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2020 game plan

it's january, in all of its first-page-of-a-new-notebook, fresh-blanket-of-snow, we-haven't-screwed-it-up-yet glory. we've recovered from a marathon three weeks of my husband's pto and the holidays and a quick visit from family. kids are back at school, christmas decorations are put away, shelves are freshly dusted, and it's now time to start the new calendar and to do lists for the coming year.

i'm resolving/intending/going to try to be better about sharing our projects. if i had staff or house cleaners or someone other than me trying to keep every ball in the air, it might be easier to bring a project to completion, clean, and photograph it. instead, i get 85% of the way there, realize i need to catch up on everything i neglected while doing the project, decide i can finish the details later, then we have to live in the space so it gets messed up, then there's never again time to brush off the last crumbs and make it look photo-worthy in the small window of time available between Doing The Work and Family Re-Invading.

like harper's room. remember when i finally got around to redoing that? (two and a half years ago.) i never shared pictures because of one unfinished thing: hemming the curtains. since then, things in the room have changed here and there, my daughter is ... not neat ... so it's never clean enough to photograph, and i gave up. but this year, i'm gonna deal with those curtains and show you the final project because it turned out pretty cute.


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and then there's my craft room. i teased it back in april, actually got it mostly done right away, but then dragged my feet on putting away the final stack of stuff that i really didn't know where to put ... so the room has never been officially finished. another build up and then ignore.



and last summer, a whole patio situation happened.




and nothing about it at all.

and this! what is this?




i have so much to share.

up until this house, our MO was to move every seven years. we are now in the ninth year in the home we built, the home which we swore would be long-term ... and we're getting the itch. so instead of scratching the itch by moving, we'll scratch by doing some big-ish projects that either bring the vision we had back in 2011 more into focus, or update a room for our 2020 needs. in the spirit of that and january, and in the hopes that putting it in writing will keep us accountable, here is our punch list of 2020 house plans:


finishing touches

we have one or two things left on the list to cross off before these project can be declared DONE (until we get itchy again): marc's office, my craft room, the mudroom (need to hang some art), harper's room (hem those curtains, hang her high school swim team photos), our bedroom (curtains in 2020!).




slighty more than minor tweaks:

tv room: this room will get an unintentional little update. we sold the keyboard (after harper got fired for the second time by a piano teacher, we realized the keyboard was neither useful nor beautiful), so now there is an empty corner in the tv room. i'm pretty sure i know what to do with it, but it will require a piece of furniture bought, another piece to be built ... which will likely cause us to re-paint the room, and there's a solid chance i'll choose to replace the rug, too.

storage: cleaning everything out of at least three closets this year and installing intentional storage solutions. and then putting nothing back in that we don't absolutely need to keep.


major-ish projects:

kids' bathroom: not a full-on reno, but we need to replace the sink, and that will trickle across the room to new fixtures in the shower. maybe more bead board while we're at it? and i'd love to have a light tube or two installed ... anyone have experience with those? do they really let in good natural light?

main bathroom: this bathroom has been on my hit list for awhile. like, for five years. i longed for the parakeet wallpaper for so long, before my husband gave me a not so subtle, "i'd rather you didn't." i've finally found a wallpaper he can get on board with, and we plan to replace the counter top, sink, lights ... mirror and faucet and shower fixtures are not ruled out. unfortunately, this project gets kicked down the road every time an unexpected expense pops up. (hello, trump tax bill, with cost us about as much as henry's college tuition this year. first time we've owed EVER. f*cking trump. but i digress ... )


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guest room: this project is the lowest priority, but i want it in the realm of possibility just in case. we really haven't done anything with either guest room since moving in, other than switch up the bedding on occasion. i would very much like to finish the basement guest room this year. ideas are always percolating. just need to make one stick and run with it.


and that's it. our big 2020 to do list. we're motivated, and are excited to feel like we have really moved in and made this home everything we always meant it to be.

if you give a husband PTO days

you've heard of if you give a mouse a cookie, i'm sure. it's a classic cautionary tale: one cookie, and things spiral.

well, i've written a new version, based entirely on actual events.




if you give a husband pto days a week before christmas, he's going to decide to rearrange his office.


if he decides to rearrange his office, all of the contents of the office will come out of the room and go all over your basement.


if everything comes out of the office and goes all over the basement, the husband will then decide to dismantle his desk, shelves, lights, etc.



if he decides to dismantle everything, the room will be empty.


if the room is empty, he will see how dirty the carpet is.


if he sees how dirty the carpet is, he will call zerorez and schedule them to come the next day to clean the carpet.


if they come the next day to clean the carpet, they're going to have to clean something else too, because they won't clean just one room.


if they won't clean just one room, now you have to drop everything to clear out and clean three bathrooms so zerorez can clean the grout.


if they clean the grout, you might as well re-seal all the grout, because now it's clean.


if you have to re-seal all the grout, you might as well re-color the grout in two bathrooms, because the white grout has bugged the shit out of you for eight years.


if you have to re-color the grout, you have to wait three days for dove gray to be back in stock.


if you have to wait three days, you won't be twiddling your thumbs, because remember that office? it needs to be painted ASAP, and you're the person who does the painting.


if you're the person who does the painting, you spend the next two days prepping, priming, painting, AND painting an accent wall, just to add a challenge.




if you do all the painting, your husband will run to ikea twice and build new cabinets and paint all of the legs of his desk and wrap all four desktops with carbon fiber because, geek.




if he does all that building, he can then use his remaining PTO to put the office back together.





if he puts his office back together, you will decide the heck with waiting three days for dove gray, you make the executive decision to use black because it's in stock, and you spend the rest of the week lying on bathroom floors, re-coloring and scrubbing grout, and cursing your lot in life as The Person Who Does This.




if you're that person, and your husband is on PTO, and christmas is now only days away, and your first born is coming home this very night for winter break, you might as well paint the mudroom and replace the light while you're at it, because you are insane.




and if you're insane, you might just start to drop paint brushes and paint rollers and fall off the ladder because your hands no longer grip after seven days of holding a paint brush.

and you'll start to rue the day your husband decided to take the week before christmas as pto.