My World is Spinning

10 comments

Ever since we found our dream home on April 5th our world has been spinning and spinning and spinning!

vertigo

While I am super excited about finding our “forever” home, I am still overwhelmed by the amount of effort it takes to pack, move and plan renovation work before even physically moving into the house. Major shout out to the mom’s out there who have been able to do this and not get gray hair!

Everyone says, “Enjoy this exciting time,” or “How exciting, you get to build your dream kitchen.” While this is true, it’s still a lot of decisions to make before even living in the house. To top it off my husband is working around the clock for the next week while I am home packing with a two-year old, who doesn’t understand the meaning of patience. Also, while I like making decisions, after about a dozen of them, you get tired of it and want some input.

Nonetheless, we close on May 23 and will have exactly four weeks to demolish the kitchen, paint every wall, ceiling, closet and install new flooring, cabinets, and all electrical and plumbing work in the kitchen. We will also have to set up all our furniture and get our daughter’s room ready. We sure have our hands full and I will have to rely on family and friends to help with childcare and housework. We even have a renovation and babysitter schedule drafted, which I am hoping we can stick to.

I am lucky though, my husband is very handy and talented. He can truly fix and install anything. I have a feeling I am going to have to “return the favor” in the very near future for him turning my kitchen dream into a reality. HA!

To all the mamma’s out there who have moved or renovated a house while working and being a mom – can you give me any advice? What kept you sane? What worked or didn’t work for you? How did you close your to-do list book at night and just relax?

10 comments on “My World is Spinning”

  1. Good luck! I moved 3 times between 2010 and 2013–first from Chicago to Minnesota (with a 3 and 5 year old, and my husband left about 3 weeks before we did–so I did the last crush without him), then a year later (now 4 and 6 years) from Minnesota to CT, and last year from our rented house to the one we purchased (6 and 8 years old) (I’m looking forward to not moving again for 20 years . . .). The first time, I had no choice but to hire movers to do the packing for me as I was working full time + had the regular daily living stuff to take care of, but we did all the packing ourself the last 2 times. Each time, I relied heavily on friends and neighbors to watch my girls whenever possible (and thankfully, I have family in CT, so I sent them to stay with my aunt for 3-4 days last year to have some solid time to pack the old house and paint the new one–we stayed up late those nights just try to get in 10-14 hours / day of packing / painting / etc).

    My best piece of advice is to make sure you pack the kid stuff last and then unpack the kid stuff first–and have a section of floor space near where you are working with toys, art projects, etc. Enough variety to give you some time to work, but not so much that it gets in your way. We also got the kids “moving presents” for each move–something we knew would keep them occupied for 30-60 minutes at a time (magnatiles were a huge hit for my 3 year old)–and we threw all the rules about screen time out the window for the first couple of days. I don’t use paper products as a rule, but we had a supply of paper plates, cups, and lots of pizza for the whole process from packing to renovating to unpacking. Babysitters / mothers’ helpers are worth their weight in gold–even if they are there at the same time you are (and in that case, a younger mothers’ helper would be perfect). And if you can find someone to take your two-year-old on moving day, it will ease some of the stress. Good luck with your timing–we had 3 weeks to get our new house in order last year, and I wish I had an extra week–they were still finishing our floors when the movers arrived to move us in!

  2. My advice, after a NINE-MONTH kitchen project: give up the idea of cooking and just do take out. Don’t fret about it, just go with it. And paper plates!
    Also, when I absolutely had to use dishes, I washed them in the clothes washer — not as a washer, but as a big basin of hot soapy water, and then a big basin of clean water for rinsing. Our washer is on the first floor, and it was way better than shlepping dishes up to the bathtub (I actually baked birthday cakes during this trying period, which is why I had to do this washing of items).
    Also, remember that the joy of the beautiful kitchen, etc. will erase the tension and stress you felt during the process. I look at my kitchen every day and fall in love with it all over again.

  3. For the move, we relied on family to watch our son. We actually moved twice in 3 weeks. We sold our house before we had closed on the new house, so we stayed with family for a few weeks. Family watching our son was a godsend. It allowed us to run on full tilt without worrying about him. As for the painting, decorating, etc… well, we’ve been in our house for 6 months…. I’ll let you know when we get to it. 😉 We still have a basement full of boxes to unpack. We’ll get there eventually….. right now, we’re just enjoying the time with our son and our new space.

  4. check out this blog: http://www.younghouselove.com for some really awesome home renovation ideas and tips. With any big project, I have two pieces of advice, neither particularly original: 1) expect the unexpected and be ready to make last minute changes and 2) stay on top of your contractors because what’s urgent to you isn’t necessarily as urgent to them. If time is of the essence, you should write that into the contract and provide even for some kind of provision if the time goes over – perhaps they cover the hotel expenses for you or something.

  5. Good luck! It is stressfull! How’d we do it? Well, we still have only three pieces of artwork on the walls, and have never painted the trim. We ended up letting some of it go. We ran out of enthusiasm and money. It’s okay, there’s peace on this side too. Hang in there!

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