Recently while on vacation in Canada, my friend L face booked me a question which made me stop and think. Her question was ... 'are you there as a hired hand? Or do you just love to do projects?' You see I had gone to Canada not only to visit my mum, but to work through her 'to do' list of jobs she physically is unable to do.
When I think back, I've been doing 'projects' ever since I can recall. Everything from wall papering, to building hen houses/calf houses, helping with the gardening, welding alongside my uncle, preserving with my Grandma, raising and looking after calves, cows, sheep, goats, hens, mowing the lawns , etc ... well before 10 years of age. We didn't have much money, so, as necessity is the mother of all inventions as the saying goes, we always, always, did it ourselves - or lived without.
Back then my Uncle Des was one bright cookie - he had even built his own bass guitar, and speed boat in his earlier years - seems he always thought outside the box, and then my mum was always a 'crafty' woman. She was a seamstress among many other things and could (still can and does) make paper 'talk', bake up anything yummy (notice I said bake, not cook .... ) and again, had/has the ability to think outside the box. [My grandma did the cooking and cleaning in our extended family.]
I have to stop here and interject my own blog to say, that never in all those years did I hear them complain or whine about what they didn't have. They either made it happen or were thankful for what they had. And in spite of what we didn't have, they were a wonderful example in giving. They always gave. They gave when they had 'it' and they gave when they didn't ... there was love and love was there.
So, I grew up with great examples of project work and a true work ethic. I learned that working hard was important and I was always left with a great deal of satisfaction from what I had accomplished and invigorated from a hard days work!
That being said, I don't always like what I do, I don't always want to do it, and I don't always like the outcome ... but mostly I am left with satisfaction. I find that when you do it yourself you are able to use up more of what you have lying around, get better attention to detail than if you hired someone, save the high costing of hiring someone else - big time, which means able to get more done.
So, what types of things do we spend our time doing? Everything from installing fans, plumbing, replacing the forced air furnace (my husband was offered a job on the spot for his work there), hardwood flooring, tiling, painting, car maintenance, fence building, gardening, installing roof fans, replacing windows, etc, etc ... and then of course is regular maintenance of our home. Last Christmas my gift was a Ryoby power tool set - sweet!
Upcoming projects include but not limited to - tiling the lower level, taking out a kitchen wall and redoing the cabinets, hard wooding the floor - basically gutting and remodeling the kitchen. Putting hardwood in the master bedroom and 2 other bedrooms, building an outside shed for the lawnmower, remodeling the master bathroom ... just a few things that come to mind. Some of these are pretty pricey, so we'll be slowly working through the list!
So after some serious thought to my friends question, the truth is that I mostly enjoy it - not always, but mostly. I don't enjoy the balancing of other jobs like cleaning and cooking when I'm doing a project as everything else falls apart ... but yes, I do enjoy it ... not so sure about the maintenance though ;P