When It’s Good Enough: Kendra Flipping Houses

Yesterday my younger daughter and Andrew came over after church and we went out to eat lunch. Then we drove over to my older daughter’s latest flip house. It was less than a mile away.

She said she couldn’t stop for lunch because she had far too much to get done on the house because the stagers were coming today to stage it.

She’s really stressed out with this flip house because so much has gone wrong. She paid about $110,000 for it, and has already put over $100,000 into it. That is supplies, appliances and such, and workers.

She does a lot of the work herself but has been upset that she can’t get decent workers. When she wasn’t there, they slipped in work that was insufficient and shoddy.

The house was three bedroom, one bath. And the garage had been turned into a living space, but was not heated or cooled. She turned it back into a garage.

Now it is three bedroom, two baths and an additional large closet. She puts in granite countertops and nice appliances. Her chandeliers and cabinet pulls are always gorgeous.

She’s hoping to sell it for $265,000, but I don’t know if she’ll get it in that neighborhood. Although the neighborhood is one where they are knocking houses down here and there and building new ones. That is happening all over Tulsa for the land in town.

My older daughter and her husband bought their two-story house on the edge of town about 5 years ago. I think it has 4 bedrooms, but I’m not sure because I won’t go up those crazy stairs. Two living areas (I’ve always considered that wasted space personally) and an open kitchen dining layout. I think 3 bathrooms.

However in these neighborhoods where they’re all new builds, the yards are small. So in town I suppose it is considered more profitable to just tear a house down and build another in its spot.

My older daughter has two rent houses and sells real estate along with flipping houses. She is 45 with an 11 and a 16 year old and shares custody with their father. With all she has going on, and all the activities the kids are involved in, she’s just about wiped out.

Do you know the young girls (Marley is now 11) have to start practicing for softball in January? That seems crazy to me. I just hope it’s indoors. I’ll have to ask.

When my girls were young they played and practiced from about June through August and that was it.

Why are kids calendars nowadays full to the brim with no time left over? Why are they scheduled to the hilt?

My younger daughter prefers a 9-5 way of life. She is not at all creative and cares not a wit about it. If they need their yard designed they just hire it done.

My older daughter is more like me. She wants to be her own boss and do it her way. However she’s such a perfectionist she can’t stop fiddling with it and put a for sale sign in the yard. Well, eventually she does. But she has a hard time stopping and calling it good.

People have asked me over the years about blogging. Some say when they can get that first post just right, they will hit Publish. I laugh and say then it will never get published. Because you can’t go for perfect. You can’t look at it that way. Not something you do everyday.

I sit down each morning about 9-9:30 and usually have no idea what I’m going to write. I download photos and edit them down to size unless I did a bunch the day before.

If I posted them straight out of the camera they would be around 3000 pixels and take forever to load. I size them down to 500×750.

Then I publish a post somewhere in the vicinity of 10:30. My posts generally come across like a journal of sorts. Sometimes I show decorating and in the summer gardening. Most of the photos I show are random and there’s no rhyme or reason as to why they’re inserted there.

After having this blog for nearly 11 years, I know when to call it “good enough” and hit Publish. I’m not going to stress myself out over it.

In life I suppose there is good enough, good and very good.

Writing is abstract and subjective. So it’s hard to figure out what slot to slide it into.

Really flipping houses is about the same way. You start with the bones of the house, fill them in, and then add the “jewelry”.

When you write you start with the point or plot, fill in the story and then find a place to end it.

When I was writing articles way back when, I wrote my ending first, then my beginning, then the middle.

All this summed up I suppose means that sometimes you can achieve “very good.” But most of the time it will probably be “good enough”.

You strive for the best and settle somewhere in the middle. Some people say they will be happy when, say, the new house they really want is realized.

I used to be like that too. When I was young I was always looking toward some future gain.

As time went by and I matured, I came to realize that it is the moments in life that are precious. The everyday run of the mill moments.

There will be pinnacles of happiness here and there. What one considers the high points. But they are usually few and far between. It is the moments that truly count.

That’s why I strive to make the most of each day. In a week or two weeks, I probably won’t remember what I did on a given day. But I will know that I was grateful for that day and tried my best to make the most of it.

“Life is not measured by time. It is measured by moments.” ― Armin Houman


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  1. Your plants do look great in the photos, as others have mentioned. I have about six house plants but they are all pretty small in size (Christmas cactuses, sansevieria and a very tiny pothos). It would be nice to have a big burst of green on these gray days such as your plants are providing for you. Maybe a trip to a plant shop is in order!

  2. Crazy stairs? Wasted space? I wouldn’t want my mom using those negatives to describe my home. Maybe this is part of the reason you have had a strained relationship with your oldest daughter.

  3. It sounds like your older daughter is a very intelligent and talented person but also that she never feels like she’s done well enough with any project. And the fact that she chooses to fill her life with stress and anxiety is telling. Because it is a choice as she demonstrated by rejecting your suggestion of some medication. Almost as if she is afraid that if she relaxes for one minute everything will fall apart and she will be at fault. What is the source of the fear, I wonder? But all you can do is make sure she knows you accept her as she is, want only the best for her and don’t judge her for her choices. The poor dear, I really feel for her because she can’t be happy or enjoying her life very much I wouldn’t think. I think you just have to hang in there with her making sure she knows you are on her side and that you love her very much, which I know you do. Boy, is it hard being a parent to our adult children? Yes, indeed. It makes wiping noses, changing diapers, feeding, bathing and rocking to sleep seem simple, doesn’t it? Of course it didn’t feel that way when we were doing it!

    The gallery wall around the fireplace is very appealing and well-done, Brenda. You have such a good eye. And your plants are so lush. I think your daughter definitely got her decorating eye from you.

    Just one last tho’t regarding perfection. I have always had a healthy streak of perfectionism and for many years it was a source of frustration in many areas. What I finally learned is that it is okay to strive for perfectionism but only in certain areas. Being a photographer I feel is an example of one of those areas where it is appropriate to want to produce a perfect image. Of course you still have to be willing to accept that it may not always be possible to reach the level of perfection you envision and not drive yourself and others crazy. The one area where I believe it is never appropriate to want or expect perfection is with people. We just don’t have the right to inject those expectations into our relationships. Humans aren’t capable of perfection I don’t believe; we need to be accepted as we are with all our shortcomings and foibles. So, getting that distinction straight was a real Ah-ha moment for me and changed my life for the better. I got off my own case and everybody else’s as well!

    With that I’ll say good night and send blessing to you and your daughters, especially your older one.

  4. You’ve frequently written about the troubles you had in marital relationships. Could it be your daughter sensed that tension while growing up? If so, its fairly common for people to grow up and not feel comfortable when things are calm. It doesn’t feel right not to be stressed. I totally understand that. Here the market is so competitive a home for sale has to have something that makes it special. People don’t want to even paint a room. They expect perfection and on trend. We hear times are tough but the majority are willing to pay a lot more for their first home than in the past. Its a bit mind boggling what are really luxuries are now considered a necessities.

  5. Your daughter might be a perfectionist, but I’m sure she feels a lot of pressure just by being in the real estate business and trying to compete with other flippers as well as new home builders and so on. It seems like such a competitive environment. I hope she can enjoy herself and it isn’t all stress.

  6. Whether a person is one who works for others, or their own boss, there are always scary, difficult times in life. From the time I was 4 yrs old, my dad had his own business…and all our married lives, my husband worked for others…either way life holds difficulties. Kind of a feast or famine existence, one way or another. Having lots of money won’t mean less troubles. You do have to reach a place where you feel enough is enough (especially if you have a decent place to live and food to eat, etc). Nice blog entry, Brenda…most interesting!!

  7. Brenda, everyday I look forward to the subjects you will write about. A blog is a great thing. Not for me though. Just isn’t in my nature to think up of what may (or will not) interest people. You are ? cool Brenda! To ✔compose daily doings is a real talent! That’s how I see it. As always ,,,,,, thanks for sharing your stories. ❤

  8. I’m saying a prayer for your daughter that flips the houses. She sounds like a great girl but anxiety and worry is a killer. I love what she does and her creative side. I don’t think the granite and extras are too much. Many people don’t have the creativity and vision to see what’s possible and she makes beautiful things happen.

  9. Nothing is ever perfect….your daughter will make herself crazy trying to achieve perfection!

    I’m like you….I don’t need anything big or fancy….I just need a peaceful life with my sweet pups.

    1. She’s already driving herself crazy. While talking to me she burst into tears. I mentioned something for her anxiety like I take. And you know what she said? She said it makes her uneasy to be calm!

      1. This pickiness over things is probably why we were estranged for five years. She is just like that. I say forgive and forget and move on. Life is short.

  10. Wonderful post. And yes it can often be difficult to know when to stop and just let it be. I really see that in my painting. i’ve messed up several because i felt they needed just a little more. i can’t believe it’s been 11 yrs you’ve been blogging. i must have started w you in yr 10. And to this day i look forward to reading your posts!!

  11. Your daughter is to be admired for a “job well done.” She has encountered trades people and workers who do not know the meaning of that. I admire her ability to not just settle for “good” or just ok.

  12. It is the moments that truly count…so true! If we’re always searching for the next “thing” to make us happy, we miss all the ordinary everyday moments, which is what makes a contented life.

  13. You are so right! Often in life, done is better than perfect! Your daughter might consider bringing a flipper house up to building codes, make sure the basics like AC are working well, paint in neutral colors, and sell. Don’t bother with staging or fancy finishes like granite, that’s over improvement.

  14. I love the wall around the fireplace and tv, and I love cows and barns anywhere. Today’s post was very good, interesting to learn more about your daughters.

    1. Schools have dates for ball practice set by the State Education Agency. Softball is in the spring for schools.

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