Life gets boring once in a while. So we try to sparkle it up, to find something new and exciting. The ideas can come from anywhere.

My husband and I were visiting our neighbor Jones, and he told us the funniest story. Last week a guy appeared at his door and said:

-         Hello, Mr. Clark, I am your contractor. You asked me to repair your house. Sorry, I am a little late.

-         You are a little late indeed. My name is Mr. Jones; I bought this house from Mr. Clark half a year ago and I repaired it already.

That was funny. Contractors are so unreliable. We expressed our hope that at least the people who fixed Jones’s house were good. Jones was not so sure. “There were some issues”, - he said, -“I had to call them the moment I came back to the house”.

-         What’s the matter? – The contractor responded, - you sound like you hit upon loads of defects…

-         No, just one. The front door is stuck. I can’t get into the house.

After they fixed the door, Jones did find loads of defects. Having to redo their work probably made the contractors angry, so they started to send Jones outrageous bills. “For instance,” - remembered Jones, - “I paid for windows replacement, and they complained that I did not include the price of windows. They thought I am stupid. It’s written bright and clear “In just one year these double-pane energy-efficient windows will pay for themselves!” So they were calling before the year was over to trick me into paying for what should pay for itself. I was not happy with them. I think I could’ve repaired the house myself. It would’ve been better, cheaper and even fun.”

When we came home, I told my husband:

-         Let’s repair our house. It will be fun. Life is kind of boring right now.

-         Good idea, - he said, - but the house is fine, nothing is broken.

-         That’s good, - I said, - when something is broken, it’s much harder to repair. Besides, we planned to start working out. Think about it! Ceiling painting develops triceps, balance and accurate eye; wallpapering strengthens back muscles, biceps and forearms; waxing the hardwood reinforces the ankles. You will develop six pack abs, and I’ll get my pre-baby waist back.

So we decided to remodel our home. We explained to the guy in the Home Depot what we were planning to do and asked him what we need to buy. The guy looked at us and suggested:

-         How about life insurance?

He was skeptical, but it didn’t discourage us.

We started with ceiling painting. I wanted to try, but my husband thought it would be better if he painted and was holding the ladder. So I let him do it. I was holding the ladder, and our son was helping me. Sure, my little boy would rather help his father painting.

-         Not now, darling, - I said, - wait until you grow up and then you will be helping Daddy.

-         You think, - my son asked, - that Daddy will be still painting this ceiling when I grow up?

He was a great little helper, our son.

I was in the kitchen fixing lunch for my sweet laborers, when my son stormed in screaming:

-         Mommy, I dropped the ladder!

-         It’s okay, darling, tell Daddy, and he will pick it up.

-         Daddy can’t, he is hanging on the chandelier!

… Painting was fun. Wallpapering was even more fun. I tried first. For some reason I kept leaving bubbles and creases. Probably I am not good at smoothing surfaces. Then my husband tried. He happened to be a natural-born wallpaperer. So I let him do it. He was very proud to show me the finished room.

-         See, no bubbles, no creases.

-         It’s perfect, - I praised him, - but, honey… where is the window?

… Hanging pictures on a newly wallpapered wall is also fun and easy. You just need to hammer a nail into the wall. I tried first. For some reason, my hammer kept hitting the wall 2 -3 inches away from the nail. Apparently I am not good with targets. Then my husband tried. He was so much better. He hit his finger, which was much closer to the nail.

-         Honey, maybe you are holding the hammer incorrectly – I suggested.

-         You are right. The correct way is to hold it with both hands. Now, you hold the nail, and I will hammer.

… While we were putting bandages on each other’s fingers, my hubby came up with even brighter idea.

-         I got it! People, who were constantly hitting their fingers with a hammer, are the ones who invented a screw and a screwdriver!

We practiced to perfection. We combined tools and techniques until our wall looked like some sophisticated abstract art. We decided not to hang pictures and enjoy our original wall décor. We became experts in nailing and screwing, and I can give you some helpful advises. Like, I learned that hammering a screw is much more efficient than screwing a nail.

And I learned much, much more. Home improvement was fun! We admit that the house looked better before it was improved, but we still like it. We became a closer family. We developed new family habits. For example, we wipe our feet not only when we enter the house but also when we leave it.

Our son got very busy remodeling his toys. He is incredibly bright and creative. The only toy that is not broken yet is the hammer.

When I cook burgers or steaks, I turn them with a putty knife instead of kitchen spatula. I kind of like it.

When my husband spreads cream cheese on a bagel, he does it very thoroughly, trying to fill every little hole and smooth it out perfectly. Once he even tried to finish the surface with sandpaper.

Our intimate life changed also. Now my man caresses me with long smooth vertical strokes. Up and down, up and down. I kind of like it.

The bottom line – renovation is fun. And trust me, Ladies, we can do it!  Except, if our husbands can do it better, we just let them.

Home improvement is a very good thing. Especially afterwards.