We are gathered here today to pay tribute to the broken tools and other casualties during our home renovations.


The oldest broken tool in our history of remuddling is our sledgehammer (above). This tool was left behind by the previous owners, and I broke it while smashing our cast iron bathtub. Now this sad remnant lives in our basement. I can’t bring myself to throw it away - maybe we’ll use it as a doorstop.

broken phone

Next was my phone/organizer, which I broke while working in the attic. Unfortunately, I left it in my back pocket, and as I sat on one of the joists to take a rest, I busted the screen. Since I can’t bear to drop another wad of cash on a new gadget, now I use a really old Nokia given to me by Serena’s aunt (it’s, like, from the 90s.)

Pick Axe

This pick axe loyally accompanied me through my grueling concrete paver parking space project where I dug out 400 cubic feet of dirt by hand. Perhaps this intensive use weakened the pick axe, because it succumbed a month ago when I was ripping out some shrubs that were growing too close to the side of our house. I was trying to dislodge the roots when the handle snapped off.

Icebreaker handle

The next casualty didn’t even belong to us, it was actually my mom’s icebreaker. Made by Olympia Tools, this bad boy was called “The Mutt”, and it was an awesome help during the winter when ice kept pooling around our walkways. Several weeks ago, I was digging fence post holes and used the icebreaker to pry out large rocks that the post hole digger was unable to get around. I leaned a little too hard on the wooden handle and heard a snap. The picture above only shows the handle. My mom took the head back home, probably to mourn over it. So sorry, mom!


This pitchfork came with our house, and we used it every other day to turn the compost (it was also used as a prop in our “about” photo). Last week, while double-digging the fourth garden bed with the pitchfork, I heard a crack. By now everytime I hear a crack while using a tool, I have a sinking feeling in my stomach. I was really sad.

Serena just pointed out that all the above tools were broken by me. Not her, not my parents nor any of our friends who helped on our house (sigh). In closing, I am grateful to these tools for giving their life in service and regret any pain I may have caused them. I’m dedicating this post in honor of their memory.