Making Progress

I find that I am both a perfectionist and
a people-pleaser and this is unfortunate. Now that we have undertaken this little renovation project and I've put my home in someone else's hands, I have been all full of angst because of these traits. Ugh...

It all started on Friday when we were taking in our contractor's progress. At first glance, I was happy with how the rooms looked but when I started really looking, I noticed that the baseboards he installed were made of medium-density fiberboard. MDF is a cheap, engineered wood product and it isn't in keeping with the architectural integrity of our 88 year-old house. It is also quite toxic. (The glue used in its production is particularly egregious.) I wasn't happy.

So, what to do? I didn't want the MDF there but I also knew that our contractor had done a lot of work that would need to be undone if I wanted it changed. I was upset that he didn't clear the MDF with us in advance but then I thought maybe I should have clarified that we expected him to use wood. I'm so eager to have this project done but I also didn't want to have my girls sleeping in rooms when I knew the baseboards would be off-gasing all sorts of crap. See what I mean about angst?

Then my husband, the voice of reason, made it very clear. We are doing this now and we are not doing it again. We are paying him to do it how we want and it needs to be changed. So, in my husband's very diplomatic way, he laid it all down for the contractor. I think the contractor was annoyed but he agreed. (His defense was that since we would need to paint the baseboards anyway, why not use the MDF since it would look the same as wood once painted? That's where I got a little psycho Earth Mama on his ass and started ranting about toxic glue!)

And so what did I do yesterday? I baked him cookies as a peace offering.


  1. I'm glad you and your husband told the contractor what you wanted. And I think the cookies as a peace offering were the perfect end to the story.

  2. I am totally with you and your husband - you did the right thing! And it's totally wonderful and kind that you baked him cookies - acknowledging that he had worked hard, and that you didn't blame the miscommunication on him!


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