FRIDAY Q&A: MOVING IN WITH YOUR SIGNIFICANT OTHER, BUDGETING FOR RENOVATIONS WHEN BUYING A HOUSE, DESIGN REGRETS, AND MORE

Happy Friday! This week felt like a big turning point on several fronts: baby #2’s due date is this month, we were finally able to start getting Teddy’s new room underway for him to move out of the nursery, we had some good progress on our hall bathroom remodel, and Will and I were able to book our first COVID vaccines for next week! I hope you’re feeling a little spring in your step as well. Have a wonderful weekend!

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1. How did you and Will decide it was the right time to move in together? Any tips?

We left New York together when he took a new job in Dallas and I personally wouldn’t have undertaken such a huge move without the commitment of living together once we got there! It just felt like it was the right time ,whether we stayed in New York or moved somewhere else together, and both sets of parents were totally supportive. Moving in with a significant other was truthfully was a bigger transition for me living in a new city, feeling homesick for my family, and not having had roommates when I lived in New York, but we got through those growing pains and I’m glad we took it on when we did! There’s some great advice from blogger friends of mine for moving in with a significant other in this old post if you’re interested!

2. How to approach budgeting for renos when buying a house?

Walk through any homes you’re seriously considering with a contractor to get estimates for projects you’d want to tackle and only make an offer once you have a solid idea of what it will cost to make it look and feel the way you envision. We knew we’d have literally years of projects to keep us busy in this house, but we liked that we could tackle just a few small projects before moving in (removing carpets, staining floors, and lots of painting) and then the rest were projects we could tackle in stages and still live in the house vs. having to gut renovate all at once (buying the house in 2019, renovating the kitchen in 2020, saving up for a bathroom and our backyard in 2021, etc.).

3. Any tips for ripping up carpet? Just bought our first home! 

Congratulations! This was the first project we outsourced when we bought our house and it made a HUGE difference. I was eight months pregnant with Teddy when we moved in so it’s not something I was about to tackle on my own (not sure if you were looking for DIY advice!) but I’d be happy to share who we hired if you’re local! 

4. Any huge design regrets?

I wouldn’t say this is huge, but the thing that comes to mind is I would have put a pocket door on our pantry when we did our kitchen renovation. I resisted big-time for no good reason and realized too late that having a regular door there blocked all the shelving on the right side and made it so cramped that we took the door off its hinges. 😂

5. You seem to have a great relationship with your parents. Has it always been like that?

My parents are truly my best friends! They are way cooler than I am and I feel insanely blessed that our kids will grow up with them in such close proximity (and that my husband feels the same!). I went through a (truly cringe-worthy, in retrospect) phase my senior year of high school where I thought everything they did was embarrassing and pushed back on every (completely reasonable) boundary they set, so I’m sure I’ll get my comeuppance when our kids are teenagers and doing the same to me. My mom will still give me a hard time about what a pain I was circa age 17 but I like to think I realized pretty quickly how lucky I was as soon as I went off to college, lived away from home, etc.!

6. Will you always find out the gender of your kids? Or maybe have a surprise one day?

I love the *idea* of being surprised but I honestly don’t know that I could do it. I’m even antsy for my friends when they decide to wait! We haven’t done an actual gender reveal for either pregnancy — I just get Will on the phone and have the doctor tell us ASAP because I just need to know! I guess I like having news to look forward to at the end of the first trimester and having time to try out different names. Clearly I’m not the world’s most patient person. 😉

7. How did you find your therapist?

I started (virtual) therapy this fall in the throes of post-weaning depression and it’s been an invaluable resource through the pandemic winter and leading up to the arrival of baby #2! I found my therapist on ZocDoc as I like being able to read reviews from other patients and wanted to find someone who took our insurance. I will say I’ve had therapists in years past who weren’t the right fit and it’s totally okay to acknowledge that and keep looking for someone who is! 

8. In need of some dresses for college graduation and events. Any ideas?

So exciting! I love this, this, and this on the more casual side and this and this for something dressier.

9. Favorite TV show lately?

Reruns of The Office (always!) and recently started Billions from the beginning so we could watch with my parents. I think Will and I made it through season three last time before falling off so we’ll see how far we get this time. Definitely leave recs for any new shows you’re loving in the comments!

10. Clothing recs for second trimester?

Stick to dresses if it’s warm enough where you live! This one and this one have been in heavy rotation for me this pregnancy and I think this, this, and this would be great for both your second and third trimester as we head into warmer weather. Then find a couple great pairs of maternity jeans (you can see my exhaustive search for the perfect pair here or just head straight for this brand!) and then order a couple of your non-maternity wardrobe staples (for me, these button-downs or the one in this post) a size or two up. 

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  1. Ted Lasso on Apple TV!! There’s only 1 season so far but two more coming soon! Really great jokes and life lessons in this one!

  2. Best TV I’ve watched this pandemic, both on HBO: all seasons of The Sopranos and My Brilliant Friend, based on the novels by Elena Ferrante which I love. Congrats on making it to the month of your due date!

  3. I relate so much with #5. I am currently a freshman in college and feel like I pushed my mom away a lot but now that I am at college I have such a better relationship with my mom and I miss her so much!! I have such a bigger appreciation for her now!!

  4. I relate so much with #5. I am currently a freshman in college and feel like I pushed my mom away a lot but now that I am at college I have such a better relationship with my mom and I miss her so much!! I have such a bigger appreciation for her now!!

  5. TV is my best friend during this time and I’m not ashamed abt it! If you haven’t watched Younger the final season starts this month and previous seasons are on hulu. It’s such a fun, smart show with some of the best fashion on tv.

    I also found Kim’s Convenience on Netflix recently and it is a DELIGHT. I would say it’s a mix of New Girl style comedy with a Schitt’s Creek style set up. Loved the intergenerational dynamics of Korean immigrants to Canada and their first-generation kids.