When friends, family, or other folks stop by the farm and see all we have going on with house renovations, kennel projects, garden projects, etc., I usually get comments like
“Gee, you sure do have your work cut out for you.”
“Wow, this is a lot to take on.”
Or my favorite…
“Why don’t you <insert some well-meaning idea about how we could do things easier or how I should focus on one project at a time, etc.>”
They’re all spot-on in their comments and suggestions. I’m sure there are easier ways to do things.
But who wants easy? It takes all the satisfaction out of doing something.
Yes, we do have our work cut out for us and this farm is a lot to take on. All the more satisfaction when we’re done.
Now the focusing on one project at a time thing…oh geez, don’t I wish. There are days when I look around at the upteen million projects in various stages and I just want SOMETHING to be finished. Something. ANYTHING. I want one room that is completely re-wired, with pretty new sheetrock, and completely painted walls, finished floors, and furniture where it is meant to stay for good.
I would love to have that one room. I really, really would.
It just doesn’t work that way. We had to stop hanging the ceiling in my office to leave an opening to get to the electrical. The floor under my office is completely bricked in and concreted (it used to be a porch) so there’s only one way to run wiring – through the ceiling.
But, we can’t finish the wiring until I figure out how I’m going to get to the junction box under the house that currently feeds the office. I can’t just pull the old breaker, cut the wires, and drop them under the house. The office is on the same 20amp breaker as all three bedrooms, so first, I have to trace back to the main junction box and disconnect the main feed to the office without cutting power to the bedrooms.
But, I can’t do that until the guys finish the septic tank move, because the only access to that side of the crawlspace is…you guessed it. Right next to the old septic tank and all it’s leaking, puddling the yard splendor. I don’t mind getting dirty, but I draw the line at belly crawling through septic tank ooze, thank you.
So, we’ve been working on other things. Like wire moulding for the living room and dining room (since we can only fish wiring into certain walls in those rooms.)
This is just the way things go. Stop this project because you have to work on this before you can proceed. But, before you can work on this, you have to do that. It’s a neverending renovating circle of Hell.
I would love…really, really LOVE to focus on one project at a time. And I guess, in a way, you could say that I am. I’m focusing on the house and it’s 23,943 smaller projects required to make it a decent home again.
When I can’t STAND my lack of walls, or plethora of exposed subflooring, or lack of a real kitchen stove, or the Pepto pink bathroom that always looks like it needs a visit from a hazmat team no matter how much bleach I pour on everything…I go outside and work on outdoor projects.
Or I dive into my computer, researching everything farm-ish to learn all I don’t know about homesteading yet. And believe me, there’s soooo much I have to learn. So much, it’s overwhelming at times. Kind of like the house project gets overwhelming.
Today, I think, is one of those all around overwhelming days. I just want to scream “why can’t I do it all? Why am I limited to only 24 hours in a day? Why can’t I get these projects finished faster? How the holy Hell do contractors get whole house renovations done in a few weeks, yet I’ve been at this two years and still don’t have a barn, or fencing, or walls, or a single solitary finished room?” Then I remember…
…they have crews full of dozens of professionals that could do this stuff in their sleep. They don’t have to pull up a blog or DIY website somewhere to find out how to replace a kitchen sink. They don’t have to research how to install a new holding tank for a well system. They can just do it. And they have lots more manpower than an inexperienced Mom and 2 teenagers. They don’t have to work a full time job first, then do laundry, feed the kids, take out the trash, talk to the boys about their school work, pick up the grandbaby, THEN work on renovation projects if there’s any daylight left.
So, while some days I really think I might have bitten off more than I can chew (like today) it’s still not enough for me say “uncle” – not yet, anyway. I do hereby reserve the right to say uncle at some point in the future, just not today. Instead, today will be a work day. I’ll spend the day, holed up in my as yet unfinished office/craft room, working on writing projects.
I will ignore unfinished walls.
I will ignore miles of Romex coiled near virtually every wall in my house.
I will ignore the partially finished subflooring in my office.
I will ignore the garage wall that STILL does not have windows, or siding, or even a door…even though we started that project two years ago, before we even moved in.
I will ignore the odd placed furniture (because I can’t put it “there” until we finish the wall, which I can’t do until we finish the wiring, which I can’t do until we find the junction box, which I can’t crawl under the house to find until the septic guys drain the mud field that has become my backyard…)
I will ignore all these things today and hide out in my favorite place…the written word. I have plenty of work-related deadlines to meet and writing projects I CAN finish today.
Tomorrow I can be Farmer Jane, the Do It All Gal. Today, I’m just going to be Hermit Me with a pen, my reference books, and some article ideas.