Monday, October 9, 2006

I'm Lucky its a House and Not a Husband

Back in '86 when we were in the process of buying a lot and building our first home, we chose a Jennish plan. It was a 2 bathroom, 3 bedroom rancher with a loft above the garage; perfect for us. But what made it even more ideal was the situation of the laundry room; it was right off the garage. So when we entered the house, we came in through the laundry room and dumped our stuff (for sorting and distribution later. After we used the bathroom. Had a snack. And watched our favorite shows.)

A few months after we had moved in, some friends were over to see the house.
"And the laundry room's here," I said as we walked down the hallway to the bedrooms.
"How lucky for you... it's right by the garage! You can come in through this way, and leave your wet clothes and muddy shoes in here," she noted .
"Luck had nothing to do with this," I thought to myself. "We planned it this way."

Years later, when we met with an architect to design our second home, we once again, planned for the laundry room to be located beside the garage.

And, 3 years after that, when I bought my first home on my own, I made sure the laundry room was off the garage.

When I sold my Fraser Heights house, I moved myself and my three boys back to the farm to live with my parents temporarily while we waited for a used house to come on the market in this neighbourhood. This is a very desirable area for families, so there isn't a very large turnover of homes. I had to wait 9 months for a 4 bedroom, southern backyarded, double garaged home in my price range to get listed.
Two things about this house weren't perfect; the peach stucco (both the peach, and the stucco. I wanted anything but stucco. And if it had to be stucco, any color but peach) AND the there was no laundry room. The washer and dryer are in a closet upstairs.

Which, truth be told, is kind of convenient.
What I miss is a dumping room off the garage.
(Not that we drive in to our garage. Or enter the house from the garage...but still.)

If you were to drop by my house on any given day, this is what would greet you:
On the floor.
That has been dumped.
That will likely not get cleaned up after the visit to the bathroom. Or after the snack. Or the favorite show on TV. Or after we've checked to see who is online. Or after we've checked our e-mail, or had a nap. Or gone to bed for the night.

In fact, not one of those items will get picked up before I have a complete and utter breakdown involving a screaming voice and a few bad words.

I knew when I bought the house it wasn't perfect.
(During the season of waiting for the "perfect house", I got all caught up in a "perfect house - perfect man" metaphor. Don't be so desperate that you marry/buy the first available man/house... Appearance isn't everything. A little paint/hair dye, new landscaping/clothes could make all the difference. And so on. Wouldn't you love to live inside my head for an hour or two?)

But I don't think I anticipated how much the lack of a mudroom/laundry room was going to bug me.
It bugs me.
An awful lot.

So much so that I'm planning a makeover.
And this is why I'm glad I bought a house instead of marrying a man.
The house is not personally affected by my inability to see past the lack of a dumping room. A husband might be offended when I say, "I knew that when I married you, you weren't perfect. I made some compromises on some things I thought wouldn't matter in the long run. After all, my biggest 'must haves' were met... you have a job, did not bring a bunch of ugly furniture into my life. And that you know how to push a lawnmower. But I've been bugged by the way you hoist your pants up to your nipples every single day we've been together. And I CAN'T TAKE IT ANYMORE. I am burning your pants."

The house-equivalent to 'burning your pants' is this: I am getting the locks on the front door changed. (If I can afford it, I want to totally replace the front door - but we'll see...) My sons will not receive a key. They will not have access to the front hall through the front door.

I will hire an electrician to put in a keypad so that they can enter the gargage by punching in a code. No keys. They've lost 2 dozen keys as it is.
They can dump their stuff in the garage. And never put it away. Ever.

The garage is theirs.
Clint has been busy preparing it for a vision he has.
Something to do with artist tables and a sewing machine.

If they are OK with mounds and piles of stuff and things on the floor of their garage, then so be it.

And they all lived happily ever after.

Three things I'm thankful for:
1. They forgave me. I completely lost it today re: the mess. The mess in the entry. In the family room. The kitchen. I'm not proud of the way I handled it. So glad I still got hugs and "love you's" before they left for their dad's .

2. Just got back from a walk with Clint. Thankful he invited me. Thankful that we live in an area where it's safe to walk after midnight. Thankful that the weather is perfect for late night strolls. Thankful that I'm awake enough to carry on a conversation when most folks are sleeping.

3. Thankful that it's only a 4 day work week.


1 comment:

raych said...

*laughs out loud at 'burning your pants,' which seems to her to be a perfectly sensible solution*