projects on the go & rolling with the punches...

This week my plan was to post my recovered chaise lounge to show how a simple slip cover can transform not only a piece of furniture, but also a room.  The slip cover is half finished - looking great, but still a work in progress.  What happened... sick kids!  So my plan for my first project to post has brought up a diffrent DIY renovating issue - scheduling and deadlines!  Unforseen things are always bound to happen.  Sometimes its a family issue (like sick kids), sometimes its a money issue, or a product issue (your tile order has been delayed or discontinued), and sometimes there is something hiding behind the walls or under the floorboards that you just didn't anticipate.  These delays can put you a couple of days behind, weeks, months or even years, and what do you do... roll with it and don't let it frustrate you.  There are a few rules of thumb to keep in mind before you undertake any DIY project, be it a simple slip cover or a new kitchen, and these will help you keep your sanity and get through it and stay with it for the long haul.
1. Set reasonable timelines for yourself, add more time than you think it will take
2. Go one room/area at a time (perhaps this should be point number one, as it is so important and key to not letting yourself become overwhelmed and frustrated)
3. Work with your set backs & keep the momentum going...  for instance, if your tile order is delayed and you planned to install it this weekend, don't stop and wait the two extra weeks it will take for it to come in.  Work on the other items that you can do, try to keep with the project, even if it is shopping for the new towels to match your new color scheme or sewing curtains.  Keep your mind in it.
4. Give yourself a break.  When you are done a room/area, reward yourself with some time off of working on the house.  Before you roll into the next room/area, take the weekend off to enjoy something else.  You deserve it.

This past week, almost two weeks actually, my kids were all sick, and I was not able to spend the time at my sewing machine to work on the slipcover as much as I had anticipated.  My live-and-learn experience has taught me that even if I had only an hour to spare, I  better do something to keep things going forward.  Otherwise I would find myself with a started slipcover that sits for maybe months because my mind has wandered elsewhere or I've become busy with other things, and maybe a pile of other projects started and also waiting to be finished.  Then the chaise completely grates on my last nerve because now it not only is the same eye sore it has been, but now it also reminds me that I have the slipcover project waiting for me downstairs with my evergrowing pile of unfinished project.  Yes, I am talking about a simple slipcover, which isn't a big deal, but I could easily be talking about the half finished kitchen that has been sitting for two years while the family room trim is also ripped off the walls and has been sitting unfinished for over a year and the stair railing is also sitting unfinished only partially painted for months.  This is the importance of starting and finishing one project at a time, so that you aren't living in a house that has unfinished work everywhere you look.  Save your nerves the agrivation.  Enjoy your projects.  And be proud of the work you do as you do it and when its complete.
All that being said, stay tuned this coming week to see my chaise, and to see if I can follow my own advice.


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