Time management is probably the hardest part of this renovation so far. Both Lee and I have full time jobs, we are both salaried with good and “higher” positions which means we often work over 40 hours a week, if we are needed, we are there.
My work schedule is simpler, typically 8-hour days from Monday to Friday which leaves my evenings and weekends free to work on the house.
Lee works in retail and when we bought this house and decided to renovate the whole main floor, she was working 8-hours days from Tuesday to Saturday (with two of those days being evening shifts).
It worked out great because I would do as much as I could by myself on Saturdays, we had each other’s company and help on Sundays and Lee got to do as much as she could on Mondays.
Since Lee’s promotion though, her schedule changed and it’s proved rather challenging. She now works 8-hour days from Thursday to Monday every week with evening shifts on Mondays and Fridays. That mean we have relatively no time to work on the house together. It’s definitely worth it because she has a better position that pays more and that reflects all her hard work but it’s challenging.
On top of that, we are trying to maintain a good balance between work, renovations, physical activities (playing hockey – ball and ice – anywhere from 1 to 4 times a week depending on the game scheduling) and of course, our social life.
We are also trying to make time to take pictures and write down our progress each day and then post it to this little blog here so that we have something to look back on once we are done. (Which we are quite behind on…)
Thankfully my dad and brother have been able to come and help us but they both also work random hours so it happens quite often that they are able to go and get some stuff done while neither Lee or I are at the house. It is great because: progress! But it’s also challenging because it forces us to explain everything over the phone and send pictures through text messages to make sure we are all on the same page and doing what actually needs to be done.
This past weekend we hit the one month mark since closing in on the house, which means one month of renovations has already gone by and we realized that all we managed to do was the demolition part (and even then there’s still a bit more to do). It’s only fair to add that we hit some surprises along the way and ended up having a lot more to do than originally planned… Don’t get me wrong, we’ve done a lot of work, made a ton of design and material decisions and opted to get to the bottom of everything ensuring we would have no surprises later on and a solid base under our brand new finishes.
Still somehow the one month mark put things in perspective…
We are still living in my mom’s basement while the renovations are happening…
The first mortgage payment went through…
We are excited to get to use and enjoy our house…
We want to finally unpack our boxes and stop looking for everything…
Then there’s the renovation deadline issue.. We didn’t really set a deadline, our mentality was lets do the best we can (obviously the faster, the better). But recently, we found out that Lee’s family which lives 4 hours away from us have planned to come visit during the May long weekend and the plans right now are for them to be staying with us, which means everything needs to be done, set up and unpacked by then.
We are hoping to be done with the renovations way before then as we also have lots of decoration/furniture projects we want do get done. We are also aware that once spring rolls around, we will have a lots of yard work to do.
Then there’s also Lee’s birthday which is in mid-April, we are hoping to get away towards the sun for a week but that depends on the renovation progress.
We are fortunate to have enough knowledge, tools and connections between my dad, my brother, Lee and myself, to be able to do this entire renovation on our own (except for plumbing and electricity) which means we are saving a TON of money on labor. Sweat equity is what it’s all about.
Put that all together and we are more motivated than ever to get this house finished and looking it’s best!