Thursday, September 28, 2006

Adventures with EasyLock

You know, whenever you see something that says it's easy to figure out, easy to install, easy to do-it-yourself.... it's all a lie. Nothing is ever as easy as it's supposed to be. Nothing ever goes as planned. Nothing is ever simple and straight-forward. Oh, wait, perhaps that's just at our house.

Since we bought our home here in MA, we have dreamed of the day that we could rip up the ratty old carpet in our dining area, and replace it with something waaaay more practical and, um, clean. We planned to tackle this project last weekend and purchased our supply of laminate wood flooring. I suppose I should clarify... Rob planned to tackle this project as I am a self-proclaimed nitwit when it comes to home improvement. Seriously, I can paint fairly well and I can use a drill to install curtain rods. I do not reach beyond that scope, I know my limits. Anyhoo, Rob said "this would be easy", "should go quickly", and many other reassuring quotes that made me feel secure in starting the weekend. Friday night we ripped up said carpet. God-awful, disgusting, dirty, smelly job that was. (People, let me just start by saying, if you have asthma or allergies, GET RID OF YOUR CARPET). We had things fairly ready for the following day.

Then things got interesting. Turns out EasyLock is not as easy as we all thought. There are things that took way longer to figure out. Hallways are not easy to do. The instructions they show you are of a plain square room with no doorways or trim work. Bastards. After a whole Saturday of cursing and wrangling boards in the hallway, Rob finished a 3x5 area. Now, let me say that there were many cuts to be made and many odd sections to be finangled, it was a lot of work for poor Rob. Then, Sunday we kicked EasyLock butt. I joined in the fun because I feared Rob would torch the pile of flooring he had left. That, or let out a stream of obscenities in front of the children that would sear into their brains for the rest of their lives. LOL. I actually learned quite a lot and it wasn't so bad working as a team.

To update, Rob is now finished with the floor and all the thresholds. He just has to put trim back up and we are all done. Overall, we have faced much, MUCH worse projects that went askew, and the end product looks maaavelous dahling. There were just some things we learned about ourselves and projects that are "supposed" to be easy to install. First, it's better to be a team. Working alone can be frustrating and having a second pair of hands and second opinion is valuable. Second, never EVER listen to all the hype, it's never going to go as smoothly as they say it will (unless you are a skilled laborer). Always plan for an extra day of work even if you think it will only take you one.

So, there, that's the EasyLock story. We have done our first major DIY project here at the new house and I can already see that Rob is going to be the floor nazi about the dining room. No throwing toys on the new floor, no wearing shoes on the new floor, no horsing around on the new floor, no swearing around the new floor, no bad energy near the new floor... ummm... I digress.

One last note to all you do-it-yourselfers.... if we can do it, you can too.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Yes, it's true, I have THAT much money!

I do, I have soooo much money that I will throw away over a hundred dollars without a thought to a few kiddie rides, one over-hyped water ride and some darned expensive Coke. Throw in some torrential rain, a wild thunder and lightening show with four children under the age of five and you've got some FUN FUN FUN! Read the full story at Milkweed Hill!

Thank goodness we joined up with good-humored family for this outing, otherwise there is the strong possibility it could've sucked. I mean it, we had a nice steak dinner with some wine once we were all home, dry and had the kids in bed. Here's to next time Ernie and Kay! Let's do Santa's Village instead, ok?

Did I Ever Mention...

...that I have an addictive personality?? I get hooked on anything new I try. After having a relapse on smoking for the past several months, I finally did kick that silly habit of two or three sneaked smokes a day. Rob sighs with relief, for it totally disgusted him. Now, however, I find myself gripped with a new addiction. Knitting. I signed up for a knitting class for the month of September and last night was my third class. Apparently, knitting is one hot hobby nowadays. I don't know about being trendy, but I do know that I am hooked on wrapping tiny yarn around big sticks. It's very very soothing and makes a great companion to enduring Calliou for the third time of the day. I now know how to "cast on", straight knit, purl, and "bind off". I have finished a scarf, complete with fringe! I am a knitter, baby! Oh, and I'm totally serious when I say that everyone (everyone!!) is getting a scarf for Christmas this year. (evil laugh). So, now I can add knitting to my list of obsessive compulsions.... cleaning, reading, sleeping, etc.