Piles Equal Progress

Onward and outward goes our bathroom/bedroom/closet reno begun three months ago.  Improvement has been made even as we braved delays, like three late winter Texas ice/snow storms within two weeks. Good times.

We’ve hired plumbers, electricians, sheetrockers, and one superhuman tile guy named Danny.  I say superhuman because he calms the OCD geometric perfectionist in me through his artistic brilliance, i.e. the tiles are level and straight. Hey, the fear of crooked tile lines can keep me awake nights. Don’t judge.

As always, my skilled husband has contributed much of the carpentry work during the course of this huge project. Me? Well, I’ve done some painting and prep work–and SOMEBODY has to be the photographer and design consultant.  He, on the other hand, is a proverbial Jack of All Trades, and I admire the tenaciousness he displays as a way of showing his love for me. Red Green may have duct tape, but my sweetie has caulk, caulk baby 🙂

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Whilst I look forward to the completion of this whole affair with GREAT anticipation, adjustments, albeit temporary, have been required to, uh, accommodate our goals.  The most obvious is the massive contents of said bathroom, bedroom, and closet have had to take up residence in and around our family, dining, and living areas. No jewelry parties for me, thank you. There’s no place to SIT.

Our comfy king size bed (and dressers) are in the middle of it all, sharing living room space with the faux fire place and my state thimble collection. Here we have slept for over two months, watching winter turn to spring and heating switch to air conditioning. To get to my clothes, I must navigate through tools, newly painted walls, and a thick curtain of plastic draped to protect my wardrobe inside the closet–which is now inside the bathroom.  And at night, a flashlight is a must because the electricity is off until the tile work is finished. What an adventure.

Imagine if you will possessions, tools, and supplies stacked 3-4 feet high amongst our furniture, creating massive piles of STUFF. The situation isn’t pretty…take my word for it.  Some of these towers hover high over the paths we have carved to the kitchen, hall bath, and large screen TV in the family room.  Ah, my TV–my escape– where I can still relax in my recliner after work, play Words with Friends, and try to ignore what’s surrounding me.  Hubby and I even reached a happy TV medium, bonding over a shared TV/DVR, but that’s a topic for another blog…TAG: Marital Compromise.

Between expensive contractors and tiring weekends of work, it’s easy to get discouraged and weary of the whole mess.  Through it all, however, we have discovered these piles are both revealing and purposeful. Sure, some of it is temporary and necessary to the renovation. But a whole bunch of it isn’t–at all. Since living with these PILES under our armpits, we have reached the following life changing conclusions:

1. We have lots of stuff.

2. We don’t need all this stuff.

3. We don’t want this stuff returned to our spiffy new spots.

4. We shall get rid of this stuff.

“The process is part of the plan,” says our pastor. How true this is, both in life as in renovation. God uses the light of circumstances to reveal the negative and cumbersome things hidden in our hearts, just as we now see all the unneeded stuff taking up space in our home. Recognizing the unnecessary that weighs us down is the first step in finding freedom from it. The next step is choosing to let it go, and not shove it back into the dark from where it came. And that is where the process begins. Yes, we are all “God’s workmanship”–but we are “a work in progress” until the day He takes us home.

So to create a positive spin on this renovation process, I’ll adjust my perspective, look beyond the obvious, and tell you what I see…


Here’s a pile of bricks I stacked in our side yard….but I see an old 12 foot corner bathroom chimney painstakingly removed to make way for our new toilet.


Somewhere behind this pile is our living room piano–but I can just envision myself using these new faucets and vanity lights in our new bathroom.


Nope, can’t sit on our office couch, and can barely make it to my desktop computer– but that new wood bedroom floor will look fab!


No sleeping in the bedroom now–but our new bathroom floors and shower will look beautiful with these tiles.


And last but not least, here’s a heap of trash covering up half of my already postage stamp-sized front lawn. An eyesore perhaps, but I see the evidence of sheet rocked, dry walled, and textured areas ready to paint.

Yep, I see the progress in those piles, don’t you?  And I can’t wait to show you the finished project!

Everything Old is New Again

It’s a New Year. And that’s always a Big Deal. Anticipation of new beginnings is everywhere.Just look at all the storage on sale at Wal-Mart. It’s a tangible entity, and available “for 20% off this week only!”

Even our three-month old grandson felt this anticipatory excitement as we rang in 2015. Lucas refused to go to sleep until completing a New Year’s Eve photo shoot  (he played the New Year’s Baby and his Pop was Father Time). We happily obliged, of course, and then declined the use of midnight noisemakers  out of fear of waking him. A sleeping baby trumps a dropping ball every time.

Resolutions abound right now, small and large, even though most will never be kept. But, still, we try. The desire to “keep on keeping on” is granted to all of us in some measure at birth. “Pressing on” is just a biblical way of saying the same thing, taken from **Phillippians 3:14: “I press on towards the mark…”

Isn’t that what life is really all about–choosing to progress forward in spite of the obstacles we encounter?

So in the spirit of “new things” and “pressing on,” I’ve decided it’s finally time for me to begin a blog. Since I have a communication passion and work in the field of editing and writing, I confess this is a bandwagon I should have jumped on long ago. A no-brainer. I could say I’ve just been “too busy.”  But perfectionism with a touch of laziness is my only excuse.

Certainly I’ve recorded  my thoughts, actions, and emotions before. Years ago I “kept a diary” and then later I “journaled.” The difference is back then it wasn’t published for all the world to see. And I DO maintain Facebook/Instagram/Twitter accounts, but with a “no-drama-mama” policy.  So this new writing  will come attached with a promise to watch my P’s & Q’s.  And my X, Y, Z’s. And my drama.  At least most of the time.

Speaking of time–it’s a precious commodity, so I never want to waste yours. My heart for this blog is for something I observe, say, or feel to resonate within you, too, and somehow enable you to “press on” in your own life with hope and, maybe, some humor.

Thank you for “pressing on” with me 🙂

**I received this verse in my daily reading while praying about the new year, and thought “Hey, that would make a great title for a blog.” The rest is short-term history.