Home Life Best gift ever

Best gift ever


It’s not too late to get the woman in your life the best Christmas gift ever.

Delight your special someone with the promise of something she has always wanted: a spruced-up room of her own where she can do her favorite things.

You can arrange for a post-holiday remodeling project that will enlarge the kitchen, upgrade the master bathroom, or convert a guest room or grown child’s old bedroom into a sewing or craft room.

Or, if you’re looking for a way to wow the man of the house, consult a contractor about making over the garage or transforming an unused space in the house into a “man cave” where he can watch LSU games, play cards with his buddies or work out on home gym equipment.

Create a personalized “gift certificate” for your lucky loved one to unwrap on Christmas morning, and then invite him or her to be part of the planning and design of the coveted room come January.

Nearly everyone wishes for a space of his or her own for hobbies, relaxation or privacy. So if you’re stuck for a gift this year, make someone’s dreams come true.

A bonus: It only takes a few minutes to make up a gift certificate. The actual designing and construction work won’t begin until after the holiday hustle and bustle has passed.

Here are a few ideas for gift-worthy remodeling projects:

–No matter who the chef is in your family, it’s a good bet that he or she would like to change a few things around in the kitchen. Maybe the “flow” of the space doesn’t work; the countertops and cabinets look worn and out of date; or the appliances are so old that people refer to them as “vintage.” If the cook on your gift list could talk directly to Santa, chances are good that he or she would ask for a bigger kitchen, or one that opens up into the dining room or family room, or one that’s replaced from floor to ceiling with shiny new surfaces, storage areas and appliances.

Jeb-Breithaupt-Headshot–If the bathrooms in your home are simply functional, what better gift could you give than one that’s fabulous? Some ways to make that happen: enlarge the master bathroom, add a second sink, upgrade the cabinets and vanity top, replace an old tub with a big shower—complete with a couple of side sprays, a big shower head and gorgeous new tile on the walls—or all of the above.

–Maybe the mom in your household has been fantasizing about the day when she can convert an unused bedroom into a space just for sewing, quilting, scrapbooking or another hobby. Your gift could include storage space designed for your favorite crafter’s preferred pastime: built-in 11-by-14-inch slots for scrapbook pages; round cubbies for rolls of gift-wrapping paper; tiny trays for storing beads; or a roomy counter for spreading and ironing fabric.

–How loudly would your kids squeal on Christmas morning if Santa not only left them their favorite toys, but a room of their own where they can play with them?

–It won’t be finished by Super Bowl Sunday 2014, but just knowing a man cave or home gym is in the works will make the gift well worth the wait for the sports fan or fitness buff in your family. And the gift giver will reap a return on their investment on this gift many times over in the form of the recipient’s enthusiasm during the planning and design process.

–What guy doesn’t wish for a “Garage Mahal” at his own home? Your gift could cover the cleaning and organizing of the junk that’s probably in the garage now, and a makeover that includes built-in storage furniture, a finished garage floor, an insulated new garage door and even an air conditioning or heating system. Don’t forget the super-insulated, made-for-garage refrigerator and a roomy work bench.


Jeb Breithaupt, B. Arch., MBA, has been president of JEB Design/Build, an Angie’s List Super Service Award Winner, in Shreveport since 1983. You can contact him at 318-865-4914 or by visiting www.jebdesignbuild.com.

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Sean Green is managing editor of the Bossier Press-Tribune.