reader remodel contest winner 2013 whole house homeowner working on house during construction
Photo: Lisa Romerein
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Schoolhouse Lessons: Focus

After three years and counting, Dustin and Stephanie Simpson have learned a few things about how to deal with dust and disorder. Their tips:
Focus on one project at a time. "It's like, 'How do you eat an elephant?' " says Dustin. "The answer is, 'One bite at a time.' We drew up a five-year plan and broke it into pieces so we wouldn't be overwhelmed." They also started with small bites. Early on, Dustin built open shelves in the basement to serve as a pantry. It created a sense of order while the new kitchen and walk-in pantry were still just an idea.
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