Tuesday, September 29, 2009

The Light of Fall

I do love the changing of the light and it just kills me that I'm not out there painting. I did this painting last fall. I love our local botanical gardens! Sigh.... But the house, the job, the squirrels, the "everything" that is not in its place has got me pretty down. I don't operate well on stress, and sugar. And then I get angry at myself. And boy you know what's next - mental explosion...

Last week I had to go out of town on business. At the hotel I vegged out one night in front of the TV for over four hours. (Let me add here, I don't have cable at home and tend to only watch movies or PBS so this was a treat for me.) I caught this home show where two brothers bought a condo and were going to work on it and flip it in 4 months. They were stressed to the max and one of the dumber brothers made me feel like a home renovating genuis. This little show gave me perspective. What I'm trying to do is hard. It's hard when there's two of you, ten of you or one of you. It's just hard.

I think I need to unpack some of my watercolors and set them up around the house - they make me happy. I need a more balanced perspective.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Be Careful What You Wish For...

A saying I hate because it's so true...

Since I divorced in 2002 I've been wishing, dreaming and longing for my own home. Shortly after my divorce, my Grandpa told me I would never own a home without a husband. And for a while there I was starting to believe him too. Three months ago, at a time most unlikely, in the middle of the biggest recession I can recall, I own this home - my very own (well in 30 years.) I think the biggest surprise is just how much time it takes to keep up a home let alone fix up. There's always something to buy and something to deal with that just wasn't part of that great fantasy in my head. Like...

- the snake my kitty caught and brought me as a gift... I'm so glad it wasn't very big and half dead or I would have probably fainted.
- the endless painting. By the way, expensive paint is worth the money. You will spend more time cleaning up cheap paint and repainting over and over. Just spend the money on Benjamin Moore. (And no, they aren't giving me any money for this endorsement.)
- the barrage of solicitors that come to my door either selling me goods or religion. I'm sad to say, I have a new rule - I don't answer the door. Living in apartments all these years had some benefits I'm now seeing.
- squirrels living in my attic - they aren't paying rent and I've been trying to get them out for two weeks with loud music, foggers, traps with peanut butter and pounding on the wall. I might be making headway.

When does the dream come? When do all those pretty images in my head come to reality? Will they? That's the interesting thing about dreaming and fantasizing, time is never factored in in any realistic way...
Anything of any value takes time ... another saying I don't really like either. Probably because it's too true. Dealing with alot of truth right now. Lots!

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Old House Photos

I painted and cleaned most of the day and I'm whipped!!! There are moments like these where I really wished I bought a spanking brand new house. But then I realize there's no way that would have ever happened - EVER!!!! I mean look at the last ten years. I'm an avid reader of home decor magazines and have all the old Victoria magazines with pages marked of rooms I like. I've day dreamed and wished for so long and I have collections of books, magazines and pictures of homes to prove it. In fact, over the years I've collected old black and whites or sepia photos of houses - they're hard to find - most old photos are just of people that I see in the antique stores. After I scanned my little old house photo collection, I realized it was inevitable - I was bound to buy an old place.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

New Tools

This renovating a house thing really isn't that fun when you have ADD and would rather be painting on paper than on walls. So I decided to paint watercolors of the three new tools I bought. This is a molding claw bar. I bought it to yank out tacks and nails that are embedded in my wooden steps that were once covered with carpet. I'm hoping to strip these stairs of layers of glue, paint and stain to reveal something truly stunning. So far the only thing that I've discovered is the importance of wearing a nose and mouth mask while using stripper because YES you can get one killer head ache. The next tool I bought is a nail puncher thingy. It taps in the heads of tiny nails so you can hide them. After you tap in the nail, you squish putty down in the hole, let it dry, sand it, prime then paint it. DETAILS - IT'S in the DETAILS!!! You can not believe how many nail heads need to be sunk. So this little yellow bugger is used with a hammer ... and yes, I already have one of those. Finally I had to buy a chisel because the previous owner/renovator forgot to chisel out a hole for my dead bolt to go into. I mean why would you go to the trouble of a deadbolt and not make it work. I roll my eyes constantly while working on this place. But WOW what an education I'm getting. Tomorrow I play with wood glue...