When we purchased our home almost one year ago, one of the things I wanted most was a cement porch right off the back of the house. Maybe I should have asked the builder to do it, but I hate paying exorbitant labor fees. After a year of saving, we were financially prepared to put in the yard, and, of course, that cement porch, all by ourselves.
For three months we worked through a crazy wet spring, grading the ground around our home, putting in a sprinkler system, and then a massive made-from-scratch rose trellis, before we could finally put up forms for the cement porch. I scheduled the cement truck and my husband, his brother, and my father-in-law all took time away from work to install it. As the day came closer for the pour, the weatherman said there was a slight chance of a sprinkle in the morning. Everyone had already taken off work so I figured a slight sprinkle wasn’t enough to call off the plan for that day. Oh no, the weatherman got it so wrong, forget sprinkle, almost three inches of snow fell. My husband and his family pitched tarps over the whole pour. For twelve hours they fought through freezing wind and every other element Mother Nature could muster to save my cement porch. There were a few flaws in the finish, but after what we’d been through, I couldn’t be anything but grateful.
We decided the best way to deal with the flaws would be to coat the cement with one of those epoxy finishes. This weekend we spent hours preparing the cement, then hours more applying layer after layer of colored epoxy paint to the porch. It looked perfect…for about five minutes. My kids opened the back door to see the finished job and the cat bolted out. His kitty paws left a trail right through the finish. To say my husband was angry is an understatement, but all I could do was laugh. Oh, after all that work I was crying on the inside, but a thought struck me. Like the movie Jumanji, our cement was like the police car that kept getting beat up by the things coming out of the game, until it was swallowed whole by a monster vine and dragged away. And what did the police officer say when that finally happened? Exactly what I said as walked into the house laughing. “Fine. Keep it!”