Saturday, November 16, 2013

What Have I Done Lately?

It’s time to take my blog back from the trolling p**n sites that have been randomly hitting it—I want to drown out that mess in clicks from real people now!

You, my small but mighty readership, are entirely entitled to ask where I’ve been lately and if any good has come of my absence from the blogosphere. I hope so.

This fall, I’ve channeled my creativity into more tangible form. We finally busted through (or ignored) some time and money constraints to improve the house we’ve been living in for ten years. Not entirely. Not in every way that we envision. Not even to our current satisfaction. But we took a step!

A little background—Big A. is an architect and I’m just a general, all-around, fussy visionary. We both love to inhabit beautiful spaces. So it’s been a challenge living with all the “high-end designer vinyl wall coverings” that the previous owner bequeathed us. Especially since they were in shades of beige and puke. Oh, and lavender. Can’t forget the purple bathroom.

Beige shelves. Beige walls.
So, over the years, Big A. and I have stripped wall coverings and painted rooms. BUT, here’s the catch. Our house has six rooms: two bathrooms, three bedrooms, and one GREAT ROOM. Yes, the entire rest of the house is one room. With lots of windows. And a half-wall. And an entrance hall our ladder won’t reach.

Choosing colors for a GREAT ROOM--years, people.
For YEARS—years, people—we’ve debated the pros and cons of stripping and painting the GREAT ROOM ourselves. We could do the work (we’re pretty handy), but the time and effort per progress equation killed us every time.

Let’s skip to the end: we hired people. It took one to three professionals (averaged at two) eight full days (8 days x 8 hours x 2 people=128 hours) to strip the wallpaper and paint. We did all the moving stuff and covering furniture, which we left moved and covered for two weeks.

If Big A. and I had tried this, we would have gotten in maybe 2-4 hours at a time, less stops to negotiate sibling peace treaties and supervise snack selections. And that would have been on weekends. So, say, 24 hours of actual work per weekend, max—now the job takes five to six weeks, during which we cannot possibly leave everything we own covered and moved, so we have to start setting up and taking down everything each time, reducing our actual work time to…nothing.
Furniture covered and walls bare. Teehee.
About the amount of "help" we needed.
Unsurprisingly, we have many bookshelves.

Anyway, we did that. We moved and covered everything, lived out of cans for two weeks, uncovered and replaced everything, then started projects like painting bookshelves and making cushions with matching valances and painting our Key West-style kitchen chairs (ten hours per chair, thank you very much!) and now we’re catching our breath in a blessedly beige-free GREAT ROOM. Yay!
Happy cushions!
More happy cushions!
Happy color!

Happy chairs!

And that’s what I’ve been up to. How have you been?

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