8.03.2011

Renovation tips...

lawn chairs
This is our first renovation, but my parents are seasoned veterans; they've renovated or built at least 5 houses. Over the years I've picked up some of their tricks and PRH and I have already learned a few of our own that I thought I'd pass along. Without further ado:
  • make to do lists in phases so you don't get overwhelmed.
  • tape your to do list right to the front door. It keeps everyone on task and acts as a visual reminder of how much you're accomplishing each day.
  • if possible, try not to live there while you're renovating.
  • rodent eviction happens first (that one's from my mom). Gross, but true.
  • keep your crew hydrated and well fed. This may take some planning, but it's really important.
  • try to make a schedule and keep a routine.
  • if you have kids, organize babysitters well in advance, but also make sure to schedule in 'family unit only' time.
One of the most difficult parts of this renovation has been not seeing our kiddos as much. We rarely have anyone watch Kicky and EZ E, but over the last two weeks it's been necessary. We need to get a lot done and we don't want them to get hurt running around the house while it's torn apart. Thankfully, we're close to our families and have had lots of babysitting volunteers. My sweet cousin (hi, Jolie!) and our parents have taken excellent care of them while we've worked. Before we got started, PRH and I decided not to let the kids spend the night without us and it's helped a little bit. All four of us are in kind of a funk, but we're hoping that comes to an end once we're settled into the house this week.

Another huge distraction has been the influx of non-working visitors who just want to hang out. Quick visits have genuinely been a nice break, but lingering visits? Not so much. From the beginning we made it clear that we were planning to move in within two weeks of closing, yet folks kept stopping by and would hang out for hours in the lawn instead of helping and then expected us to feed them! Saying things like, "Sorry, but we really need to get back to work", didn't seem to help and I was getting really irritated. It finally dawned on me to remove the comfortable lawn chairs I had set out the day we closed. Nowhere to sit = short, sweet visits.

I know that a bunch of you are either working on your own home renovation projects or are about to start. What are your renovation tips?

11 comments:

David Henderson said...

Flooring is last.

Mo Pie, Please said...

Oh my - so overwhelming! Good luck with everything, I'm sure you're goign to have the most AMAZING farmhouse ever!

chattykathy said...

Take time to still have some fun. Renovating can take a lot out of you, make sure that you have a day to spend doing fun things to recharge your batteries.

kris said...

Get one room DONE so that when you have to live in a whole house that is not done you have a place to go that does not feel like a construction site. For us, it was the future office that started life as a done sitting room. Best of luck!

sécia said...

Great tips! I hate being distracted when I have a tunnel-vision goal to achieve. Good idea removing those chairs.

♥ sécia
www.petiteinsanities.blogspot.com

Anonymous said...

I made the blog! I'm famous now! I love hanging out with E ZE and miss kicky! Plus who else but the best cousin in the world would let them have as many freezie pops as they want! I always have a blast with them! Love you guys!!!
-Jolie

LookWhatICanDo said...

You have covered my tips....
Ban any visitors that are not there to work...
We had to & we never fed them.
We had one month to pack up our apartment
and paint, de-wallpaper, switch out outlets, upgrade electrical box, put up pre finished maple to cover dark wood panel ( could not afford to re dry wall..also did not have time)get new blinds ( old curtains from the 70's) clean and get new appliances & change locks. Now we are painting the basement & working on the yard but live here & have the kids....so it's slow going.
You ROCK!!!

Juliab said...

I don't understand how some people just can't get the message when you're trying to work and they're still hanging around, asking questions about what you're going to do next and making completely unrealistic suggestions. From the few bits and pieces we have done to our homes, I would also recommend getting one room completely done, and if you have kids, I would suggest their bedroom first and foremost. They will settle into the new house a lot sooner. Also, when we were having our lounge/diner done, we used our pack away camping table for mealtimes so we could have some kind of normality for meals and then collapse it down and out of the way. Good luck with the rest of the renovations. I'm sure it's going to look amazing once done. x

Michelle D said...

It's lookin good Abbey! and I am so with you on the annoying non-working visitors...and if I say "no thank you ~ I don't need any help" for the love of Baby Jesus would they take the hint...I took your advice and made my working list, now to work on it! hang in there, have a great weekend! Michelle

Emma at The Marion House Book said...

Maybe the odd glass of wine or two! Or at the very least a lot of chocolate.

Chrysalis said...

Take a few weeks off once in awhile. You can live a long time without finished ceilings, bathroom doors that don't close, and area rugs over super ugly floors.

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