And then there is my brother. He is the builder. When he isn’t busy with his regular job (he’s the only non-teacher in the family as a captain in the Navy) he likes to do construction. In his “spare” time he rips the roofs off houses and adds another level, puts in bathrooms where there were none, and adds new wings to the sides of houses. While my idea of a weekend plan is to finish quilting a couch throw, his is to build a retaining wall and a fully insulated shed.
My sister and I frequently lament together about how wonderful our houses would be if he didn’t insist on living clear on the other side of the continent. Two of my most frequently stated desires have been to put a sliding glass door to my back deck, and a side gate in the fence so we could put the utility trailer beside the house instead of the garage.
For a wonderful birthday surprise, my mom and my sister arranged to fly my brother in for a long weekend! I got home from work on Thursday and there he was! It was the first time I’ve seen him in two years. Lots of hugging.
And then came the rest of the treat. We raced off to Home Depot that evening and got the door they had already arranged and the dismantling and installing began right away until it was too dark to continue.
My sister took the next day off and, one table saw purchase later, the two of them got all the trimming and caulking finished. I just have a little painting left but we have a fully functioning slider now, letting in so much light. And even better, the French doors are no longer there to bang into the dining table and chairs every time my children run in and out (conservatively, a thousand times a day). And a screen door! Breezes without bugs!
And they kept going. With the kids and my husband helping they took off the narrow section of fencing at the side of our house, my brother whipped up a gate, and we can now squeeze our useful but annoyingly long utility trailer alongside the house rather than taking up every inch of space in our single car garage.
Much garage organizing is in my future, and I’m so happy about that!
My sister, brother and Mom are fabulous, and it was a terrific birthday surprise.