My friends, my friends…the nightmare is (mostly) now behind me, but I still don’t think I could accurately describe the horror we’ve just lived through. Even the photos don’t show you how frightening this place was over the last week and the months leading up to it. All I can tell you is I will nevernevernever again install new carpeting in a house (with no basement) while we’re living inside of it. Before we move in, okay. Otherwise, I will become good friends with the Stanley Steamer man and learn to love whatever crappy, ugly, lumpy carpet came with the house.
You see, I got up the nerve a few weeks ago to finally commit to some new carpeting and an installation date, thereby initiating phase 2 of the remodel. This threw me into the tailspin I knew it would; I had been dreading this part even more than the previous “being without a kitchen and 1 bathroom phase” because the house was finally starting to look nice and I could actually clean it and you could tell I cleaned. You cannot believe how much crapola we have in every room that needed carpeting. Without a basement or an attic, this house is especially full of crapola, thanks especially to the fact that I take part in doing things like sewing (beau coup fabric and notions), draw (many large pads of paper), writing (booksbooksbooks everywhere), jewelry-making (rocks, metal, and tools), and my dearest love, knitting (beaucoupbeaucoup yarn). Sigh. And the Bug is exactly like her old mom, but has zero editing skills and more room to fill up. By the way, CR has his own stash of stuff and things too, lest you are led to believe he has nothing to add to our load of crap collection of stuff.
Actually, I’ve been preparing for this part of the remodel since last September, going into each room, sorting and purging. Purged so much that I’m now on a first name basis with the Goodwill guy by the Trader Joe’s. I gave stuff to him, and to friends, and to the City Sanitation Department, and to whoever foolishly dropped those “we’ll be in your neighborhood Monday to pick up your donations” cards in our mailbox.
Still we have too much left over to be believed. Whatever happened to that idea of my youth that “traveling light” was the way to live? Sigh.
On top of it all, I decided I wanted to paint the Bug’s room and furniture before that nice new white carpeting went in, just in case I spilled.
So I started there. And on the fourth morning, upon entering her room to continue cleaning/packing, I burst into tears and scared the begeezus outta the kid. I didn’t mean to do that, but it couldn’t be helped. To me, it still looked like it had three days earlier and I knew I’d never get it packed in time. Not to mention I still had to paint it, paint her furniture, and pack up the hellhole office, guest room, and our bedroom. And there were just 5 days to go.
So I pulled myself together and moved through her room like the proverbial Sherman through Georgia. In about 4 hours I’d finished packing it up once and for all. And once I was finished, I decided to do this (see left):
Perhaps not the wisest thing to drink and knit, but it was a necessary thing as it is a secret birthday surprise for the fella who helped me through this nightmare–perhaps not so secret as I’ve been working on them in front of him. Anyway, so far they’re working out nicely, despite casting on with a G&T beside me. I decided to used exactly the same garter rib, 2-at-a time, toe up pattern I made up for Papa’s socks so as not to confuse myself. Gotta love that Sportweight yarn to make up size 13 socks in a jiff. Still got a way’s to go, but here’s how far I am:
The next morning after I sent the Bug off to school, I trotted back into her room, ready to paint her furniture using this fabulous Behr paint that has the primer in it. Fab stuff, I tell you! We painted the ceiling using it, and frankly, I think it could’ve saved my marriage since it was so simple to use and only took one coat.
So I started painting this old, futzy-full-of-gingerbready-carving Louis XV solid cherry furniture, singing happily and patting myself on the back at my cleverness for using this paint so I would be able to skip the primer step.
Don’t you know, the girl at the Home Depot gave me the wrong paint. That’s right. It was the right color, but it had no primer in it.
Here’s what happens when you paint furniture without primer:
Here’s what a raving lunatic looks like–no, I won’t do that to you. Too frightening.
When I called the 800 number on the can, the nice man from Behr paint told me that ‘Oh, the paint numbers on the can are similar.” I told him they should do something about that. Then he told me that they would refund the cost of the wrong paint and the new paint I needed to redo the furniture. Yipee. Problem is, I think the cost of my sanity to sand the rest of the paint off the furniture and start over is what I can’t afford.
At least CR came home that night, gave me a loooong hug, fixed me a laaarge G&T, and promised he’d help me finish the packing. And he did. And he said he’d help me with the painting after they did the carpet.
And Friday, 2 men (both barely bigger than I am–sheesh–is there any doubt that men are stronger than women, no matter how small they are?) came at 8 am, dragged all the furniture out of the rooms, pulled up the garbagey, trashed-from-the-remodel beige carpet, and replaced it with with some lovely, creamy-color berber that smells like a model home. Hooray.
After I post this, I am going back into the Bug’s room to sand and repaint the furniture, paint the walls and finish this job.
Then onto phase 3, Paint the outside.
Gawd help me. I think I should buy stock in Tanqueray. 🙂