...because home doesn't happen overnight.

FYI – All images in this post were designed by James Radin, the famous ‘Something’s Gotta Give’ set designer. Other than the title, this post has nothing to do with the designer or movie. Carry on.

{love the upper glass-front cabinets and symmetry in this kitchen}

I have a feeling I’ll regret starting this post at 10:44 p.m. But that seems to be the only time I have to blog nowadays – late at night. Most of the time I choose precious sleep over typing since my body is getting more fatigued as my due date inches closer.

I’m a few hours away from working full-time at my day job as a pharmacist {loathe the job, love the coworkers}. Ever since our first was born nearly seven years ago, I’ve always worked part-time. However, in recent weeks my hours have increased due to volume. It’s draining me physically {standing for 10-12 hours at a time with maybe one bathroom break and one fifteen minute break to shove something to eat down my throat} and mentally {it’s sucking all inspiration out of me on my days off}. On top of my day job, we’re renovating {duh!}, preparing for a baby {oops!}, and trying to keep our two boys’ lives as ‘normal’ as possible. Handy Hubby is traveling more than ever for work and it’s throwing our reno/moving schedule all off.

This news isn’t meant to bring on a pity party. I’m grateful I have a job and thankful that HH was promoted even if it requires him to be away from us. Instead, this is more of an explanation as to why I’m not posting as much as I normally do. Unfortunately, House*Tweaking is taking a back seat to life.

{love the recessed TV, striped chairs and tongue and groove ceiling}

It irks me because this is what I really want to do. Write, design, answer emails about decorating conundrums, etc. You know the saying, ‘There’s no time like the present.” Well, I do believe that. In fact, I have a few non-H*T projects in the works that are design-related and I’m super excited to share them with you when they come to fruition.

But for now, I’m in this transition period where I feel I’m doing a little bit everything and not doing any of it as well as I could. And that irks me too because I have high expectations for myself and my work. I’d much rather be focusing on one or two things at a time and giving them my full attention than be pulled in so many different directions that no one/nothing is getting the best of me. It kills me to not be able to answer every single email that comes my way and to not be able to help every single person who asks for design advice. I want to say ‘yes!’ because I love seeing the potential in any space and bringing it to life. I love improving things.

{love the grasscloth on the walls paired with white, teal and green}

So, I’m asking that you be patient with me. I’m on the cusp of a big change. A big change for me anyways. A change that I’ve been working towards and yearning for for a long time while waiting for the correct timing. But until that time comes, I have to suck it up and fulfill my duties at my day job and put my family and my health above H*T. Something’s gotta give.

This doesn’t mean I’m quitting H*T or anything like that. I could never do that! But my ideal goal of 4-6 weekly posts isn’t realistic at the moment. I have a vision of where I’d like to take H*T if I had the time. I have so many ideas! I sort of feel like a caterpillar in a cocoon growing wings and preparing to start a different kind of life. I’m excited and extremely scared at the same time.

Stick with me. H*T’s not going anywhere.

I’d be lying if I said I didn’t have a total meltdown while folding laundry in the middle of the living room floor a few weeks ago. Poor HH. One minute I’m sitting there cross-legged folding away and the next I’ve got tears streaming down my face because I let the gravity of our situation get to me. I’m an ugly crier. My face gets all contorted and red. My nose snots up. My eyes swell shut. But things could be much worse.

We’re so lucky that we’re healthy, that our boys are healthy…and loud!…and rambunctious! We’re lucky that we’ll soon get to see another lil’ guy or gal grow and change right before our very own eyes. We’re lucky that we have a ton of friends who are graciously giving us baby stuff since we got rid of ours thinking we were done-zo with kiddos. We’re lucky that a very thoughtful H*T reader selflessly donated her fashionable maternity wardrobe to me just as I was outgrowing my non-maternity pants. {That really did happen!} We’re lucky that we have a safe haven away from our renovation. We’re lucky that we’re getting to renovate an old house into our own home. We’re lucky that the only pressure on us to get into our Underdog is the pressure we put on ourselves. We’re lucky that we have jobs that need us. We’re lucky that somehow this entire experience {selling by owner, downsizing, renovating, unexpectedly expecting #3, moving to another city, meeting more demands at work, etc.} has made us closer.

We’re downright lucky.

What about you? Got anything that you feel especially lucky about? Any big changes coming your way that you’re crazy excited-scared for? Have you had to put something you love on the back burner for a while and let it stew until the timing was right? Had any laundry folding breakdowns lately? C’mon, I can’t be the only one.

images: all James Radin

70 Comments

26.January.2012

And this too shall pass. I have cried while folding clothes too (and not always when I was pregnant either =). Change is hard, especially when the end of that change does not seem close enough. Take a break and just be in the present. Tomorrow will take care of itself. =)

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26.January.2012

You’re not alone. My job has worn me out as well and I’m not having too much luck finding something else to replace it with. On top of that there are constantly layoff scares. it is hard and weird to be thankful and loathing of a job all at once. I am excited to see what you do with HT once you feel settled again!

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26.January.2012

I feel lucky to have my partner – he’s been very supportive (emotionally and financially) since I moved to Sweden to be with him. Trust me, moving to another country is not easy (alienation, customs, language, unemployment…you name it), but he’s been my rock. And like you said, when the time is right things will happen (I’m back in school). Despite feeling lonely (away from family, friends, and everything familiar), I try to focus about the positives in life and learn from mistakes/negativity. While at times I over-analyze things, I know that what doesn’t break me will make me stronger and wiser. So yes, I’ve had break-downs, too, but it’s better out than in.

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26.January.2012

I too have had many emotional moments lately. I was 35 weeks pregnant with my third child in October when I found out that my 4 year old son James was severly deaf. He was fitted with hearing aids 2 weeks before I had my son Ryan. This was such a stressful time. Dealing with a new baby and my eldest son constantly pulling out his hearing aids and refusing to wear them. Things were finally settling down when two weeks ago my 2 year old daughter Lucy was also diagnosed as being severly deaf. She will be fitted with hearing aids in a couple of days. I have been feeling overwhelmed and sorry for myself for the last couple of days but I have to keep reminding myself that we too are lucky to have a loving family and skills to cope with these issues. Its Ok to let are emotions out, but remember that we are strong people who can deal with problems one at a time.

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26.January.2012

Awww. I swear this week has been the toughest of my life. My husband deployed and my work kicked into high gear at exactly the same time. The image of you crying in your laundry is similar to me crying over a pan of burned chicken this week. Just blubbering in self pity. I bought some convenience food and let the house go. I’d rather give my kids 2-4 hours a day of me being calm and happy in a cluttered, dusty house than ignore them while I try to focus on the cleaning. I hate the way our generation all somehow bought into the idea of the do-it-all woman who balances her whole crazy life with a smile in heels. You are right- something has to give! Our families need us to be happy, not drained.

You know we love the heck out of ya. Don’t stress! :)

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26.January.2012

We are unexpectedly having a baby, and I’m in college. I am not quitting college again, it took me seven years to get back. So in late July/early August I’m having this baby and then showing up for Fall classes!
Hang in there! It’s good to know there are other ‘ugly criers’ out there and just because you don’t post as much won’t mean I’m not dropping by!
: )

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26.January.2012

good for you – choosing gratitude instead of something else. i plan on seeing what you do whenever it is you have time for it!

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26.January.2012

You are so adorable and I just love your blog. I think most of your readers know your situation so by all means, take a break! I have no clue how you do what you do anyway. As far as the sudden outburst of tears….been there and done that too…its normal considering everything that you have going on. Have you ever heard of a stress calculator? I suspect your number would be through the roof…moving, renovating, pregnancy, change in work hours…..yikes!

Take care of yourself, your kiddos, and your cute little Hubby and we will be here for you when you are ready to get back to full time blogging. :-)

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26.January.2012

Glad to know that you are not going anywhere as in away. You are adorable and a wonder woman. We DO understand and will stand by you, wait for you and rejoice with you. Let the tears flow when needed. It’s just hormones and will pass soon. Take a break anytime you need it but we would like to know when you have the little House Tweaker. We love your blog and you too.

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26.January.2012

Of course you are overwhelmed………..you have a ton on your plate. How you are expressing gratitude at a time like this just shows your great character and how lucky your family truly is. Everyone has meltdowns. You are more than entitled.

You know, not every post has to be long. Sometimes one quick pic with a blurb is enough to let us, your loyal followers, know that you are still kickin’. You have impeccable style both in decor and writing. Take care of yourself and remember to breathe and take each day as it comes. Not all of them will be all sunshine and roses, but just keep your eye on the prize! {{{{{HUGS}}}}}

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Breakdowns happen, life gets in the way, timing is a frustrating thing to wait for…but the one thing I have learned is that those of us here in blogland are pretty patient folk and we’re not going anywhere. I for one love your blog, and will happily take a back seat while life works itself out for you. Wishing you all the best and above all rest as you move into the latter part of your pregnancy.

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26.January.2012

You focus on what’s important and it is what you shall do ! Your family first (including yourself :) ), then the job and the new house. The blog can wait … Hopefully, the cards will be reshuffled soon and you’ll be able to pursue your dream the way it’s meant to be.
Take care, Dana ! One thing after another. I give you a nice big hug from France.

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26.January.2012

Put what really matters first. And be patient with yourself too. I love reading your blog and I’ll won’t stop checking in.

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26.January.2012

Your blog is one of my favorites, and I have no plans to stop following it. :) Good for you for giving yourself some grace! Hugs and high fives from a fellow mommy to boys.

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26.January.2012

Life has a way of sneaking up on us without us really looking and throwing a ton of changes at us all at one time. You’re doing an amazing job with your kids and I absolutely love reading about your new house! Once you are all moved in and settled, you can look back and reflect on this time as a growing experience.

As for me, I’m graduating college in May. It’s a huge change coming right at me that I hope I’m prepared for. Good luck to you! You’re doing a good job! :)

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Oh Dana, do NOT fret! You are doing a wonderful job at a plethra of life-things & it is always hard to feel balanced… I can’t imagine the pressure of work, renovation, simplification, husband, home, 3 kids (2 out, 1 in) AND keeping up this adorable, creatively inspiring blog! If your posts get sparatic don’t worry about it! Even if this is on a back burner, all your pilot-lights are still lit (& you have a bun in the oven, sorry i couldn’t help the pun!)! Prioritise the best way you can… day by day.
Consider yourself hugged – big-time. I know I won’t be the only reader still checking in even if you could only post once every other week til you get settled. You just keep the tissues handy… your feelings are totally normal & you’ll be on to a new set of lovely circumstances before you know it!

Take care & try to get some rest! <3 :)

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26.January.2012

I agree with Michelle W…… this is just a season in your life and it will pass. I had an “oops” baby, although now I would never call it that b/c in a way he “saved” my life. We thought we were done done and 6 years after our last, I was pregnant again at 37 with our fourth. Half way through the pregnancy my husband lost a very good job when the market tanked. He couldn’t find a decent paying job (to save his life) for 3 1/2 years. It felt like we lost everything and we pretty much did, materialistically. I “mourned” for what was lost for quite awhile and then I realized that what was MOST important to me was right in front of me. The most important thing to me was my family, and we were together, healthy and in spite of everything, happy. I was so thankful to have a sweet little baby at that time b/c I just turned my focus on him instead of our circumstances. I can’t imagine our life without him. Every time I felt myself having a pity party I would give myself a “smack” and remember that I had everything that I needed, definitely not what I wanted, but what I needed. I learned to not think past the day that was in front of me. That helped my mind from going crazy with worry/fear/anxiety. I became truly content for the first time in my life and I wouldn’t trade that for anything. I knew in my heart, that we would not be in that situation forever. It FELT like forever, but I knew it would pass and it did. Hang in there. You have a great talent and gift that will not go to waste. You will come through this, just give yourself some grace for now. We love you and support you no matter what.

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26.January.2012

Your posts have inspired so many changes in my house! We’ve been decluttering all month and it feels SO GOOD to live more simply. I got a subscription to Real Simple and LOVE their ideas. THANK YOU for all your hard work. We’ll all be here when you come back full throttle. :)

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26.January.2012

My husband and I just moved to Nashville from Minneapolis – pretty much on a whim. We know no one here, and just wanted to try a change. I am SO excited that we did this and get to explore a new place together, but a job offer for my husband threw things a little off course from what I expected them to be.

I thought we’d rent for a few months, then buy a home. But Kris (my husband) was offered a job where he’ll have to be over seas in the middle east for 3-4 months at a time. The money will be good, and financially it will put us in an amazing position, but it’s going to be very very hard on us. Especially on me having moved to a new place where I don’t know anyone, or pretty much anything yet. Plus we’ve been pretty much joined at the hip since 2009, so it will be difficult getting along without him. I know it’s for the best, but I feel ya when you say you feel lucky and scared. That’s exactly where I’m at. I haven’t had a laundry break down yet, but I definitely feel it coming!

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26.January.2012

Thank you for being so honest. I often wondered how you did it all! It’s true that we miss you, but you have to take care of yourself and your family first. Don’t worry, we’ll be hear with open arms when you return. Good luck!

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26.January.2012

You are not the only one. I’ve had my fair share of meltdowns over the years. I know exactly what you mean when you say “something’s gotta give”. I’m working insane hours as of late and, even though I work from home, I feel like I’m neglecting my kids, my love, my house, everything. I didn’t finish working until 10 p.m. last night and have to start in again this morning. Deadlines for today and tomorrow and Monday – gah. It’s okay, though. Like you, I’m grateful to even have a job right now and feel bad when I don’t seem as appreciative as I should. But boy, it sure does get tough sometimes. Hang-in there and don’t worry about doing everything – it’s just not possible, so do the best you can and we’ll be here.

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I’m grateful for a good roof over my head, a loving husband, our health and lots of free time since I’m unemployed!

I think you’re doing great and I love reading your blog!

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26.January.2012

I came accross your blog while searching for “Capiz chandeliers” for our new construction build! I love, LOVE your ideas and your beautiful home! I too am a pharmacist and know far too well how you feel… Some days it sucks the life out of you! We sold our home, are currently building another home, shacking up with a friend and expecting a baby in a few months!! Love when life brings many wonderful but stressful changes! My best to you :)

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26.January.2012

Amen sister on the ugly cry.

What I love about your blog is how much thought you put into what you write. Your style inspires me. And your boys give me hope that I can raise my son to be so loving and sweet. Do what you have to do to make sure you stay sane, and I will continue to get excited when your posts pop up in my Google reader!

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26.January.2012

As much as I love reading your blog (and I do, click it daily, hoping for updates) I am glad you are aware Something’s Gotta Give, and that feeding us, your readers, 4 – 6x weekly is not the most important thing you’ve got going on. So, speaking strictly for myself, I will continue to click daily, and continue to be delighted when there’s an update. And I’ll say to myself “Good for her!” if I click and there is not.
Take all the time you need!

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26.January.2012

My heart goes out to you! I’ve enjoyed getting to know you through this blog, and have so admired your positive attitude and been amazed at how you are able to handle ALL the responsibilities in your life. As other commenters have mentioned, you have a lot on your plate. Please rest (yes, sleep!) assured knowing that we are inspired and in awe of your accomplishments. And we will survive a few less posts from you–we’ll just appreciate the ones we get that much more.

Keep it up, you are doing great.

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26.January.2012

Thanks so much for sharing your life with us! It’s great to know that others out there are not perfect and have struggles just like I do.
My family and I went through a similar situation in 2010 and have come out on the other side stronger and closer and with more faith in God than ever! We lived in a tiny town in Arkansas where my husband grew to hate his job, I was at home with 2 small children and a third on the way with nowhere to go and nothing to do, and we had no real support system there. It was very very hard, and we began praying that we could move back home to Mississippi.
Two years later my husband was blessed with a job back home but we still had to sell our house and find a new one–not an easy task in this market as you know. So we packed everything up in AR, put it in storage in the town my hubbie was now working in, and moved the kids and I into my parents’ house 2 hours away from my husband. We lived apart for 9 months while our house finally sold and we found one in foreclosure that we could afford. Then hubbie went to work almost single-handedly renovating the new house to into a liveable situation for us and our now 3 kids. (I had many many breakdowns in all that time! And I’m an U-G-L-Y crier too!) Two more months later we all moved into our new house in our new town with him at a new job he loves!
That was last April and we are so thankful to be together and able to slowly make this house into our home! That hard time taught us to appreciate eachother so much more, and to value the little things, like being able to sit in our own house together after the kids go to bed, or being able to decorate and hang things on my own walls, or just being alone as a family, and so many more.
You will come out on the other side of this tough time with a new perspective on many things, and a new love for the little blessings that God bestowes every day! Rejoice in that and in His infinite love and caring for you!

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26.January.2012

Five years ago when my daughter was 5 days old, my hubby had to move out of state for work for about 18 months and we couldn’t go! He could only come back to visit for a few weekends. That left me with an infant, working full time, finishing my masters and for 9 months keeping our house in show condition (with 2 dogs, one of them being a puppy)! One night my daughter would NOT sleep and at midnight, since she was up I decided to clean out the fridge and inadvertently dumped too much broccoli & sausage down the drain which exploded onto the “show condition” mopped floor and ceiling! I sat on the kitchen floor and cried until I laughed. Luckily we’re all back together in the same house (and state:) and I can laugh at the whole situation. I promise the same will be for you too! Hang in there!

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26.January.2012

I don’t know what it is about laundry, but I always seem to save up my breakdowns for laundry folding as well. My husband lost his job 3 weeks ago and there have been a few bitter tears shed. I was hoping that NOW would be when we sold our condo and moved to a better school system… but it’s not any more. So I am thankful that 1) we didn’t move to another place with a bigger mortgage BEFORE my husband got laid off and 2) my income is enough to support us at our current place indefinitely. It is not a bad place to be, it just… wasn’t the plan. So, time for a new plan!

On the theme of “this too shall pass” I always tell myself that in a year I won’t even recognize my life or care about the things that seem so stressful right now. And it is always true! But one thing I KNOW won’t change… the internet will still be here. So don’t worry about whatever time you need to take for yourself, your family, your job, and your reno. The internet will still be here when you get back! :)

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26.January.2012

I can understand how you feel. My husband is his last 6 months of Med School and it has been a long and very rough journey, but we see ourselves stronger for this. We have 2 kids and they have been through it all with us and we are very close as a family because of this experience. So, I am actually grateful for it, but I get frustrated often. We live in a very tiny apartment in Chicago. I do not like it. I try hard to control my melt downs because I do not want to put even more stress on my hubby. He is already doing so much for our family. So, what I usually do to help me snap out of my meltdown ( and this may sound silly to others) I will get on the internet and look at photos or videos of people or kids in places like Haiti and similar countries. Tears roll down my face when I see the conditions they have to live in. I will usually call my kids over to look at them with me because I want them to see how good of a life they have as well. My daughter has developed a big heart for people in need like this, and is always willing to give and rarely complains herself anymore. After looking at them I immediately snap out of it and feel disgusted at myself for even complaining that I have to live in a tiny apartment or whatever I may be having a meltdown about. At least I have a roof over my head and food to eat, clean water and the list could be endless. I feel this has been the most helpful for me and I have a lot fewer meltdowns. It is still a work in progress though. We all go through it don’t feel alone :) In the end you will be grateful for your struggles.

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26.January.2012

I have to say that your blog is my absolute favorite. I actually haven’t minded the decrease in posting because it makes each new update that much better! :) And I will add that I loved your fashion/fitness posts! I know it’s not the focus of H*T, but I felt like I was getting to know you a little more with each of those posts. Your spirit and your style inspire me, so no worries – I’ll be sticking around.

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26.January.2012

You sound exhausted but grateful. Don’t give up, you’ll get there! Most importantly you’re present and enjoying where you are now – as overwhelming as it can be. Kind of speaking these word to myself too – I’m a young mom with little kids and dreams too :) Love your blog and your work!

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26.January.2012

Your remember when we had our hard times I am sure. We had moved 1/2 our stuff to MN and were going to put our house on the market when we got back from vacation. We were FINALLY going to move home, be with family. Then Katie got sick while we were on vacation. We weren’t moving, we were stuck there, I had a very hard time with the stress, no family, and 7 months pregos. I usually cried in the car by myself so I didn’t stress Hector out. The Tim McGraw song “my little girl” always got me going. You will look back on this time in a year or two and wonder how in the heck you did it! Take care of yourself and the baby, a healthy mommy= a healthy family. We are praying for you, and hoping you have a little girl to even the odds :)

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26.January.2012

You are very inspiring!
First because you have long-term goals and dreams that are concrete and specific.
Second because you have made choices and are making sacrifices that are slowly propelling you towards the fulfillment of those dreams.
Third because you have taken life’s curve balls and kept going, without letting any of it take your eye off of the big picture. Your persistence and hard work is very inspiring!
Finally, you inspire me because, in the face of many challenges, you count your blessings.
I know your struggles and sacrifices will all pay off in the end, and bringing a new baby into your home will bless your family in countless ways. Thanks for sharing your talents and inspiring all of us!

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26.January.2012

Thank you for this post. Truly, I love to read H*T. It’s amazing how much self-inflicted pressure we put on ourselves as women, to do 10 things, many times all at once. Sometimes {ok, if I’m being truly honest…most times} we need to take a breather and there is nothing wrong with that. Spend time with family, do the laundry, let our real jobs overwhelm us, go for a run…the list goes on. Life is short and I know that when I look back at my life 5 years from now, I want to be able to say that I honestly enjoyed and lived present in every moment. A virtual hug to you and sending lots of prayer your way!

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26.January.2012

I LOVE your blog; I’ve taken a great deal of inspiration from it! And I’ve grown to like you also and so I wanted to send you lots of well wishes (All the way from the GREAT WHITE NORTH!!) Looking forward to your updates, when you have a moment to share. Take good care!

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26.January.2012

You have a lot going on right now and you are amazingly positive through it all! Remember to keep things in perspective. You are right, we all have so much to be thankful for! Thanks for the reminder! :)

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26.January.2012

It sounds like you need a break! Make sure you take care of yourself!:)

Well, I will join the others and say that if I find you have posted I will be delighted and if you haven’t I will just check back another day. I’ve been drooling over the leather couch you posted about a while ago and have been wishing you were to the point where you were decorating around it so I could see what you were going to do. It makes me laugh to write that because I bet you wish you were decorating your house too! It will come–and with how busy you are I’m sure it will come sooner than you can imagine! Hang in there:)

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26.January.2012

Don’t beat yourself up ! I’m amazed at everything you do with all that you have going on in your life right now.

I sit down with my coffee to check your blog every morning. I love to see your updates but I don’t expect you can post every day with your hectic schedule and the HORMONES !!

Take a deep breath…. We will be here.. :-)

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26.January.2012

You take all the time you need, honey!

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26.January.2012

You are such an amazing woman! I had to go back and re read the sentence about going into full time work as most of my friends reduced their hours when they were a few months along not increased them!! Angie, Michelle and Carol Ann have said exactly what I wanted to say. Take care, love yourself …. xx

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26.January.2012

Honey, who WOULDN’T cry in your position? Holy overwhelmed. I cannot even imagine, and frankly, I would probably be a raging b!tch if I were in your shoes. Good for you for taking the high road.

In a few months, baby will be here (I have such a girl feeling for you!), you’ll be happily living in/decorating the Underdog, and all this stress will make that period feel even sweeter. I can’t wait to read all about it!

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26.January.2012

I’ve put some of my dreams on hold, supporting my husband as he was up for tenure, raising my two great but busy kids..it’s the way things needed to be, for our family and our marriage…there have been a few “ugly cries” about it, but many more smiles than frowns!

in the mean time, while you are waiting for “your turn”, remember to find small ways of fulfilling your passion for design, even if it means taking time away from writing about it to do it! Take care and good luck with all of the changes to come!

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26.January.2012

I love your positive attitude! In the past few weeks I have had more meltdowns than I care to share… life took a turn that I wasn’t expecting and it hurts. I’m lucky though that I have a hard working husband who supports me and my crazy ideas, who works hard so that I can stay at home with our two crazy and loving kids. I’m lucky to be able to spend my days with those two… both the good and bad.
You have so much going on right now… and your growing a new little person in you! It’s okay to step back and take a breather, you can’t do it all! You need to take care of youself and your family first… we’ll still be here when you do have time to update. =)

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26.January.2012

I had a dish washing/cooking dinner breakdown this past weekend. My husband likes most of his job but hates some of the people he works for. He works long hours for little pay. They recently created a position above him so I was worried he would lose his job. I want so badly to get out of our apartment and into a house but money is so tight I’m not sure when that will happen. We have too much stuff to try and fit comfortably in our apartment so it is a mess. I hate to get rid of some of it because what if we need it in the house that we someday buy. But I’m thankful I have my husband, our two cats and my horse. My husband’s boss told him his job is not in jeopardy so that is good news. I too haven’t been posting on my blog. Computer issues and I’m just not sure what to write about.

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26.January.2012

My last bout with self pity was a few weeks ago. I just started balling and my husband reminded me that some theoretical number on a piece of paper doesn’t matter because even if we were financially ruined, we would still be together which is all we really want- something he shouldn’t have had to tell me. My husband has been looking for a job for 3 years. We had bought a house thinking that I had job security with a state job and I was then laid off last March anyways. So we’re living on my student loans while I finish my MA in May and waiting for our house to sell. We’re even thinking of ditching the realtor to sell the house ourselves since we bought it as a foreclosure and could save an extra $8,000. It’s very frustrating at times, applying for what seems to be thousands of jobs for the both of us over the course of three years. Wanting to start a family now and not being able to because of health insurance. I guess what I’m saying is I think we’ve all been there, ugly crying and all. I’ve been reading your blog for a while and I too, can’t fathom how you juggle everything that you do! I can barely keep our house clean with just a husband and a beagle!

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26.January.2012

Thank you for sharing your story. You are definitely not alone in the area of being pulled 10 different directions. I have two boys. One in high school and one in elementary. My grandmother passed away in December and my mom has a huge void of time and hurt in her life to fill, and has been leaning heavily on me to help her sort it all out. I am a room mom for my youngest’s c5th grade class. Additionally, in Dec I started a part-time job that is quickly moving into full-time. Love the job and the people. And not to forget, I have a husband who is great, helpful and understanding but in need of some attention himself. The balancing act is worse than a juggling clown at side show circus. Like you, I have a great family and many blessings. So, as you go through your day remember you are not alone and I will also think of you. I read your post as well as yhl and others after work …it is my detox. Looking forward to some H*T posts even if they are few and far between for a while…. Take care!

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26.January.2012

Aww, hugs to you! I love your blog but I am a firm believer in NOT trying to do it all, and instead respecting the limits of your body and soul. I’m glad you’re able to give yourself a break without feeling guilty and I look forward to every post on H*T whether 4x/week or 2x/month. God bless you and your growing, stretching family!

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26.January.2012

Yours is one of the first blogs I check when logging into my reader. I am completely amazed by what you and your husband have achieved in such a short space of time. For now life may well be taking you away from the underdog but it’ll still be there when you’re ready and so will we, your readers. Take care x

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26.January.2012

I’m like Kimberley, I found you through YHL and now check your blog everyday. I dream of making a ranch my own someday and love what you and your hubby are doing with yours. Good Luck with everything, I know your blog will be a huge success sooner than you expect.

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26.January.2012

I’m feeling lucky that my husband was given a job offer this afternoon, just days before it is likely his whole team will be laid off. I’m feeling lucky that I ended up with a job I never would have expected to like while I was in nursing school, but it turns out I absolutely LOVE. I feel lucky that that job allows me to be home with my kids two days during the week, as well as nights, weekends and holidays—very rare in the nursing profession. And I feel lucky that we are all healthy and happy right now! There have been plenty of points in our lives together when it’s been a struggle, so I absolutely acknowledge and appreciate the times when all is well.

Congratulations on your pregnancy and all the fun changes in your life right now. I love following your blog and promise to be patient as you adjust!

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26.January.2012

Another title post could be “I Don’t Know How She Does It”!!! I look forward to reading every blog post, but each one is a gift and I’m just happy whenever they show up. You (and your Hubby) are really an inspiration and I don’t know how you do it. Keep on keeping on and we all know the important things – your family and your health (and the life you are creating!

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26.January.2012

Gosh, thank you for being real. I have had the ugly cry too. This past Saturday I found out I was pregnant for the 3rd time and it was a major surprise. My husband’s vasectomy was postponed from December 23rd to Jan 20th. We found out about Jan. 7th that the urologist was no longer in network with my insurance so we were scheduled for another MD Feb. 6th. Well Jan. 21st we found out the big news. I had the hysterical moaning cry, locked myself in the bathroom and scared my husband to death. Well, I have regrouped and I am now counting my blessings.

Reading all the comments from everyone has been so wonderful. I realize life would be really boring if we didn’t have major events that challege us to our core. So another blessing you have is all the wonderful support both tangible and intangible.

Continue on your journey, there is no race to the finish it’s more about how you finish the race.

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26.January.2012

Hi Dana,

Just wanted to offer you some encouragement– you are truly doing an amazing job and have a ton on your plate. I love reading your blog and am so excited for you with all you have going on.

If I may ask, at what point in your pharm career did you realize it was not for you? I am starting to hear a distant voice calling me to do something else, design related, but my current job (I am a health care professional as well– the exact opposite of design!!!) is flexible, pays great, etc. I guess it’s just hard to make that leap… You are an inspiration. Thanks so much.

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replied on January 27th, 2012

Leah – I can’t say retail pharmacy has ever been my passion. Mainly I did it because it was a ‘respectable’ job and one that others thought I should do – plus I always liked anatomy/physiology. That being said, I did and do take it seriously…I graduated first in my pharmacy college class and have a commitment to a good work ethic. I guess that’s why I’ve stuck with it for so long.

The first inkling I had that it wasn’t right for me was actually when I was in college. I had to complete a few hours of some sort of art/theater credit. For extra credit, I worked in the theater sewing costumes for the performers and I absolutely LOVED it!!! I would spend hours in the sewing room or in the theater’s storage room just admiring the costumes and props. I was totally in my element. The thought occurred to me to quit pharmacy and change my major but quitting has never been in my vocabulary so I stayed with it. Not until HH and I started home improvement projects on our first house did interior decorating catch my eye. That was 10 years ago. It was still just a hobby, something to occupy my time.

Then when I started blogging is when I ‘knew’ this was it for me. Writing + any kind of design = my passion. It felt so comfortable and rewarding…and I wasn’t even making any money or getting recognition. HH was the first to persuade me to get a proper URL and he actually ended up buying me the http://www.housetweaking.com domain for my birthday one year. He’s so supportive. He has always encouraged me to try and make some $$ from my passion but that’s been the most difficult concept for me. Getting paid to do something I love????!!!! I’d feel guilty asking for payment while doing something I enjoyed. I’m just not used to that. But I’m getting there. In fact, I just acquired my first paying design job a few weeks ago. It’s not much but I’ve had so much fun with it already. So we’ll see how things go.

Sorry for such a long answer but I guess I discovered over time in little snippets that I needed a change. Hope you discover your passion!

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26.January.2012

Love your blog! Stay strong and true to yourself. I can’t wait to see what the future holds for you, hang in there:)

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26.January.2012

I always check your blog daily, it’s my morning routine :p
but no matter how I’ll miss your post, I agree your family & day job are much more higher priority right now. Don’t worry, I’ll still check in, h*t is too fun to be missed out :)
and thanks for sharing too, it’s very honest and I can understand how overwhelmed it is.I always picture you as a super mom, at least compare to me, who just have 1 kiddo but hardly achieve what you do. Take a good care, hugs from a cross the sea :)

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We are not going anywhere. Hang in there. We’ll be here waiting for you :)

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26.January.2012

<3
i feel lucky because my favoritest boy ever proposed to me last month!
i had a breakdown because i'm in grad school and it's overwhelming at times.
you are not alone! (:

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27.January.2012

On the pharmacy issue, I totally feel for you! My husband works in a pharmacy, and his legs and feet hurt every day from standing for so long. He’s lucky to ever get a lunch break. So I know exactly what you’re going through. It’s a hard job on its own, let alone being pregnant doing it. I can’t imagine only having one bathroom break! I’m 28 weeks pregnant, and I’m in the bathroom practically every 20 minutes. You poor thing, of course you deserve a good cry every now and then. You shouldn’t feel bad about it. It’s good to let out some of your stress. I think your positive attitude is great. Don’t worry if the posts are lacking. What you do post, we all love to read. Your website is one of my favorites. Keep up the good work!

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27.January.2012

I do not blog and don’t know if I ever will…but I LOVE yours and your commitment to what you do and love…you have a great talent and passion and should embrace it. I am a mommy of 1 3 and a half year old monster (boy…how did you guess)…I am a full time, part time, now full time again teacher who is leaning toward a leave next year. I also love design and have worked for 6 + years at a wonderful shop called Chartreuse in SO. CA. ( check out our blog you seem like you would love it…http://www.chartreusehomefurnishings.blogspot.com/) I am currently selling Stella and Dot jewelry as well…if you look at the blog…we have a trunk show coming up and I am featured…I think reading about moms like you are an inspiration to stay true to what, and who you want to be….and I think we should support each other in our endeavors…and with that being said…I hope that whatever you have in the “works” works out for you…you seem like an amazing mom, wife, designer and much more…have fun and be you! Cheers!
Jenelle

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27.January.2012

Cheers that is when you are not prego…oops! :)

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27.January.2012

I’m a lurker usually, but I want to say I love your sweet blog and am enjoying the Underdog journey. Sounds like you have a bit of a sucky boss, you deserve more breaks than that in your long work day, especially when pregnant. We hope they take it a bit easier on you, otherwise you’ll be finishing earlier than expected.

I find it hard getting myself organised, and am amazed that you manage two kids, a house reno, a husband away and a job. You’re doing a great job, but I hope you get to take it a bit easier soon.

Best wishes
Julie Q

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27.January.2012

You focus on taking care of those sweet boys and that baby in your belly. We’d love to see more posts, but sacrificing your sanity is not worth it!

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27.January.2012

Take a break. we’ll totally be here when you get back.
:)

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27.January.2012

You’re so sweet to share these personal feelings with everyone. I hope you’re able to find some balance and maybe take comfort in the knowledge that you’re not alone. Everyone has gotten to that cry in my laundry point before and it’s not a great feeling. Enjoy your time with your family and us readers will be here when you return. :)

P.S. Love the pics from Something’s Gotta Give – that movie is beautiful!

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27.January.2012

I really love your blog but I understand that this isn’t your full time job and you have other committments. I’m completely agree with the comments above, you need to find what works for you, especially being pregnant and already having kids. I’ll still continue to check in, and can’t wait till you get to a place where you can blog more frequently.

I’m leaving my dead end receptionist job in 4 months to start law school. I’m so excited about finally moving forward in my life but secretly I’m a little scared to :)

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27.January.2012

Take your time and don’t stress about your blog! The health and happiness of you and your family is much more important! Don’t worry your faithfuls will stick around. I started blogging over 3 yrs ago and took a break for about a year and when I came back I was shocked at how many people came back to say hi!

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27.January.2012

Oh girl I feel your pain and am sending some peace vibes your way. Life has a way of getting complicated doesn’t it?….but you are right in that you are so very blessed, your blessings just unfolding before all of us as you grow a new babe, renovate a new home and learn a new career, all while being a momma and working full time. You’ll get there and H*T will be waiting when you do. Breathe!

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I know exactly how you feel as we’re in sort of similar situations! I work full time, just finished going for my master’s degree part time in December, try to maintain my blog and I’m expecting a baby in early May. Also in December, my husband gave up his full-time gig to work on his dream, which is his website. I love my blog and I feel like it’s my true passion, but there are so many things I have to put before it right now. It’s a little heartbreaking, but if I can only do 3 posts a week and some weekends I can’t get any projects done? I have to realize that it’s okay. A little blogging is better than no blogging, right? :)

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