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You should know that my husband, Sean, and I aren't DIY experts -- at least, we weren't until we bought our house in San Francisco. With its flowery wallpaper, dated tile, and cheesy paneling, the kitchen screamed, "Hey, the '80s called! And they don't want any of this stuff back." Because we're both creative -- and also control freaks who love saving money -- we decided to tackle the renovation ourselves. Over four weeks we learned lots of new skills. And yes, those were the four longest weeks of my life. Detailing our progress on my blog, Nothing But Bonfires, kept me sane. Don't get me wrong, though: We enjoyed it so much we're planning a bathroom redo next. But only after a very long nap.