For the Wiltgen household of Spillville, that couldn’t be more true. When Kristie Wiltgen and husband, Ryan, purchased their home in 2000, they knew from the beginning that there have been going to be updates, however they would wish to take them on “in phases.”
“It nonetheless had the unique inexperienced slate siding and unique home windows,” stated Kristie of the 1952-constructed dwelling.
The primary massive mission got here in 2002 after they added a entrance porch. Then, in 2005 they added a 24×24 addition, together with a completed basement. From there, they started their exterior reworking mission in 2018, the largest of the duties thus far. This mission included a storage rework, changing all the unique home windows, placing on new siding, new gutters and a brand new roof. The storage was taken from a small one-car storage and breezeway and reworked right into a 27×34-foot heated storage that’s now linked to the home’s unique roof line.
And, as if that wasn’t sufficient, in March 2020 the Wiltgens started their pièce de resistance: the kitchen rework. As Kristie put it, “Our exterior rework and most up-to-date kitchen rework have been one thing we dreamed of after we initially purchased the home, and 20 years was lengthy sufficient to dream, so we lastly determined to chunk the bullet.”
And did they ever. The plan from the start was to strip every part to the studs – together with the ceilings within the hallway, front room and entrance entryway – then knock down the partitions to open the staircase, substitute cupboards, add a pantry and transfer the entire kitchen to create a “full open idea residing space.”
Within the plan, Kristie did lay out a number of “necessities.” She stated, “Having a pantry was a should! Additionally, extra storage and useful cabinets and drawers have been a should. Beforehand, we have been storing perishables in a small hutch and on some shelving in our basement. I had extra kitchen devices in about three totally different locations together with our basement which wasn’t handy.”
As soon as they acquired began, the Wiltgens discovered themselves fully-immersed within the chaos that comes with reworking on such a grand scale. “There was no selection however to have the mess inside, the place as a household of 4 we wanted to perform each day. When Kristie left [for a work conference], she had a kitchen, and when she returned 4 days later, it was utterly stripped to the studs,” stated Ryan.
Then, two weeks into the rework, the world shut down. COVID hit, and with it introduced Kristie into the world of working from dwelling. The issue? Her dwelling was in items. “It appeared like a twister went via our home, and whereas leaving for work each day was going to maintain my sanity throughout this rework, I didn’t have an workplace to flee to. I labored for about two months in a nook of our basement on a cardboard desk,” stated Kristie.
The remainder of the household was inconvenienced, as properly. “Whereas most issues have been shut down, we spent all our time at dwelling with out a kitchen sink or dishwasher. We used paper plates and plastic silverware more often than not. Our oven and fridge have been useful in our front room for some time till it acquired slightly hotter exterior, and we determined to make a makeshift kitchen in our storage. We moved all our home equipment and kitchen desk on the market and as an alternative of doing dishes within the toilet tub, we washed and rinsed the dishes in plastic totes within the storage.”
Nevertheless, regardless of the pandemic, the Wiltgens saved transferring. In truth, they declare that it saved them forward of schedule! “The transforming moved alongside as a result of when every part shut down in March 2020, we had nothing else to do however work on the home. Easter weekend, as an alternative of egg hunts, providers at church and household gatherings with our prolonged households, the 4 of us as an alternative spent it portray our total primary stage and ceilings,” stated the Wiltgens. “It was household bonding!” they joked.
They usually aren’t kidding, both. The Wiltgen household took it upon themselves to finish as a lot of the rework as they might themselves, together with portray, wiring, demolition, eradicating previous siding and home windows, developing the locker unit they put within the entrance corridor and putting in, staining and varnishing the exhausting wooden flooring.
Now that the mission is full, the Wiltgens have recommendation for dwelling renovators. “Our recommendation is to push via it. Kristie likes issues saved so as, so it was slightly nerve-racking,” stated Ryan. “And Ryan can deal with issues being in disarray and in development mode significantly better and might be extra laid again about issues. He needed to remind me it wasn’t a multitude, it was progress,” stated Kristie. “The inconvenience solely lasts for a short while within the grand scheme of issues, and the end result is so value it,” they agreed.
Moreover, they advocate taking a look at different properties – each new development and remodels – to get concepts. “We appeared and drove round so much taking a look at what we like. We took footage of the surface of strangers’ homes for concepts or colour schemes of siding we like. Discuss and go to with individuals that lately accomplished new development and rework initiatives. Speaking to a designer can also be an amazing concept as a result of they may consider issues you might not have,” stated Kristie.
Trying again on it, Kristie is glad that she adopted that final piece of recommendation in addition to she did. “We love the kitchen structure with the pantry and the way our home is so open now. Once we met with Kari [Steinlage, of K.L. Design], she gave us many choices to consider. We most likely had plans for about six months, checked out it a number of instances and adjusted it a number of instances earlier than we lastly determined and began. Initially, we have been going to part off our entrance entry space to have a separate mud and laundry room, however we determined to maintain every part open and construct a locker unit as an alternative. It was thrilling to see Kari’s 3D photos and it put our minds relaxed that the completed initiatives have been going to prove simply as we envisioned.”
Now, 22 years from the unique buy, the Wiltgens can lastly say that they’re residing the dream, of their dream dwelling. And this was not a dream they purchased, it was one which they made. By way of time, effort, household and what can solely be imagined as buckets of blood, sweat and tears, the Wiltgen household have made their dream (dwelling) come true.