But then, there are times when I curse it all. I say, "Damn you, princess life! You've left me unprepared for important realities, such as taking out the garbage on my own or doing DIY projects around the house!" This is one of those times.
It's become inevitable that I must re-do our playroom. I picked this house because it fit my wish list in nearly every way, including the fact that it has a fourth bedroom on the first floor that acts as the perfect playroom. (It does NOT have a mudroom, which I think of ruefully each time I enter the mountain of shoes that entrenches our main door, but I digress.) However, five years have passed and my two children have grown out of the myriad baby and toddler toys that have taken over their play space. Along with those toys, we have acquired mountains of things the boys DO love, like three thousand superheroes and buckets of Hot Wheels, but which they can't ever reach because of all the STUFF surrounding them, and it's just really become a disaster I can't put into words, so here:
It started innocently enough, I swear. Just a few toys, a table for coloring, and the noble idea of hanging the boys' artwork for display. But nothing could have prepared me for the gifts that continued to roll in, even when it was nothing we needed or could have known to hope for. For the piles and piles of arts and crafts that come home from school almost daily. Or for...swallow, gulp, the stuffed animals. In fact, if I recall correctly (and I admit, recall is not my strongest skill), I think I actually said when I was pregnant with Joey, "I don't really want stuffed animals at all."
No matter. The time has come for an overhaul, and since I'm the only one who seems to care (that's life with men for you), I've taken on the job.
Before I go on, I want you to know that I successfully completed THREE impressive DIY projects prior to this undertaking:
TWO Roman shades that look and work beautifully:
(it's crooked because I'm just bad at raising and lowering in general, not because of a structural issue)
AND Joey's amazing Batman bedroom:
HOWEVER. This doesn't mean I relish the idea of starting again, or that I am any better at handling the nitty gritty details of actually DOING the project. Hence my writing this blog entry ABOUT the project rather than actually starting it.
I already have the materials, at least. Yesterday I visited the paint store where my favorite one-armed paint salesman helped me through the process of choosing colors and amounts of product. That wasn't so bad--although I DID leave the paint in the car overnight when I realized I forgot to buy brushes and rollers and had to wait until today to buy them. Because I don't want to take Noah to Home Depot. So I am a little afraid the paint is frozen, in which case, well, what would I do about that? And then today I did go to Home Depot, and that's one of those experiences that calls to mind the same feelings as elementary school gym class. More specifically, those times when two team captains were chosen, and the rest of the class sat on the floor while each captain took turns choosing the best athletes for their teams. I knew then, and I know now, that it was no my fault of mine that gym classes and Home Depots are not my elements, but I can't really help that it hurts, if only a little, when the people involved put their hands over their mouths, turn away an inadequate bit, and snicker. At me.
I'm sure the Home Depot people see me coming just as loudly and clearly as the team captains did all those years ago. Instead of tidily laced Keds and adorable stone-washed jeans shorts, of course, it's my The Gap peacoat and overall cuteness that does me in now. It's how certainly small I look (and feel) walking through those mile-high orange aisles, how it takes me fifteen minutes--FIFTEEN MINUTES--to find the sandpaper after the snarky salesgirl pointed me in the proper direction. I was too embarrassed to go back and ask her to actually walk me over to the sandpaper, and I was right to be. Once I realized it was the giant, fifty-foot, sky-high display of packages labeled, "SANDPAPER," I felt as stupid as I'm sure the Home Depot girl was whispering that I was.
Ironically, I'm going for a more rough and manly feel in the playroom, so much of what I need to buy is at Home Depot. However, I 'd really, really like it if my wonderful, amazing, super-handsome, manly, and did I say wonderful? husband could possibly go back and do all the rest for me. After the sandpaper and, also, a nightmarish self-checkout episode, I'd really rather avoid the Depot for as long as humanly possible.
I'm aware that this reverts me instantly to pathetic princess status. But let's be truthful: it's not often you hear people running around saying how much they want to re-live those elementary school gym class days. Not to mention, I DID take out the garbage yesterday. So he kind of owes me.