Introducing AJ

This has been a stressful summer. I had dental implants put in (I have to be very careful to add “dental” in conversation, I’ve been getting strange looks when I just say “implants”) and got sick as a dog (remember the steroids?).

And we’ve added on to our little house. They started the first of June and we are still in the process. We had no cooler the first 6 weeks due to construction, boy was that awful. Our contracters are a young couple, early 30′s, in our ward. She gets right in there with her husband, sawing and lifting and climbing up on the roof. She talks “construction.”

We have actually fought much less than I thought we would, especially considering that right in the middle of illness and remodel, Sarah left Nicolas and that is still blowing my mind.

The initial excavation work was done by a sub-contractor who hired Mexicans, probably illegal. They irritated me by parking on my neighbor’s lawn and left their garbage on ours, but they were cheerful, kind and hard-working.

It’s all coming together, this addition. We purposely kept it small because a lot of people our age in our neighborhood are adding on and their houses are just monstrosities. I call them “polyg mansions” and tease them about making room for their sister wives. Inside they’re great, outside, they look sort of like apartment buildings, square and boring.

This is what it looks like outside, from the back yard.  It’s a small dining room and laundry room:

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I  spent last week with AJ, my new best friend. AJ looks a little rough–well, he just textured and taped my walls for a week, he’s worn out–but he has a heart of gold. Most of the other workers have been stand-offish, but AJ introduced himself right off and chattered away. He even talks to himself, out loud and unembarrassed.

AJ is a unique young man. He’s been married to his wife for 11 years, he tells me, three kids. He says they’ve only argued five times. Boy, that makes me feel inferior already.

He’s an artist. It’s been interesting how the arches I requested have come together and add personality to our house. Bill’s delighted.

I asked AJ if he was LDS and he says, no, he’s a southern Baptist. I said, “it’s all the same God.” And he agreed and told me he tries to do a good turn daily. He is a gentleman, has never used bad language in front of me, and never commented on the fact that I’ve mostly sat on the couch watching TV all week, waiting for my lost energy to return.

Life is interesting, the way God puts people in your path for you to learn from.

This whole new experience, adding on. But boy will we have room at Thanksgiving, if our family is speaking to each other. You know how that goes with us.