San Diego, CA
transitional mix of old world rustic with contemporary. Lots of grays and browns. Warm, natural, relaxed, personal.
My next project: We've hired a garden designer to draw up ideas for updating the backyard in 2013. Its a beautiful yard but dated and no longer goes well with the contemporary interior remodel we just finished.
About me: I moved to San Diego with husband Stan in July of 2011. We bought a house in Crown Pointe, south Scripps Ranch, in May of 2012, and spent the summer remodeling it.

Before this relocation we lived in CA's south Bay Area for twenty years. My husband was a government executive and I was the ED of EdSource, a nonprofit research and communications firm that studied CA's K-12 public education issues. In January of 2011 I was appointed by Governor Brown to a four year term on the CA State Board of Education.

Our only other prior remodel was ten years ago; we expanded our small kitchen in the Cupertino School District, replaced a few floors, put in new windows. I was working full time and raising two sons so I spent as little time on the details of the remodel as possible.

With this summer's remodel I was on "sabbatical" from paid work. The floor plan of the house made it possible for us to stay in it during the remodel. I served as interior designer (I have no background in this area!) and as co-project manager with the construction foreman (not that different from running my former company). The design challenge was terrifying but thank god for Houzz! I used the website daily!!

Another challenge, and an opportunity -- being in San Diego -- was that all the construction crew (see my review of their work) were native Spanish speakers; some were fluent in English and some were not. Unfortunately I had never learned to speak Spanish. But I made a point of learning and calling every worker (about 15 of them) by name. I also kept bottles of cold water in the fridge available to any worker. Both of these shows of respect contributed to a very positive construction "culture" in our home; the whole team was high quality to start with, but they also went out of their way to ensure I was happy with every detail. I even learned a little construction related Spanish:)

By the end of the extensive remodel I had a major case of "decision fatigue" and am ready to move on. But I love the remodel outcome -- the way our new home now looks and feels -- and l learned a lot from the experience.
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