7 Ways to Survive DIY Home Remodeling
7 Ways to Survive DIY Home Remodeling
A Tongue In Cheek Look at DIY Home Remodeling.
1. Think of the project as a new diet.
Who doesn’t want to lose at least five pounds? DIY Home Remodeling is one way to do it. Between running to stores all day and evening long, meeting with contractors, inspecting the work, searching the Western world for the perfect light fixture, who has time to eat? Provided you don’t sabotage this new, unorthodox diet plan, with McDonalds drive through, you’re good for losing five pounds. If you are a masochistic type who does some of the work yourself, whether it be painting, laying tile, or landscaping the yard, you can count on another five to ten pounds of weight loss. Just think, you may be miserable, frustrated, exhausted, and downright cynical about the good of the humankind, but your jeans will fit nicely!
2. Write checks as aerobic exercise.
These workouts are great for toning the wrist and fingers. Usually done in hectic spurts as you race out the door in the morning while the contractors are breathing down your neck and your kids are beating each other with the lunch boxes you just prepared, the stress and frantic activity are sure to raise your heartbeat for a good hour. Grumbling under your breath that the plumber, electrician, or you name it, isn’t really worth this much money adds greater intensity and calorie burn to this little publicized exercise regime.
3. Save money through shopping burnout.
Yes, even the most die-hard shopper will come to dread setting foot in any store. This affliction starts innocently enough as you go to look for light fixtures. How hard can it be? Hard! Either the light you want is being shipped from Yugoslavia and won’t arrive until your youngest child buys his own home, or you just can’t find the one you want. You’ll shop every lighting and electrical store you know. You’ll search Home Depot. You’ll haunt hardware stores. And then there’s plumbing fixtures. Sink centers, faucet handles, finishes, special orders. What’s all that about? And the cost. You’d think you were outfitting the palace for a former third world dictator. Of course there's also carpet, tile, hardwood, stairs, siding, windows. Enough already. And you thought it was a pain picking mints and sweet table treats for your wedding.
After your 1000th trip to Home Depot (or Lowes or Menards or whatever), in addition to all the other trips you’ve made for items that shouldn’t count as shopping (toilet seats, for example), you’ve had it. Your friends won’t be able to bribe you to check out the latest sale at Bloomingdales. You’ll think it will be better when you can pick out fun things like paint, wall paper, drapes, fabric, and furniture, but don’t bet on it. At this point, the pressure to make your home look like something other than an empty rat maze will counteract any joy in shopping. Spending this much money has never been such a miserable experience. As a result, when your home becomes half-way presentable, you’ll refuse to shop again, even for groceries, for at least six months. The money you save during this shopping hiatus will be sufficient for you to resume this previously pleasurable past time once more without guilt.
4. Impress your friends with obscure facts.
Only someone that has remodeled their home can explain the fluid dynamics of a proper toilet water swirl. Or cite that the International Building Code calls for an outlet within 2 foot on each side of a sink. Or brag that triple glazed windows are really the wave of the future for light emitting device technology. See what I mean? 🙂 DIY Home Remodeling will turn you into the true research queen you are!
5. Pride yourself on your new creative skills.
Discover a creative side that you never knew existed! Like how to wash dishes in the bathtub. And how to make a full course meal for a family of four using nothing more than a toaster and hot plate. Or how to fit an entire family in a house smaller than your first apartment. They say that necessity is the mother of invention. That’s probably true, but I also think that the only thing that separates modern and pioneer life is just one kitchen or bath remodeling project.
6. Yell at someone other than your kids; and not feel guilty.
Honestly, as a modern woman trying to juggle running our homes, possibly a job, and the future Olympic soccer aspirations of our children, you have the primal need to yell. At someone. Anyone. Often our spouse and children suffer from this need of ours to release pent up negative energy generated from nothing more than some miniature human leaving smelly gym shoes on the kitchen table. (Ok, that probably deserves a bit of yelling - we eat at this table!) But when you remodel your house, you have a whole cast of characters - and believe me, they’re characters that often deserve a good scream from time to time. Like when they tell you that they tore out the fireplace because they didn’t think it looked right. Or when they show you a mistake made three weeks ago that now requires half the house to be torn down in order to fix. Yelling isn’t immature or a result of too much estrogen, it’s therapy.
7. Throw out (finally) your significant others treasured [fill in the blank] from his bachelor days.
It could be the poster he won’t get rid of, or his collection of exotic beer cans. Or hey, what about all of his Sports Illustrated magazines since the Chicago Bears last won the Super Bowl. Now is the perfect time to get rid of it. If you need to move out of your house while the remodeling is done, or you are moving to a new home, such an opportune time may never occur again. Say it won’t fit in the rental house. It’s either this or his golf clubs. Gently remind him that the sentimental item really serves as a reminder of his advancing years. Anything. Get rid of it. It will be one positive you can remind yourself of when the stress of remodeling makes you feel that this project was the biggest mistake of your life.