I’m so reno now. I move about home and country diagnosing gaps and cracks with the appropriate fillers. Mumbling things like “bit of poly-fil outta fix that” and “give it a sand and an undercoat first!”

Unlike the old me who washed her hair every single day and never left the house less than clean and mega tidy – I can’t remember the last time I didn’t have a smear of paint on my thigh or a ridge of gap filler under my fingernails.

My outfits are outstanding.

My efforts are alarming.

My results are very rewarding…

When Fitty and I first discussed ‘purtying up the shack’ many moons ago, it was little more than a mouse turd on stilts with a spectacular deck and view, great bones and truly revolting decor.

When I say truly revolting, I’m talking “please just light 8 candles every time I come to stay and never ever turn on the light so I can see the mouse poo.. or what is making me itch in your bed.”

Fitty was a single dad with 5 kids! – and a good ole lack shack that you could build model cars right on the floor! (And paint and glue the carpet too!) The house was clean like Tony Abbot is honest. So now that we have that out of the closet full of his ex’s stuff,  we can move on…

4 and I converged on the Lake shack at roughly the speed of an indignant shit-storm, waving mouldy smelling creepy stuff in the air demanding “rubbish? rubbish? rubbish?” of him until he let us throw most of his rubbish away.

Fitty is the only man I’ve ever even known to go to the dump with a full load of crap and come home with someone else’s half load…

You know you’re going to need parts from a 1940’s Naval Switchboard because Fitty.

I know I promised to be honest on this blog… but do you guys really want to know about the High Rise Low Cost Mousing Housing Development 4 and I found?

“Fitty!… Your mice are gay!”

It’s not often I make a call like that but upon discovering the back of Fitty’s fridge festooned with Easter Egg foil, glitter, Christmas streamers, bits of bright plastic lego-men, colourful wrapping paper and numerous other bright detritus I assumed I had found the Gay Pride of multi-storey housing for mice. I shit you not!

4 and I cleaned and scrubbed tirefully for what seemed like hours at a time. Eventually we got together a kind of “retarded old hippies love purple” vibe going on between his crap and mine. We had a Buddha head to make it all legit so that all worked.

Nothing matched furniture wise and all the beds made all of us itch except Fitty. He’s way too mental for anything to bite him, (you learn that when you train to be an internet doctor and scientist – that parasites are way to clever to bite mental people..)

When I grew up and stopped working I finally had time to put all those words and plans and discussions to some kind of use. It was time for the purple hippies to go.

The first thing I did was come up with some new words…

Reno-crastination – This is what you do when you spend so much time planning and re-planning your project that you never actually get started.

Reno-lating – The art of getting so OCD about your project that you find yourself stripping wallpaper at 3am.

Renargue –  When the person whose time and skills aren’t required on the job wants to take part in the decision making.

Renial –  Hiding hardware store receipts so you can’t add up how much you spend on paint.

Anyone who has followed my blog so far knows how long it has taken me to do a bedroom, hallway and the walls of my living room, culminating in the horror of paint-seiling my stairwell on a couple old rotted planks. A normal person could have renovated 3 houses by now right?

But they don’t know about the paneling… which leads me to my Tips and Tricks, few but very important.

  1. Before you start renovating ask yourself “Am I Stretch Armstrong?” – If not you are probably going to be miserable with neck, shoulder and back pain the entire time. (Not to mention throwing yourself off ladders because you’re not Stretch Armstrong and can’t reach the high bits.)
  2. If you have any timber paneling do not for the love of the baby Jesus ever decide to paint it. Timber paneling invites you to think it will be easy. Timber paneling is lying, needy bullshit. Burn it down now, quickly!
  3. Save your hair! Wear Fitty’s beanie.
  4. Never enter into any kind of relationship with a step-ladder wearing slippers.

That should keep you safe until tomorrow when I will eventually stop drinking coffee and smoking cigarettes long enough to post some truly amazing photos of all my projects so far. Before and After. Catch you when that happens.