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First, something that may be more boring to some of you – all of the stuff that I hacked down a few weeks ago is starting to grow back. Which is great, considering that the intention was to have a much more petite and manageable set of bushes in the front yard. Yay for things going exactly like I planned, right?

And then the of-course-not-everything-goes-as-planned part: my aunt and uncle are planning to come down for a visit this fall! There may be a small handful of you that might remember what happened in 2010 the last time they came down (they live in Wisconsin), but for those that don’t, a quick recap:

My aunt Mary Ann likes gardening (we call her “Meme” – my little sister had trouble pronouncing her name when she was little, and the nickname stuck). She went to town on the camellia bushes and sculpted them into trees, along with helping me make over the front yard’s garden bed (wow, back when I had blonde highlights too) and digging a fire pit in the back yard. Three years later, the camellia plants are in a regrowth phase (because of yard cleanup) and the garden is pretty much maintained with new flowers earlier this year – but I imagine she would have some amazing ideas on what to do next.

As for my uncle, he’s got years of construction experience under his mighty tool belt, so I was incredibly grateful when I had his help long enough for a quick powder room redo, rewiring the upstairs switches to control the overhead lights (a daily irritation), and moving my kitchen cabinets to make way for the new microwave.

No projects have ever gone so swiftly in this house before or since. Thus the cape.

And here we are, three years later. They’re headed south this fall, and are offering to help again. So, if you knew that you were going to have a golden opportunity to put two people to work who actually enjoy these types of projects, what would be at the top of your list? I’m having a tough time deciding, but it’s definitely causing me to contemplate yet another change in my plans. You see, my real wish this year for the house is to have enough redone by December that I can have people over for a graduation-slash-open house party. I’ve worked really hard on my MBA, and I want to celebrate this milestone turducken-style by also celebrating the changes I’ve made so far to the house. Doing so would require that I get the kitchen project underway (well, not require it, but would certainly be the lingering project on my mind where I might need an additional set of skilled hands). And knowing that the cabinets have to be painted before a new sink and counters could go in (what I’d want my uncle’s help for), that would mean doing the painting and prep work during my school break in the next month.

So, what do you think? Go for it?

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  1. I say, “go for it!” mostly because kitchens and stuff can drag forever if you’re doing it by yourself (or with limited help) so I think that if you have the opportunity to expedite the process, switch up the schedule! :) ahhh!!!! can’t wait to see it!

  2. Having that kitchen to show off will feel so amazing! Just like it will when you get the degree. Just think…you can use the degree as the centerpiece of the table. You’ll have to hope no one flicks gravy or cranberry sauce on it though. Maybe that’s not such a great idea…Spending your break painting isn’t exactly the most exciting way to live up those 3 weeks, but it’s probably just as exciting as what the others are doing.

  3. I say go for it! Sometimes you just have to roll with it, and extra help for the biggest projects on your list is always a good thing :-)

  4. Kitchen redo sounds like a plan! But maybe also look at what items have been on your project list the longest, that you have been putting off again and again. You probably need some help to get going on those items. Let these wonderful people offer you the boost you need to get those items DONE!

  5. I think if your aunt and uncle have the time to give you the help you need to actually accomplish the kitchen project then go for it! Priming and painting the cabinets may seem like a huge undertaking but if you have a month I say yes. I did my (standard builder grade oak)cabinets with a paint and stain–winging it with no tutorial help back in the day–with two very young ones and a helpful husband. It probably didn’t take more than a week of consistent work when my husband was home? We added the trim molding at the top and beadboard on the sides of the cabinets. And then you get to add the fun hardware! Remember, this is one of those rooms that makes the biggest impacts with just paint. So to have your uncle to help with the big stuff—-yee-haw!!!

  6. I say burn your ships on the beach and go for it! There’s nothing like a deadline imposed by passing the point of no return to get crazy levels of production out of yourself.