Sunday, April 22, 2018

I Will Have To Eat A Few Of My Words While Tackling Our Big Painting Project

Our Big Painting Project will be happening in May. Lisa took the week of the 14th - 18th off to tackle this project. I've already made the decision to embark on this project the week before. I won't finish Our Big Painting Project in its entirety, but I want to get enough of it done during the week of the 7th through the 11th so Lisa can relax and enjoy the second half of her vacation. It's my gift to her. She works hard and deserves a good chunk of her vacation to sleep in, have lots of downtime, and be able to do what she wants when she wants.

In order for me to make this happen, I'll need to intricately plan my weekly schedule from now until then. And, I'll need to bust some serious ass. Our Big Painting Project involves painting all of the walls, the trim, rearranging several rooms, and Spring Cleaning.

Over the past few weeks, I've sort of gotten back into the swing of renovations, painting, and such. Lisa and I have assisted with the renovations upstairs. Prior to the past month and a half, it had been well over 5 years since either one of us had tackled anything related to renovations.

I'll be the first to admit, I'm a little nervous about diving into the Big Painting Project. In addition to having 5 kids (4 pups and a guinea pig), I'll be in a situation where our home will be in disarray for a bit. This alone will drive me batshit crazy because I'm a Work at Home Dog Mom. I live here. I work here.

And more so, I'll have to eat my own words of wisdom that I've learned over the decades and ones I dole out when others are tackling renovation projects...

1. One Project At A Time. There will be multiple things happening as Our Big Painting Project commences. The purchase of paint and supplies. Moving furniture. Taking everything off the walls. Making sure the baseboards and all surfaces that will be painted are wiped down. Putting down drop cloths. Rearranging furniture and floor and wall decor. Spring Cleaning. Waiting for the walls and trim to dry before putting the rooms back together. That's a lot and it's overwhelming, however, we will do this...

2. One Room At A Time. We will do all of the above one room at a time. I can't paint more than one room at a time so why prep and stress about all of the rooms. In total, we have the bathroom, kitchen, living room, our bedroom, the biscuit/craft room and the home office to clean, paint, rearrange, etc. If I focus on all of that at once, it would send me over the edge. In addition, we have 5 kids. So, bottom line, one room at a time. Clean, paint, let dry, rearrange, move stuff back, etc. Then, onto the next room.

3. Extend A Great Deal Of Gratitude To Anyone Who Volunteers To Help Out. In this day and age, people are willing to assist, but their hand is extended. They want to be paid. But, every so often, a person or two or three come forth to help out without any expectations of payment. If you're lucky enough to have that person or persons in your life, treat them like royalty. Feed them. Hydrate them with their favorite beverages. Understand that they are altering their schedules and giving up a good portion of their free time to help YOU. This also extends to...

4. Extend Gratitude To Those Who May Not Be Able To Assist For Extended Periods, But They Do Something To Make Your Life Less Stressful During This Time. This includes, but is not limited to, providing lunches and dinners, running errands, helping out with cleanup, delivering a platter of baked goods or a casserole, offering tidbits of experienced advice, and pitching in even if it's just for an hour.

5. Expect To Lose Some Sleep. In order to complete renovations, regardless of what form, you'll have to hone up on your time management skills. For example, I'm a Work at Home Dog Mom. I'm well aware that during this 2 week period in May, I'll have to adjust my schedule. A lot. I'll probably be writing blog posts in the wee hours on the overnight and completing DIY Dog Mom Projects in the biscuit/craft room while the kitchen is being painted and cleaned. During this 2 week period, especially the week before, I'll be adding an additional 40 hours to my work week.

5. Put The Youth To Work. I have published a few blog columns about reflecting on the work I was expected to do in my late childhood, teen and early adulthood years. You can read about that here and here. This applies to both Lisa and me. Back in the day, the youth were expected to help out, especially on the weekends, in addition to our many chores. Sure, painting cupboards and walls and spending hours in the gardens on hot summer days wasn't a walk in the park, but it taught us many valuable lessons that we still embrace to this day. If you have friends with teens and young adults, suggest that they help out for a day or two. Trust me, their world won't shatter if they have to be separated from their digital devices and game consoles for a day or break a sweat.

6. Wear Old Clothes Or Have A Tiny Budget Available For A Few New Pieces Of Apparel. As a Work at Home Dog Mom, the least of worries is my wardrobe. Well, at least until now. While assisting with the renovations upstairs, I have ruined several shirts, a pair of my Croc Flip Flops, and a skirt. While I won't be throwing these articles of clothing away because I'll wear them during Our Big Painting Project, it's obvious that I need to replenish my wardrobe with new apparel.

7. Listen To Those Who Are Wiser. We've been there. Done that. Lived. Learned. We learned the stuff we know from our elders who are much wiser and more experienced. Don't shrug us off. The easy way out may not be in your best interest. Paying someone to do the work may not be in your best interest as well. And, it may shred the feelings of those who have been helping you without expecting payment. If you take one project, one room at a time, you can focus on the details. We're living in the digital age. Taking an hour to research DIY videos can save you hundreds of dollars.

8. It's A Balancing Act Of Sorts. Many years ago, a good friend of mine spent well over 2 months helping a friend and his wife out with renovations. He spent a few nights a week after working all day and most weekends helping out. A year later, he needed to conquer some much-needed renovations on his home. The friends that he helped out a year prior promised to help out. But then, at the last minute, better plans came up. His friends were traveling out of state for a mini vacation. Long story short, my good friend ended up working alone aside from my help. It's a shame, really.

9. Don't Take Credit For Stuff You Didn't Do. That doesn't just apply to renovations. If you didn't complete something in its entirety, don't take full credit for it. Whether you hired someone to help complete a project or they volunteered their time, the same rule applies. Don't dance in that spotlight that isn't meant for only you. The moment you do that is when you lose your authentic fan club. Sure, there will be those who will continue to cheer you on, but they don't know the reality beyond your facade.

10. Heed The Advice Of Your Elders. None of these lessons learned or tidbits of advice were grabbed out of thin air. They're lessons learned and wisdom gained after many decades of "been there, done that." Whether you're a first-time homeowner or helping a neighbor in need, or tackling renovations yourself, learn from those who have been doing it for decades. There is nothing shameful about living, learning, and gaining wisdom from those more experienced than you.

I will be keeping Y'all posted on Our Big Painting Project. Stay tuned.

On that note...

I want to give a BIG shout out to those who taught me some of life's toughest lessons in the form of hard work.

To those who instilled preeminent work ethics.

To those who taught me that a sense of pride after a hard day's work is better than any monetary reward.

To those who weren't afraid to go face to face with me in my teen and early adult years and raise their upper hand when I got sassy or defiant. My parents and elders let me know that I had no rights. I owned nothing. I lived in their house. I wore the clothes they bought me. I ate the food they paid for. I used the electricity and hot water they paid for. Living there was a privilege. Doing chores and beyond was my way of earning my keep and contributing to the household.

To those who put a fire under my ass when I wanted to throw in the white flag.

To those who reiterated that being deemed "old fashioned" or "hardass" isn't such a bad thing.

To those who told us not to soften our voices. Yes, times have changed, but all that boils down to is speaking a bit louder, putting your foot down a bit harder, tough love, standing your ground and not putting up with your youngin's excuses. And, that means not making excuses for them either. The world isn't going to powder their asses.

I raise my wine glass to my Dad. Grammy and Grampie Deloge. Mom & Dad Violette. Grammy and Grandpa Tarte. Grammy and Grandpa Violette. Maude Baby. Mr. & Mrs. Clarke. Lorraine. Basil. Marc.

Because of all of your wisdom, lessons, and inspiration, we'll get through Our Big Painting Project and beyond...

With or...

No comments:

Post a Comment