2017 Year End Review & 2018 Outlook

Happy New Year!!!! I know I need to post Bruce’s “before and after” blog but I can’t NOT do a New Years post…It’s my FAVORITE time of year! I literally have the goofiest smile on my face right now while I’m typing- I’m just giddy about the fresh start this year and every new year brings. Right now, where I stand, the possibilities are endless and I haven’t done anything to mess it up… so far.
So anyway, I thought it would be fun to review last year’s Goals and Resolutions to see how I did. But first, in keeping with last year’s tradition, I wanted to do another “favorites section” to highlight our 2017 projects. BUT this year, instead of me picking my favorites, I would LOVE to hear from you! So with the help of our resident techy, Colby of Colby’s Creations, we have set up a quick survey after each category for you to select your favorite…. please and thank you.
We completed 3 homes in 2017.
846 Donaghey
1917 Caldwell
1406 Bruce
What was your….
Favorite Exterior
A) Donaghey
B) Caldwell
C) Bruce

Favorite Kitchen
A) Donaghey
B) Caldwell
C) Bruce

Favorite Master Suite
A) Donaghey
B) Caldwell
C) Bruce

Favorite Story
Man, just looking thru those pictures I’m reminded of all the people who skillfully worked their trade to make each home come together. Seriously, couldn’t have happened without them. 
And now I will honestly evaluate how I did on the 6 Rehome/Storybook Goals/Resolutions I set for myself this time last year:
2017 Goals and Resolutions End of the Year Evaluation
1) I will make AT LEAST minimum wage on all projects.  
Evaluation: ummmmm no. Financially it was not a good storybook year. HOWEVER, while I may have not collected minimum wage (or any wage) in 2017, I am proud to say we did hire our first official Storybook Employee, Cole, and managed to provide a weekly paycheck to this fella for the last 7 months. 
2) Live out James 1:2-4

Consider it pure joy whenever you face trials of many kinds, 
because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance.  
Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and 
complete, not lacking anything.

Evaluation: Not so much. Oh, I started out strong, but guys, I’m not going to lie, Caldwell nearly did me in. Every day was a new trial with that project and the financial burden nearly crippled me. Hindsight, I was able to look back and see how God carried us thru the valley and had us in his grip all along BUT I can hardly call my reaction or attitude toward this trial “pure joy.” 
3)  Update rehome FB/blog weekly.  
Evaluation: Fail again. I am the slowest writer in the world, so blog posts take me FOREVER to write. Proof of point- I started this post on January 1st. HOWEVER, in my defense, we are no longer rehome….so this resolution is null and void and can’t be held against me. 
4) Re logo rehome! 
Evaluation: Hot diggity! I did this one! We have been operating as Storybook Homes since last March. 

5) Get on Instagram.  
Evaluation: Guys, I tried. I really did. I just don’t get it. I’m not giving up, but I’ve got to get a tutor or at least see if there is an “Instagram for Dummies” book. Those hashtags just stress me out.

6) Complete 5 homes! 
Evaluation: Personally I think the Caldwell Manor should have counted as at least 3 homes so I think I should get partial credit for this one.

So 1.5ish out of 6 goals met. Hmmm, not the greatest But hey, I proved I could meet one goal and surely the experiences I had in 2017 will help me meet ALL my goals and resolutions for 2018. So in addition to the 42 personal resolutions (down from 56 last year) I have set for myself here are the goals and resolutions I have for Storybook Homes in 2018 (1-5 are repeats from last year’s failures with some small changes):

2018 Storybook Homes Goals and Resolutions

1. Make a PROFIT or keep the property as a rental. We have always had the backup plan to rent if we are unable to sell but this year Rory and I have decided that if I overspend to the point I can’t get a paycheck we will just keep the house as a rental. So if you are looking for a high-end custom rental with a story- this just might be your year!

2. Live out James 1: 2-4! Or at least try to make it thru 1 project without crying.

3. Update Storybook Homes FB weekly. I might not blog weekly but surely I could snap a picture and post it on Facebook weekly. I’d love to think I would get back to posting about Rory and I’s WWYWW (Work with Yo Woman Wednesday) projects…. yes I should do that. Of course this week he is going hunting on Wednesday…. but next week…

4. Instagram. Yes! I’m going to do it. I might not do it correctly but I’m going to do it. #try, #justdoit, #whatintheworldarethesehashtagsfor

5. Complete at LEAST 5 homes. I’d really like to start working on more than 1 home at a time and complete each home within a 3-4 month period.

6. Launch a new Storybook Homes website. We think we have found a sweet family to adopt Sister (our current home) and therefore will be moving sometime this year. Since this blog, Two Story Sister, was originally started to chronical our own home renovations (before I highjacked it for Storybook Homes) it just makes sense to reformat once we leave Sister behind. I’d LOVE to leave the blogger format and have a more professional looking website that has links to our FB and Zillow….. but who am I kidding, I can’t even figure out Instagram.

7. Hire a jack-of-all-trades handyman. I think one of the reasons we can not seem to turn a profit in this business is because I’m not handy and Rory has a full-time job so we have to sub out EVERYTHING. If we had our very own handyman I think it could potentially save us money and a ton of headaches. Someone who has knowledge of most construction trades would be the dream BUT I would settle for a carpenter who could frame and trim and be an overall problem solver.

8. Take a two-week break in the summer and at Christmas to spend quality time with my family. One thing the story of Bruce taught me was the importance of balancing out work and play time. I am a workaholic. I LOVE what I do and because of that, I have a hard time turning off my work brain when I’m home with the family. It was sooo nice finishing up our Bruce Street project just in time for Christmas last year so I could be fully present with my family during the holiday break. I’d love to think I could time our projects to allow for another break during my boys summer break.

So there they are. I’m ready! Bring on 2018!!!

3 thoughts on “2017 Year End Review & 2018 Outlook

  1. Molly Bernard says:

    Possibly to the detriment of your pocketbook and occasionally to the detriment of your sanity, you have contributed to making Old Conway a more desirable place to live. As a resident of Old Conway, I thank you for bringing personality and character to some properties that were in danger of destruction and more vitality to this awesome neighborhood!


  2. Britni Elder says:

    I love this update. It's vulnerable and honest. I also love what you do. Caldwell has, by far, been my favorite story to follow. I would pass it every day on the way to work, long before you began restoring it, wondering what was inside. When you started posting about it, I didn't have to wonder anymore! What an incredible transformation! Keep up the good work in Conway. I can't wait to see what you do next!


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