwave, George Foreman grill…and a later addition of a mini oven wrapped up in boots, coat and scarf. The room, I hasten to add, was also a building site, full of spiders, running off a temporary electric circuit and FULL of tools, rubbish and supplies!
In addition to the cold and rather sad temporary kitchen was our ‘bathroom’ – this consisted of a toilet, shower and sink, but was basically a garage (again no heating – and no door), oh and we were also running our washing machine in here (draining in to the same loo that we were using….so flooding occurred regularly when we forgot to put the washing machine waste outlet pipe back in to the loo!
My Dad also likes to reminisce about the fact that on particularly cold days…steam would often rise from the toilet…need I say more!
As well as the lack of facilities, the constant dust, dirt, spiders and endless wires trailing around the house (due to the temporary electrical circuit) was (and still is) the actual hardship of working on the house – especially around busy full-time jobs!
If you’re in the process of self-renovating, I’m sure you’ll sympathise, even with the best project management intentions, issues and ‘head-scratchers’ are forever presenting themselves, meaning a renovation project is as mentally exhausting as it is physically exhausting.
Some of the best bits…
Well…we have a kitchen, a proper, beautiful one that dreams are made of…and we’ve even cooked for guests in it (pics on our Instagram)
We also have an en-suite…a luxurious, clean one that doesn’t have a washing machine plumbed in to the loo.
We’ve worked tirelessly to have both of these, and what is has meant is that we are even more appreciative of just how lovely they are – and the effort required to get there. We may spend more days feeling overwhelmed and exhausted than we do feeling content and excited about this project at the moment, but on days when we’ve made great visual progress, and we can see light at the end of the tunnel – that initial excitement sneaks back in!