Home » Stuff » Why the sudden urge to get things done

Why the sudden urge to get things done

I’ve been posting on facebook about my recent home improvements…. I’ve had a few people being all shocked that I’m doing stuff (come on, I’m not *that* lazy 😛 and I have done other home improvements and even gardening in the past) ….. and even a couple of people asking if I’m pregnant and nesting!   (for the record – No 😛  I’m on the pill because I have PCOS and hubby had the snip about 11 years ago – so there’s double safeguards {and with the PCOS I rarely ovulated anyway so the fact we had MiniObsi is somewhat of a miracle}.. but anyway…)

The reason I’m all of a sudden inspired to do some things is because I’ve got to the “fed up” point over things I’ve been wanting to do for years, and I need to do them now for my own sanity!

You see, I suffer greatly from depression.  Some days are great, some days are a struggle and some (thankfully infrequent) days are REALLY a struggle….   There’s LOT of stuff about the house, car, yard that are broken and frustrating and I have had to just put up with them.  For years. Which just adds to the everyday struggle.

The problem has been that when we first moved in we didn’t have a lot of money (because we’d just moved in), but also most things were ok back then.  But over the years as things have been breaking and becoming annoying that has been the time when we had (in some cases literally) no money because hubby was doing his PHD (8 loooooooooooooooooooooooooong years 😛 ), then the last couple of years we’ve been recovering from that time and still some job uncertainty.  I’m pretty frugal, but hubby is more so.  Which is a great thing… but it does get tiresome when I feel I have to make a compelling argument to spend $10 on a new something-or-other because the old one is broken… or we have differences in opinions over whether we should buy a new $5 broom or not, when the old one still functions fine but it’s daggy and old and I’d simply like a nicer one.

When the house is run down I have less pride in it, so then it starts to not matter so much when things are a little untidy.  But then things get worse and worse over time, and my ability to care had gone down too.

We’re messy people…. and hoarders.   I’m a complete and utter slob 🙂 but so are MiniObsi and MrObsi (I swear he was neat when we first met, so either I’ve infected him with my messyness or it was false advertising :P)  I’m sure I have the same struggle other mums/wives have where you walk into the kitchen and all the cupboard doors and drawers are left open, there condiments and plates left on the bench instead of an arms reach away into the crate we have specifically for putting your dirty dishes into….  So in the beginning you angrily walk around fixing it up, but then you get to a point where you just go “$^@*# what’s the point” and leave everything open and messy.  I’m not a Stepford wife, I run my own business so I work too, so it’s not my job to pick up after everyone ALL THE TIME.  I’m not the maid!!!!! 😛

The house is so messy I started wearing jeans all the time.  I used to dress more like a “hippy” – long flowing skirts and dresses.  But I stopped wearing them mostly because I got sick of my skirts knocking stuff over everywhere I walked 😛  Hubby has a habit of just piling the mail (and other stuff) on the arm of his armchair, which I always knock off as I walk past (he has to perch on the edge of his chair because there is always stuff on it!), I have piles of stuff by my desks.  I’m forever knocking piles of mess over.

So it’s getting beyond a joke now ….. everything….. and I’m COMPLETELY over it.

When you’re feeling emotionally fragile and you brush past the couch and knock junk mail flying, strain to reach the kettle to make a cuppa, get a cup from a cupboard that has no side, go sit on the ripped couch to drink it, go out to hang the clothes on the line with a washing basket that has broken handles and a clothesline you can’t reach, go to collect the eggs and have to fight with the gates – it’s just too much.  Each individual thing isn’t a problem but all added up it just becomes all too much!

So while there are a lot of things I can’t do anything about, there are some ways I’ve been thinking of to spruce up the house a little and hopefully make things look nicer that everyone (myself included) actually bother to try and keep it tidy. I’m also going through and throwing out (and donating) stuff and doing some better organising to help things be kept neater.  While the hoarder in me hates the idea of throwing out something I might need one day, and the frugal part of me doesn’t want to have to go buy another widget after I’ve thrown a perfectly good one away……. the fed-up-ness in me has come to the conclusion that unless I can see a current use, or a legitimate longterm use – it probably needs to go!

I might even be able to have friends over!  Mini might be able to have friends over!!… her next birthday might not be a “crap, you can’t have people come here, and we can’t afford a playcentre party, so what the hell are we going to do” thing.  I Haven’t really been able to have anyone over for years unless I spend a week cleaning beforehand, just to be able to go “sorry the house is a mess, I haven’t had a chance to clean” because the house is too embarrassing.

So here’s the stuff that’s wrong with the house, and some of my plans to fix it.  Hopefully I can cross some things off.



(Admittedly it is me who has said we should wait for the car to completely die before buying a new one, since buying a car is obviously expensive and we’re not going to be able to trade it in for anything anyway)

  • Passenger side mirror has been broken off (years ago)
  • Weird problem with the electrics (mechanics can’t find/fix it) so our headlights randomly turn on high beam (mostly when it’s hot) which drains the battery when it happens overnight or while parked for long times.  So we have to remove the fuse for the headlights (indicators and parkers aren’t affected) when we’re not actually using the headlights.  Which means we often have to stand there in the dark and rain, trying to put the fuse back in so we can drive home at night.
  • Clutch pedal has no rubber top so it’s slippery
  • Clutch pedal is leaking fluid which pools in the base of the car and has ruined a pair of my suede shoes – we have to put carpet mats in there to soak it up.  This also makes the clutch pedal slippery
  • Steering wheel is cracked so we’ve wrapped black electrical tape around the crack, which gets all gummy and undoes in the heat so feels gross and we have to keep fixing the tape.


  • Front yard full of dead plants, overgrown plants and plants I don’t like.
  • Backyard belongs to chickens and dog.  There is nothing there for me.  We have a cubby and swingset for Mini which she is too old to use.  There is nothing there to allow us to use the yard for anything.  We have an outdoor table (small and rusty) and chairs with a BBQ in the carport because there is nowhere else for them to go.  We have a paved section in the backyard but the pavers are uneven and full of grass, plus there is a clothesline in the centre – making it not actually usable space for anything – but it’s very Bogan to sit in the carport to have a BBQ, and I can’t see the point in going out there to cook on the BBQ and then bringing the food inside to eat.
  • We did originally plan to make a nice courtyard beside the house in a space that is just dirt/grass with no use but a perfect size for a small patio – we have never done that – despite having enough paving stones to probably do it without needing to buy anything except the sand (some rescued from hard rubbish, some taken from my failed vegie patch)
  • Gate to the yard doesn’t work properly – you have to lift the gate and ram it with your shoulder to make it open.
  • Ghost-town remains of my failed vegie patch a constant reminder of my failure at my plans for organic gardening
  • Overgrown rose bushes – so tall and woody they really need replacing to look decent (pruning would just leave us with bare trunks)
  • Lemon tree overgrown so it bangs lemons onto the roof at night (and makes a way for the possum to live in the roof)  and you have to duck to walk past it – the ground is always littered with rotting lemons, and it is full of gall wasp (will likely need to remove the entire tree to get rid of it)
  • Fruit trees that never grew or don’t produce enough edible fruit
  • Properly built wooden cubby that Mini never really used and currently us just a home to a hay bale and probably rats
  • Chook pen is falling apart.  Opening the gate to access the food/water is extremely difficult because the dirt buildup in front of it is blocking it, and it’s also one that needs to be lifted into position to open/close properly….. and it’s likely to fall apart if you breathe on it wrong.
  • Gate to the other part of the yard doesn’t work properly, again (like every gate in the place) you have to lift it to open/close it
  • Pavers on the other side of the yard are full of grass/weeds, half chewed dog toys and dog poo
  • Clothes line is on a lean and sways when you use it – because it was a replacement for the one that was previously there that broke and fell on me… which theoretically can be removed and/or folded down if we wanted to use the space for something – so we didn’t concrete it in – but we never have taken it down or folded it up, and likely never will… so it’s just an annoying swaying clothesline….  The winder handle has broken off making it difficult to wind it down – you have to hold the main bit, which is covered in spiderwebs….. and I can barely reach it when it’s fully wound down as low as it will go anyway. (Hubby can reach it fully wound up so he leaves it up as he does most of the laundry – because I can barely reach and it drives me nuts)
  • Shed full of spiders and rats, sliding door is a major hassle to slide open
  • Back doorstep covered in moss from hole in the guttering above that has been there for years but never been fixed
  • Roof needs new ridge capping and a general cleanup to make sure it’s all nice and watertight.  Sometimes when it has heavily rained portions of the mortar have come loose and settled in a V shaped area of the roof which has then let water pool and leak into the roof space
  • Dog hair EVERYWHERE


  • Front foyer/Hallway
    • Grout is missing in places  (would ideally like to rip the tiles out and have floorboards like we do in the lounge)
    • Hall cupboard is the main storage for linen, cosplay clothing and everything else, it’s so full the doors don’t close and I’ve had to fashion a wire latch between the door handles to keep it closed.
    • Despite having put hooks on the cupboard doors for school/work bags, there are still bags left on the floor to trip over
    • Ugly yellow bottle glass side panel of the door
    • Ugly mission brown door and door frames
    • Stuff always left in the hallway because there’s nowhere else for it.
    • Ugly brown carpet
    • Hallway is so dark in winter I sometimes have to leave the light on in the hallway during the day (especially since some of the connecting doors to it are left closed.  Would very much like a skylight in there.
  • Lounge room
    • Bookcases overflowing
    • Piles of MiniObsi’s and MrObsi’s old schoolwork/work spilling out from bookcase onto the floor
    • Armchairs piled with stuff
    • Bare plasterboard section of wall where heater was removed
    • Cracks in walls
    • No tv aerial so the only TV channel we get all the time is ABC (or rather all 3 ABC channels). The other channels are somewhat of a novelty – we’ll go months without getting any of them, then occasionally, depending on the weather and if all the appropriate sacrifices have been made to the TV gods, we may also get channel 10 if we’re lucky.  If we’re extremely extremely lucky we may get channel 7 for a few hours.  Interestingly we got it while the olympics were on and then it went away again! Mybe they boosted reception during that time or something.   I don’t recall the last time we’ve ever got channel 9, but that was my least favourite channel anyway so I’m sure I’m not missing much.  Instead we have a comical arrangement of rabbit ears, wire and an old carboard box from teabags propping it all up.  Which has been the case for the 12 years we’ve been living here. Good thing I prefer to play games than watch TV, but it would be nice to be able to be able to have all the channels one day.  Reminds me of growing up in Tasmania as a kid where we only had 2 channels 😉  Some people want payTV for the range in tv options, I’d be happy to just be able to access all the free to air ones again! 😛
    • Ripped and stained couch (although I love the shape of it, so I might have to learn how to recover it) -so the couch is covered with an old blanket and an (admittedly very cool) throw rug.  But the rug slips down and needs readjusting several times a day.
    • Magnetic latch on sliding door to the kitchen doesn’t work so the door won’t stay closed and I’ve had to fashion a rice-filled weight system to keep it closed (to keep the aircon/heating in)
    • “popcorn” textured wall catches my clothing as I walk past and I’ve resorted to putting clear packaging tape on it to stop it happening.
    • MESSY  so very MESSY!
  • Kitchen
    • Bare chipboard cupboards filling space where old stovetop was Fixed!  Finally painted white (although I’d like doors on them
    • Bare chipboard pantry (with shelves lined in old contact)  – Fixed!  Finally painted white
    • Bare chipboard inside all cupboards (with shelves lined in old contact)
    • Bright yellow laminex cupboard doors
    • Some cupboard doors won’t stay closed (non-working latches)
    • Cupbard next to the stove doesn’t have a side to it, after it was cut out to make way for the new rangehood, so steam from cooking gets into the cupboard, cups have the potential to fall out – Fixed!  Finally nailed a side to it
    • Bare plasterboard walls where old cupboards were removed – Fixed!  Finally painted white
    • Cracks in walls and ceiling
    • Dishwasher is broken
    • No cupboard doors on the pan cupboard (which is the hole from where the old wall oven was)
    • Sealant on the tiles behind the sink isn’t working so the water leaks into the cupboard below and it’s musty in there
    • I find it difficult to reach the kettle and the rack I store teabags on, because it is in the corner and the dishrack is in the way
    • White laminex bench stained and ruined (probably from me using lemon vinegar and baking soda to clean it)
    • Benchtops always piled high with mess
    • Benchtops are the “island” kind (and about 8feet long) so there is no back to them.  We’ve put short bookshelves on the other side to keep the flour cannisters from falling off
    • Annoyances like the bread bin being positioned on the complete opposite side of the room to where the toaster is (because there’s not really a better place for it)
    • Ceiling exhaust fan has been stuffed with a towel after the roof leaked, which has never been removed because it’s apparently too much hassle, so we’ve just taped over the switch so it can’t be used
    • Cracked floor tiles
  • Dining room area (part of kitchen)
    • Just a junk collection room, we can’t have a dining table because we just leave mess on it (prefer to eat in the lounge with the TV on), not really big enough for a dining table anyway
    • Wood heater that we don’t use, just taking up space, being a surface to store mess on and being dusty (Since removal is apparently problematic due to the flue, I think we should just build a cupboard around it and use the rest as shelving/storage)
  • Laundry
    • Always filthy and full of fur because the dog sleeps in there
    • No blind so there is always a towel or something hanging in the window to keep the summer heat out, making it dark and ugly
    • Cupboard so full of junk and stuff we don’t use that we can’t actually put things like laundry liquid in there (and instead put it on the wood heater).  Door also doesn’t like to stay closed
  • My office
    • Gets used as a general storage room when we can’t think of where else to put stuff that isn’t in the dining area thing
    • So full of stuff I can barely walk through and barely do my packaging in there (I’ve had to move my sewing out of there)
    • So full of stuff I now work and store stuff in the lounge instead
    • Need to keep the curtain closed so my fabric doesn’t fade, so always dark
    • Shelving wobbly and threatening to fall over
  • Bathroom
    • Tiles in shower need replacing (wall is bowed and some grout is falling out)
    • Cold tap stiff to turn on
    • Ceiling vent needs cleaning
    • Bath (which we don’t use because it’s too short) is old and stained  (“CLR clear” might fix it), also scratched (from cats I assume)
    • Mission brown window and door frames – Fixed!  Finally painted black
    • Can’t open window because it is locked and we lost the key – Fixed! bought new window winder
    • No blind so we hang a towel up in the hot days to block the heat, which makes the bathroom ugly and dark
    • Medicine cabinet is weird and ugly turquoise – Fixed!  Added turquoise and orange paisley paper backing
    • Glass doors of medicine cabinet don’t slide very well and are so old the mirror finish has rubbed off in places
    • Sink is cracked and chipped
    • Cupboard door has broken at the hinge
    • Green part on wall where old fixture was removed
  • Toilet
    • Floor tiles old looking
    • Mission brown window and door frame
    • No blind so we stick aluminium foil up hot days to block the heat, which makes the room ugly and dark
    • Piping has a slight leak so we need to have a plastic container behind the toilet to catch the drips
    • Ugly slatted cupboard, put there because it was the only place to store towels and the room is big enough to sit on the loo and only just touch the walls, so may as well put storage in there 😛
  • Main bedroom
    • Ugly green curtains that don’t match anything and only *just* cover the window (and only because I used drawing pins in the window frames to hold the curtain there so they would meet in the middle)
    • Bed head is literally a bed head – because hubby is tall he didn’t want his feet bumping into a foot, so we couldn’t put up any frame, so the bedhead is just sitting between the wall and the bed, so it bumps every time we get into bed.  To stop this I have a bright blue facewasher wrapped around the post to cushion it, which looks silly.
    • Messy 😛
    • My clothes are in piles on the floor and in piles on washing baskets because I can’t fit them all in the wardrobe/drawers and I never find the time to put everything away
    • Cherval mirror won’t stay upright so I’ve got a bent coathanger holding the base to stop it from flipping up
    • Would ideally like one of the windows removed and a door and patio made – because our windows are wind-out and get very little breeze
    • No powerpoint for the airconditioner so we have to run an extension cord from the bathroom to use it, which of course tends to be the enormous outdoor one that just gets left lying around the bedroom or hallway
    • Tallboy is just unstained wood so the drawers don’t slide open/closed easily and it’s always a struggle to use it












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