In case anyone was wondering, we were able to work out issues with Jetsam for visitation this week.  The kids are back at their momma’s house – soaking up the greatness of trailer-park living.  Ok….that’s not fair – there are plenty of hard-working people who live in trailer parks.  Forgive me if I’ve offended anyone….

The deal only cost us the price of snacks for the kids – there went child support.  How sad is it that snacks for 3 kids (plus we picked up enough for their younger brother – Flounder) for a week cost more than we receive in child support from Jetsam for 2 weeks?  Of course, the cost to us for them to see their mom for the week is worth way more for……..FFRRREEEEEDDDOOOOMMMMMM!!!!!!

Freedom is the name of the game this week – or is supposed to be anyway.  My Mom was generous – way generous – and offered to allow Buddy to stay with her and Dad for the week so we would be 100% child-free for the week.  My birthday present from my Mom this year – Thanks Mom!!!

I can think of all sorts of dirty, naughty, convoluted activities Hun and I can get ourselves involved in without kids around for 7 days….

Not one of those ideas included another construction project on our house.

Yep – you read that right – we started another project.  No, we haven’t finished the bathroom remodel – why do you ask?  We are gluttons for punishment it seems.  In our defense, it was one of those projects where we either fix it on our terms or the house would dictate when it would be fixed.

Our kitchen ceiling was caving in.  No really!  See:

How do we manage to get ourselves in messes like this?  I blame it on my Dad – it’s all his fault.  Why him?  Because he’s the one that showed me that DIY home improvements are possible – thanks Dad!

So….on the week we have no kids, no responsibilities, and no demands – we now have a gaping hole in our ceiling.  Not to mention – my kitchen furniture is now sitting in my dining room, what’s left of the items in the kitchen is covered in dirt, insulation, old termite mounds (yes, termites ate away most of the rafters behind the ceiling – causing the collapse over the course of many, many years), and sheetrock dust.  Did I mention the kids are nowhere around for me to blame the mess on?

This is how the project has come down (literally!):

We attempted to pull the pieces down in sections to avoid a huge mess.  Hun was cutting, while I was holding the bulk of the ceiling up.  20 minutes into cutting, Hun needs a different tool, so I get off the ladder to grab it for him.  Seconds later, the part of the ceiling I was holding up came crashing down.  (By the way – the specks in the picture below is flying insulation that was floating through the air – yes, we were wearing masks.)

We get the ceiling down and find the rafters eaten away by termites.  The previous genius owners, instead of fixing the REAL problem, patched the cracks with so much spackle, plaster and mud that it was built up thicker than the original sheetrock.  The sheer weight pulled the ceiling down – not the termites (they just helped the process).  Sorry for how dark the picture is – none of the pictures with flashes showed the termite grooves.  The white circles are the original nails that stayed in the rotted wood, but pulled away from the sheetrock.

As we’re putting up new rafter boards, we suddenly hear rain pattering on our roof.  Rain?  Since when did the weathermen call for rain?  Hun suddenly looks at me and exclaims, “YOUR WINDOWS ARE DOWN!”  Crap!  Run outside into the now pouring rain and jump in the Suburban.  As I’m about to run back to the house, I notice the windows of the truck are also down.  Crap!  Run to the truck and get those windows up.  As I’m running to the house, I have the ultimate realization – the brand new sheetrock for the ceiling is still in the back of the truck!  CRAP!!

Hun and I got the sheetrock inside, dry it off and stood there wondering how stupid we could be and is the rock ruined?  I looked at him, covered in water, dirt and insulation and say with wide eyes, “We left all of the electrical tools outside too!!”  Both of us run into the backyard, cautiously unplug the tools from the extension cords (yes, we were very careful) and get them put up out of the rain.  Standing in the shed, watching the rain pour down, each of us looking like drowned rats and we busted out laughing.

We finally finished as much as we could – covered the ceiling up with plastic and we’re hoping to get the sheetrock up tomorrow (we decided to take a day off and allow the sheetrock to fully dry before we tried to hang it – we’re pretty sure we saved it).

One last picture – proof that Hun knows how to use a broom…..

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