I have been visiting a lot of blogs about home decor, DYI projects, thrifty and frugal ways to renovate. I find the clever ideas from some of them just wonderful and not too difficult for a person who is willing to take on such projects and making them happen in their homes....everything from rearranging furniture and accessories up to and including knocking down walls to essentially remodel their homes. I am so regretful that I am not one of those kinds of people. Mr. Fix-It won't let me pick up a paint brush, hammer a nail, screw in a screw, or any other kind work needed in a home remodelling project.
This is not because he a guy who is the take charge, nobody can do anything as well as I, or go sit down, Magnolia Blossom, I will build whatever your little heart desires, you don't need to lift a finger -- type of guy! Nope, he doesn't let me help out of a sense of self-preservation! I am LOUSY at that kind of thing. I am not very coordinated, things go wrong all the time, I can't even get paint to cover evenly! I am a walking disaster waiting to happen! He has learned that it is safer and easier to send me out shopping or visiting or something when there is a project to be done. Truthfully, that's okay with me! If you are like me, you will understand when I say, I don't like doing things I can't do well, especially when I have Mr. Fix-It who is exactly the opposite of me. He can fix nearly anything, he can build anything, and he can do whatever we decide to do to whatever house we happen to live!
Over the years he has:
>> re-tiled floors, counter tops, back splashes, showers
>> Laid down carpet
>> Laid down hardwood flooring
>> Torn out walls
>> Installed sinks, toilets, cabinets, appliances, ceiling fans
>> Built or remodelled closets, laundry "rooms", bathrooms, kitchens, stairways, entries
>> Installed lighting
>> Upholstered furniture
>> Painted --- EVERYTHING
>> Sewed pillows, curtains, (and a few costume things here and there)
>> And more that I can't remember at the moment.
Some of them have been done multiple times in different houses! And they are all done beautifully! He is a perfectionist about it. His work NEVER looks shoddy, tacky, or amateurish. I didn't marry him because of these skills....they were a bonus that I discover after we were already married!
The only drawback to the things he has done is that nearly every project he takes on TAKES FOR-BLOOMIN'-EVER! That is the God's honest truth....FOREVER! When we completely remodelled our kitchen, it took FOUR MONTHS to finish. He tore everything out down to the studs and sub-floor! Seriously, we had no functional stove, no sink, no walls, no flooring, no counters, no cabinets, off and on for four months. If it had taken one week longer I was going to kill him!!
Every project takes a lot longer than he anticipated, partly due to problems that arise, partly due to the size of the projects he takes on, partly because everything has to be "just so", and partly due to the fact that he just gets stalled. That's the part that is enormously frustrating to me, because there isn't anything I can do about it but wait till it's done! I have told him that his gravestone will say, "I didn't think it would take so long!"
Once finished, the job is perfectly beautiful and ultimately worth the wait, but I have a hard time remembering that when we are living in the middle of chaos....again!
Understandably, it appears that he reached burn-out at the time we moved to Austin. Our house here was relatively new when we bought it, so there weren't any major problems to fix. Somehow the few projects that I would like to have happen, were not critical, and over time they just disappeared from the radar, one by one. Ten years is a long time to hold on to a To-Do List.
The Big Guy works long hours at a very hard, on your feet a lot -kind of job. He's a machinist. The machining that he does involves lifting heavy objects, an extremely tricky process to make many different, precisely-measured parts that are used in knee replacements. It is a noisy, hot, tedious, tiring, potentially dangerous, and dirty kind of work. The last thing he wants to do with his time off is more physical labor. I certainly understand that.
I must, however, admit that I miss the kinds of remodelling (or at least re-decorating) projects he used to do at home.
So when I go to visit one of the home decor blogs I like, I feel frustrated because they remind me of things that I'd really love to have happen in my house, but can't. "Our House" IS a very, very, very fine house...." but in my mind's eye, I keep seeing things that would make it so much more!
Mr. Fix-It spent about 35 years creating and recreating our dream homes for us. I kind of got use to it! I really miss making changes. It's sad, but I'm pretty sure Mr. Fix-It went out of the Dream Home business forever!