painting
*NOTE:  This is not a photo of us.  In case you didn’t know.*

I hate doing home improvement projects.  They’re horrible.  Actually, I hate doing any sort of improvement projects, whether home or otherwise.  (It’s why I don’t even bother dieting anymore.  I hate failure…is that a cookie over there?) I like to think that everything in my life is perfect and not in need of improving.

Unfortunately, my electric bill strongly disagrees.  Recently, we’ve noticed that our house is not overly efficient when it comes to energy.  This is something my house and I have in common.  When it comes to my energy, I also don’t seem to be energy efficient.

I rarely have the strength to walk across the room to throw away my gum wrapper, but I will sprint to the door to greet the pizza delivery driver and throw him an extra $5.00.  I guess I’m just selective with my energy.  So is my attic, but I can’t excuse my attic, as it doesn’t deliver me a veggie pizza.

We purchased our house from a total beotch and at least once a month we curse her and her do-it-yourself husband for all of the “home improvement” tasks they did themselves…most of which involved duct tape and Monster glue.

Although I believe those two items can fix nearly anything (except my first marriage),  they couldn’t help out in the insulation department.

I’ve been wanting to re-insulate the attic for about 6 months.  I kept casually mentioning it to my husband in the hopes he would get the project going.

By the way, do you know how hard it is to casually work into a conversation the words “attic,” “energy efficient”, “insulation” and “fart box?”  (Okay, the last ones didn’t have anything to do with the story but you try fitting those 2 words into a conversation…it’s harder than you think.)

Every time I would casually bring up the project, my husband would say he put it on his list.  “My husband’s list” needs to be a separate blog for a separate day, because that list isn’t so much a “to do” list as it is a “I’m going to say I’m putting this on my list to shut up my wife” kind of list.

I have a feeling he’s not the only husband with such a list.

Most likely because my husband wanted to prove me wrong about his little list, a few weeks ago he surprised me and said he was ready to insulate the attic.  I would have preferred a surprise that involved a day at the spa and a night alone with a pound of guacamole, but this was a nice surprise too.

I’ll take what I can get (and I’d like to get some chips with that guacamole).

Either my husband doesn’t believe in the voodoo of meteorology, or he likes to torture himself, as he chose the weekend when it was 107 degrees as the magical weekend to insulate the attic.  (I think he probably likes to torture himself.  Exhibit A:  he’s married to me.  Obvious torture.)

In addition to choosing the hottest day of the year to do manual labor, he also chose the day before my birthday, which was another strike against him.  (There I go again giving strikes…)

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We begrudgingly set the alarm and got up at 7:00 Saturday morning.  I was already irritated.  We headed to Lowe’s to begin our project, or as I like to call it “our marriage tester.”

Anyone who is married and engages in a home project with their spouse (or ex spouse) knows what I’m talking about.  I knew there was a 60/40 chance we would emerge from this project still united in matrimony.  (You can decide which one the 60% represents…)

We actually researched this project the weekend before and discovered we would need to rent an insulation blower along with several packages of insulation….72 to be exact.

The previous week we asked the guy at Lowe’s if we would have any problem renting the machine and getting that much insulation.  He told us they had several hundred bags of insulation so it shouldn’t be a problem.

When we arrived at 7:30 a.m. at Lowe’s to get the machine and the insulation, we were shocked to discover they had only 19 bags of insulation to sell.  Obviously other people in the St. Louis area wanted to test their marriage and check something off their husband’s “list.”  We were in trouble but I was determined not to admit defeat, as I knew I had a small window of time to push this project through.

We rented the machine, bought all the insulation they had, loaded up the truck, and we headed home. (Okay, I watched them load it up.  Whatever.)  We unloaded the machine (okay, Matt and his friend did), and then we made two different trips to another Lowe’s for additional insulation.

couple smiling and paintingIt sucked.  Or should I say “It blew?”  (That joke was terrible but I’ve been away from blog writing for a while and I’m rusty.  Or should I say I’m dusty?  I will stop now with the bad puns.)

Miraculously, our marriage survived the numerous trips to Lowe’s.  I attribute that success to the copious amount of Diet Coke I slammed and the musical stylings of 2Pac.  Nothing says “let’s do this home project” more than gansta rap from the West Side…especially at 8 a.m.

We finally made it home, set up the machine, and spent the next 7 hours blowing insulation into our attic.  We also discovered that although you use a hose to blow everything into the attic, you might as well just shoot dust directly onto everything you own because that’s what is going to happen anyway.

Seriously.  Everything you own.

We finished the project that evening, covered in sweat, insulation, and a new found hatred for the previous home owners…who didn’t put ANY insulation in the attic.  No wonder our house was a hot box!

Running on pure anger (and a delightful foot long sub from Subway), we then proceeded to return the machine and the extra 22 bags of insulation we bought, clean the house, and put everything back the way it was before we started.  The project was complete!

Finally, we had something to cross off my husband’s list! I was so happy that I wanted to personally check “insulation installation” off the list.  (Doesn’t that sound like an 80s cover band?)  When I asked Matt where his list was, he told me he didn’t have an actual written list, but it was all kept “right up here” (and then he pointed to his head).

I then asked him if the list was kept in the same part of his brain that remembered the lyrics to songs wrong, or if it was in the part of his brain that seemed to always forget which nights Big Brother airs.  I’m still awaiting his response.