Thursday, December 4, 2014

My Wife Won't Do That...

Andrew came home from work a few days ago to a cranky, sniffly, sarcastic wife. As Andrew likes to put it, I had done a lot of "suffering" that day. I had spent 7 hours doing my least favorite thing of all time: sanding sheetrock & plaster.  The first hour was exciting, progress was seen. After that, it was all dust and throbbing pains in my arm. I spent every hour cleaning out the white goop from my eyes, going outside for air and texting Andrew to say "I don't care what the F it costs to get someone else to do this job, but we are paying it next time!" Thanks to the Christmas station on Pandora, it was tolerable.

And this was my first time truly executing the task, solo.

We are currently working to finish the upstairs hall, stairwell & front entryway, which are all connected. This rehab of a big, awkward space has been going on for 8-9 months now!! When we moved in, the plaster walls were sponge painted baby blue, with popcorn, swirly ceilings and brass light fixtures. Can you imagine?? (Actually, you can, see pics below).


hallway renovations to our 1905 house

torn out plaster ceiling with new insulation and window

After tearing out the three bedrooms upstairs, parts of the hall inevitably got torn out as well. At one point this summer I hardly noticed that half the wall & ceiling was missing or that you could see every screw hole in the new sheetrock. In the past two months we have installed a new window in the upstairs hall, torn out the plaster ceiling & replaced it with insulation & sheetrock, rewired & installed can lights both upstairs & downstairs and spent 6 full days total mudding, then sanding, and repeating. This week, I have spent 2 days sanding sheetrock and today I did the final "spot mud". This awkward space will be ready for primer this weekend (fingers crossed).



As we sat on the couch reviewing our week, Andrew got quiet and said, "I shouldn't tell you this…but the boys in the shop heard what you were doing…and told me, 'My wife won't do that!!' You are lucky that yours does…"

It got me to thinking...Yes, Andrew, you ARE lucky that I would sand the sheetrock, first and foremost. And I may never do it again, for the record. But I am also lucky to have a husband who trusts me, challenges me, and teaches me HOW to build this house, how to restore things the right way, and how perfection is worth it in the end.

We have gutted & rebuilt 4 rooms so far.  In each room I have gradually acquired new skills, built on those I had, and learned to accept the new challenges ahead.  I have learned that things are never what they seem, that restoring a house is HARD WORK, and that my bitching does no good other than fill the airspace with negativity rather than drilling noises. I have learned more things in the past year and a half than I ever imagined possible. I might not like it all the time (just ask Andrew), but I am now a carpenter, a painter, an electrician and a builder every day as we transform this house into our home.

I am happy... in fact be the wife that WILL do that.

sanding sheetrock for the third week on the upstairs walls and ceiling

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