Episode #111: Emma’s Birth Story

Emma is back from her maternity leave! She is sharing the story of her son’s birth—even some things that Elsie doesn’t know yet. Birth is nothing like it is in the movies.

You can stream the episode here on the blog or on iTunesSpotifyGoogle PlayTuneInPocket Casts, and Stitcher. You can find the podcast posts archive here.

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Show notes:

-Emma and Oscar love the botanical wallpaper in the nursery. Oscar can’t stop staring at it. 

-Stacey Abrams romance novel series. Reckless is the one Emma read.

-Elsie’s Guilty Pleasure Treasure: Etsy sweatshirts:

Sanderson / Spice Girl / Pumpkin Spice / Ghost / Beetlejuice / Camp Walden

-Emma’s Guilty Pleasure Treasure: Full set of nail polish from Color Dept.

-We answer a listener’s question about how to love a scaled-down renovation.

-Elsie talks about recoloring kitchen appliances with vinyl when you can’t afford the appliances you want.

Episode 111 Transcript

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Emma: You’re listening to the A Beautiful Mess podcast. Emma here, and I’m back from my maternity leave. 

Elsie: Yeah. 

Emma: I thought it would be fun to share the story of my son’s birth with you all. Some of the story Elsie hasn’t even heard yet so that’ll be fun. Plus, we’re both sharing a recent guilty pleasure treasure at the end of this episode.

Elsie: Yes, I’m so happy you’re back Emma. I want everyone to hear all about your summer and everything that’s happened and your new baby. He’s so cute.

Emma: Yeah, I’m pretty obsessed. I won’t do just the birth story. I’ll talk about my maternity leave a little bit. It’s actually kind of hard to get into this episode because, I told Elsie, but this morning was the first day I dropped him off at daycare. This is his first day of daycare ever and that was hard. Everyone told me it would be hard and they were right. I was like, oh, it’s not so bad right at first. I feel like every hour that’s gone by, I’m like, no, this is getting worse. This is getting worse. I thought it would get better throughout the day. It’s getting a little worse throughout the day.

Elsie: Oh Emma, you’re doing a good job as soon as we finish recording…

Emma: I’ll finish all my work and go pick him up.

Elsie: Yeah, you can haul ass over there and pick up baby Oscar and feel reunited.

Emma: That was my first question to the gals at his school. I was like, so if I want to pick him up early and they’re like, yup, you just text and come on. Ok, cool, cool. So with the birth story, I did a little Q&A on my personal Instagram account, which is Emma Red Velvet, and that was the number one thing that I kept getting is, are you going to tell us your birth story?

Elsie: So people love a birth story, right?

Emma: I won’t lie. I do not like birth stories very much. I’m always so happy when a friend has a baby or welcomes the baby into the world, no matter how it happens, because there’s lots of ways, but I’ve never been one to really want to know all the details of someone’s birth story. It’s a little intimidating and I’m just not a particularly medical person. Yes, but now that I’ve gone through it, I feel like I have a new perspective on it. I at least understand it more so it’s a little more interesting and in light.

Elsie: You will have to enlighten me then because I have clicked away from many a birth story.

Emma: Me too. Me too. That’s why I was so surprised. I guess people really do want to hear this. So I’ll start at the very beginning. If you don’t know, a lot of women feel contractions like a week or two weeks or even a month before.

Elsie: Seen that in the movies here. 

Emma: So you’re on board with that. I kept waiting and waiting for that to happen to me. I was like, I haven’t felt any contractions and it’s two days now before my due date, June 2nd, and my due date was June 4th. So I haven’t felt any contractions and in my mind, I thought, well if it doesn’t happen until a few days after my due date, I think I had an appointment for that following Monday or Tuesday or something like that, they’re probably going to set a date to induce me. Because I’m thirty five years old and they’ll let you go for a while after your due date, but it’s like the baby is ready, so they’ll set a time for inducing you. In my mind, that was probably what’s going to happen because I hadn’t felt anything that felt like a contraction to me. So I actually went to my book club. I call it Girls Group. It’s a bunch of women I hang out with. I had gone to book club that night, went to bed and then around four a.m. I woke up and I was soaking wet and I was like, oh, I think my water broke.

Elsie: Whoa.

Emma: But it’s one of those things where I’ve never had my water break before so I also had this little fear. Did I just pee myself because you also have to pee all the time when you’re nine months pregnant. So I was like, was I just really tired and is that what happened? But no, it wasn’t that, and I was like, oK, I think my water broke, but I still hadn’t felt any contractions. I’d heard so many friends say, oh, the first time I had a baby, I went to the hospital and they sent me home. I heard that over and over and over again. So I was like, well, I don’t really want to go to the hospital and then send me home because it’s four a.m. and I’m tired. Maybe I can just go to sleep for another few hours at least and then see if I’m feeling anything when I wake up. That was kind of my reaction to my water breaking was can I go back to sleep?

Elsie: Ok, can I ask a question? What are you supposed to do when your water breaks?

Emma: That’s a great question. I didn’t really know clearly.

Elsie: So it’s not a common, like you go straight to the hospital when your water breaks.

Emma: That’s what you should do. Spoiler, that’s what you should do. But I didn’t really know that. I just thought if you’re not feeling any contractions, then it’s not happening yet, because that’s a big part of what they tell you. You start timing the contractions and when they get a certain amount of time apart then it’s time to go to the hospital and I was like I’m not feeling any, so I’m not sure if I should go. I almost went back to bed but then I thought I’ll just call and make sure that that’s ok because I don’t want to show up late because my plan was to get an epidural. I didn’t want to show up so late that they’re like, sorry, you’re too far along. You can’t get the epidural. That would be a nightmare to me. So I was like, all right, I’ll just call. So I called the hospital and I was like I’m nine months pregnant. Here’s my name and I think my water just broke, but I don’t feel any contraction. Should I just stay home and come in maybe later this afternoon or should I come in now? The lady was really nice but she was like, oh, you should come in now if your water broke. You need to come in like right away. I was like, oh ok, so I get off the phone and I go out of our bedroom and I gently wake up Trey because now it’s five a.m. So I wake up Trey. I’m like, hey Trey, my water broke, think it’s time that we should go to the hospital. I already called and they said we should go. He pops up immediately and it’s very like your water broke, oh my God. He’s ready to go. He’s looking for our bags that we’ve already packed. His reaction was the appropriate reaction to your water breaking. Mine was under and what I want to say about that is, and I think you’ll like this Elsie, is I am one of those people. I am an under reactor. So this is great in a crisis or when something weird happens and you need someone with a game face, I’m your person but if you throw me a surprise party, generally give me a surprise present. Elsie has had the misfortune of giving me a very sweet surprise gift before and I kind of have no reaction whenever those moments happen. I’ve learned many times in my life now at this point that is the wrong thing to do and it makes people feel like you don’t like the present or you don’t like the party and it’s terrible. But in a crisis, I’m a very calm person, so it’s kind of good sometimes and then it’s terrible other times.

Elsie: Ok so you’re under reacting. It’s five am and your bags are already packed. So did you change your pants?

Emma: I changed my pants but I won’t lie, you’re kind of just like leaking at that point. So I got a towel and was sitting on a towel in the car because I don’t want to get my car seat all watery and Trey is driving me, of course, and we have all our stuff. We get to the hospital and I’m still a little not convinced that they’re not going to send me home. I don’t know why, but in my mind, I’m like, oh, here we go, they’re going to.

Elsie: You were just really prepared for a false alarm.

Emma: Yeah, I was super. I was like that happens to everyone, it’ll happen to me. So we get there and I’m like, hi, I called my water broke, my due dates in two days from now. So should we go home? I’m not feeling any contractions. They were like, no, you’re having a baby today.

Elsie: Oh my gosh. I love that. So did it sink in at that point?

Emma: Yeah. At that point I was like, oh, ok, ok, got it. So this is the day I got, ok, so we’re having a baby. All right. Finally in the hospital and they’re like, no, you’re not going to leave. You can’t leave, this is it. I’m like, ok, cool. Then they start the whole process. They put you in a little waiting room, you get a gown and there’s a lot of medical type things. I had personally never been on an IV before, so just having that was new to me. So I was like, oh, this is uncomfortable and not that fun. I feel like a little science experiment where you don’t want to move too fast or it’s something a little needle will pop out of you. It’s like, nah. So like I said I wanted to get an epidural and what they told me about that was once you start feeling the contractions because they put me on this thing called Pitocin, I think is how you pronounce it. But it basically helps you start having contractions faster. It starts getting you into labor faster. I think it’s a hormone. Again, I am not medical, so I do start to feel the contractions and they’re like pretty much as soon as you feel them, go ahead and order your epidural because it could take like an hour or two by the time you say you want one for them to actually come and and administer it. So as soon as I was like, all right, I’m really feeling it’s time to call for that epidural. So I did that around 11:00 a.m. and the doctor, the anesthesiologist I guess, who came to give me my epidural was a really nice guy. He did a great job, but it was a little awkward because my nurse, she was new in that she had worked at another hospital, a different hospital but now she was at the hospital I was at and so she was learning all their processes. So she had been a nurse for many, many years and she was very knowledgeable. But she was learning the computer system and their specific order of checklists. There’s lots of checklists that medical professionals are going through over and over to make sure communication doesn’t break down and all that. So anyway, the anesthesiologist, he was getting ready to do my epidural, which is when they put a pretty long needle in your back into your spine.

Elsie: Ok, no details needed on that one.

Emma: Yeah, and I’ve never done that. The great thing about it is it’s in your back so you don’t have to look at it, so you just have your back to them while they do it.

Elsie: Yeah, that’s good.

Emma: Yeah, yeah. So anyway, she was like, oh, did you do the test dose? He was like, no, I don’t do test dose. Behind my back he’s doing his medical stuff, I hear him say test dose is for wimps, just kind of under his breath and in my mind, I’m like I’m not going to say anything because this guy is about to put a huge needle in my back. So I’m not saying anything but I also am like aren’t epidurals for wimps? Maybe we should be doing this test dose thing. What’s going on like it’s, you know?

Elsie: Ok, so number one, I can hear you. Number two, explain this shit to me. Ok, right?

Emma: I was like, what are we? What are we doing? Do I need that? Do I not need that? This is my first time. Can we just go over some…

Elsie:  Did you ever find out what it was?

Emma: Not really because then what happened after that is the nurse, I think she just forgot that she had already asked him, and she was going through her checklist. Like I said, she was new to this particular system, so I could tell from the look on her face and her tone she had just forgotten. She came across that again, like, oh, I didn’t fill this out. When did you do the test dose? But she had already asked him, and she had forgotten. I think so. She asked him again and he was like, oh, I don’t do tests. I haven’t done a test dose in the 20 years I’ve been doing this. The literature doesn’t support it, he just kind of starts going into like. 

Elsie: A little rant.

Emma: This is not how I do it, and please don’t question me type of attitude and I’m just sitting there with him putting this giant needle in my back and I kind of want to giggle because this is a strange situation to be literally caught in the middle of. But I’m not going to giggle because I’m getting an epidural right at that moment. So I just like kind of frozen and like I hope that this is fine. I don’t really know, but it was fine. It was a great epidural. It did what it was supposed to do and life went on and it was totally fine.

Elsie: Oh, I see that the next thing on your list, says Student Doctor. What does this mean?

Emma: I gave Elsie an outline, but I was keeping it really vague because she doesn’t know all the little things. So I was like, oh, I got to tell you this. Yes. So my doctor, my OB. She happened to be on vacation that week. I had a different doctor do my delivery, which was great, she did a great job and it was wonderful, but before she came in, one of the nurses asked me she was like, hey, the doctor who’s going to be doing your delivery today, she has a student with her. Is it ok if the student’s in the room or they said something to that effect? And I said, yeah, that’s fine, because in my mind, it’s not a particularly modest day. There’s a lot of people in the room and you’re pushing a baby out. So I’m like, yeah, one more person who’s about to become a doctor, that’s fine. Plus, everybody’s got to learn. So no big. Yeah, that’s fine. They can be in there. No big deal. But what I should have realized, I should have clarified is this student doctor going to be observing or are they going to be doing stuff? Because in my mind,they were just observing?

Elsie: You thought it was going to be like at a restaurant when they bring like the second server who’s watching it the whole time and they don’t do anything, they just kinda watch.

Emma: And you kind of just like taking notes. Yep, exactly. They don’t necessarily hand them any plates or anything, they’re just observing, taking down some notes, seeing how it goes. So I was like, oh, that’s what this is. No problem. But then I delivered my son and let me just pause though there, because the first moment that Trey and I heard our son cry, like he comes out and we hear his little cry for the very first time, that’ probably one of the top moments of my life. Definitely top three. It might be the top. I don’t know. It’s hard to quantify that type of thing, but it was the most magical, special moment ever, just because you’re so tired. For me, I’ve just pictured being a mom for so long and also pictured my son now because I’ve been pregnant nine months just thinking about it, I was dreaming about him all the time. So one of the best moments of my life was hearing my son cry for the first time and I know Trey felt the same. It’s just a magical, magical moment. So he comes out, we hear him cry and then what they do is they put the baby like up on your chest kind of first thing. I think it’s partly to distract you, partly because it’s just like this special moment. I have a feeling it also has to do with body heat, because your little baby just came out of this very warm place, your womb. Now it’s very cold in the hospital so they put them up on your chest and I think that’s part of the idea anyway. So he’s sitting on me now and I’m seeing him for the first time and I was very distracted. But I also noticed that I’m getting stitched up after delivering a baby. I noticed that the student doctor seems to be doing the stitching, which I was not anticipating. So I’m just kind of like out of the corner of my eye seeing that. Then all of a sudden, I see this little stream of liquid just shoot out from between my legs. Then I hear, yep, yep, yep and then I hear the other doctor come up behind the student doctor and she says, oh, it looks like you punctured her bladder. So that’s why you just want to ask for help. Like something to that effect.

Elsie: Oh my God, that’s like, wow.

Emma: Yeah, apparently. She’s stitching me up. She accidentally nicked my bladder, I guess. So that little stream of water that I saw shootout was, I guess, urine. So that was strange. In my mind, I was really like, kind of out of it because I was holding my son.

Elsie: I was not expecting that part. That was a twist. That was a twist and a turn.

Emma: It is quite a twist. I really didn’t even know. I once again didn’t really react. I’m just holding my son for the first time so that’s the most important moment and I’m pretty focused on that. But in my mind, I was like, ok, so now I think my vagina is sewn to my bladder. I guess I need to check into that later is what’s going into my mind. I’m like Frankenstein.

Elsie: Oh, good. Good for you for being a good sport for medicine.

Emma: Well, I regret it. I wish I had said no, thank you on the student. It’s great to learn, but not for me. Wish I had said that, but it’s ok. It’s not a big deal. It all worked out, but I did tell my main doctor at my six week checkup when she was back from her vacation obviously by then and I was like, oh yeah, it went great. Here’s what happened by the way though, as you’re checking things out, I just need you to know about this bladder thing that happened. So can you make sure that everything’s fine down there and her eyes just got really wide when I told her the story, She was just trying not to react too much because she’s a doctor and she’s a professional. But I could tell she was like, what? What happened? So that was also funny, but it was a great day overall. My son was born and he’s beautiful, so it was great. That’s more or less my birth story.

Elsie: Well, that was more medical than I thought it was going to be. I hope everyone’s ok. Let’s all take a drink of water and give Emma a big thumbs up. Everyone in the whole listeners are giving you a thumbs up right now.

Emma: You did it.

Elsie: You did it, Emma. I’m so proud of you. That is definitely so intense and you should get a medal like how they give you a medal at the end of the half marathon. You should get a medal for this.

Emma: I thought running the half marathon was harder.

Elsie: Stop. No.

Emma: I was ready for more of a horror story. Anyway so what else?

Elsie: Ok, well, that was kind of a funny story, too. I hope you don’t mind me saying I liked.

Emma: I thought it was very funny.

Elsie: I liked the twist. Baby Oscar is so cute, so I’m glad it was a magical moment. A lot of my friends have had really traumatizing experiences, so I’m glad you didn’t have a traumatizing experience.

Emma: Me too. I definitely think it’s funny too. I don’t really need to put a caveat because it’s my experience but I will say I’m so grateful for being pregnant, for how the birth went and for my son. I love it all and not all of it was easy, but I love it all, and I’m so grateful. But yeah, some funny things happened and hard things too but my review is five stars, would recommend if it’s for you. It’s great and it’s not for everyone and that’s fine, too.

Elsie: Yeah, beautiful. Well, I missed you so much this summer and we only talked on the phone for everyone who’s curious. We only talked on the phone like once a week, which was so little for us.

Emma: Yeah, it was weird.

Elsie: She was really in the zone and normally we talk about once a day. So I was trying to give her her space at first, and then I realized that she was just so busy. I have heard people talk about how breastfeeding is a full time job and stuff. So anyway, tell us a little bit about your summer. Did you do anything fun to entertain yourself? What was it like having a newborn at home? How do you like your wallpaper? Everything.

Emma: I love the wallpaper, and Oscar loves it too. At first, so you can’t see it. But now he’s kicking online more.

Elsie: Did you just say kicking online?

Emma: Yeah, that’s what we call it. Well the poor thing kind of can’t see and they’re getting into it, into this living life thing. Yeah. Now he’s seeing stuff and reaching for stuff and all of that. We call his wallpaper, that’s right by his changing table, his baby TV because he’ll just stare at it as if it’s a show. We make little jokes that are just like cheesy parent jokes. But like, there’s this one red flower that’s right by his face, where his head is whenever he’s on his changing table and we pretend like that’s his favorite character from his show Red Flower.

Elsie: Oh, that’s cute.

Emma: So yeah, the wallpaper is a hit, so that really worked out. I’ve been nursing. That at first is like every hour, every two hours so that’s really all you do for a while and it’s great. It’s also really tiring but I love it. It’s very special. I’ve read some books. I finally got around to reading my Stacey Abrams romance novel that I was wanting to read, Selena Montgomery.

Elsie: Can I tell everyone the review that you sent me? It’s a one liner review. Ok, so first of all, everyone knows that Stacey Abrams has a pen name romance novel series. We will put this in the show notes. If this is your first time hearing about it, it makes her even more of a treasure. Anyway, Emma read one of the books. Which one was it?

Emma: Ruthless.

Elsie: Ruthless and she sent me the one liner review and the review was not enough sex.

Emma: Yeah. Stacey Abrams, her background is in law, she’s a lawyer. So that part of the book it’s about a lawyer and like a crime has been committed. That part’s great. It’s great as far as, kind of a thriller or law type thing. But yeah, not enough sex. I was already on page like two hundred and the main characters hadn’t had sex yet and I was very disappointed because for a romance novel, that’s what I’m there for.

Elsie: So, yeah, maybe it’s not really a romance novel. It doesn’t sound like it is. I mean, that sounds like a side dish there.

Emma: I just wanted more so. But yeah, and then what else? We’ve been going on tons of walks. We go on walks basically every day. Oftentimes the three of us and sometimes just me and Oscar. So I have been using the stroller like crazy and it’s great. I have loved having a baby in the summertime because the sun doesn’t set until like eight or nine p.m. and you can get outside. Obviously, there’s some days where it’s really hot, so you have to go earlier or late. But I think that’s made a huge difference for mental health for me because I tend to struggle when it’s January through March, when there’s not as much daylight hours and sunshine. So I’ve been really grateful for the time of year that he was born because I think it’s just been really fun to be outside and also just to get some sunshine. And what else? We had one day where we all went to a pool, a community pool with a friend. It was Oscar’s first pool day and we weren’t there super long because he’s a little baby guy. We were there for a little while but it felt very summertime and that was really fun. Then we also had one day where Trey and I, his grandma, watched Oscar and we went out on a boat for a few hours, rented a boat. I’ve needed to learn how to drive a boat, and so I wanted to kind of do that, not with a whole bunch of other people around because doing new things is kind of embarrassing and hard sometimes. Anyway, but it’s not hard to drive a boat. I just never had learned.

Elsie: So you got a lesson, a boat driving lesson.

Emma: Yes, I got a boat driving lesson. And yeah, and that was one of the first times we were both away from him and it was weird and wonderful. And also, we went home a little early because we were like, we miss him. So, yeah but those are probably the main summer things that I’ve done but it’s been great.

Elsie:  I saw you had a baby pool on your back porch?

Emma: Yes and that was ok. Oscar liked it, medium-low. I really liked it but it’s kind of one of those things where you have to kind of set everything up and then get the sunscreen on him and all the things and then get out there. Then it’s like five minutes of fun and then he’s crying and it’s like, ok, now I take everything down. So it’s kind of a lot of work for what it is this year. I’ve already taken it off my back porch and will try that again next year.

Elsie: Everything is when your kids are really little.

Emma: Yeah, I’m like, ok, next year, try it again next year. As I was doing all that, I was remembering you or Elise said this one time, maybe both of you but something about with crafts and doing creative projects with your kid. You get all the supplies out and then they do it for like five minutes and then you clean everything up. But it grows over time or maybe it was a little early and so you try again later. So that’s what I was thinking in my mind, oh this didn’t work now, maybe later.

Elsie: Kinda like a memory tradition project is like that with little kids. Sometimes you need a redo or a lot of reviews before they’re ready to fully enjoy it. You have to think of it as an introductory experience sometimes.

Emma: So yeah, that’s kind of what I think that was for us here. We had one day where he fell asleep out there and so he took a little nap, only 20 minutes and I just sat in the pool and read my book and he was like sitting in his little bath caddy right next to me. Not in the pool, but you know, and that was really fun. But again, it was like a 20 minute thing so kind of a lot for a short amount of time. That’s all right.

Elsie: Yeah. Well, we’re so happy to have you back and congratulations. I know everyone just been dying to hear how you’re doing. So I think this episode will be really good for everyone to feel like we caught up.

Elsie: Ok, so we have a couple of segments planned. The first one is our favorite guilty pleasure treasure.

Emma: Yeah. So what’s a recent guilty pleasure treasure for you?

Elsie: Alright, Now that it’s September, I can say without shame that all I want to do is celebrate fall, celebrate autumn, fall things, pumpkin spice, everything, all that stuff. You guys know it is the vibe and anyway, so I pulled out my sweaters the other day from our Halloween closet and I pulled out all my sweaters, pajamas and costumes and laid them all on the floor in my closet and kind of set them all up. I got really excited about my Etsy sweater collection. So I’m going to show in the show notes today a sort of a little collage of my favorite Etsy sweaters and I’ll try to do the ones that are still on there. I have the one I’m wearing right now as we’re recording is the Sanderson Witch Museum. So I love that one and I just kind of first of all, I love sweaters. I kind of wear them year round but Halloween sweaters like one of my number one favorite things. The other thing is I love supporting Etsy people who do fandom shops. So, you know, it’s like the things like The Office and now I’m kind of getting into Harry Potter.

Emma: Finally

Elsie: And of course, I’m really into Hocus Pocus and Halloween. Yeah, so many things. There’s so many Etsy sellers who really geek out with you and make these adorable, hilarious merch items. So yeah, I want to support them and I will put them in the show notes today. It’s just bottled joy. What’s your great pleasure?

Emma: What’s great about Harry Potter is that it’s kind of Halloween, but Harry Potter is also kind of Christmas, because now that you’ve been into the movies, it’s always Christmas.

Elsie: Harry Potter is year round.

Emma: It’s like a school year.

Elsie: Let’s do a Harry Potter mini episode because I have so much to say about it but I don’t want to spend an extra 20 minutes on Harry Potter right now but I’m on like the seventh movie right now.

Emma: Yeah, let’s definitely do that because I grew up reading the books as they were coming out and Elsie never got into it and now finally she’s like, oh, I’ve been watching all the movies and I’m like, yes, my moment has come.

Elsie: Yes, I’ll save it for the Harry Potter episode.

Emma: Ok, good. My guilty pleasure treasure is I have been painting my nails lately and so I bought the full set. It’s seven colors plus a top coat of nail polishes from Color Dept.  have never been into painting my nails until this year because I was always a nail biter and now it’s been almost a full year that I stopped biting my nails and it just kind of happened when I got pregnant. I can’t explain it. It doesn’t make any sense to me, So anyone who needs a tip, I’m sorry this is not helpful. But yeah, it just something clicked finally and I quit biting my nails.

Elsie: I love that for you. Ok, so we have a voicemail question.

Voicemail: Hi, Elsie and Emma I wanted to ask when we moved into our home, we had grand plans for a big renovation in five years. Now after five years of daydreaming, we’re about to start. But after assessing our budget and the home’s realistic value, we’ve had to scale down our plans significantly. I want to be excited about our future, but I’m also really bummed about what we’ve lost. I wanted to ask how you come to love a scaled down renovation?

Elsie: I love this question and I’ve been in this situation before a couple of times, so I feel like I have a good answer. Have you ever been in this situation?

Emma: Probably. Yeah. Always I guess.

Elsie: In our first house, we had reached the potential of what it could be worth before we did. Ok, so first of all, we were going to do this huge deck and a hot tub that was in the ground, a nice fancy hot tub. There was a part of our renovation that we basically just canceled because we realized that it just wasn’t mathematically worth it, which I will say I don’t think that things always have to be mathematically worth it. But for us, this home was like we knew that it was a stair step or that we would be moving again soon. So it did have to be mathematically worth it. I also had to scale down the budget of our finishes as we were doing the house. Originally like everyone does this. You go on Pinterest, you save like all the most beautiful tile, the most beautiful light fixtures,things that spark joy for you and get your heart set on fancy appliances, things like that, you know? But then a lot of times the budget comes in or something unexpected happens or things are just generally more than you thought it would be. That’s what always happens to me because I’m too much of an optimist on budgets, for sure. Then you realize, ok, like this isn’t all possible. So my advice is twofold. Cut a couple of things out and just let them go and that part, I think, is the hardest. Then on the rest of it, embrace your new budget and find ways to make it look like your inspiration, even on a smaller budget. So for me, I did those colored appliances with the vinyl when I couldn’t afford the appliances I really wanted and I save like 10 grand things like that, painting a light fixture gold when you don’t want to afford a fancy gold light fixture, just spray painting light fixtures are totally ok to spray paint because you never touch them, they’ll never get worn off. It’s totally fine. Hand stenciling a wall when you have your heart set on wallpaper that can save like five thousand. It’s a lot of time commitment, but that’s what podcasts are for. We’re here for you. You know what I mean? So I think don’t give up that dream house that you planned in the beginning. Just find a way to get it for cheaper.

Emma: Yeah, I think it’s a real lesson in letting your dream kind of evolve a little bit. It’s going to look different than your original. But you know, like you’re saying, there are still a lot of more budget friendly solutions to certain things. And even if it’s not the grand thing that you were thinking of, it could still be really great. It can still look really, really great. Anyone else who’s looking at your house like they’re not going to know that you were intending to buy a thousand dollar light fixture instead of the spray painted one that you have, they’re not going to know. So they’re just going to see the beautiful light fixture and be like, oh cool.

Elsie: Yeah, that’s a great point is that when you get your heart set on something, you feel like nothing else is as good, but you can get used to the other stuff and it can eventually look as good to you. I think less expensive finishes that still aim for the look that you wanted is definitely the way to go.

Emma: Yeah, I agree.

Elsie: Yeah. If there’s a part of the plan, I don’t know what your plan was but if there was a part of your plan that just can’t happen anymore. Like my deck with my built-in hot tub, just take it from me, maybe it’ll happen on your next house. Maybe it’ll happen eventually. Maybe there’s another twist and turn. As Emma always says life is long, but it doesn’t have to be this year or right now. Yeah, I think that’s good to always remember when you least expect it, that hot tub will come your way.

Emma: Yes, I think so, manifest destiny. You just got to wait it out sometimes.

Elsie: Well, welcome back, Emma. I’m so happy you’re back and I’m really excited for fall. So we are going to be podcasting once a week and we have six mini episodes, so we’ll have a mini episode about every other week from now until Christmas. And yeah, we’re excited. We’re happy you’re here. Thanks for listening.

Emma: Bye.