Remodeling Project Part Eight: Remodeling Daze and Delays


Last June, when I announced to Kate here in our office that I was going to remodel the lower level of our 1972 ranch house, she asked, “Will it be done by the conference?”



“Of course,” I scoffed. “This will only take three months.”


Technically, I was right.


The work has only taken three months.


Waiting took the other four.


We are now in Month Seven and while the end is certainly in sight, we’re not quite ready to begin moving furniture back in. As general contractor for this project, the buck has to stop here, but in my defense – and as fair warning to those of you considering a remodeling project – I never realized how much down time we would have between sub-contractors.



For instance, we actually ordered our windows and doors last summer, but they just arrived last week. On Monday the installers started putting them in. We never imagined that we would have large windows missing in the middle of January with snow flurries swirling around the guys up on the ladders and scaffolds.



Under our agreement, the installers – Tracy and Zeke – are replacing the exterior cedar trim, but left it up to me to finish out the interior. It was a combination of frugality and egotism on my part, as I was convinced no one could do a better job matching the new interior trim to the rest of the house.



What I didn’t count on, of course, was that by the time the flooring, cabinets, countertops, windows, and doors had all been installed, it was time to start working fulltime on the Arts and Crafts Conference. Which means we now have all the baseboard, window and door trim laid out on the floor next to my silent compressor and nail gun, both waiting for me to find the time to turn them on.


Time, however, is in short supply right now, as Kate and I are pushing to get the 88-page Conference Catalog done, the 2019 Arts and Crafts Wall Calendar submitted, my next book proofed, and a thousand name badges printed and filed.




But the National Arts and Crafts Conference only comes once a year, so the trim can wait until our deadlines are met and the hundred little details, from display cases to walking tours, seminar images to breakfast juices, are all checked off our list and ready for everyone’s arrival.


Come March there will be plenty of time for trim boards.


Until next week,


“Get your Happiness out of your Work, or you will never know what Happiness it.” – Elbert Hubbard