Many moons ago, a friend was having some plumbing issues at his house. He had called me to see if I might be of any help. I tried and tried with all of my might to channel my Popa since he was THE handyman to go to when you needed something fixed. But I couldn’t figure it out and my friend was left to call a plumber to fix the problem.
As my friends bought homes, I helped move boxes, paint and anything else I could do. I even was talked into crawling into a very disgusting cabinet to pull out random things that had been left there years ago. I got my first taste of demoing walls, fixtures and floors. Hard work but yet so satisfying; hurt, anger, frustrations from a failed relationship poured out as I ripped away the old in a house.
Then I met Stacey and her husband. . . this is where the real learning began. Anyone with a sledge hammer and some might can rip things apart, putting a demoed room back together is a whole different skill set. But I sat, learned, listened and took orders while helping. I beamed as I learned something else when putting walls up, I also learned that I am the kind of person that just wants it to be done, who cares about perfection? Of course there is a small hole behind a cabinet in Stacey and J’s remodeled kitchen. . . it probably still bothers him. His perfection led to one evening of “us girls” finally saying, let’s just prime it so we can paint. . .
I have mastered several tools and love to use them. I used to think that putting crown molding up was easy. Umm, no, those stupid angle cuts are a pain in the tush! I did manage one time and one time only, of correcting J when it came to cutting an angle and I was right! I smiled at myself and knew it was more sheer luck than anything else. Geometry is not my strong suit.
But if it hadn’t been for my friends, so willing to welcome me in to help tear down and rebuild in their homes, I would not have been able to do the following:
With the help of dad and mom being banished from the kitchen, I installed their new microwave. Sadly their old one had died a quick, painless death yesterday morning and it being above the stove meant that they needed another one to go in it’s place. Mom and I looked at Sears and they did not have one in stock and the installation fee was half of what the actual cost of the microwave was, I stood shaking my head. I can put it in, there is no need to pay for someone else to do it. Yep, Stace, I somehow managed to turn into you and J! Why pay someone when I was able bodied!
Mom found one at Lowes and off we went back to the house. Dad was in a lather. He dreaded this and mom even warned that my own hide was on the line should this little home improvement job land on her stove. . .
We got the old one out and I looked at the new one, since it was different brands the mounting would be different. Of course! I measured (again, math just really isn’t my strong suit) marked spots, explained what we were going to do with dad and from time to time, reminded mom to please leave the kitchen.
After buckets of sweat, a miscalculation on my part and some cussing (from dad, I didn’t at all!) we got the new one installed. And it worked like a charm, hot tea for mom in the morning!
While mom did mention the space was off a bit, dad mentioned that it didn’t matter, it was on the wall, working and would stay put. But mom is just like the rest of her family, precise. Me? Not so much.
I would love to have a go at their floors but I have been told no way. I still love to piddle with do it yourself projects but I am in serious need of my own tools. Should I ever get married, I think that is what I will register for, I have all my kitchen stuff!
So a big thank you to my friends for allowing me to be a part of your projects. I learned a lot, sweated a lot and finally got to show off my mad skills.