Lessons From My Parents

You may have heard that Mom, Dad, sister and bro came up last week (bro only for 48 hours, really) to help with manual labor on the house. www.ouroldrowhouse.com.

I think we all thought we’d be further along than we were when they arrived, and my Mom and I even had visions of even getting some decorating done! Not so fast — those plaster walls and ceilings really put a hold on our schedule. The undecorated Christmas tree is still sitting on the front porch.

Even so, this week was a wonderful lesson in how to work together and have fun, even when you’re in the midst of back-breaking manual labor.

A few lessons I picked up:
1. Treat each other with respect, even when asking for a paint brush. (They must be doing something right, because they’ve been at it for 34+ years)
2. Listen to music, but not techno, because it puts people on edge.
3. Make a list of projects before you start.
4. Always have lots of food around.
5. Satin paint works for trim, but use flat for walls and ceilings.
6. Ask for help when you need it.
7. Find humor in everything, rather than desperation; laugh a lot.

It occurred to me after my family left that I had a ton of fun last week, even though we were all bone tired from lifting plaster, scrubbing grout, painting, peeling wallpaper, or any of the dozens of other un-fun things we did. I think the main reason is because we were all working together for a common goal, and doing it together.

Thanks, Mom, Dad, Bec and Jay, and all our friends who came to help for the House (Work) Party! Thanks also to those who are praying and cheering from afar; I feel I’m running on fumes all the time but the encouragement really makes a difference.

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