ABSENCE …

What can I say … I have been neglecting my poor blog … it’s sitting here, looking at me, with a petted lip, crying out for some content, for some photos, anything, ANYTHING to make it feel wanted, alive.

Truth be told, I just didn’t see this coming.  I thought “no worries, I can do this and run a business and pop on my cape and update the blog and all that stuff along with project managing a major home renovation”.  Boy, was I completely wrong.

Our dream started almost 3 years ago.   Whilst we love our home (finally, after moving 10 times in 10 years, we found a home we were happy with) we always felt that the architect who designed the downstairs, in relation to the upstairs, must have been on meds … or must have forgotten to take them !  For us, and for many others I suspect, it’s important to be living in a home that really works for you, for your family … and for me, for my work life, as this is where I run my business.  I am fortunate to have the layout I have, the front of my home is dedicated to seeing clients  in the viewing room, filled with lovely framed prints, canvases, box frames, albums, with no need to intrude on the family end of the house, at the back.

However, up until 2 weeks ago, this was a warren of small rooms back there, each with no particularly useful function, time to change that.  So, around 3 years ago, we started thinking about knocking down walls, making the space really big and lovely to live in.  Then we thought, why don’t we just move, and now we’re back to where we are after a disastrous house hunting few months (there was just nothing out there, you know?).

So, 3 weeks ago we started in earnest.  We got our contractor lined up, along with a bunch of other trades … and so it began.

Now I knew it would be tough.  I was warned.  No problemo, it will be cool, thought I.  As I sit here, in the only room in the house not COMPLETELY covered in dust and filled with stuff (my office) I will say this … if I could have afforded to move out while all this was going on, I would have.  No amount of warnings prepared me for this.  No amount.  None.

So, why have I decided to blog about this?  A few reasons … one is to let my lovely clients know that I am working 24/7 to ensure I am on top of the business as well as managing a massive project … you guys are so important to me, I am working longer hours for this short time in order to keep you guys happy !  Yay.  The other is to move onto this subject …

BUDGETING …

I wanted to post this as a piece of advice for any bride and groom budgeting for their big day.

When I set out on my project I pulled out a spreadsheet and started writing out all the things I would need for my new home remodel.  To give you a better idea, we are knocking through a dining room, a study and a kitchen to make a large kitchen, dining, living space.  Bearing in mind we have been planning for this (and saving for this) for 3 years, I thought I would find this pretty straight forward.  I pulled the budget together in what I thought was a pretty realistic manner.  I very swiftly realised that some things would need to take priority over others … and I guess that’s the case with ANY budget, including a wedding …

For me, there was the actual building work (let’s say that’s the venue and food), followed by the kitchen (the next most important thing) … now, this will differ from person to person and couple to couple but, honestly, every single one of my clients will tell you that the photography is up there, it’s one of their top priorities.  It may differ for you, it may be in third or fourth place, say after the dress or the cars … wherever you place these things, you need to realise that some things will be placed in higher ranking than others.  And here is where the bulk of my budget went … after that was a juggling match, weeks and weeks of researching products and prices, retail versus wholesale … there were some items I refused to budge on, those things that would need to stand a battering (cooker for example) and those things that were more cosmetic than functional … I guess the point is, I GET how hard it is to budget for a wedding … I can RELATE to it, first hand at the moment.

And of course, I will be completely and utterly biased to photography as an extremely important part of that budget.  The old cliche springs to mind … it’s all you’re left with once everything else is gone … so make sure your photographer fits well with you and your vision, that you are left with a gorgeous product that will be with you and your children for a lifetime.

I guess I should hit this home with some photos … warning, not for the faint hearted LOL

If any of you are on my Facebook, check in to see the progress … in the meantime, I’m here, I’m working through it all, you’re all keeping me sane hahaha

All images Copyright 2014 Gill Taylor Photographer ... please don’t steal them, it’s not nice !