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For several months, we’ve been busy remodeling the house.
This past six weeks, while hubby was out of the country, I took it upon myself to rip up carpet, bust up tile, and knock the plaster and lathe from the walls, leaving beams and bricks exposed.
Unfortunately, that’s as far as I got before he came home.
I knew after flying for 20 hours, and suffering from major jetlag, it would take him a day or two to notice, so I wasn’t terribly worried about it.
I picked him up from the airport at 2:30 in the morning, guided him through our back door, over and around the mess, and directly up the stairs.
Now, the upstairs looks pretty magnificent, even if I do say so myself.
I expanded our bedroom a bit, moved a door in the hallway, and painted and carpeted the entire level.
He had no idea what I’d been doing to preoccupy myself while he was away, so he was pretty impressed.
“Everything looks great!” he exclaimed.
The next morning, he saw the reality of the kitchen, dining, and living rooms.
Yeah, I might have gotten a little carried away with the sledge hammer.
They make it look so fun and easy on those DIY shows.
“What happened to the refrigerator?” he asked, tilting his head to one side.
“I was trying to move it so that I could break up the tiles underneath, but it sort of dropped off the edge where I’d already removed tiles.
“I’m not strong enough to hoist it back up or move it the rest of the way, so I shoved those lids under one side to sort of balance it.
“I was hoping that would keep stuff from falling out every time I open the door.
“Oh, and the icemaker isn’t working, but hopefully I didn’t do any permanent damage.”
Then I gave him my prettiest smile.
If you are going to wreck your house, and destroy major appliances, the very best time to do it is when your husband has been sitting in a third world country, missing you for six weeks.
Especially if he will only be home for a week.
Not only do you look amazingly beautiful to him, he’s not going to waste one minute picking fights because he only wants to spend time with your sweet side.
He didn’t even let out an audible sigh when he asked, “So, do you want me to lift the refrigerator back onto the tile, or move it completely off?”
Just as he lifted the side, I remembered that I’d stashed both sharp and heavy objects on top.
But he didn’t show even an ounce of irritation when they came crashing down onto his head.
I flashed him another pretty smile as I handed him the ice pack.
It was then that I remembered the bathroom light.
Just before Christmas he had remodeled the downstairs bathroom, complete with a gorgeous light fixture for which I’d spent weeks shopping.
Several days ago, while changing the light bulbs, I tightened a bolt too tight and shattered the glass globe.
I tried to order a replacement part, but ended up having to drive 35 miles to purchase an all new light fixture.
I had intended to put the new glass on the old fixture so he’d never know, but never got around to it.
I decided to bide my time and see how it played out.
Amazingly, it was three days before he noticed. Fortunately, three days wasn’t long enough for the beauty of my smile to have lost its impact, but I threw in a bit of eyelash batting, just in case.
I thought his breaking point might come with the unusual cold front moving through our area.
After spending six weeks in 90 degree weather, the chilly spring showers were proving a bit much for him.
“Where’s my jacket?” he asked.
“Oh, well, you see, I thought it would be warm when you came home, so I packed your jackets in the storage pod with the rest of your clothes.”
“Is this why you stopped at Wal-mart on the way home from the airport and bought me all new t-shirts, socks, and underwear? Because my stuff just happens to be in the back of the storage pod?!!!”
“You guessed her, Chester!”
He was beginning to wake up from his jet lag coma, and I needed to pull out all the stops!
Pretty smile, eyelash batting, and add a slightly sultry laugh.
Amazingly, he was willing to wear our son’s old, yellow rain slicker and a worn IU sweatshirt for warmth.
It didn’t even matter that he attended Purdue because he loves me, and our week is almost up.
Ginger is an author, speaker, and mother of five. Her award-winning column appears weekly across Indiana and Kentucky. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.