I’m a homeowner. I didn’t own my first house until I was 41 years old. Up until that time I was a free-footed, oblivious renter of apartments. If there was a leak, just call the super. If an appliance broke, the landlord was the one who made a new stove or refrigerator magically appear. As far as home maintenance went, I was living the life of pure, ignorant bliss!
Ah, but not anymore! I’ve got a “to do” list as long as my arm, since I moved into this house 9 years ago. Don’t get me wrong, the house was in good shape when I moved in, although the guy I bought it from didn’t use the most skilled craftsmen to do any of the finish work. Since moving into This Old House I’ve remodeled the bathroom and the kitchen. Not small projects in terms of time AND money. I had a professional do the bathroom renovation. He’s a friend who I trust and he did a great job. In other words, the work is exceptional and I didn’t get taken to the cleaners! If you ever need remodeling/repair work done and you live in NW Indiana – I have the guy for you! The Dude and I did the refinishing work in the kitchen. Turned out great and I realized I’m great at installing tile.
Anyway, I’ve realized that owning a house means that we will always have home projects to tackle and money to spend. Dreams of a trip to Europe (hell even Gettysburg), fall by the wayside, at least on our budget. The Dude and I prefer the DIY method. Not only do we save cash, but we learn a new set of skills. I must admit that The Dude is very handy around the house. **wink, wink** No, seriously, he has great basic carpentry and electrical skills which have saved us tons of cash.
Every once in a while I sit down and try to prioritize all the home projects we have either started and need to finish, or fresh items I need to add to the list. Here’s what we’ve got in the hopper right now:
- Replace the back deck – The guy I bought the house from didn’t use pressure treated wood to build the deck off of our bedroom. It has become a rotting pile of sticks at this point. Fortunately, it’s only about 18 inches off the ground, not 10 feet! This project will be completed before the month is out. I promise!
- Paint exterior of house – We started this job last fall. It’s half done, but then the weather turned cold, rainy, and nasty. We’ll be finishing this project as soon as the heat in the Midwest drops below that of the surface of the sun. Which can’t come too soon because I’m tired of the house looking like all we need to finish the look is a car up on cinder blocks in the front yard! Yee haw!
- Paint the ceiling in living room and dining room – I’ve been wanting to do this for, oh, 4 years. Yeah, it’ll get done eventually. Jeez, you would think it’s the Sistine Chapel instead of basic white ceiling paint! See, those references to Europe …. sigh.
- Repaint the master bedroom – Back in the early summer of 2008, I decided to paint our bedroom a “sunny, happy, yellow.” I’ve lived with said “sunny, happy, yellow” for two years. Me no likey. Yellow is a tough color to get right. It’s either too soft that it is almost white, or it’s so bright that it burns the cones and rods of your eyes out. Our yellow is too bright. So back to the drawing board. Which means, picking a new color AND priming the walls all over again. Me REALLY no likey!
- Hanging closet doors in the master bedroom – Hanging my head in shame here. For the same two years that we’ve lived with the “sunny, happy, yellow” paint, I’ve had two closet doors that need to be reinstalled. Guess I’ll wait now until I repaint the room! For once procrastination pays off. Yes!
- Path to the front door – About 5 years ago, I decided to tackle a job all by myself. I was recently divorced and needed something to take my mind off of the mess I had just removed myself from. The path to our front door/porch was dirt. I wanted to clean it up, so I put down weed barrier (what a joke) and pea gravel. It was hot, sweaty work, and I was thrilled that I did it myself. It looked terrific – for about 3 months. Now we basically have to mow it because it is all weeds. I’d love a brick walk, but I’m willing to entertain any surface type, as long as it doesn’t have to be mowed.
Okay, so are you bored yet? Exhausted? Bored and exhausted? This isn’t even the entire list, but I think I’ve tortured you enough. I’ll just keep dreaming of the day when we don’t have a home project in the works. In the mean time, pray for us….