Room Renovations

December 1, 2008 at 10:22 am 3 comments

Last week, our kids were out of school so I wanted to teach them some handyman/handywoman skills. I figured if Kristen really wanted to be an orphanage director one of these days, then she would need to know how to do some construction & renovation. And so, we tackled the project that Kristen had been asking for: Painting her walls and redoing her floor in her room. Ten years of thumbtacks in the walls and juice/soymilk/soup spilled on the carpet have worn out that little room. And she has been reminding us that in a matter of 3.5 years, she’ll be off to college, so if we’re planning on redoing her room, then might as well do it soon! (She is logical AND can work the emotions–a powerful combination and very effective in getting her daddy to do things like this.)

The first day, the kids were fighting for the paint rollers: “It’s my turn!” “No, you went already!” I thought to myself, “This is great! We’ll be done in no time with such eagerness and enthusiasm!” Everyone was on-board and on-task.


But then, the next day, the excitement thinned out. Taylor started disappearing every now and then. I found him downstairs swinging his baseball bat, impersonating a MLB baseball player. “Taylor, come up here and help us!”

“But Daddy, I’m tired…” (Sure, he’s tired and can’t help his sister paint her room, but has enough energy to swing his bat around!) Well, it was just down to Kristen and me to finish it off…

We then tackled the laminate hardwood floor installation which was a click-click and a snap! But as we were nearing the end, with baseboard trim to go, Kristen disappeared for a long stretch as well. She was taking a shower (since visitors were dropping by for dinner) while I still had paint and sawdust sprinkled all over. (At least she didn’t do her hair rollers and paint her eyeshadow while I was working on her room, or else I would have really gotten upset.) And so there I was, in Kristen’s room, finishing off this daddy/daughter/son project, all alone.

To be fair, the kids came up every now and then and helped out with the finishing touches, but those who remained on the job the longest were those who took genuine ownership. Clearly, Kristen put in a lot of hard work, because it is her room, after all. But in the end, I think I worked even harder, because she is my daughter, after all…

Three years and 6 months and counting! 😉

Entry filed under: About Life, Parenting Lessons.

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3 Comments Add your own

  • 1. mom  |  December 3, 2008 at 7:31 pm

    Oh joy! Time goes really fast! It’s your turn!
    Kristen is going to college within 3 and ½ years?
    No matter what you did or no matter how you did for your kids, you are gonna miss them and there’s some regret.
    I didn’t know that time came so soon. So I didn’t prepare for that moment!
    I’m glad you are preparing!

  • 2. kaitlyn  |  December 4, 2008 at 2:24 am

    wow ps. Jonathan, Kristen’s not mad at you for eh… your honesty? having once been 14 myself, I was pretty self-conscious when my dad jest about my teenage attempt to emerge from girl to young woman… and your blog, you know, has not the shroud of anonymity cyberspace usually affords… hmmm… but anyway, speaking as a doted-on only daughter myself, come now, you are clearly her greatest hero. 🙂 I remember the day I noticed that my dad went from thinning to balding, I was so sad… hehe, not saying anything about you of course… just you know, i know minus your desire for her to become a woman with beautiful character on top of beautiful eye-shadow, i think you will gladly snap on a football-field’s worth of new floor for your Krsiten… 🙂

  • 3. joongwlee  |  December 4, 2008 at 10:51 am

    Hi Kaitlyn,
    But I do let her put on eye-shadow and all that (btw, coming from an all-boy family, I didn’t know the difference between eye-shadow and lip gloss!). It just would have been bad if she had put that on while I was slaving away in renovating her room. But, to her credit, she just came out of the shower without any makeup on to host the dinner guests. 🙂
    I made it subtle in my post, but renovating the heart is what I’m really desiring in my children (who actually read my blogs!). The heart is where we need to make room for Jesus and we should regularly clean out the junk so that Christ may dwell richly in our heart. God is passionately wanting to do that because He is the one who has genuine ownership over that room. (Oh my, this reply became a mini-sermon!) 🙂
    You are right, I would gladly snap on a football-field worth of new floor for Kristen! But that day will not be for at least another 3.5 years. 🙂 Maybe one day when she opens up that orphanage I will be there to do their flooring…



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About Joong “Jonathan” Lee

This weblog contains thoughts & reflections as I pastor Gracepoint Austin Church (previously at Gracepoint Davis and Berkeley Churches) and engage in various ministries.


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