So you and your partner have bought a home. You want to save a few bucks and invest your labour and love into your new home. Spruce up a few rooms. Re-do the garden. Find some unique antique furniture and breathe new life into it. Splash on some paint and even venture out and do a feature wall. You could pay someone to do it, but you now have this huge mortgage hanging over your head and want to do things on the cheap. The only logical solution? D I Y.

A few nights are spent around the laptop, watching D I Y videos on Youtube. Preliminary reconnaissance missions are undertaken at Bunnings to cost the project. Friday nights are set aside to watch Better Homes & Gardens, just to get some final hints and tips. It’s all oh so exciting! You can’t wait to roll up your sleeves and get stuck in!

You are both excited. You imagine doing hard yakka together, playfully splashing paint on each other, sneaking in kisses in between sanding and smacking your partners backside with a paint-covered hand. You picture the pair of you smiling, sitting on upturned milk-creates sipping a beer and eating pizza, marvelling at your finished D I Y project, then racing to the shower for a post D I Y shower together and celebratory nookie.

You borrow tools from friends and family in exchange for boxes of chocolate. Trips are made to Bunnings to buy the necessary equipment. The paint is on sale as it’s an ‘end of the line’ colour, so you get it for half price! Score! The room is prepared to be painted. Drop sheets are laid, you don that Ralph Lauren knock-off Polo you got in Thailand a few years back. You are ready to go!

The First Day goes great! You work well together, the children don’t get in the way, nothing has been spilled and you quickly get the hang of using a paint roller. You wonder why more people don’t do DIY more often, cause it is actually quite easy. You mentally count the hundreds of dollars you have saved (even though your bank account is currently empty, with all surplus funds being spent on stuff for this project) by not paying a professional.

Day Two and the going is a little slower. The children want a bit of attention and somehow manage to get into the room you are painting and knock over your paint pot. It’s laughed over and quickly cleaned up. Thank goodness for drop-sheets! The damage could have been much worse. You quickly find that the corners and cutting in on the sides is actually quite an art. The paint just seems to run a bit today, and, due to the humidity, isn’t drying as quickly as you want. Never-the-less, you just know this project will be knocked over in a couple of days. Thankfully you’ve booked in holidays so you don’t have to go to work.

By lunchtime on Day Three you’ve done the undercoat. Rain-clouds are closing in and you remember the guy at Bunnings say ‘don’t paint if it’s raining cause it won’t dry right’. It’s been a busy two and a half days so you figure you deserve a break, anyway. Your partner has done a great job with keeping the kids entertained while you do the real hard work, so you figure you’d spoil them by gracing them with your presence. The only problem is that they don’t really understand how hard you have actually been working and how you really just need some peace and quiet while you have a rest on the couch for half an hour. After settling in on the couch, your partner quickly scolds you for not showering, then laying down on the couch with your now well paint-splattered, smelly Ralph Laruen polo shirt, getting a few dots on the black leather seats. In a huff, you storm to the shower to clean up. The images of the pair of you laughing over post-DIY beers and pizza just seems a little tainted.

Day Four and Five it rains, so no painting. Two days lost.

Day Six and the sun is out. You decide to make hay while the sun-shines and get started early, except you realise you didn’t rinse the brushes out as well as you should have and now they have gone hard. Your clock reads 5.30am and it’s a full two and half hours until Bunnings opens. Wasted time! It’s mid-morning by the time you start painting again. You quickly get into a good rhythm and by the time you know it, the second undercoat is on. It’s also 8pm at night. Tired and sore from all that painting, you rinse all the brushes (well this time), shower and hit the sack. All you can manage is a quick kiss and a good night from your partner. It’s been a long day. ‘The post D I Y beers and nookie can wait’ you tell yourself.

Day Seven and it’s time for the final undercoat. You wonder why the previous owners painted the room such a dark cover that you need three undercoats, but it needs to be done! Better prepared with well-cleaned brushes, your day starts promptly at 6am. Painting like someone possessed, you don’t realise that your dog has sat on the paint-tin lid, then proceeded to sit on the carpet, the couch and wipe itself all down the hallway, leaving a trail of off-white as it goes. The children find the white blobs of paint and think it’s hilarious , using it as a launching pad for more finger painting! Frustrated, you scold the dog, the kids and the weather (it’s a million degrees out there). The polyester cotton of your filthy, sweaty knock-off Ralph Lauren polo shirt is sticking to you. It itches your under-arms and makes you sweaty. It takes over an hour to clean up the mess the dog and the kids have made. Grumpy, you get stroppy that the paint has run and now you have to clean up lines. By 2pm, your partner reminds you that you have company that evening so you need to clean up and help. You feel your blood boiling. At least you have a few hours to get this coat of paint on.

That evening, all you can think of is getting this silly D I Y project finished. You are terse to your partner and verging on rude with your guests. You toss and turn in bed that night, getting an earful on why the painting has not finished and don’t be so rude and snappy.

Day Eight and you have to go back to work. You wonder where the week has gone. You have a half-painted babies bedroom, your room is full of furniture from the room being painted, the baby is also sleeping in your room and an unhappy partner. Laughing over post-DIY beers and nookie is now a distant thought.

This continues until you can paint again on Day Thirteen, which subsequently, is raining again. So is Day Fourteen.

Day Fifteen and you’re back at work. Aching to get this damn project finished, you resolve to paint at night. By the time the children are in bed and the jobs are done, its 8pm and you’re just so tired, but the show must go on. Painting until 1am, you seem to make a hell of a racket cleaning up, managing to wake up the dog, the baby and your partner. It’s 2pm by the time you are in bed.

Day Sixteen and you’re tired, sore, annoyed. No painting tonight. Same for the night on Day Seventeen, Eighteen and Nineteen.

Day Twenty and it’s almost been a month since you started. You feel like your bedroom has now been truly taken over by the baby’s furniture and the baby. The house smells like paint and you have a permanent headache. Dragging yourself out of bed at 6, you put on your disgusting knock-off Ralph Lauren that now smells worse than the Devil’s sphincter and proceed to knock over the paint tin. Dragging yourself and your children to Bunnings, the clueless teenager behind the counter advises you that the colour you want is out of stock and no longer made. They do have a similar colour, but they won’t be getting it in for a week or so. He calls around to a few other stores. It turns out that one store on the other side of town has a tin, and they’ll put it aside for you.
Hauling the family to the other side of town, it turns out that the shop only has enough of the colour you want for about half a wall, not a whole room. You don’t know if you want to cry or go postal. You get yourself and the children a sausage sizzle from Bunnings. The sausages turn out to be too hot and end up on the floor of your car, with tomato sauce smeared over the window and onto the upholstery.

Day Twenty-One and you are almost defeated. You stare at the unfinished walls, wondering what the hell you were thinking. You’ve ruined your once-nice knock-off Ralph Lauren polo shirt. Your partner keeps raggin’ on you for not finishing the job.
Sitting down over a cup of coffee, your partner makes a suggestion:
“Why don’t we just pay someone to finish the job?”
Defeated, you relent. It’s taken over 3 weeks to finish one room, and you are really not that closer to finishing. You look at the runs of paint around the window, the whisks and drips on the floor, the uneven strokes of your roller.
“Ok” you agree.

Day Twenty-Three and the painter sends around his chirpy apprentice, who just happens to have the right colour. Looking at the work at hand, he comments ‘Is this all you want done?’ You go to work. You come home to a completely painted room.

Day Twenty-Four and you move the babies furniture back into the newly painted room. It looks beautiful. You have your room back. You throw away your old, faithful knock-off Ralph Lauren polo shirt, covered in paint and sweat and spilled coffee and dog hair. After paying for the painter, you don’t have enough money for post- DIY beer or pizza. You’re too tired for post- DIY nookie. Your partner cooks you some pasta and sauce, cause it’s the only thing left in your pantry. You are exhausted.

Your partner looks at you. You can barely keep your eyes open. “I’ve seen this thing on Pintrest that looks really cool and easy to make”…

You think to yourself… D I WHYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY?????????




  1. Gigi D

    My bathroom! Putting down a new floor looked so easy; they did it on YouTube in just under 30 mins. Now, 2 months later, I am seriously considering hiring someone to finish what I started.

  2. Serena

    ………..Guessing now wouldn’t be a nice time to mention I’m a high school student and I painted the front outside of my house before you finished one room, Vidin? I mean, just saying 🙂

    BTW, you visited my blog, like, 20 min ago, came to stalk you back. Saying hi!

  3. hohenadler

    Brings back memories of the time when we installed our own IKEA kitchen. Just recently, I rediscovered a related post on my FB timeline from that time: “I’m sick of DIY”.

  4. roma1912

    Beloved & I are renovating a whole cottage, been at it 6 YEARS, the end is in sight, but I swear if I hear “how hard can it be” once more…….. still if we hadn’t done it ourselves we couldn’t afford to live here 🙂

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