Tools With Tools
I’m as madly skilled in the home reno realm as I am in the garden. That is to say, not at all. Not being handy in my family is a bit of a genetic defect – I grew up in a house that was constantly being repaired, rebuilt or restored by my dad. Workbenches, power saws and enough tools to stock a Rona surrounded me, yet none of the talent – and definitely none of the desire – to use any of it was passed down to me.
Living in the same city, it never really mattered – my dad was happy to come over and tinker with wonky lights or poly-fill any holes in the wall. But now he’s thousands of miles away and talking me through these tasks is, well, no easy task.
And where is my husband, Mr. Affleck, through all of this? Most likely he’s off playing with the kids (they don’t call him ‘fun daddy’ for nothing). He, too, grew up with a dad who knew his way around a tool kit, and if my fella starts a project, it usually turns out okay. The challenge is getting him to start anything because we can both think of a thousand things we’d rather be doing. Working on our home is something we have neither the patience to carry out nor the knowledge base to do properly.
Case in point: when we first moved to a new city in 2001, we attempted to install an IKEA light in the kitchen. It went pretty well at first and we marveled at our natural affinity for such projects. Then the ceiling caught on fire.
Another example: our first Christmas in the ‘burbs, we were tasked with putting up Christmas lights for the first time (wrapping them around a balcony railing doesn’t count). I had a vision of them lining the garage door but we couldn’t figure out how to attach them. So we decided to nail them. To the garage. With nails. Fortunately, we didn’t get very far before we realized the folly of our plan (and yes, we now use those little plastic clip thingies).
Granted, these examples were a long time ago. Since then, my husband has installed new light switches and faucets, and the house is still standing/hasn’t flooded, so we’ve definitely improved in our home improvement prowess. We’ve even painted a couple of rooms. The problem for us is, we didn’t particularly enjoy doing it.
Now the main level of our house needs to be painted and we’re bringing in the experts. And while the paint dries, I’m totally gonna get them to re-caulk my shower.