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Saturday, May 8, 2010

The Men in my Life

I know this is a more appropriate post for Father's Day, but I realized something today while I was assembling some patio furniture and the thought won't keep 'til June. Maybe then I'll write about my mother. A few weeks ago I saw a great bargain - two chairs with ottoman and a side table for a wonderfully low price. I jumped at the offer.

Naturally, they came unassembled. Today I decided to finally assemble them. I'm still having trouble with the table, but the chairs and ottomans/ottomen are finished. And it's not easy tightening screws without ruining a manicure. Then I realized the impact of the two men in my life.

When I was a child, my father would let me hang out with him in his small workshop (which had been the coal bin before the oil heater) in the basement. There I would watch him work, or when I got bored play with the various tools. This was so long ago that they weren't power tools so they were safe. He even let me (with his help) make a toy covered wagon for a neighbor child. We made it from an old cigar box and some wheels he had laying around the house. When I got really bored I would sweep the floor which never got clean.

Even though he tried to domesticate me by giving me a subscription to GOOD HOUSEKEEPING magazine when I was 11, he also wanted me to be handy and take care of things for myself. The day I got my license, he took me outside to show me how to change a tire so I wouldn't be stuck anywhere.

Fast forward to my husband. He was the opposite of my father. My husband wasn't very handy. He did try to do things around the house, but rarely finished them. It was very frustrating at times when it felt like I had to do everything. If I wanted anything assembled, I had to do it. Christmas Eve, I was the one putting the toys together.

Now, however, because of my early training with tools and my having to assemble household furniture, I'm able to read and follow directions (when I want to) and assemble my own furniture. You know, very few things are delivered fully assembled.

Over the years I have had to assemble bookcases, tables, desk chairs, shelving, etc. I did take it easy when I bought my latest desk, I paid extra to have someone set it up.

I thank both of these men, one for his patience in letting his little girl play in his workshop and the other for his unhandiness which resulted in my learning how to take care of things around the house.

I took some pictures, I hope they show up. All I can see while typing are the codes. All the assembly was done on the kitchen table, I don't have a workshop. Hopefully you can see that Burnie is already trying out the chair. There is also a picture of the box and how everything should look. It's pretty close.


Anonymous said...

Nice. I and our daughters know how to do these things too, thanks to DH and daddy. These skills always come in handy, especially when one daughter's hubby doesn't know how.Linda

Snooty Primadona said...

I've always been a do-it-yourself gal too. Thank goodess, since hubby can barely hammer a nail, lol.