Monday, October 31

the house painting saga, part 1

anyone remember the oven saga of 2010? well, this year, it's been the house painting saga...

we have wanted to paint the exterior of the casa since we moved in over two years ago. i have always wanted a golden yellow house with black trim & shutters. i thought that combo would look lovely on the casa because it would contrast well with the brick.

we painted the shutters black first. and we love them.

[taken june 2011]

we picked several yellows & tried them out on the siding. we didn't like any of them, so i played around on an online paint program to figure out what to try next. we decided a terra cotta color that would blend with the brick more than yellow but still be bright & fun was just right for us. [if you want to see these steps, see the posts on painting the house & color dilemma.]

we tested three different interpretations of "terra cotta"...

[taken september 2011]

we decided to go with the top color -- not too red or dark, not to pale, but just right. we bought the estimated seven gallons it will take to paint all the siding, front & back, on sale at home depot over labor day weekend. 

but before we could start painting, we first had to prep & prime. it took so much longer than i thought it would...

i apologize for having virtually zero pictures for this process. they were all lost when my mac logic board died... 

[one] remove all storm windows

[two] chip away any cracked glazing around the windows. [we have old school wooden frame windows, & glazing is a compound that reminds me of dry wall compound used to seal the wooden frame & the glass pane. new windows do not require glazing so almost no one knows what this is anymore. i had two guys from a window installation company come by the house, soliciting business around the neighborhood, & neither of them had a clue what glazing was!]

[three] reglaze windows as needed.

[four] let glazing cure. [this takes foooor-eeeeever. the instructions said 7-10 days. it's was a few weeks before all of it became completely cured. it's possible we put it on too thick though.]

[five] scrap any cracking or peeling paint. 

[six] clean the siding thoroughly. we used a combo of vacuuming, sweeping/dusting, & semi-pressure washing.

it took us a couple weeks to get all the prep work done, & it took me a couple days to do all the priming, plus another partial work day of shaun getting all the places entirely too high for me to reach!

i was so excited to be done with this phase, it's not even funny! i could not wait to get COLOR up!

PAINTING, part 1
shaun & i worked together on a saturday afternoon. he spent a couple of hours finishing the priming i couldn't reach, like the gutters, resulting in the above picture. then we spent three hours painting the first coat of "terra cotta" on together. for those who like to know actual paint colors, the real paint name is behr's "firebrick." we had it mixed for exterior with a satin finish, no primer.

when i first started painting, i was struck by it's brightness. but i wasn't too worried because i always feel that way when a new paint color goes up on a wall, partly due to the newness & partly due to the wetness [paint always dries slightly darker than it appears when wet]. i also figured this effect was heightened due to it being in the red/orange family, which i have heard is particularly prone to seeming too bright/light when wet &/or on the first coat.

this is what it came out like, finished & dried, the first coat:

 orange. our house is orange.

i'm pretty sure we're never going to live this down with the neighbors...

i apologize for the awful pictures, but i snapped these first thing the following morning, immediately before i went to home depot to figure out other options!

and because everyone loves a good cliff-hanger, i'll leave this saga 

to be continued...


Saturday, October 29

top 10 reasons to NOT blog...

i'm certainly not a model of consistent blogging, & i got to thinking about the various reasons why:

[ten] i'm not consistent about much of anything in my life! but i'm always striving to do better.

[nine] once i'm on a roll, & something interrupts that roll [like not having your computer while it's being repaired], it's hard to get going again.

[eight] receiving said computer back with all of your files gone [fried logic board], including all of your pictures you had for the blog [not to mention all your pictures for the last three years & a manuscript you've been working on even long than that...] is discouraging to say the least.

[seven] trying to figure out where to restart when doing so practically from scratch -- well, i'd rather be on pinterest! [i'm sometimes inclined to delete every post on this blog & literally start over!]

[six] i'm a girl with a plan, so i plan out my blog posts weeks in advance. it's nice because it motivates me to get things done with deadlines. but if i don't do well when i get off-schedule.

[five] pinterest is distracting & addicting!

[four] i start to wonder if anyone ever really reads this blog & so whether it's worth spending all the time to post. [then my sister & mother-in-law tell me how much they miss the blog, & i figure it's worth it even just for the two of them!]

[three] i'm sometimes uncertain about whether i want the focus of this blog to stay solely on the house & improvement projects, & decorating... i'm a bit of a perfectionist, & i like neatly categorized things, so making this blog anything else in addition to those posts bothers me because the name of the post is about the house. ridiculous, i know. but it keeps me stumped.

[two] life is about to get hectic again as i move into a new position at church, & we expect it will likely be more full-time hours. when am i going to get anything done?! much less have time to blog?! then i realize that many of you have busier lives than me & still do it. and that gives me hope.

[one] i can't think of any more reasons to NOT blog, so i think i'll get back to it! things to look forward to soon [hopefully!]: the newly painted house exterior, the master bedroom baseboards & paint choice, & who knows what else because right now i don't have a plan!