Where do we start? There were so many things to make this project feel really overwhelming to me.
1. It’s a mess. Due to several generations of hoarding tendencies, the house was chock full of stuff — furniture, clothing, photos, books, even 50 year old jars of pickles.
2. It’s feels like it’s falling apart a bit. Because no one lived there for so long, the temperature was unregulated and there was a moisture problem. The plaster in some ceilings and walls were in serious disrepair and seeing big holes in the ceilings of two rooms made me feel like the whole thing was going to cave in.
3. It’s emotional. I come from a long line of sentimental people (hence the hoarding thing…) and the fact that this house basically represents almost my entire maternal family’s history makes it feel really heavy. My mom died in 2010 before she could realize her dreams for the house and I really want to make her (and the five generations before her) proud.
4. We live in Boston. My husband and I have lived in Boston for ten years and have built careers here. The house is 255 miles away, so about 4.5 hours of driving on a good day, 6 hours during the summer with traffic. We’re more committed than ever to get this project done, but the reality of distance is a big hurdle.
This spring after our wedding in May we jumped in head first and began the first step — cleaning. After six truck loads of trash were removed from the basement and the house, the picture started to become a bit more clear and we set some goals to accomplish by the end of the summer: solve the moisture problem, clean and organize as much as possible, remove some walls and ceilings, and prime the house for full speed ahead in spring 2016.