Guess what today is?
Our Fourth Flammaversary!
That's right, four years ago, the event that started the blog was crackling away.
So for those of you who are unfamiliar with our beginnings, here's how
it went down.
When you're done reading this, go check your fire alarms.
Sunday morning August 16th 2009 at 9:15 AM our house officially went from being Casa de Redneck to Chateau Inferno. We smelled the smoke, grabbed the kids, and ran out onto the lawn in our pajamas while I frantically dialed 911. I had to go back onto the porch and leash Arwen to convince her to come outside; she's been trained not to run out the front door. The cats? Please. They were on the front lawn staring at us with a look that screamed, "Why were you guys still IN there?!?!?" At this point, I also noticed that Sam was a tad under dressed, and I was wondering how that would affect his Teacher of the Year chances if the media arrived. Then I realized I was in a satin leopard print robe that was better suited to being worn for 2 minutes and then flung aside in a whirl of passion. The neighbors were staring. None of them were coming up with anything for us to wear though. We're still plotting our revenge.
Mid afternoon found us sitting on the lawn in those blue chairs waiting for the Red Cross in front of a house with no electricity that smelled like barbeque. We filled out all of our paperwork and got a $125 Visa gift card to help with expenses and some laundry soap that was guaranteed to kill the smoky scent. After that windfall, we farmed the kids out to friends who had fancy things like walls and air conditioning, and we went out to On The Border for a little Mexican food to discuss exactly what to do next. Big shout out to that fine dining establishment. They took one look at us and comped the check.
Ultimately, we came back to our house and lit some candles and crawled into bed. The windows directly over us had been smashed out. And it rained. On us.
Sam as I said, is a teacher, and the next day was the first day for him to report to work. And he did. I, however, called in "in flames" and got to work.
In a decorating dilemmas contest, I win.
The fire went up through the floor and walls into the boys' room upstairs as well, and the firemen had chopped out their plaster to get to it.
So, for this project you will need the following:
A cast off or burned out house
Weapons of mass destruction
Friends with trucks
Beer. Get lots
A serious yelling voice
Kids who don't mind sleeping in the living room for several months
A camera to capture every golden moment
The ability to laugh at how incredibly absurd your life really is right about now
Step one: rip out anything that looks like total crap.
Step two: realize when step one is completed and for God's sake STOP.
Step three: assure your husband you know exactly what you're doing. Lie if necessary.
Go upstairs and repeat steps one through three.
Sit back and admire your work.
Now take any non-essential belongings and stuff them in a 20x8 foot storage pod that is the focal point of your landscaping. Be sure that anything you could possibly need is stuffed in the very back where it will be completely inaccessible. Fill this unit to the rafters with Tetris-like precision. Close the doors and lock them. Realize you hear a meow coming from inside. Unlock the doors and remove idiot cat.
Discover that visqueen adds a chic industrial ambiance to your patio and consider halting progress at this point to fully enjoy your new decorating direction.
Notice all the places in your home that were not formerly entrances.
Take time to evaluate the use of natural light in a setting.
Consider allowing a more organic look instead of cookie cutter finished walls.
Make your flooring and color choices. Ponder how much Ringling Brothers has influenced your direction.
Stare at the delivery. Second guess yourself. Wonder if you're making too many permanent choices at once. Say, "Screw it." and open the packages. Realize you forgot to buy tile. Use a flooring plank to bludgeon yourself. Momentarily enjoy the sensation.
At this point, a little normal may occur. Do not panic. This is an illusion, and there's plenty more chaos to come.
In the middle of this, decide that it would be a good idea to move your mother in with you. Because that's really what any sane, rational person would do. Grab her dog, her two cats, and everything she owns while you're at it. Rent a second storage unit for your yard. Ignore your neighbor's glares and reap the benefits when your taxes go down along with your property value. Consider adding old tires and plastic flamingos to your landscaping to emphasize the new motif. Perhaps a rusted out truck up on cinder blocks would truly ice the cake.
Quit whining and get back to work.
Occasionally, question your sanity. Appreciate the fact that your husband supports you fully in this endeavor and would like to emphatically join you in this activity. He's really the expert, since he's been doing this since you met.
Explore how much you hate high ladders. Convince yourself that creaking noise is nothing, and the obvious list to one side is just perspective and the fact that you're lightheaded from the altitude.
Next, second guess your continued use of pink as a house color choice after you've had it perfectly matched at Home Depot and it's up on the walls. Cry slightly. Do not ask anyone else what they think.
Prime the smoke damaged walls and decide that's all that's happening until fall when the mercury drops below flambe'.