With the floor structure complete it is time for the demolition part of our renovations to begin. During last week weather-boards came off the rear of our house, the study window was removed, the back door is gone (it will one day become our living room door!) and it is a matter of hours before the kitchen window is taken out. Looking at the gaping hole that was once our back door fills me with an odd mix of excitement and terror.
After so long waiting for the renovations to even begin, it is so exciting to watch them progress. It is exciting to think that the empty echoing shell that was once our study will one day part of our lovely new family room. It is even more exciting to dance around on the new floor structure and imagine how everything will work and where everything will go.
I stand in the space that our dining table will occupy one day and I can almost see myself cooking dinner in the new kitchen while looking out over the back garden while the children play or do their homework at the table. I drool over the beautiful red boards that are slowly populating our back veranda and I’m already planning dinners with friends out there on summer evenings. I am so full of dreams and excitement over how our lives will change when the renovations are done.
Then I wander back ‘inside’ except it isn’t really inside any more.
Doing the washing took on a whole new dimension this morning, with -1 degree temps making the damp face washers in the basket frosty in our open air laundry. Soon my ‘kitchen’ will have no walls and no roof. Soon I will be cooking under a giant tarp, and wishing I had heated socks.
These two things fill me with a good amount of fear.
How am I going to cope with an open air kitchen and laundry?
How are we going to manage to share the tiny space we have left, which is now crammed with the contents of the study and most of the kitchen and laundry?
How long are we going to have to cope with this? Well that’s anyone’s guess. We are doing most of the renovation work ourselves, well, The Father Figure, my brother in law and a family friend are doing most of the work at the moment, but once the externals are done I will be helping too. The Father Figure still needs to go to work, and fit in hospital appointments and all the other day to day life stuff like cutting firewood and sorting out a flooded sewage system as well as finding time to build our house. That means that the renovations will take a good while longer than they might if ‘professionals’ were doing all the work. So it may be a number of months before we have walls and a roof.
Even when the new walls and roof are up there is still a few big scary bits to come. We still have to rip out the old kitchen so we can put in a new one. That will mean a period of time with no kitchen at all. Same goes for the laundry, and let’s not talk about bathrooms and how we’ll juggle re-sanding and sealing the floors in the entire house?!?
We knew before we embarked on this crazy project that things would get tricky at times. I’m usually pretty good at just making do and putting up with stuff and part of me is so darn excited to see this all finally happening. But a big part of me just wants to close the door to the kitchen, eat fish and chips every night and wear new clothes every day until it is all over and done with.
Have you ever lived through the day to day craziness of renovations?
Did you survive without a kitchen?
Got any ideas or suggestions to help me make it through without going insane?