Six months ago, we set out on our craziest idea yet: to renovate and remodel our first home. I love that we are crazy enough to take on crazy projects. And we’re talking crazy. Move a wall here, build a wall there, not to mention gutting two kitchens and three bathrooms. And don’t even get me started on the invisible stuff.
And I love the results. I am over-the-moon for our new kitchen, our new bathrooms, and the Air Conditioning that has saved our sanity this summer. Our new house is slowly becoming a home. One of my love languages is having our living room, kitchen, and yard filled with faces, and soon we’ll have guest rooms ready and the door will officially be opened wide!
And yes, before and after pictures will definitely be in order.
But before the after, there’s the messy. The crazy. The dust. The just-one-more-thing-to-do.
This remodel project has taught me a lot about myself, and about being messy. I’m a big fan of before-and-after, and sometimes I wait to share stories until I have the “after” figured out. But messy is where life happens.
Having now lived through six months of a remodel, this is how I would describe it: Remodeling is like issuing an invitation to all first-world problems to come through your front door.
Enter: the Story of a Stove. Yes, a stove. The Stove that has been bought twice and delivered thrice.
We grinned as we made grown-up purchases to replace our once-upon-a-college-student’s appliance collection of the past. Our smiles faded when problem after problem arose. It shouldn’t be so hard. But it has been. Countless obstacles have attacked this one part of our home, despite our best research, consumer-reporting, and careful purchasing.
Let me tell you, nothing makes you hate the first world more than fighting with a stove company about delivery, damage, broken promises, bad service, and all the requisite cash that comes from those issues. I mean, it’s just a stove. The classic first-world problem. It’s not like I’m scouring to find food in the first place.
But also, it’s a stove. My stove. Where pancakes and spaghetti and cookies and over-easy eggs are destined to be made. Where onions are sizzled and peppers are stir-fried and bacon sizzles. A critical ingredient to a house becoming a home.
The Story of the Stove – with its grueling hours, mind-numbing delays, and costly detours – ended this week. This week I got my stove. I got to turn on my burner and see the beautiful blue of burning gas. This, after driving like a bat out of hell to meet the handyman for installation. Bat-out–of-hell, people.
The first night I made a beautiful egg with a golden yolk and celebrated the end of this particular first-world problem. But I won’t pretend it wasn’t one heckofa messy road to get this “simple” thing done, and I’ll have an extra dose of grace for the next time a friend faces a first-world problem.
I think a lot of us face this – we come up against things that “shouldn’t be this hard.” But sometimes they are. Sometimes the things that should be the simplest can end up being the hardest. Sometimes the things that should take minutes take hours. Sometimes the things that seem so easy for someone (everyone?) else are your personal nemesis.
That’s life. It gets messy. But then again, the messy is what makes you appreciate the beauty all the more – like the golden hue of a perfect egg.