Monday, March 31, 2014

remodel: chapter II; shorty...

i heard dale's, 
big, old, red truck
as he pulled it into our driveway.
i was excited to get our
lane remodel started!

when john and i first met
with dale to discuss our plans,
dale indicated he would be
working alone.
as i sat at my dining room
table sewing that first morning,
i heard dale talking to someone
as he made his way up to 
our house.
i walked out onto the front porch
and greeted them.

me: good morning!
dale: mornin'!
me: how are y'all?
dale: awe, we're good.
me: (looking past dale) who've 
you got with you?
dale: awe, this is...
shorty: shorty, they call me shorty.
(shorty talked so fast i only caught
part of what he said.)
me: your name is shorty?
shorty: well, everybody calls me shorty,
but i don't like it much.
(he laughed.)
me: what's your real name then?
shorty: it's terry.
dale: (under his breath) it's shorty;
just call him shorty.

i offered terry my hand 
to shake.
he reciprocated.

me: it's nice to meet you,
shorty: uh, you can call me shorty.
me: okay, it's nice to meet you,
(i giggled.)


on my front porch...
 stood a skinny burt reynolds 
and a straight michael jeter.


evening shade:

dale standing no less than 6"
weighing no more than 150 lbs.
shorty standing no more than 4"10'
weighing no more than 105 lbs...

"tall and lanky"
would quickly become 
my new best friends
for the summer;)

love and God's blessings,
dani xxx

Sunday, March 23, 2014


if you keep up with
my life on the lane,
you know meester berrong
have been contemplating 
leveling our house 
and rebuilding 
here on our lot.
after writing this post,
i began to dream
by way of my pinterest.
i found ideas, 
shared them with john, 
and began to plan what each room 
would look like...
high-pitched, exposed ceilings,
beautiful light fixtures,
bright paint,
colorful furnishings and decor,
the fireplace.
counter tops,
innovative showers 
walk-in closets,
hidden outlets,
and tile flooring.

from ceiling to floor,
i was making plans 
with john,
and he liked them:)



a few days later,
i awoke to an empty house.
i made my way 
from my bed 
to my bedroom door,
opened it,
and took one barefooted
step out
onto the cool, hardwood 
that is our living room

the floor creaked
(just like it always has/
just like it always does);
this time though...
the sound was deafening:
it may have even echoed.

i immediately experienced
the raw emotion of


that experience 
was apparently 
a pivotal point
in my plan-making
for i quickly found myself
looking at ways 


instead of pinning
large country chic
kitchen plans,
i began to look
at galley kitchen plans
and pin 
ways to renovate 
our kitchen.
instead of pinning 
exposed ceiling ideas,
i began to look at and pin
new metal roofing
to cover the 9' ceilings
we already have.
instead of pinning
furnishings for 
an open-concept den,
i began to look at and pin
den furniture 
for the den we already have,
which could be made
much larger by moving
our utility room
and knocking out
a couple of walls.

i began weighing 
our options.
meester berrong
was good with that too.


(a few photos of "before")

tomorrow will mark
the first day of our
lane makeover:)

love and God's blessings,
dani xxx

Monday, March 17, 2014

remodel: chapter I; "phil"...

when we decided to 
remodel here on the lane,
meester berrong asked around 
about contractors.
a family friend told him
she and her husband
had been using the same contractor 
for over 15 years.
she said he was good
and would do a great job.


the meester came in smirking 
with confidence.

the meester: i found you
a contractor.
me: really, who is it?
the meester: here's his number.
me: what's his name?
the meester: janie said to just
call him.  he's finishing up
a project at her house now.
me: who is he?
the meester: his name is
phil something.
me: ok?


so, i gave phil a call.

phil: hello?
me: hi, phil, this is 
dani berrong. janie told
me you might be interested
in doing some 
remodeling work for 
my husband and me?
phil: well, sure...

i gave him our address
and directions to the lane 
and set up a time and date
to meet.


when phil arrived,
i showed him around the house 
pointing out what we wanted

we have 10 rooms.
phil said, "WOW..."
no less than 15 times.
i was afraid
i was scaring him 
away from the job.

me: it's a lot, isn't it?
phil: wow...

(note to self: phil's favorite word is "wow...")

we have 10 rooms.
i addressed our prospective
contractor as "phil"
no less than 15 times.

after completing our
i told "phil"
how i wanted to break down
the contract.
he gave me his credentials:
"dale's home improvement"
was printed across the top 
of the paperwork.

(note to self: "phil's" real name is dale! wow...)


all this storytelling
just to point out...

what meester berrong
meant to say when i asked
for the name of the contractor...

"something something?"

love and God's blessings,
dani xxx