I love Christmas, but Thanksgiving is a close second. It’s the last holiday that hasn’t been overtaken by consumerism. There’s no Thanksgiving themed aisle of candy and decorations at the store. We don’t buy gifts or special sweaters to show we’re celebrating. And how cool is it that this holiday is all about being grateful?
So, in the spirit of Thanksgiving, here are the top five things I’m grateful for during this house renovation…
1. A sense of humor
If you can’t laugh at the dust or the 7:30 am hammering on a Saturday, don’t live in your house while it’s being remodeled. Trust me on this. It’s not for everyone. Sometimes we’re laughing just because it’s a better alternative to crying. And sometimes we’re laughing because there are two porta-potties in our driveway. Not one, but two. Who knew that stucco-guys could be so particular about their johns. Brings new meaning to the phrase BYOB (bring your own bathroom).
2. Tradesman that show up and do good work
We are officially done with drywall. (Yeah!) This guy was here every day for 10 days straight (weekends and evenings included) to get the job done. Sometimes he had a whole crew of cousins and mariachi music with him, sometimes he was solo. I admit that having drywaller houseguests all weekend for two weeks in a row got a little old, but it’s better than the alternative. We’ve heard horror stories of no one showing up to work on a project for a week or so at a time. Not the case here. They are moving pretty fast – even on stilts. They aren’t so good with clean up, but all the trades have done an excellent job so far. That’s all we could ask for.
3. Windows that remind me to enjoy the view
One thing we love about our house is the corner location and all the light we get from the East, South and West. The new addition (on the West side of the house), is full of windows to maximize the sunshine. The result is open and airy and a constant tease at what’s to come when we get to wake up and look out these windows each morning. It’s easy to focus on the mess and the incredible inconvenience of it all, but when the sun shines just right through these windows, we remember that in just a few months we’ll be enjoying the view from the comfort of a new kitchen or bedroom.
4. A chill dog
When we started this project, I was most nervous about how Rocky would handle it all. I thought he might bark at all the workers or go stir crazy being in a confined space. Ironically, we’ve been the ones barking at each other (from time to time) and going crazy living in just a few small rooms.
We have no access to our backyard, so Rocky has to go out front to do his business. Every morning at 6:30 we just open the door, he goes pee on the front lawn and comes running back. Except for chasing the mail lady in the rain that one night (what is it about mailmen and dogs?), he is very obedient and comes back in the house like a good boy. He especially loves checking out the workers and the new space and rolling in the dust.
5. Reviving game night
We had to get out of the house last weekend. There was drywalling all day, combined with dust and noise, and it to top it off, it was cold and rainy. Trifecta of unpleasantness. Lincoln was especially bored, so Dan decided to go get a new game that they could play at Starbucks on Sunday afternoon. Colby and I went along for the ride and to do homework and work-work while the other two played games. The new game of choice? Exploding Kittens.
If you haven’t played Exploding Kittens, it’s now more popular at 602 William than TV. It’s fun. It’s vindictive. It has kittens. The perfect combo. And any time you can play games with your kids that don’t require batteries, you do it. Be grateful they want to spend time with you, it may be short-lived.
Giving thanks this year
Wherever you may be this Thanksgiving, we hope you look around and can see bright spots in your life. The turkeys in power may bring us down, but we still have much to be grateful for. We have a roof over our heads and love in our hearts, and for that we are incredibly thankful.