Dear Diary

 In A-to-Z Blog Hop, Blog

September 6, 2014 – Dear Diary, I’ve decided to finally do something about our deck and pergola. I did some research and got some ideas. All I need to do is pressure wash it and then slap some stain on it. Sounds like a weekend project for October when it turns a bit cooler. I’ll order the stain today. It’s gonna look great!

September 23, 2014 – Dear Diary, the stain arrived today. 10 gallons. That’s a lot of stain, but I figured better too much than not enough, right? Off to Lowe’s to pick up some brushes and plastic drop cloths. Wish the weather would cool off so I could get it done.

At the beginning

At the beginning


October 19, 2014 – Dear Diary, a perfect forecast! 7 straight days of sun and cooler weather. I’ll start tomorrow. Pressure wash in the morning, start the staining in the afternoon. In two or three days, it’ll be done!

October 20, 2014 – Dear Diary, the pressure washer won’t start. I learned more about small engine repair than I thought possible. Replaced the spark plug, drained the gas, cleaned the carburetor. A little soreness in my right arm and shoulder from pulling the starter cord so much. I’m confident I’ll get it going tomorrow though.

October 21, 2014 – Dear Diary, never realized how heavy a pressure washer was until I tried to throw it across the yard. Slight twinge in my back now. Turned on the truck’s heated seats when I drove to Lowe’s to get a new pressure washer. That helped.

October 22, 2014 – Dear Diary, new pressure washer works like a champ. Went to work on the deck and blasted off most of the grayness. Lost most feeling in my right arm and shoulder though and sometimes my fingers cramp in weird positions. No worries. Got to let the deck dry for two days before staining anyway.

After pressure washing

After pressure washing

October 24, 2014 – Dear Diary, started putting on the stain today. Used the big ladder to get some of the high places. Also did one corner down low since that’s where the bucket of stain landed when I almost fell off the ladder. My fear of heights has not lessened with age.

October 25, 2014 – Dear Diary, didn’t have much time to work on the deck today. Good thing. I can barely walk. Feet and legs hurt too bad. Thinking about borrowing father-in-law’s walker.

October 26, 2014 – Dear Diary, rain is in the forecast in a couple of days, so today will be the last chance I get to work on the deck for a while. Darn. Wife has helped for the last couple of days so my language was better. Thinking a two-tone deck isn’t so bad.

Have you ever had a weekend project stretch into a month (or more)?

Tweet: Dear diary, why didn’t you warn me?


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Showing 18 comments
  • Linda Glaz

    Yes, but only when I waited for my husband to help. Ahem, learned to do it myself if I want it to get done. I now know how to plumb, drywall, paint, paper, any and everything but electricity, though I do change an occasional light bulb. SIGH!

    • Tom Threadgill

      Yeah, I don’t mess with electricity either. I try not to mess with things that can kill me. 🙂

  • J'nell Ciesielski

    Sigh. This sounds like most of our ideas. You start thinking, hey, this’ll only take a few hours. That stretches into days, then weeks, then you start considering fire insurance for when you go on a rampage and just burn the sucker down. I think a two tone deck adds character, unlike one boring color.

    • Tom Threadgill

      Eventually the part I haven’t stained will turn gray again and the difference won’t be so noticeable. At least that’s what I keep telling myself.

  • Susan Stilwell

    It’s fun reading the home improvement woes of somebody else, Tom. Does ANY project ever take the time we think it should?

    • Tom Threadgill

      Never. I used to watch Renovation Realities on HGTV but it hit too close to home. Thanks for stopping by, Susan!

  • Karla Akins

    I try not to get involved in anything that might deck me.

    As for using motorized equipment, I subbed in high school science this morning and saw an x-ray of a guy who lost control of his chainsaw and it went into his chest and the chain was embedded all the way across it. It was ugly. So be careful out there.

    It made his work partner happy, though, because it made him look so good with a chainsaw that he was promoted to branch manager…

    Now the injured guy sells boomerangs. He’s hoping for a comeback.

    • Tom Threadgill

      Ouch. The puns hurt worse than the chainsaw.

  • Susan F. Craft

    Tom, my children used to head for the hills when I started a project. Mainly, because I usually spent several hours searching for the stuff to do the project with and by the time I found everything, I was too tired and frustrated. I would yell, “I know I put it right here!” It happened so much that when we talked about what should be on our tombstones, everyone agreed that mine should read “She finally found it.”

    • Tom Threadgill

      LOL! I organized my workshop so I’d know right where everything was. Didn’t work. I used to blame my kids for taking my stuff, but since they don’t live with us now, it’s all on me.

  • D.L. Diener

    It took me a week to get the wallpaper down in my kitchen. Another 3 days to wash (I thought) all of the sticky glue off. My stepmom was going to paint it for me while we were on vacation. (she is awesome like that. no you can’t have her) she learned I hadn’t quite gotten all the glue off. She washed and sanded my kitchen walls 3x before priming it. That took her a week. It’s stayed primed since last April. I might finally paint it this falinter. No, not a mistake. Maybe falinterpring. Eventually, it’ll be painted. Then I only have 5 more rooms to depaper and paint. Easy cosmetic updates they said. HA!

    • Tom Threadgill

      I hate hate hate stripping wallpaper. I will NEVER do that again. I know, never say never, but I swear, that’s the worst thing I’ve ever tried to do.

  • Joanne Sher

    Story of my life 🙂 Totally!

    • Tom Threadgill

      It always takes longer than I think it will. Always.

  • Kathleen Rouser

    We have been talking about putting a screened in porch on the back of our house . . . then when we thought we’d be better off getting a contractor to give us an estimate, we couldn’t even get him to come out here! I’m thinking this “project” may go on a few more years. 😉

    • Tom Threadgill

      Screened-in porches are great… as long as someone else builds them. I know what you mean about the contractor. You almost have to beg them to come out and then half of the time they don’t show. Ugh.

  • April Gardner

    LOL! You’re a chuckle a minute.
    My husband and I frequently make the mistake of deciding to DIY together. Every time we think we’re more mature, wiser, we can handle it. Nope.
    We’ve finally learned to sign an “I swear not to bite your head off” agreement before we pick up the first tool.
    Our kitchen/dining room/breakfast room/laundry room tiling project lasted a month.
    Yeah. Not pretty.
    But we’re still married, so yay for pre-DIY contracts. 😉

    • Tom Threadgill

      Yep. I always heard you should double the amount of time you think any DIY project will take, but I think that’s way undershooting reality. And if my wife and I signed a contract, one of us would have it torn up within the first hour. Thanks for stopping by, April!

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