A Work In Progress


My name is Kayce Johnson. I graduated from IUS in 2014 with a bachelor's degree in English Writing. I have always loved to write and was the one kid in my high school classes who actually looked forward to essays, etc. When others looked at assignments as a means to an end or just something that they had to do, I looked to writing as comfort and one of the things that had a calming effect on me. I tried to pick a different degree in college, thinking jobs in other fields would be easier to obtain, but somehow I always found my way back to the enjoyment of reading a good book and writing a nice, long paper.

At the end of 2015, I got a job at Leader Publishing Company and my love for writing was once again rekindled. I am so excited to share some of my story!

My husband and I bought a house almost three years ago in Salem. We knew it would be a fixer-upper, but did not know to what degree. We got the house at a great price, even considering the money and time we've put into it.

My husband, Alan, has an electrical engineering degree, so upon a closer look at the house (after closing, of course), he noticed the wiring was a complete mess. The house was livable to the eye--move-in ready to those who didn't want to do some digging, I suppose-- but after noticing the potential risk for a house fire from an incredibly bad wiring job, we started our journey.

Everything came down. All the walls, most of the windows, even the chimney. We somehow transformed our little piece of cake, run-of-the-mill home buying event into "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition!" Our adventure, of course, took way more than a week (as seen on reality tv), but it is fun to see what can go on behind the scenes.

We worked and worked (and when I say "we," I honestly mean "he"). Alan had experience with working on houses, while I mostly just did some cleaning, answered questions about future cosmetic repairs, and brought him food. We had some family and friends over to help as well during different stages of the process.

One get-together that will forever be etched in my memory was our induction into the world of remodeling- we had a "Demolition Party." A few of my husband's friends came over to help get the walls and chimney down. We did what anyone would do in our position, told them we would supply three things to lure them in...beer, pizza, hammers.

We made a lot of progress that day. We kept going every day, until finally on Christmas Eve, just weeks ago, we had created a space just livable enough to work on it while residing there. After all the wreckage, time, money, decisions, and general dislike for the people responsible for leaving the place in such bad shape, we finally have a new and very much improved home. However, more remodeling antics are to come before the completed project can be revealed...


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