Dear Crissy

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Our home renovation rejuvenation

What comes to mind when you hear the word renovation? Does your spirit perk-up at the thought of beautiful new floors, knocking down a wall to open up a room, or putting the finishing touches on your DIY project with the perfect paint color?

For months, I have been hearing these words from my husband through the telephone, at the end of his work day.

I’m on my way home, but I need to run into Lowe’s to pick up a few things.

renovation confession

When my husband began ripping up flooring, and tearing down the walls in our upstairs several months ago, I tried to close my eyes, and hoped they could remain sealed tight until it was all over. I desperately wanted to snap my fingers, click my heels, or perhaps wink my nose and find magically before me a fresh, new, renovated upstairs. What I did not want, was to endure several months of pounding, sawing, stress, and an overworked husband. I just did not want to go through it, even though I knew well that renovating our upstairs was nothing less than an absolute necessity.

Lowe's DIY Renovation

We bought, and reside in the home that I grew up in, and the upstairs was really in need of some repair. This isn’t a project that was started simply because we wanted a new aesthetic in our upstairs, or even more space. It was started to make this area safe, livable, and functional for our family, particularly our little boy. Right now, Evan doesn’t have a room of his own. So far, this hasn’t been an issue (we wanted his crib in our room), but with the looming inevitability of a big boy bed, and a sky-high mountain of toys, this renovation just can’t be completed soon enough.

Thankfully, husband is not like me. He does not bury his head in the sand, or wait and wish for things to change on their own. He is motivated, focused, and capable—I love these qualities in him, even if I am not always so brave in the beginning.

We had no budget for this giant undertaking, and have literally worked on renovating an entire floor of our home paycheck-to-paycheck. Again, that old familiar phone call.

I’m on my way home, but I need to run into Lowe’s to pick up a few things.

Sometimes those faithful trips to my husband’s favorite home improvement store resulted in the purchase of literally one or two pieces of lumber at a time, but, we were always moving toward the goal.

Finally on board

I wish that I would have been more of a cheerleader for my husband in the beginning, but I am working on making up for that now. I can finally see with my eyes, what he has been seeing in his mind for the past few months. I can see a skeleton. I can see a new vaulted ceiling, instead of a sagging, water-damaged drop ceiling, new walls that are straight and tall, and a new floor that is level, and does not creak with each step. I can see it!

This has been such a long process, and while my husband, bless his heart, is the one suffering from exhaustion and busted hands due to the extra work, our entire family has been anxiously waiting this upstairs project to come to a close. It is amazing how renovating the home can affect the heart of an entire family. I am seeing now, that my husband’s motivation, in spite of my trepidation, is going to provide our family with such an incredible gift. Safe, sound, gorgeous living space, and most importantly, a proper bedroom for our kiddo. I truly can’t wait.

Let’s build something together

All of those phone calls to let me know about a trip to Lowe’s after work? They still come several times a week, however, we have been absolutely thrilled with a new opportunity to partner with Lowe’s, and Johns Manville, for the coming insulation phase of our project. I am so excited when I think about reaching the insulation stage of our renovation, and Johns Manville Insulation is the only complete line of certified formaldehyde free insulation, meaning a healthier and safer indoor environment for our whole family, not to mention, peace of mind. I can’t wait to share more photos and information about this part of the project, stay tuned!

So, this has been an issue that is huge in my life, but one that I haven’t really blogged about until now. I’ll be posting our progress over the coming weeks, and hope that you will share some of your personal home renovation stories with me.

Disclosure: Lowe’s and Johns Manville provided the insulation for our home renovation project. Thoughts and opinions are my own. I really can’t thank Lowe’s and Johns Manville Insulation enough, and feel strongly compelled to place the word hugs between two asterisks.

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31 comments

  1. When we were first married, we bought my husband’s childhood home…it was in very rough shape…we stripped it all the way down to the lathe and replaced everything….the downstairs which contained a kitchen, diningroom. parlor, foyer, livingroom, 3 bedrooms and bath were completed about 3 months after I gave birth to our first daughter….it was a tough time, we did the same thing..paycheck to paycheck and many trips to Lowe’s…but the upstairs, which was a full apartment with kitchen, livingroom, diningroom, bath and 2 bedrooms didn’t get completely finished until we had all 3 kids, (10 years later), and were getting ready to build our new home some 30 miles east of this home….it was long process…and I learned one thing…it’s easier to build from the bottom up…but his childhood home had all the love and memories that just couldn’t be replaced :)

  2. When you describe you and your husband- him being motivated to change and you wishing for change- it sounds just like my husband and I. I’m sure there is a perfect balance in the match! :)

    What an amazing project and an incredible opportunity. We love Lowe’s, too. I hope your project is finished even faster and easier than you imagined!

    PS How cool that you live in your childhood home? I love it!

  3. Just hang in there Crissy – there’s a fun part in remodeling too: painting and decorating your new space (aka the girly stuff)! :)

  4. Can I say, honestly, the first thing that came into my mind is awe and admiration for you as a blogger and how you manage to find a way to make things happen for your family. I love that! Keep up your amazing work, mama! I can’t wait to hear more about the renovation and see it when it’s complete.

  5. It’s a headache while you’re doing it but every time I see the floor we put in or the fence we put up I can smile, because it looks great and gives me a sense of accomplishment. The feeling of reaching a goal is better than the aesthetics to me!

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  7. Oh, how exciting! I can’t wait to see the progress!

  8. I have posted recently photos of the before/after for some of the rooms we have done since we bought our home. Right now we are doing the kitchen. By the time we get everything done, I’ll be ready to sell it and move south!!!! LOL. I love using the power tools and getting right in there doing all the work myself. Hubby just wishes I had more follow through to complete one project before I start 10 more! I guess he is more like you and I am more like your Hubby. I’m always ready to for a trip to buy more “stuff”. I really think the kitchen is going to push me over the edge. Trying to do the full remodel on a tight budget is not going to allow for the new dishwasher or stove. We have them all picked out at Lowes but, that is where they will continue to live for quite some time. I’m lucky we got the new microwave this weekend. Hopefully the whiny/leaky dishwasher will hold up a while longer and the stove who’s lights flicker is just trying to put on a magical light show for us and not burn the house down. (That would be just my luck!)

  9. That’s great! I wish you all the luck in the world!

  10. Wow! You’re going for the whole shebang! Good for you guys! And super kudos to your hubz for taking his vision and making it happen, even if it has to be slowly. We all understand budget barriers. But the upside to it, is that every purchase is thought out and deliberate. Less buyers remorse and oodles more happiness!

    Congratulations! I can’t wait to see more!

  11. SO exciting! We just completed the construction phase of finishing our basement. It was GRUELING. Now “all we have to do is paint” and here I am with my head in the sand wanting to blink so it can be over. Hang in there!

  12. That’s awesome! We used a green product we found at Lowe’s for our family room remodel that I thought was really cool since you didn’t have to wear gloves or a mask (no fiberglass!). I can not wait to see more about the project, we are currently remodeling our family room, but have a TON more work to do. I fear our house may be like yours soon!

  13. Crissy, this is SO exciting! I look forward to seeing the transformation process!

    • Thanks Amy! It really is a transformation process, excited that we’re getting into the heart of the project now. :) Thanks for stopping by!

  14. Can’t wait to see how wonderful this looks when you’re finished!

  15. Renovating is fun, tiresome, and definitely something everyone can’t wait to finish. We are renovating a home that was built over 100 years ago, and it’s been a huge task. I can’t wait to read the progress, and see photos, I love home renovation projects. I wish we had a Lowe’s closer than 45 minutes away, as we really do love that store!

    • Wow, how amazing to own a home that was built over 100 years ago, that is really cool!

      Definitely glad our Lowe’s is only a few miles away, makes those frequent trips a lot more manageable.

  16. Thanks so much Tara!

  17. What an ambitious undertaking, but just think how much healthier your son will be without the water damaged walls, and all the new space you will have for that mountain of toys! It’s great that you have the opportunity to work with Lowes and John Mansville-you are in good hands! Cannot wait to see the finished product!

  18. I could not be more thrilled for you and I cannot wait to see your progress!

    My husband could live at Lowe’s too. We love that place. Lowe’s is one of the first credit cards I ever had; figured it was worth it since we spent so much time/money there.

    Congrats!!

  19. I’ve said that so many times, “My husband lives at Lowe’s.” Thanks for commenting Christine!

  20. I so understand the feeling you have when hubby starts tearing stuff apart. When we were first married we too lived in the home where I grew up. One day we decided to remodel and the next day hubby had walls down. My son was about 9 months at the time and living through a remodel with an infant is not my idea of fun.

    In the end I got a brand new kitchen with custom built cabinets, concrete counter tops, and a spacious pantry. It was truly worth the headache and inconvenience.

    When ended up selling that home (to my brother and his wife) and moving to a home with a larger area for the kids to play, but I do miss the lovely renovations at my old house.

    Hang in there. Soon it will be complete and it will be wonderful. Can’t wait to see the progress.

    • Mardesia, Evan was really little when my husband started ripping things out, too. I argued to wait until he was older, however, I am glad he started when he did now! :) Thanks for commenting!

  21. I am thrilled to hear that you bought and live in the house you grew up in. How incredible!! I hope your renovation project goes over very well. Enjoy! :)

  22. Crissy,
    I love that you are sharing your home renovation project!! You are definitely someone I look up to and am glad when I see your family blessed in this way. Good luck with everything and I know you will provide your readers with a fabulous photo journey along the way!!

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