Question to all the diy-ers here

marti8aApril 8, 2012

When you are actively involved in a big project, how do you keep up with the day to day stuff? I haven't cooked in, well, I can't remember how long it's been. Thank God for tv dinners or we would starve.

But it's the other stuff, like laundry and paying bills that have gotten away from me. It doesn't help that all the stuff that was in drawers in the kitchen is now dumped in boxes and scattered about the living room.

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Gads Marti. I do understand. Not same situation for me but illness has cut deeply into being able to keep up with the house stuff. I was starting to catch up the last couple of weeks in a good time for me but I am half way down again with my feet looking like some one took a razor blade to them.

For me I had to just let it all go and do the best I could when I could.Cooking is iffy. I just make sure my husband is fed. I am not loosing weight so I must be eating too. LOL

As far as bills I have always paid them as soon as the envelope hit the front door and had it ready to go out the next day.I make myself just do it. finally it has become a habit. I have one of those three slot mail things with stamps and address labels and all of that handy. Since I just did the wall it hung on in mosaic it is sitting on the table. I am trying to decide where to put it.

I just do laundry all the time.I also do it at odd times. some times I get a load in after my husband goes to bed to run so it is ready to hang on the line in the morning if the weather is good or I will also push it over to the dryer before going to bed myself. Maybe set yourself an hour each day for house needs. There really is no point in doing big clean ups. A lick and a promise is good enough in a construction zone.

I think the best thing for me was to stop beating myself up for what I could not keep up with. We have survived many renovations and after they are done we can usually look back with some fondness of the experience.

    Bookmark   April 8, 2012 at 2:06PM
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I don't think I will ever look back on this with fondness. Maybe when this side of the kitchen is done and I can use the sink and a counter again. ;)

What happened to your feet? How are you walking, or working? That sounds awful!

    Bookmark   April 8, 2012 at 3:13PM
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Marti I have psoriasis or PsA Psoriatic Arthritis. The picture is horrible. This foot was almost healed and then a few days ago it all split apart again. I have a high tolerance for pain but this is really bad right now. I just do what I have to do. I walked around and sprayed the yard today for weeds. I have my foot bandaged in a mini pad. Inside my shoe of course. Forcing my brain to override the pain. The weeds were going to over take me.Would make my life even worse.

Stress adds to this problem. I was doing so well, I was totally walking pain free for about two weeks, until I had to prep for a big council meeting this week and the stress of it brought this on.STUPID. I have been trying to get rid of my job. I do not want it any longer. No one else wants it either. I drive to work. I can not walk that far and back even though it is only three blocks. :^(( I use my office chair like a wheel chair on the really bad days. Even the one at home in the kitchen. My hands do the same thing with the splits and everything is done with gloves on even typing. I am going to beat this thing back into remission. I am determined to get my life back again. I have had this since I was a kid and did not know what it was back then. Now I do. :^(((

Maybe you need to take a few days away from this and you and DH go have some fun. Recharge. Go out to a nice dinner. your crock pot is your friend too. So nice to have dinner cooked when you are done for the day.

Here is a link that might be useful:

    Bookmark   April 8, 2012 at 4:24PM
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'how do you keep up with the day to day stuff? '

about the same way I do windows... lol!

'Not same situation for me but illness has cut deeply into being able to keep up with the house stuff.'

same here. maybe more so. 'deeply cut into' is putting it mildly here. for a good number of yrs I was sleeping 15-20 hrs a day. Barely able to function when awake. It doesn't take long for it to pile up around you. very depressing... trying to weed my way out of it with this move (attempted move anyway).

psoriasis - shades - that is horrible! I do understand the pain - at about a 3 sq in level! that much has just got to be horribly painful. I have it on my left elbow. Is there something you can put on it to help? I've been using ASAP which does help. Also, MK thick pink night cream. I alternate. and usually it isn't bad. just having a bad few days of it right now. using lots of ASAP.

I probably should read up on it tho. the doc had me get some stuff at the drug store yrs back but it didn't help very much.
one of my sisters has it all over her body. I haven't seen her in decades tho.

guess I need to get up and take my shower to go to my other sister's house for dinner. she emailed the menu (nothing that exciting) and time. I have 3 hrs and believe me it'll take me that long to get a shower, dress and rest in advance.
I really wanted to do stuff around here today but have missed most dinners there in past 6 months or so. She has more leftovers for me too so that'll help keep me from bothering to fix 'meals' here for a few days. Last night I ate a swiss cheese sandwich. Didn't take much 'fixing' but it was good!

btw - HAPPY EASTER all of you!

    Bookmark   April 8, 2012 at 5:03PM
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Oh Chris, that does look painful. Hope you dump the job soon and get to return to less stress. Once we pay off the cost of all the foundation repairs and get the other house sold (we moved out in 2005 and had it on the market for two years before getting someone into a rent-to-own contract that they later reneged on because the value of the house had fallen so far), I'm hoping to move to half-time work so I can concentrate on my health.

Marti, we have had two kitchens redone and both were out of commission for over a month. Both times we set up the microwave and other kitchen items in an empty bedroom. Being double income, no kids, we had the extra money for take out meals, as well. What has happened is that we have not moved back to being daily cookers! We spent last summer with no front door, a lot of mud and dirt and disruption and it seemed to prevent us from returning to regular cooking. I am looking forward to the fresh foods at farmer's markets this year to get us back into the swing of cooking.

    Bookmark   April 8, 2012 at 8:15PM
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Oh Chris, how awful. My dad had psoriasis and I keep waiting for it to hit me. He didn't have it nearly as bad as you do though. Can you not just give notice and let them deal with finding a replacement?

I need to take the microwave out to the office in the garage and use it as kitchen. There isn't much workspace out there, but at least it's clean. And I could use the crock pot out there too.

I haven't been sleeping well either. Doze and wake all night and finally drop off about 5 a.m. and then my stupid alarm clock goes off. It's a manual and I have no idea how it gets set but it's gone off at 6:30 the last 3 mornings. I'm dead tired all day and trying to get the drawers done so at least I can put stuff back up.

Power was out for several hours after a storm today and if I hadn't been so sweaty and yucky feeling, I would have just gone to bed. But dh had invited his mother over to cook hotdogs on the grill. Now here's my tired, gripey self talking, but it really ticked me that he felt we needed to invite her over for a meal when she hasn't invited us over once since we started taking the kitchen apart.

Ok, enough griping. Tomorrow is another day. It's 8:30 and I'm going to bed.

    Bookmark   April 8, 2012 at 9:25PM
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I'm not a heavy duty diy-er, but when I am in the middle of projects I start work by 10am in the morning and quit in late afternoon around 3p-4p. Put what I can away, clean up, relax.
It might take me longer but I don't get stressed or wore out as much.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2012 at 10:43AM
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I hope to get to that point soon schoolhouse. When I am just doing doors I think I can. I did take today off more or less. I did a coat of finish on everything I'm working on and then left to get some overdue shopping done.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2012 at 5:11PM
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mama goose_gw zn6OH

Even though the kitchen is finished, except for flooring, I still feel as if I'm living in chaos--just something one has to accept. We started the addition in early 2008. It's usable, but not completely finished. However, having a sink, even a small sink, in that room was wonderful when the kitchen sink was out of commission. Working on one wall at a time may not be feasible for everyone, but it worked for me, and organizing clear plastic bins that could be carried from room to room worked well, too. They stack easily, and you can see at a glance what they contain (baking supplies in one, bill basket, stamps, pens, etc in another.)

marti, you deserve a day off.

shades, hope you're feeling better.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2012 at 10:14PM
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I'm glad I am only working on one side at a time too. When we finish this side, hopefully the rain will end and we can get the dining room closed in.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2012 at 11:52PM
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I REALLY sympathize with you. Although we did not totally DIY, my DH gutted the apt. and worked with a general handyman who is skilled in basic plumbing/tile/electric-while we are living here. When we were doing the bathroom I was losing it. I had no toilet no bath. I had to wash my hair in the kitchen sink and go to a (fortunately the neighbor owns it)local lotto/smoke shop to use the back toilet. We were living w/o walls/ceilings/plywood floors in 500sq ft. total. We stopped and started the work so that it slowed us down and our friend the handyman IS SLOW. If we had the $$$ we would have moved out but rents are so high...
Now we are working on the kitchen and I have no sink. All of the kitchen is in boxes or a storage center. On Easter I was attempting to squeeze lemons by hand with no glass juicer for the lamb marinade. But I had no need to cook the last few days so that worked out !
Someone here suggested setting start & stop times, good idea ! My DH carried in 15 pieces of sheetrock(up 2 flights) and all the molding at 8:30pm one night---not a good idea. And he asked me to hold the 10 pack of 9ft. molding above my head while he grabbed it from the 2nd fl. window. Can I tell you if I hadn't screamed for help the molding would have crashed through the neighbor's window...and maybe killed their dog. not happy. no I was not.
I've cooked through it all b/c if we don't eat, things get even worse...if that's possible. That way we have enough energy if we need to have a fight.
I make things that provide lunch & dinner and alternate between 2 dishes for variety such as black beans and tomato meat sauce or chicken stew. On the in between days I stir fry vegetables/steam fish or cook lentils or split peas with pumpkin(fast) and serve with brown rice/spinach. I try to add as many vegetables as possible to what ever I cook--Stress slows your digestion so the more vegetables the better.. If I make vegetable/cheese omelette I make double so I can have it for lunch w/ a salad I cook a lot of things in the same pot-when rice or pasta is almost done I toss in peas or spinach or sauteed garlic.
When I'm desperate I go to the butcher for shoulder lamb chops and grill them on a cast-iron grill. My toaster oven has received a work out too--I love grilled mozzarella/tomatoes and could eat that for lunch most days.
As far as keeping up with bills--things get lost so easily when your environment is disrupted. SO EASILY ! I cannot believe it. As soon as a bill comes in I take the cash out and pay it the next day(I pay utilities/credit card in cash). If I didn't do this I would wake up at 3am. EVERY NIGHT.
Keep your spirits up, make sure you rest, we are all here to listen to you :)

    Bookmark   April 10, 2012 at 10:50PM
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Some really good ideas Eats.

We ran a gas station one summer 38 miles from our house. We were open 12 hours a day. I did all our cooking in a microwave and electric skillet. Worked out really well as I did like you Eats and started combining foods as they cooked. I think the stir fry is a staple of ours with lots of veggies and slivers of meats.In fact I have a small chunk of meat heading towards a stir fry for tomorrows dinner.

In a few of our house remodels we also did some take out but we never could wait to get back to home cooking. We got so tired of take out. Right now we are into salads and a little piece of meat for dinner and eating early in the day and just a smoothie or tea and light snack for dinner time.

Marti I am glad you got a day off to regroup. I have another city meeting tomorrow and THEN I have the rest of the week off. PHEW. Was up to 12:30 last night / this morning typing minutes.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2012 at 11:15PM
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Oh my Eatrealfood, I wouldn't have survived if I had to go to a public toilet every time. I think I'll quit complaining now.

Good news today. I got 2 drawers back in the cabinet. Bad news. When I started putting the finish on a cabinet door, the stain started streaking and I had to take it out to the garage and strip it again. I was really unhappy about that, but it was a little too dark so maybe it was a good thing.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2012 at 11:59PM
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Oh NO Marti. do you think it was streaking because you were not working on it on the flat?

    Bookmark   April 11, 2012 at 5:35PM
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Chris, I think stress contributes to it. And maybe carbs in your diet. That is what they tell me, from having diabetes, with dry skin and poor circulation part of it. It's hard to know which way to turn with that stuff.

And Marti, when I was working as a boat captain and out of town most of the time, the only way I could keep current with the bills was to auto debit for the power, the water, (I had the gas turned off totally in those days), then the same for the mortgage and for the credit card (which was not a big amount because they did not let women have much of a line of credit in those days). So, I had debits for the minimum amount due each month, to make sure nothing was in default, and if I had the extra money, I sent another check from wherever I was. Also, I had a little calendar set up which had every bill I had to pay, and when it was payable each month or each quarter or whatever, and I'd give myself a GOLD STAR when it was taken care of.

One thing I found helpful when I was too busy to pay attention to cooking, I turned on the crock pot and let er rip. All during the day you smell it so nice, and know you'll have a nice hot meal. Then the wash--just strip off at the laundry and throw all the clothes in the wash. If you put dark colored sheets on the bed, you can go a few days longer before dealing with the linens, but I'd for sure keep the towels and just leave them in the dryer--you don't have to fold them up and put them away then.

Or, Marti, it is a good time to eat big green salads with store-bought potato or tuna salad on the side. I've recently discovered the joy of green smoothies, really yummy stuff, and absolutely good for you.

Cheer up, this too shall pass. :)

    Bookmark   April 11, 2012 at 6:17PM
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Chris, I was working with it flat. I was using a Danish oil finish which has a lot of solvent in it, and I think I just rubbed too hard. With all the others, I just wiped it on and didn't linger. This one was a little darker than I wanted and I wanted to make sure the oil worked in. It did. lol

    Bookmark   April 11, 2012 at 10:45PM
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