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  • brittain sobey

what's gonna work? teamwork!


david and i lived in ozark, mo for a year after i graduated from college. in 2009, we moved to south hamilton, ma for him to pursue his master's degree at gordon college theological seminary. we spent our last night in missouri at a friend's house. they had a little guy and in the morning we were watching wonder pets. they sang the "what's gonna work? teamwork!" song on the show and it has forever been sealed in our minds. we have pulled out that little tune many times over the last eight years. because it's so true!

david and i have realized over the last six months that we are really a great team (that only took almost nine years of marriage) and that we enjoy doing things together as a team. usually i'm the one dragging my feet. our teamwork typically involves house projects. my perfectionism leads me to hire professionals to do the job. and then if they screw it up, at least i can be mad at them and not the guy i live with 24/7. but after getting the ball rolling on doing projects ourselves instead of hiring out the work, i'm seeing that i actually do enjoy them and that as it turns out, we don't do that bad of a job. ha. also, it has become sort of a marriage building exercise. i find that when david is off doing projects by himself and i am not involved (like when he painted our whole house interior white from top to bottom), i get resentful. if he's home and doing projects, then i'm by myself with bina. and i would rather be together doing something when he's home than acting like he's not home when he is but is otherwise detained by a project that doesn't include me.

given, it's totally good and healthy for us to do things on our own. but i've realized lately that you know what. i like this guy i married (shocking, right?). i married him because i want to BE with him. and i don't like it when i don't get to be with him. so when he's home from work on nights and weekends, it's better for all of us if we can incorporate things that we can accomplish and/or enjoy together. to that end, we have been tackling little house projects together. and i'm loving the results.

our first big project together was our basement renovation. david found a plastic playhouse on the nextdoor app, and then i got this crazy idea to turn our basement into the outdoors-indoors, researched some flooring and paint, and we were on our merry way. at the end of that project, we were both really proud of our work and enjoyed how we worked together to complete it. david got us started, i cast a vision, and he helped me implement it. go team! now the basement is no longer a dreary spider infested dungeon. it's bina's playroom paradise and we enjoy being down there with her!





our next project was our upstairs bathrooms' floor renovation. we had kicked ideas around. we thought about just renovating the entire master bathroom but thought we would need to source that out. in the interest of saving money (and buying us time to really think through how we would want our master bath to function if we were to redo it), we decided to take care of the two things that bothered us most: the floors in both baths, and the shower door in the master bath. that decision was reached rather haphazardly because we kicked around different flooring ideas and kept discovering problems with our ideas, which resulted in a lot of delay and zero action. then one day we decided to go look at home depot and found this fantastic product that solved all of our problems: interlocking faux wood vinyl tile. the stars aligned and we heard the angels singing. praise jesus. david took care of cutting the tiles, and i made sure they all fit together as best as i could get them to. then david cut and installed the baseboards. we couldn't stop beaming with pride once we were finished. we love the new floors! and we had fun installing them together. i told david after we were done that i'm actually looking forward to the next time i have a stomach bug so i can lay on these beautiful floors. way better than laying on the disgusting tiles underneath. and if you know me at all, you know that stomach bugs are basically my least favorite thing in the world. so, that's saying something.



after the floors, we tackled the shower door. our previous door was old and disgusting. i hated it. i tried to deep clean it once and it was just not even worth it. the shower stall itself collected mold quickly. i hated cleaning it because it was all just absolutely gross. side note: i've discovered that if i love how a room in my house looks, i do a better job of keeping it clean. case in point, my kitchen. if i hate how something looks, i avoid cleaning it like the plague. case in point, my shower and our old tile bathroom floors. we looked at different door options. i knew i didn't want one with a frame all the way around the glass door because our old one was like that and it was just one big conduit for mold. gross. gross. gross. gross. so i narrowed it down to some partially framed glass doors. i decided after starting to let bina wander the upstairs (with the stairs gated, dogs downstairs, and other bathroom door closed) that it would be best to have a clear glass door and not frosted. easier for me to see the munchkin and monitor what she is doing if she wanders into the bathroom. if we have a second munchkin, i can stick that munchkin in a bouncy chair on the floor in front of the shower and make sure bina doesn't try to attack said munchkin. after figuring out that piece, we picked a door, ordered it, and rejoiced when it arrived.

one saturday we decided to tackle the door installation during bina nap time. david took care of prepping for installation (remove old door, bleach the crap out of the shower stall, remove old caulking). after that, he decided he needed me for my muscles. i single handedly held the super heavy glass door in place while he secured it. jk. he held it in place while i quickly tried to ensure that it was level before his arms fell off. which was surprisingly difficult. at one point david had to take a break and leave and come back. but with our powers combined, we figured out how to do it and successfully installed our brand new beautiful shower door. now we use a squeegee after every time we shower, to keep it looking clean and pretty. i actually like my master bath now. and the clear door makes it feel a bit more spacious, a bit less claustrophobic. always a plus.




lastly, david used his stellar nextdoor app skills to snag a used rainbow brand play structure for bina. i was reluctant to go for the plunge when he initially showed it to me. but he convinced me. we got a great looking play structure for a steal. the previous owner lives just a few minutes away and was super helpful with transporting it from his backyard to ours. we couldn't have done it without his help. yay for awesome neighbors who desire to pass on the joy of a play structure to a younger family. david and i did the work of putting it back together in our backyard. i just about broke my back in the process, but we survived and it was so worth all the work and little bit of money. we spent the whole day outside prepping to assemble it and then assembling it. paid for that dearly the next day because of lovely spring allergies. tree pollen is the devil. david went out and bought a baby swing to replace the semi-broken trapeze rings, and he ended up needing to replace one of the steps to the ladder that leads to the slide. he put all his weight on the bottom step to try to sink the ladder into the ground bit and broke the step. better him than bina! now it's reinforced and ready for bina play. and bina absolutely loves it. now i enjoy being out in the backyard because there's something to do besides dance around dog poo. and i'm even more motivated to keep on top of the dog poo so we're not having to do the dog poo dance. win win all around.










here's to many more projects for many more years. teamwork really does work. our next project is to tackle our landscaping out front... and install new light fixtures outside. and some other items like painting our front doors, possibly the garage door... we'll see. whatever the case, i look forward to doing it all with david, while bina and the dogs wander and get themselves into lots of trouble. those three. always keeping us on our toes. and we wouldn't have it any other way.

#renovations #marriage #family

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life with dogs and baby