Something I Made

I’ve made a mountain out of a mole hill, I’ve made a last ditch effort, I’ve made eyes at a handsome man, I’ve made up my mind and then changed it, I’ve made my head spin worrying about whether it was all going to work out, I’ve made do with what I’ve got, because what else can a gal do but make do, and along the way, I’ve made a lot of mistakes. I mean a lot. I make making mistakes look like its my full time job, and yet, somehow I can still make something out of next to nothing, a good situation out of bad, make a comeback when I had counted myself out of the game, and despite all these mistakes I make, I’m making my own way.

Follow the 10% more guideline so you don’t fall short of what’s needed.

I’ve found it incredibly helpful when others share the mistakes that they have made along the way instead of pretending that all their efforts were the result of flawless execution. It’s impossible, and yet, impossibly we seem to believe what we see, instead of what is likely hidden just off camera, the unfinished tile floor of the bathroom – opps, didn’t order quite enough and now it’ll take three weeks to get the additional amount needed to finish the job, the custom curtains that I had to have before I had measured the actual windows, and ended up being super wide (not necessary) and so short they looked like that poor kid in junior high that seemed to grow inches overnight and had high tides, his pants looking as if he were ready to go wading in the sound instead of sounding off in the sing along for the school’s production of Our Town. Thank God for a brilliant seamstress that matched the intricate pattern stroke for stroke, and nary a stitch could be seen. You’d think that I’d have gotten the measure twice, cut once rule down by now, but sometimes I am a little slow, and take things far too fast.

My Galbraith & Paul Curtains – saved by the seamstress!

I’ve had quite a run with panel ready dishwashers. I had purchased a single drawer Fisher & Paykel for my very first place. I was so excited, not having had a dishwasher at my last rental. It was super expensive, but I splurged and when I walked into the apartment after a long day at work to find its guts spilled out across the floor, you would have thought my eyes had sprung a leak. I thought my tears would flood my little living room, and I would drown in my sorrow. Turns out my builder had no idea how to install it, so decided to take it apart – I had to buy a brand new one, and have Yale Appliance come and install it. My most recent dishwasher got installed but three separate builders couldn’t figure out how to put the panel on. They kept telling me that I had the wrong panel size. Two special orders later, I said to myself, something’s going on here, and it has nothing to do with the size of this panel and everything to do with the installation guide to the galaxy not being right. Getting people that really know their stuff – the first time, can really keep your costs down, even if it cost you a little more up front.

And as for the tile – purchase 10% more than you think you need for the square footage you are covering. It’ll cover the chipped, and broken tile that are all part of process, and allow you to pick and choose the tiles that “show” the best.

Go ahead, make something beautiful.

If I’m Not Mistaken: The power of failure.

Friday I was having a conversation with my boss Lisa Wexler about failure.  She was recounting a story about the founder of Spanx – Sara Blakely and her family dinners.  “What did you fail at today”?  Was the question her Father posed each night at mealtime.  Hum, “what did you fail at”?  It got me thinking about all the scientists we build laboratories for, these amazing folks that are hard at work solving the world’s problems.  Scientists live in failure, they turn their faces up to it like one might tilt one’s head to feel the warmth of the sun on a cold winter’s day.  Each failure a learning moment, inching them toward a success.


My year in review.

“A life making mistakes is not only more honorable, but more useful than a life spent doing nothing”.  George Bernard Shaw

I spent my morning at the site thinking about all the mistakes I have made on this project alone.  From paint colors to sequencing, mathematical miscalculations to the naive faith in a plan well laid.  I no longer have a Master Plan, but to steal the wise words of my good friend Pam Delphenich – I have a Framework Plan.  It’s so much more forgiving.  Life throws curve balls, and really it’s the master, not me.


Trying something new and old all at the same time.

“Even the knowledge of my fallibility cannot keep me from making mistakes.  Only when I fall do I get up again.”  Vincent Van Gogh

My journey is a long one.  I am not yet halfway through my quest.  There are bound to be mistakes along the way.  Public failures, private trials, disasters side by side with minor mishaps.  I will be afraid.  I will doubt.  I will keep moving, I think, with a smile on my face, both literally, and metaphorically.


Year in review too and 2, celebrating 4.

“If you have the guts to keep making mistakes, your wisdom and intelligence leap forward with huge momentum.”  Holly Near

My promise and advise to anyone that strives to make an imprint, is learn from the mistakes of others, and be ready to receive the insights of those that you make.  The possibilities, and potential are dizzying.


Tape is always a good idea, but regrettably the real insights come after the walls go up, and then must come down.  Embrace it.

“I hope that this year to come you make mistakes.  Because if you are making mistakes, you are making new things, trying new things, learning, living, pushing yourself, changing yourself, changing your world.  You’re doing things you’ve never done before, and more importantly, you’re doing something.”  Neil Gaiman

Stay curious.  I hope 2017 brings you a whole lot of living.  Thank you for all your support.  Whether I am just scraping my knees or getting my heart-broken, in the infamous words of The Beatles….”I get by with a little help from friends.”