Sunday, November 9, 2008

Chewing on Cabinetry

Oh hi. It's still NaBloPoMo, isn't it? Oh, that's right: I haven't posted anything for today yet, have I? Well, let's get to it, then.

Today was supposed to be the grand odyssey to pick up a couple of cabinets. You see, we discovered that to have our contractor to do the things we wanted done in the kitchen and elsewhere would run us, oh, about the cost of our new car. We swiftly and regretfully concluded that that was a no-go. Rats, anyway.

After some gnashing of teeth, Mr. Sweetie came up with the idea that we would redo the kitchen cabinets ourselves, but in stages. We'd start with a couple of cabinets and work out the kinks in the assembly and installation, thereby saving ourselves time, money, excessive renovation mess, and larger mishaps. This actually makes a lot of sense, especially if we start with the corner that currently has non-permanent storage.

We'd install one corner's worth of cabinets, transfer the stuff in the existing cabinets into the new and then tear out the old to install the rest of the new cabinets, again in stages. This is much what my church did 15 years ago as we were expanding into a larger sanctuary - build a new building to temporarily house church offices along with childcare/religious education classes while the older building was torn down and built anew. (We also had a smaller space that would serve as sanctuary while all this was going on.)

The trick now is *getting* the stuff we need without spending an arm and a leg on shipping and then finding the time to acquire what we need. This has turned into an issue; many of our weekends are taken already. How did we get so busy?

Mr. Sweetie came up with this great idea to wing our way over to the Ikea today and pick up a few cabinets and even the chair we're lusting after. See, once again, we were supposed to be in at least the same state as our target Ikea, and hey, what's another 4 hours to drive over? While we're already in the same state and all. As we have been busy preparing for this and that, we said: yeah! That sounds stressful but doable! And we threw our kitchen folder into the car on our way out of town.

Flash forward to this morning. We wake up super early, have a great breakfast and visit with our hosts, and hie our tails up the road in the opposite direction of home.

As we drive, we chat. DH wants to replace the flimsy backs with a sturdier construction. First time I've heard about this. My objections are several, namely that he is *already* planning to build his own bases *and* seal the raw edges *and* all of this was on the recommendation of our not-to-be contractor, who (you notice) is not actually undertaking the picky details of this project!! This is what I call mission creep. This is what I call the overly-engineered do-it-yourself project from hell.

So we argue about this until DH says he won't argue about it, so we agree to not argue about this, only sharing our concerns and reassurances about the do-ability of this line of attack. (ha!) The air thus cleared we continue up the highway.

And then I take a look at the package dimensions which I had conveniently compiled and printed out earlier. Each individual cabinet comes flat-packed in anywhere from three to nine separate packages. And each package's dimensions are up for grabs. One is something like 52 by 32 by 2 inches and weighs 64 pounds. Another is something like 23 by 18 by 1.5 inches and weighs 5 pounds. The list goes on ad confusiom. The question then arises as to whether our new car has the capacity to actually hold any significant amount of packages, especially cabinets *plus* this new chair we have had our eye on. It (the new car, not the chair) is much bigger than our old car, but we have neglected to actually measure the interior before we left for the weekend. Have I mentioned that we were rather busy?!

And by the way, is this going to be worth the hassle of driving these many hours to and from to pick up what may or may not fit and may or may not suffice AND which may drive me bonkers since I can't quite bend over any more and suffer from near-perpetual indigestion due to my GI tract being scrunched into a sub-compact space? You can see where this is going.

So what with all the questions, we decide that we need to collect a little more information before continuing. At the last place we can easily turn homeward, we stop to find a store that will sell us a measuring tape on a Sunday morning so that we can measure the car capacity and assess whether this is just a fool's errand, or whether it's worth adding another 7 hours of travel onto our day. After much measuring, we discover that a few cabinets will definitely fit, but whether the chair plus cabinets will fit is uncertain.

There are still too many uncertainties we haven't sorted out. In addition, Mr. Sweetie says he doesn't want this to turn into a slog for me as we have hours to go and I *still* have this digestive pain and am highly uncomfortable. There's no denying that it would be a slog.

We slowly and regretably conclude that this trip is not to be, at least not for today. So we turn homeward by a slightly different but more direct route, and it *still* takes us another few hours to get home.

So now the plan is for DH to take a day trip and do the trip alone without our extra baggage in back and without my extra pregnant self needing to eat and pee every hour and feeling miserable on the road. But when?? Have I mentioned that we are rather busy? Working and traveling hither and yon and the next thing you know, it's Christmas season. It's possible to have the items shipped to us, but that would get damn expensive. The chair alone would practically double in price were it shipped! Our car gets better gas mileage than that, so clearly picking it up is the way to go. But when?

This project is grinding our teeth down. It's doable, but WHEN? It's not just time versus money (although that's clearly an issue), it's time AND money with a side of aggravation. We'll clearly have to spend a little of each. Le Sigh.

Lalala! I am now going to think happy thoughts and work on clearing our the baby's room so that *someone else* can paint it. Don't mind the teeth marks.

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