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Chris Fabry
Married to Andrea since 1982. We have 9 children together and none apart. Our dog's name is Tebow.
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Where We Are Now

After finding and remediating mold twice in our Colorado home, we abandoned ship in October 2008. Because of the high levels of exposure, our entire family was affected. After months of seeing different specialists for all of the problems, we came to Arizona to begin comprehensive treatment to rid our bodies of the toxic buildup. In August 2009 we moved into a larger home, four bedrooms, south of Tucson, north of Mexico. I am doing my daily radio program/ writing from that location. Thanks for praying for us. We really feel it.

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Tuesday, August 20, 2013
I learned that my 17 year old son has more patience than I do.

I learned that what’s worth doing is worth doing right except when it comes to things you get wrong and you’ve already been at it six hours. Those things you can live with. Like the little plastic doodads that are supposed to go into the round, metal thingamajigs at the end so it doesn’t look like you put it together yourself.

You don’t have to put all those #6 screws in the back. I know. I took some out to finish the top drawer.

Lying in the floor and whining, “This is too hard,” does not help.

Sitting in the floor for seven hours is hard on your back but not as hard as standing for seven hours after you’ve lugged the thing in the room.

“Team lift” is a relative concept.

Sitting on the carpet for long periods of time makes you want to scratch your backside.

The desire to scratch is directly proportional to the size of the backside.

You can get younger children to laugh by scratching your backside and describing it with a word you’ve told them not to say. With a New York accent. But the 17 year old will not smile because he wears headphones.

Don’t cross your legs for more than five minutes at a time or you won’t be able to stand for a week.

It does not help to ask your son, after every step, what step you’re on. When you are on step #13 of 68, all you can see is 500 pounds of particleboard.

It does not help for other people to walk into the room and ask, “So, what step are you on?”

It does not help for people to walk in the room and say, “Wow, this is taking a long time, isn’t it?”

It does not help for other people to ask, when walking into the room again, “Is this the hardest thing you’ve ever tried to put together?”

It does not help to come in and look at my hat that has a flashlight duct-taped to it and say, “Dad, you know they make head lamps, right? Tee hee hee.”

It does not help to come in. Period.

Seven hours putting together a desk is a ridiculously long time. Especially when you have two people working together who are reasonably intelligent.

Seven hours putting together a desk makes you question the reasonable intelligence of yourself and your coworker.

The moment when you push the drawer in and it only goes halfway and there’s four inches of clearance above it is just about the worst.

The moment you finish the hutch and turn it over and see the back of one piece of particleboard staring at you is worse than the drawer thing.

The moment you realize you’ve screwed three screws into the wrong side of the finished piece of wood and that it will stare at you the rest of your life, or as long as you keep the desk, is worse still.

Seven hours of putting together a desk is a test of your faith in the sovereignty of God. And your sanctification.

It’s the day after and I still feel like scratching my backside.

However, when you’re putting the desk together for your wife who hasn’t had a decent desk in five years and deserves a space to call her own and you finish and arrange the computer just so, and finagle all the billion cords through the back of it and she looks at it and smiles and acts as if you just slew a dragon for the damsel in distress, it makes all the pain and questions and frustration worth it.

Just don’t tell her about those three holes in the front that shouldn’t be there or the doohickeys we didn’t put in the round silver things. And yes, it was the hardest thing I’ve ever put together, thank you very much.


Andrea Fabry said...

Totally true story. Comment typed from my keyboard and smooth flowing keyboard tray. I am a humbled, grateful damsel.

Anonymous said...

It was a great and funny story. I loved it.

Carey Marshall said...

Sometimes, it helps to read the directions first, unless of course, you have done it before and made all the mistakes you could make the first time! On the other hand, it might just be easier to lay out all the pieces in the order needed, then start putting it together. Then always remember that what you THOUGHT would take 2 hours usually at least takes a day! Maybe more!

Fauxnomenal Walls said...

I can soooo relate!

betty said...

First and foremost, I can now look innocent, and say that I just am not good at this, thank you for helping, as I leave the room.

For I cannot have tools anymore. I used to look at them, buy them, arrange them, and imagine the great projects I would make with them.

Directions are what started my sneaking out of the room. First, it was sewing. The pattern writers thought they were saying things clearly, but later one finds out they have assumed one has a certain kind of knowledge. After that, it was strictly "Sew-Easy"

I think my next brave attempt must have been a child's bike. The directions were then only in 3 languages, but were minimal, like where the spare parts are. But for your perusal was one of those expanded directions, and all sides are shown at once. If you have not done this before, wow! this could take all night! And hopefully, one only has one bike to do that night.

I actually did, as my last project a garage shelving unit. Having lots to shelve,(tools) I bought the tallest one. So, open that and spill out two different types of metal, and a big bag of screws. So, I brought it back into the much cooler house, got a cold drink, put some music on, and began with that same type expanded direction to make this shelf. I was there working for hours. No one came by; no one called. I stopped and pitied myself a little bit; ok, I cried out "Why me, Lord" and quietly went back to my job. Standing back to look at my masterpiece, I noticed a tilt. I did not touch it. It had the same tilt of the first bookcase I made from wood with just my own idea...

But, then my teenage girls came home, and cannot stop laughing, even to be kind, even the one who is just like me! I put down my screw driver, and that was it. My love affair with craftsman was over. Well, for now.

Do you have a lot of tools for gardening?

Chasity said...


Melissa said...

Ok- So this cracked me up! This is SOOOO like my husband and my son. My son being 14 and NOT patient! Needless to say my daughter, who is 16, and I are the furniture builders in the house, or any project that involves instructions for that matter. Which is OK with me, since I know all of the screws will be used and I wont be saying, why are these left over??? HA!
Hope your wife is enjoying her new space even if the desk is a bit wonky. Again, thanks for the laugh!:)
PS- We love your program- Chris Fabry Live and enjoy listening in the car after school. My teens even unplug their headphones! Miracles ARE for today.:)
Blessings to you and your family,
Melissa- Tampa, FL

Krimmyseven said...

Now I'm not sure I want to go out and help my husband finish putting the swingset together... Thanks for the laugh, though!

Krimmyseven said...

Not sure I want to go outside now and help the hubby finish putting the swingset together... Thanks for the laugh, though!