As the children have aged, I have sometimes wished we had taken video and pictures of them, and Buds and me, every day. I love the BIG memories of our trips and birthdays and holidays, but the day-to-day, that’s where I find my long-term storage of joy.
Last Saturday was such a day.
We have a rental condo that the previous tenants moved out of and we needed to prepare for the next folks. The previous renters left it in great shape, but there’s always cleaning and repairs to handle.
Our new folks have their own washer and dryer, so our day began with our very kind neighbor helping Buds and me move the pair from the condo over to our garage. He has a truck, trailer, and appliance dolly, plus a loving, generous spirit, so we met up over there at 7 for the first adventure of the day.
We’ve realized over the years what a difference the right tools can make for accomplishing a task, plus working with people with great attitudes and spirits makes the time fly by.
Neighbor had a tech problem Buds attempted to help him with after the appliance moving project, then we headed back to the condo for painting and cleaning and repairs.
Buds and I don’t have a lot of skill, but we’re willing to learn. Although we prefer our repairs to be simple, Buds did teach himself to remove and replace caulk around all the sinks. He also replaced doorknobs.
After working at the condo all morning, we grabbed some lunch from Panera, then headed home for a break before heading back to the condo with our extra helpers.
Since the kids are used to the night shift, we headed back to the condo around 6 for a couple hours of work.
I continued covering the bright yellow walls in one of the bedrooms.
I would judge the paint color choice, but then I remember the Pepto-Bismol pink bedroom Monkey slept in for years.
Buds and the kids worked their way through other items on the list: cleaning, cleaning, cleaning.
They were chatting and laughing and making it so joyful to be there together.
Buster cleaned lights. Yessa cleaned the stove. Monkey on door knobs. Then on to the next items on the list.
On the list of things I want to remember; on the drive over we were talking about what the condo was like. Yessa had a curious dislike of it for years, so had never been inside. (She’s over that now.)
Buds said it was like our Reston condo, which started me laughing because I don’t think they are anything alike. Once they knew why I was laughing, the children joined in.
Yessa asked if the stairs were on the left as you come in the front door, like at the Reston condo.
Does it have a basement like the Reston condo?
So it’s like the Reston condo in that it has walls and a roof?
The comparisons went on and on.
I was crying with laughter and Buds good naturedly deflected these teasing barbs.
Buds eventually called us “smart a***s,” and when Buster pointed out the curse to Yessa, she replied, ” I don’t even care because he’s making Mother laugh.”
So much laughter.
And then later, at the not-like-Reston condo, Buds attempted to tell Buster something and Buster responded, quick as a whip, “That’s nice, Dad, but I’m not sure I can take advice from someone who thinks this is like the Reston condo.” And we started laughing again.
It was not fun work, but with the right people and good spirits, any work can be a delight.
It took two more days, but the condo is ready for our friends to move in. It’s not in perfect shape, and it’s not the Reston condo, but it’s dang clean and the walls are sprinkled with laughter.