Saturday, August 23, 2008

Couples who do housework together, stay together.

A few weekends ago, Shawn and I started couples therapy. By that I mean, we started putting up the baseboard trim in our kitchen. There is nothing better to help couples build character then to stick them in a kitchen with not a single 90 degree angle, not a single straight line and not a single flat wall.

We started out optimistic. We had our trim painted, our tools purchased, we had talked through the process with Dad (who even sketched us a picture) and had watched a how-to demo video on YouTube, several times. The first couple of walls were a huge success... after some practice cuts of course. The south wall behind the fridge and the west wall beside it were the first to be covered. This made an immediate impact because it finally covered the obvious eyesore everyone notices when you first walk in our kitchen.

Then came day two. We started early. I want to say it was about 10am? Over the course of the next eight hours we cycled through many emotions: optimism, determination, frustration, denial, anger, utter failure and then finally, complete chaos and uncontrollable laughter. It was serious entertainment. The cause of our battle was a miter saw we borrowed from one of our many great neighbors and the horrendous outside angle. It turns out the miter saw didn't actually lock in the 45 degree angle. This, along with the fun of having an old(er) house, snowballed into every cut being "off". In the end, nothing butted up nice... or even came close.

This discovery is where the laughter and another entry in to our "Things Learned" journal came from. It wasn't until the last hour that we figured out the problem, and therefore the solution; when an automatic route fails, go back to the manual. Shawn screwed our $19 manual miter saw to a 2x4 and we, together, see-saw cut every single angle from then on. I wish we had it on video because it was priceless. As was the elation we felt when we finally got an angle to fit! And by fit we mean darn-near fit!

We started out with 15 to 20 percent overage for wood and ended up with a ton of tiny little doorstops and having to make an additional trip to Menards for more trim. The best part about it all, we spent the entire day on two angles. Blogging about it really doesn't give the event justice but to make things worse, we're not even done! The new, unpainted trim is still sitting in our bedroom. Heavens to Betsy. Cross your fingers, say a little prayer and send your good thoughts and knowledge our way in the hopes of us finishing this shi**y sweat equity project soon! I didn't even bother with pictures yet but I know the anticipation will kill you!


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