Saturday, January 27, 2007

I Couldn't Make this Stuff up if I Tried

Remember the curtains? No, not the movie with Denzel Washington. THE Curtains. These curtains. Remember them? Right.

Ms. Boo remembers them too. You know how I know this? Because last night, on a family outing to the Home Depot to pick out some new interior doors, Boo asked, "Are we going to have no doors for a few days?"

Oh, yes. She remembers. She has witnessed the home improvement process at our house. It's. Not. Pretty.

Case in point. It took us about 45 minutes to install a new toilet seat earlier this week. A toilet seat. 45 minutes.

No. I am not kidding.

So we went over to the HD, and discussed all things door with the very helpful Jeff, HD employee and door expert. He puts the door in hunky doory. (I had to. I just had to.)

After about 45 minutes worth of questions patiently answered by Jeff, we made our way to the registers, and loaded the van with our two, brand new ceiling fans.

Doors might not be the thing for us right now. But, with all the money we've got to burn, we just HAD to buy something. Lucky, lucky ceiling fans.

Paul came home this afternoon to a wife still in her pajamas. And a living room strewn with all manner of toys and an entire container of neon-colored hair elastics. The family room - not much better. I wanted to tell him that I cleaned all day. I really did. But the microwave is the only thing I have to show for it (what can I say, I had a lemon I needed to use) so I didn't even bother trying to convince him.

Don't think I am going off on a tangent here. When it comes to home improvements, nothing is tangential at this house. I just wanted you to know that I was SO into cleaning mode that I not only stayed in my PJs all day, but I also HAND WASHED a bunch of dishes.

I'm convinced that today's planetary alignment must have been extremely rare.

Which is only appropriate for home improvement day.

So, when Paul came home andseemed eager to get on with the ceiling fan installment, I stayed put. The curtains and the toilet seat were all of my doing, so I figured I'd lay low.

Paul had the electrical stuff pretty well in hand until he realized that there were four wires coming out of our ceiling where the old fan was. This is not such a big deal except that the installation booklet only mentions three.

He made a few phone calls (because, who STAYS HOME on a Friday night) and he finally found a friend who explained that the wiring was for separate switches on the light and the fan.

Paul returned to the task.

But, as it turns out, it's kinda difficult to install ceiling fans alone. And in the dark. So there was a whole lot of flashlight holding, screwdriver handing, motor supporting, and kid anesthetizing that had to be done. So, jump in I did.

Oh, for the love of all things sacred.

We got a bunch of things hooked up and what not. Unscrewed a previously screwed on component so as to shove the wires back into the ceiling. Answered a few questions for Lainee about the location of our attic. There was an extra screw that we couldn't figure out what to do with. Somewhere along the way we got all the wirey stuff covered up. We had just attached all the blades to the fan.

Then, we spun the blades. The sound that emerged was the sound of something rubbing against another something deep within the now screwed down and bolted shut interior of the fan. And I just looked at Paul - this sweet man who tries to please me by installing things like ceiling fans.

And I said to him: What do we do now? He sorta shrugged. And then I looked at him. T hen I said: What was that?

Have I ever mentioned that we have three kids?

And that I was doing housework all day?

Handwashing dishes.

That dish water? That DIRTY dishwater that was in the sink? I HEARD it DOING something.

And when I arrived breathless in the kitchen, I found that what it was doing was loading itself into cups so graciously held by Ms. Bao and Mr. Bug, and dumping itself all over the kitchen floor.

They thought this was HI. LAR. I. OUS.


Not so much.

I seethed some lovely sentiments, particularly to the beloved Ms. Bao, who had done this same thing TWICE earlier in the day with water from the toilet. But she was covered in dishwater, so I had to put her in the tub.

While in the bathroom, I asked the naked Bao to put her clothes in the dirty clothes bin located two steps outside of the bathroom door. While I tended to Mr. Bug, Ms. Bao walked the two steps outside the bathroom, passed the laundry bin, the washer, the dryer, the pantry cabinet, and the kitchen table.

And I was oblivious to it all until I heard her smack the kitchen floor. The same floor that was covered in water that I had yet to mop up.

I found her flailing around in the huge puddle. I grabbed her up and put her and Bug in the bathtub.

During that time that I was patiently tending to my precious cherubs, Paul managed to fix that little problem of rubbing somethings within the fan (see? better if I JUST STAY AWAY...)

- kids in tub
- me not tending them (Mother of the year) so that I can mop up the kitchen floor (because I apparently didn't do enough cleaning today)

In my disgust, I shove the kitchen chair that is in the middle of this puddle over to the side of the room. On it's way, the chair juuuust clips the corner of my countertop.

And chips a piece off. I am certain this happened because no home improvement adventure at our house would be complete without resorting, at some point, to the use of super glue.

Once the chip is glued back in place, I go check with Paul who reports that, after turning the power back on in the room, the fan does not work.

We hang it up. Get the kids dressed. Done for the night.

Until Paul figured out that if you just pull that little chain thing that is attached to the fan, it will actually start turning.

So we forge ahead with the process of attaching the lighting component. Which WILL NOT LINE UP with the screw holes we are supposed to be using.

That was another twenty minutes.

We're not convinced that the light fixture is adequately secured to the fan. But, this is just the fan over our bed, so, fortunately, should the light actually fall off of the ceiling, we'll at least have the pleasure of dying in our sleep.

We attached the glass light fixtures and put in the light bulbs. When we turned the power on again, we saw that only two of the four bulbs were working. Paul and I exchanged looks, but it only took me a moment to try that OTHER chain that was hanging from the fan. (I may be some dumb but I ain't plumb dumb.) Turns out that other chain makes ALL FOUR lights turn on if you want to make the room, you know, bright.

And there you have it. A fan. Installed. And, at last check, still attached to the ceiling.

But you realize we're not done. We did, after all, buy TWO fans.

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Blogger Diane J. said...

My maiden name was Cook. By any chance are we related? Because this is SO something that could happen at my place!

Two more fans, huh? My sympathies, Lori. ;D

Happy Weekend!

Sat Jan 27, 02:34:00 AM  
Blogger BooMama said...

HAVE MERCY, Miss Lori.

The dishwater business would have sent me straight over the edge. No doubt about it.

And I'm glad to know what those little chains on the ceiling fans are for. Because I was, you know, wondering. :-)

Sat Jan 27, 09:39:00 AM  
Blogger ShaggaBear said...

Wow! What a day! And still more to come? We can't wait to hear about it!

A similar thing happened to us over Christmas break... Our hot water under the kitchen sink exploded shooting water EVERYWHERE. And hubby couldn't find the turn-off valve. All this was happening while I was painting the stairwell walls. Too many projects at once. Thankfully Abby was taking a nap during that fiasco.

Sat Jan 27, 01:55:00 PM  
Anonymous Heather said...

And this is why we do not have any light fixtures installed in our bathroom. i took them out two years ago when I repainted and was promised that we would replace them with new light fixtures, which we haven't bought because then we would have to install them. We really need a lighted fan in there ut that would mean crawling into the crawl space that is the attic above the bathroom and drilling a hole which is to line up with the bathroom hole. And then making sure all the right wires are connected. So instead we have a hole in our ceiling and two on our wall, al with covered wires sticking out, and two plug-in model mismatched lights, one hanging on an old screw in the wall (because we can not drill new wholes or the wall turns to dust) and one taking up much needed counter space. YEah I know where you are coming from.

Sat Jan 27, 09:57:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Only you could make me want to read about ceiling fan installations.

Sun Jan 28, 12:45:00 AM  
Blogger Luisa Perkins said...

Oy vey iz mir.

Tue Apr 03, 05:43:00 PM  

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