Every day is an adventure. Or at least that’s what they tell us on those inspirational posters. Today was certainly an adventure… let’s call it:
The Day of the World’s Longest Mini-Blind Installation
And lest you think I’m going to rant here about the incompetence of some barely qualified mini-blind installation specialist, or whatever they call the folks who come to your house to install your mini-blinds, let me warn you ahead of time that no, the world’s longest mini-blind installation was completed by yours truly.
First, let’s discuss my need for new mini-blinds for my brand new house. Last night as I sat down to watch the Seattle Mariners game (they won!! YAY!!!) at 7pm, my neighbor T knocked on my door and asked if I wanted to go to dinner with them. Seeing as this would be the last time for about a week that I would be able to see them because of their impending trip to Oregon, I gladly said yes. However, I didn’t eat a second dinner, but rather tried the blackberry cobbler, which came as cold as the ice cream served with it.
Before we left, though, we stood outside my house talking to T’s husband and daughter about how her daughter managed to scrape up her knees pretty badly by falling while T was in my house for all of five minutes. I know better than to do this. If my dog can see me through the window, and he can’t get to me, he goes nuts. Hence, he went nuts. When I got home from the restaurant around 9pm last night, I found not one, but TWO vomit spots in my living room, and the mini-blinds in my living room had been shredded.
This was no mean feat. These mini-blinds were the aluminum kind, not the cheap vinyl ones I had gotten used to while living in our apartment. This fact, coupled with the fact that since Kurt is still out to sea I would have to replace the blinds myself, caused a mental breakdown on my part.
I am okay now, though.
So today I hied myself off to Home Depot. I tried Target first, but they didn’t have the right size. I found some nice vinyl blinds, and after waiting in line behind some old people who wanted to purchase a welcome mat for their house that didn’t have a tag on it for the cashier to scan, I was on my way back home for the mini-blind installation. I also realized as I drove home that since the previous owners of this house had gotten most of their stuff for the remodel from Home Depot, the aluminum mini-blinds in the living room were probably the ones sold at that store, and the easiest thing to do would have been to buy one aluminum mini-blind and just install the one with the brackets that were already in place.
Have I ever been known to do the easy thing??
I bought two vinyl blinds, thus ensuring that I would have to replace both blinds, seeing as a vinyl set and an aluminum set would not match in my front living room windows.
One would think that mini-blinds are one of the easier home-improvement installations there are. I beg to differ. Well, if you have the right tools, it’s an easy installation.
See, I own the cordless screwdriver. It’s mine. I bought it. I just let Kurt use it every so often. The cordless drill with the screwdriver bits is his. He lets me borrow it, quite kind of him, really. But while I try to make sure that the drill is charged and ready to go when Kurt needs it, he conveniently forgot to put the screwdriver back onto the charger when he was setting up his workspace in the garage. In fact, today is the first time I have been able to find the charger for the screwdriver.
Therefore, I was left using the drill with the screwdriver bit, which was just way too much torque for me to be able to handle easily. Then I installed the brackets for the mini-blinds about half an inch below the top of the opening of the window, which I figured would work, but then I couldn’t install the supporting brace in the middle due to the funky nature of my window. Just take my word on it. So then I installed the brackets on the second window right at the top, once I figured out how to do it, and was able to use the supporting brace as well. Go me.
Well, in this midst of all this, I wanted to hang one of the blinds and see how it was all working. So I got out my 47″ blinds and attempted to hang them. I had measured my blinds last night and found them to be 46″, but I was pretty sure that I had measured the opening of the window to be 48″. I wasn’t sure which blinds to get, and the somewhat helpful Home Depot associate told me that those brand of blinds were actually half an inch shorter to accomodate the opening of your window. So the 47″ blinds are really 46 and a half inches. I went with the 47″ blinds.
The blinds themselves fit well into the opening of my window, but not the part at the top. And instead of undoing all my hard work on the first set of brackets (which I had to redo anyhow, but I didn’t know that at the time), repacking everything into the boxes, and taking them back to Home Depot, thereby adding at least another hour to the install, just to get the 46″ blinds, I took another route.
I pulled a Kurt.
I took the blinds into the garage, grabbed my safety glasses, and fired up Kurt’s Dremel tool. I managed to shave enough of the plastic off the top part that the blinds now fit into their brackets.
My husband has corrupted me. There was a time that I would have forced him to put everything back in the box and truck all the way down to Home Depot to get the RIGHT size. Not today… I was in way too deep already.
Two and a half hours later, I have sweated out about a gallon of perspiration as the sun beat into the windows I was attempting to cover, and the blinds are finally installed. They look very good, by the way, but it shouldn’t take that long to install mini-blinds!!!!
Hence, the World’s Longest Mini-Blind Installation.
May your installations be much less frustrating and time-consuming. :o)