June 28, 2020

Garage Progress

Today was a much better day than yesterday. With the quarantine letting up here in Michigan, more and more things are opening and happening, and I just feel overwhelmed. We have doctor's appointments, dentist appointments, etc, and it's back to reality.

Yesterday, I drove Eli to Jerry's sister's house to do some work for her in the yard. He's trying to earn money to buy a new fishing reel, so he asked some family members if they have any work for him. He pulled weeds and replaced mulch, and did some stuff with the landscaping for Laura (Jerry's sister). I'm glad he took the initiative to earn his own money!

Jerry was off work today, and there are going to be some big changes with his schedule. He's going to start working nights again! We are both very excited about that. The night shift works better for all of us, and he sleeps much better on nights. He'll still work a swing shift (meaning his shifts during the week will change days, but it'll still be the night shift).

When he switched to working day shift, it was SO HARD to adjust. I was looking back at my weight log, and I noticed that he'd started working straight days just before I started gaining weight. I felt so overwhelmed and stressed out, and I was eating to try to ease my stress.

I really hope that now that his shift has changed, I'll feel less stressed out and I'll be able to finally focus on taking better care of myself. Jerry is happy about it, too--he always slept better on nights and he'll be able to spend some time alone once in a while.

On days, he NEVER gets "alone time" to do whatever he wants to do (watch wrestling, play video games, etc). When he works nights, and he it's his day off, he still stays up all night. So, he'll use that time at night to catch up on "his" shows, play the Xbox, and stuff like that--uninterrupted.

I know exactly how important that "alone time" is. If I didn't have time to myself regularly, I would be a total nightmare to live with.

Today, we spent time working on the garage. First, he took Eli to a couple of grocery stores to return cans and bottles (for deposits). No stores were accepting them since the quarantine started (and only a few stores accept them now), so they just built up and were taking up so much space in the garage. Also, after Eli worked for Laura, she gave him seven bags of cans/bottles in addition to paying him for his work! (It ended up being nearly $50 worth of deposits. He was thrilled.)

While they were gone, I worked on some more taping/mudding the drywall in the garage. When Jerry got home, he and I worked on moving all of our "stuff" to the side of the garage that is already done (as far as the taping and mudding). I sanded the mud on that side as well, so it's ready for primer and paint! I am SO EXCITED to be able to prime and paint everything.

Here is what one corner looked like before and now (in progress). Keep in mind that the walls and ceiling still need to be painted, so it doesn't look good right now. But it's progress!

I still have about two-thirds of the garage to finish with the taping and mudding. Still, we got rid of a lot of stuff while we were moving things around today and now I have a lot of space in the rest of the garage. I think I'll be able to get the taping and mudding done in 4-5 days.

Now that I'm done with that one side of the garage (not "done" done, but just ready for paint), we moved almost all of our stuff to that one side. That made a ton of room on the other side of the garage so that I can freely move around to tape and mud the ceiling and finish the walls.

This is where we moved all of our stuff...

And this is the space where I have to work! Once I get to the far wall, we'll move that other stuff. For now, I can finish the ceiling and the walls that aren't obstructed. The seams only have 1-2 coats of mud on them now.

Jerry has the next couple of days off, so we're hoping to pull out a couple of enormous bushes--I don't know what they are called, but they look like this (this photo is not of mine--I just have one of these bushes on each front corner of my house). And mine are HUGE--they are taller than the house!

When we had Tim come out and spray our house to keep the spiders away, he said that those bushes are the biggest attraction for spiders. They also just look way too tall for the house. Since we're going to be replacing the porch, we need to work on the landscaping anyways. So, I'm happy to get rid of them.

Cutting them down and pulling out the roots is going to be a challenge, but I hope we'll be able to tackle it while Jerry is off work. I'm excited to see what the house will look like without them! I know nothing about landscaping, but Nathan's girlfriend, Alex, is into it. I asked her to help me out when I'm ready to work on it.

Anyway, it's been fun seeing the changes as we progress. I'm thrilled with how the garage is looking--even thought it's not finished, it already looks so much better. (And I have to admit, I'm pretty proud that I've done all of the drywall by myself.) Thankfully, I remembered to take "before" photos, so I will post everything once it's done!


  1. Katie! Is there anything you CAN'T do!? I'm so impressed (and honestly kind of jealous) of your DIY skills. I really admire how you are not afraid to try new projects and that you persist in them, even when they get monotonous. I also really appreciate your honesty about your relationship. I think a lot of people think that there's only one "right way" to have a happy marriage/relationship with everyone having the Leave it to Beaver Family with everyone together/on the same schedule all the time. But it's clear that you and Jerry love each other, and are best friends, even if you need time without being with each other 24/7. It is a comforting reminder to me that, just because we might need time to ourselves, doesn't mean my partner and I aren't happy together. We have actually been shocked at how much we like each other's company being in quarantine together for 3 months, but there are definitely days where that time apart feels good too! :)

  2. I think those huge evergreens a called arbevitis (wrong spelling). Thanks for sharing these pictures. Your and your families work is AMAZING! Wish our garage was finished like that but I have no desire to even venture there. That picture of Eli to me...I thought he doesn't look like a cute kid anymore, but he looks all grown up. Good job on everything you guys.

  3. A tip, because I've been working on landscaping as well. I don't know what Jerry drives, but we have been using my Jeep and my husband's truck to pull out bushes! I never would have thought of that...it was my husband's idea, and I will never lift a shovel again! It works amazingly well!

  4. I think those bushes are arborvitae (that's the plural). We have some in our backyard that are also way taller than they are supposed to be. Ours are old enough that they are dying one by one and we know we need to replace them. I will be interested to see how you get the roots out, since we probably will need to, too. Good luck with all your home projects!


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