Remember How Far You’ve Come


kitchen duringthree months after we bought it

kitchen beforethe day we bought it

kitchen 2today

duringtwo weeks after we bought it

beforethe day we bought it

The truth is, this house is about 25% finished. We have two bedrooms upstairs, two bathrooms and a mudroom on the main floor, and an entire basement (that flooded) that all need attention plus a wrap around porch and screened in porch–all that need as much love as the kitchen.

When you feel overwhelmed with how much you have to go, start looking at how far you’ve come. Amen.


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  1. True on SO many levels! Thanks for the paradigm shift for the day.

  2. So needed to hear this today! Thanks!!

  3. Thanks for the encouragement! It can be discouraging living in a house that needs SO MUCH WORK. We are planning to redo our kitchen soon before it actually falls apart on us but I hesitate to spend the money. Even when the kitchen is fixed – there will be so many other things that need addressing. Sometimes it is hard to feel like it is worth it – especially when in our neighbourhood, older homes are always torn down to build two new houses – the value is in the land. :( So we aren’t adding any value to the house. Still, this “lovely limitation” has inspired me to find a nice affordable laminate countertop with straight edges and some kind of edge banding – rather than splurging on beautiful quartz.

  4. There is so much truth to that. I do find myself at times focusing on the “what needs attention” instead of the progress we have made. I tried a quick search on your site and I didn’t see the post, but have you mentioned which grout you used with your subway tile? I love the look of yours. I don’t want too white or too grey and yours is perfect!

  5. Thank you for this post. My brain is not on remodeling our home, but I needed to hear this today. Our son was diagnosed with cancer two years ago tomorrow. Today he is healthy in a “running-off-the-school-bus-to-hug-me-after-kindergarten” great sort of way. I have been dreading tomorrow and walking back through everything in my mind the way I tend to do. I am going to change my thoughts from “wow, that was awful” to “wow, look how far we’ve come.” We just got home from check-ups today… he is so so normal. Love that normal kid. Tomorrow is going to be a great day!

  6. Amen, amen, and amen.

    Whatever you’re facing, and wherever you’ve been, you’ve still come a long way. And as I’m finally learning,


  7. You have done a beautiful job. Envy.

  8. Wow— what an incredible difference!! Looks fantastic!!

  9. This is a great reminder as I, once again, come home to no running water. Our contactor began the project in September, at the least the demolition part. It quickly turned into a weekend job that has drug on forever. For the last few months we have lived with a mud moat around our home, a trench limiting access to the lower part of our property and 2 Pit Bulls and 1 Rottweiler living indoors instead of the backyard. I both look forward to and dread when we are able to begin tackling the inside of our home.

  10. Amen!

  11. Wow! It’s really looking beautiful. Thanks for the reminder that it’s a marathon, not a sprint.

  12. That is true for so many other areas of life too. Amen.

  13. Thanks, I needed to be reminded of this today.

  14. Nester,
    So true, I take photos of all the befores and durings. When my wife and I get sick of it all and stuck wondering if we will ever finish we look at the photos. It helps us feel like we have gone most of the way and just have a bit to go to be done. It is also fun to share some of those “this is what chaos looks like” photos with friends and family. Some people thinks it just magically gets done.

  15. Oh I needed this today! I took this cozy minimalist course , and it’s Priceless ! “But” I still so many more rooms that need attention, and I have company coming Sunday… I am cleaning today and I keep seeing the broken couch, stained curtains, ” the lack” if you will, instead of how far we have come , and our many blessings. Thank you ! Our home is more than stuff, and you help me relax into that. I can’t replace the couch right now, but I can clean, paint, re arrange (and save for a couch) . I can be creative and find other, less expensive “hiney holders” . Thanks ! Your info is invaluable and such a gift!

  16. This is so inspiring! Always look how far you’ve come. Give yourself some credit. Let’s do it in our homes and in our hearts.

  17. What a good reminder! And isn’t it just as much about the journey as the destination? I really don’t see my home as ever being “done”. By the time I do everything I want, we’ll be in a different stage of life and the home will call for something different!

  18. Love this! I need this reminder all the time with my house. This can be applied to so many aspects of life.

  19. Needed to hear this today too! Thank you for sharing (as this applies to so much of life) – you are always such an encouragement~

  20. Always love a good before and after….this is the best yet. Love how you opened up the space and love al the white. Your kitchen just sings now! So many great details like the built in shelving next to the range. Everything! Gorgeous!

  21. This reminder speaks to so many areas of life — in addition to home renovations. Here’s to tracking our progress, step by step! Thanks!

  22. Yes. Such a good reminder. We still have a long way to go also. I was mentioning to my husband that I LOVE house projects. Instead of being frustrated about how slow everything is going I’ve started looking at it like my playground. I’ll never run out of fun projects ;).

  23. It’s completely vital for your sanity to have the practice of seeing how far you have come in your fixer upper (and in life!). My fixer upper teaches me so much about myself. Restoration of heart and home are what I am all about! Love this post <3

  24. Emily Lindley says:

    True words and right on time. I walked around my home today trying to convince myself that I’ve done so much and not to get discouraged. There will still be rooms needing change even after we’ve invested so much time and money. That’s hard to swallow. I want to decorate and make our house look more like a home but, there is still money to be spent on plumbing, drywall, and insulation. Ugh. I can’t wait to take our lives out of storage and crawl out from under the dust. Slowly, I see and feel the transformation of this place and I like what I see! I am so grateful for all of the change. In the meantime…there’s a lot of sanding and painting for me to do!

  25. Amen!! You are always such and encouragement!! Thank you for sharing your life with us. I love everything you’ve done! ((hugs))

  26. Well it’s beautiful… and perfect! ;) Well done, I love the finished kitchen!

  27. Have you ever thought about writing an e-book or guest authoring on other websites?
    I have a blog based upon on the same subjects you discuss and would really like to have you share some stories/information. I know my viewers would enjoy your work.

    If you are even remotely interested, feel free to send me an e-mail.

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