One Thing Leads To Another

We are looking at moving to higher Arizona country with- get this- TREES!  As part of the process, we have to get our house ready to sell.  We’ve lived here over fifteen years, so we’ve got a lot of home improvement project ideas that seemed beautiful but died on the vine.

Yesterday, while my husband was at work, I got the crazy idea to clean some windows that have wood shutters installed on them.  Window cleaning isn’t my forte; some would argue things look worse when I’m done (kind of like most home improvement projects I attempt :))

When I opened the shutters in our dining room, the magnetic pieces just popped off, broken plastic pieces resting in the sill.  Apparently ten years of Arizona sun was too much for the plastic parts.  I opened the rest of the shutters and as expected, more closers popped off.  I counted twenty of them.

Left:  broken catch     Right: new catch
Left: broken catch;           Right: new catch

I did some research on the internet so I could have a name for the “magnetic closer thingies” (they are called “magnetic catches”).  I saw a pack of ten for $7.98 so I was happy this project wouldn’t cost too much.  However, when I got to the store, they only sold them individually- for $1.32 apiece.  Ouch.

As soon as I got home, I started the process of changing the catches.  Of course, the new ones were about 1/8 inch wider than my old ones, so one new screw hole needed to be drilled for each catch.  Sigh.  I had to wait for my husband to get home because I don’t even know where he keeps the drill.

After he charged the drill overnight, he wanted to show me how to put the drill bit in.  I asked him just get it ready and I wouldn’t need to remove it.  He did and left for work.  Right after I watched him drive away, the drill bit broke.

01-21 Broken Drill Bit

You don’t think he’ll notice, do you? 😀

The moral of my story:  don’t ever clean windows.  It’s more trouble than it’s worth!

Do your projects ever go like this, or is it just me?  It’s probably just me….


35 thoughts on “One Thing Leads To Another

  1. mindofshoo January 21, 2013 / 9:43 AM

    That project would make me SCREAM! And throw things. Did I just say that? LOL I feel your pain Janna.

    • jannatwrites January 21, 2013 / 3:57 PM

      Hahaha! Well, I didn’t throw anything (yet) but I did say some things that I don’t care to repeat (in print or verbally :grin:) I’m trying to sell myself on the ‘this is so rewarding’ aspect of DIY, but so far I’m not that successful.

  2. suzicate January 21, 2013 / 9:56 AM

    EXACTLY…in fact, all house work/projects just lead to MORE than we planned in the first place! Good luck with your house sale and move!

    • jannatwrites January 21, 2013 / 4:00 PM

      Oh, I didn’t want to hear that all projects are like this, Suzicate. I couldn’t leave well enough alone, so I (with the kids’ help) sanded the wooden gate slats and put a coat of waterproofer on them. Times like this I hate having a 10 ft wide RV gate! I may or may not be able to move tomorrow.

  3. philosophermouseofthehedge January 21, 2013 / 10:05 AM

    I agree about windows!
    No once you start one thing…..
    Getting a house ready to sell is a challenge…and it will look so nice when you are done!
    Trees do make a difference.

    • jannatwrites January 21, 2013 / 4:05 PM

      Well, I’m glad I opened the shutters and not someone looking at the house. It wasn’t a planned repair, but then again, are any of them? I’ve never sold a house myself, but I’d been through several sales as a kid. Basically clean, clear extra stuff out and see if we can get the kids to cooperate 🙂 Thanks for stopping by, Phil!

  4. Yvonne Root January 21, 2013 / 10:58 AM

    It’s a sure bet he’ll never notice the broken bit. 🙂 Good idea about not cleaning windows. I’ll bring that up at the next meeting. 😉

    • jannatwrites January 21, 2013 / 4:06 PM

      Clean windows are totally overrated, Yvonne. I haven’t washed them in 15 years and it’s been fine (blocks a bit of the sun :))

  5. Tessa January 21, 2013 / 12:10 PM

    Thanks for the laugh. 🙂 You sound like Tim Taylor of “Home Improvement.”

    • jannatwrites January 21, 2013 / 4:06 PM

      Oh my gosh, Tessa – everything I touch turns into a pain in the neck nightmare! If I were so inclined, I probably could’ve made this fit with the Trifecta word this week 🙂

      • Tessa January 21, 2013 / 6:19 PM

        Oh you so could have LOL!

  6. Sean January 21, 2013 / 12:11 PM

    A broken bit happens. As far as your hubby noticing it, probably not for some time as you mentioned that it had to be charged first. For that size bit, it is easy to break them. If you want to take the bit out, grasp the black part where the bit is with one hand and the larger black part with the other and twist clockwise on the end with the bit in it. It should come loose and you will get the bit out. yes, the AZ sun will definitely bake plastic. I am surprised they lasted that long. Have you ever tried to fry an egg on the sidewalk? Take care

    • Sean January 21, 2013 / 1:50 PM

      And there are trees there, there is the mesquite and palo verde, the saguaro, oh wait, that’s a cactus but it’s big like a tree 😛 And don’t forget all the people that move there and bring their trees with them so they can have part of the north to remember.

      • jannatwrites January 21, 2013 / 4:17 PM

        Ha, ha, ha…those “trees” are barely more than tall shrubs! The Saguaro gives more shade, but it’s not like you can sit under it to read a book. We have a couple queen palms in our yard, but again, they aren’t exactly good for shade (but they are pretty to look at.) There are a few pines here, but they always look so out of place to me.

    • jannatwrites January 21, 2013 / 4:14 PM

      Oh, he’ll notice it Sean – there are still 16 more catches to install! I was able to pull the broken bit out of the frame with needle-nosed pliers (I usually use those for twisting wire in flower arrangements, so this was a new one.) The catches could’ve rotted a long time ago – we open the louvers, but never open the entire shutter frame. I’ve not tried to fry an egg on the sidewalk, but I have imagined my skin charring like bread in a toaster when I’m out in the sun 🙂

  7. jenniesisler January 21, 2013 / 2:10 PM

    This is my entire life;) Thankfully I’m in an apartment and have maintenance men for this sort of thing:D

    • jannatwrites January 21, 2013 / 4:21 PM

      I need a maintenance man, too, Jennie! Poor hubby isn’t exactly handy himself… I have a little more patience for the tedious tasks, so that’s why I was trying to do it. I should’ve just watched TV all day!

  8. nrhatch January 21, 2013 / 2:11 PM

    The move sounds exciting! The fix-it-up projects sound . . . like they might be a challenge. Best of luck, Janna.

    Note to self: cross “wash windows” off my to do list. 😉

  9. jannatwrites January 21, 2013 / 4:23 PM

    You’ll be doing yourself a favor by skipping the windows, Nancy! We’re not for sure on the move – if we don’t find a house with what we’re looking for, in our price range, we’ll probably just stay.

  10. diannegray January 21, 2013 / 7:59 PM

    Oh no! Janna – no! This is infuriating and I thought this kind of thing only happened to me! 😦

    • jannatwrites January 23, 2013 / 8:49 PM

      Ah, you aren’t alone then, Dianne. We finished the magnetic catch replacement, but I’m a bit reluctant to start anything else 🙂

  11. pattisj January 21, 2013 / 10:14 PM

    No, I just gave up on cleaning! lol How exciting to dream about trees. 🙂

    • jannatwrites January 23, 2013 / 8:50 PM

      Now giving up on cleaning entirely sounds like a perfect plan, Patti 🙂

  12. GodGirl January 22, 2013 / 2:18 AM

    Haha… I feel your pain! It rings a familiar bell… with my attempts there’s always something I’ve forgotten, some kind of obstacle…
    All the best with getting the house ready. Moving is challenging but exciting!

    • jannatwrites January 23, 2013 / 8:51 PM

      Glad you can relate, GodGirl. We joke that no project can be done with only one trip to the home improvement store!

  13. Debbie January 22, 2013 / 8:40 AM

    Oh, Janna, it’s not just you! Funny how we think we’ll tackle one such project and it’ll take no time at all; then, one thing leads to another, and we’ve eaten up our entire day off!! Still, how exciting to move — and trees? You’re gonna love ’em!

    • jannatwrites January 23, 2013 / 8:52 PM

      I’m too scared to try another project, Debbie 🙂 I’ll leave my husband a list and see what he can do with it! I’m glad it’s not just me, but I’m sorry so many have experienced this.

  14. agjorgenson January 22, 2013 / 8:17 PM

    OK: no window cleaning. Can you tell me a similar story about bathrooms now?

    • jannatwrites January 23, 2013 / 8:53 PM

      If you give me some time, I can make up a story about bathrooms to get you out of that awful task 🙂

  15. Carl D'Agostino January 23, 2013 / 2:33 PM

    Just yesterday my tech guy came by to install new version of linux on computer 10 minute chore. He’s coming back today.

    • jannatwrites January 23, 2013 / 9:01 PM

      Ugh. Electronics can be a nightmare, Carl. I get so cranky when something goes wrong with them!

  16. pattyabr January 25, 2013 / 8:37 PM

    I usually wreck something too when I clean windows. OR I leave horrible streaks on the window from cleaning when there is a lot of dirt on the windows ugh!

    • jannatwrites January 25, 2013 / 9:19 PM

      My windows look terrible, Patty. My solution was to close the shutters (haven’t opened them since the ‘cleaning’) until my husband can fix the mess 🙂

  17. Imelda January 27, 2013 / 12:30 PM

    First, good luck on your planned move.
    Second, I have done some bit of improvement on my own. I painted our porch – the front and side porches. I knew nothing about painting anything until that time. My husband gave me the paint to use as primer. It was a cheaper white paint. After I primed the wood, I put in the real thing. A year later, the paint was peeling. Already. I do not know what happened – now it seemed like modern paints are made differently from old ones and thus, do not work as primers anymore. Or something like that. Now, I have to re-do the whole painting thing again.

    • jannatwrites January 27, 2013 / 10:12 PM

      Thanks, Imelda! We are still looking for a house we like…we are quite picky!

      I’m sorry about your painting experience. One year isn’t nearly long enough for a coat of paint to last. I think repainting is worse than painting the first time because you have to sand the peeling paint off. (We had to do that on our wooden gate – the water protector bubbled and peeled after several years in the hot sun.) I hope you can find the perfect time to do it – when it starts to warm up but isn’t too hot outside!

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