Thursday, May 2, 2013

Life Lessons Month of May: Blog 1- Letters from Mom & Mimi

Hi Ellie!

Because of a slight disaster this past week, I am prepared for my week’s blog.
I shall call it:

Life Lesson Learned #9: If you are not a housepainter by trade, then don’t attempt to do your own fix-ups.

Yes, I have a “Mimi” story for you.  While Poppy was away for the weekend I decided to surprise him when he got home by painting a small area (about a 3” X 3” patch) located on a wall leading to our basement.  As I prepared the area with painter’s tape and newspaper, I also scanned the rest of the wall to see if there was anything else I should touch up.  And the answer to that Ellie is, “Yes there was…. Plenty!”   So I pulled off the 6-inch strip of freshly laid blue painters tape, threw it away and got out the BIG role.  And then I proceeded to lay new tape that extended from the beginning of the stairwell (both sides), up both sets of stairs, through the hallway, back down the other side, and three large areas in the living room.  I then laid down two weeks of newspaper (thank goodness for the Sunday edition) all over the house to ward off damage from possible spills.  Proud of my professionalism, I was then ready to paint.  So I went out to the garage and looked underneath the workbench where we must have dozens of paint cans stored.  Now Ellie, keep this in mind… I did not have my glasses on, but I knew that all I needed to look for was the ‘color sample’ on top of the paint can.  Once I found it, I opened it, stirred it and got started.  Starting on the 3” X 3” wall I couldn’t find an appropriate stopping place so I just painted the whole wall.  Then, I went to the next level of steps and opted to ‘touch up’ the shorter of the two walls that lined those steps.  Since it is an extremely short wall, I just went ahead and painted that whole area too.  Next, I tackled the opposite side but since it is a much taller wall, I chose to stop right below the light switch.   My next stop was across the room where there were three miniscule smudges well below a collage of pictures I have hanging on a wall.  So I painted a 4’ X 4 ‘ exposed area while keeping about an inch distance between my paintbrush and the picture frames.  Once that was completed I headed to another area in the living room next to the bay window and painted another large patch.  If you are thinking I should be done by now… not by a long shot.  Another wall, center room, also had some smudge marks.  So I painted that one too being careful around the light switch and vent.  But that wall was also tall so I stopped just below the picture hanging there.  Then came the hallway, both sides.  At this point I started to get tired so even though I painted the entire length, I stopped at hip level.  Lastly I had to take care of a few nicks and fingerprints near the railing area on the tallest wall, which spanned both floor levels.  Not wanting to get out the ladder, I painted a line at eye level and covered everything below it with the exception of the light switch and around the handrail.  Now I was done.  Or so I thought.  I decided not to clean up or return the paint can to the garage just in case I missed a spot.  But I thought it best to wait until the paint dried to see if there were any such areas (it seemed to be taking awfully long!).  Well, after a couple of hours, more like (many), I checked over my work.  Since the sun was setting, it seemed to be casting shadows on my walls.  But upon closer inspection, that was not so.  Ellie… all my so-called ‘touch-ups’ were a different shade (and quite noticeable I might add) from the walls original paint color.  Maybe if my brush strokes went in a straight line instead of all over the place it wouldn’t have looked so bad.   At first I was shocked, then horrified, then thought, “Uh-oh… Poppy is going to kill me!”  Since it was already late in the evening I figured I would just clean up, put everything away and deal with it the next day.  So when I went to put the lid back on the paint can, there, in big bold black magic marker letters were the words ‘DON’T USE!’  Uh-oh.  How could I have ever missed that???  (Remember back at the beginning of the story when I said I was not wearing my glasses?  Well, there lies the answer!)  Now I knew I was going to be in BIG trouble.  So I just went to bed and prayed that during the middle of the night somehow the two shades of paint would come together and be as good as new in the morning.   After all, Jesus was a carpenter, right?  So painting should be right up his alley.  And I don’t think there is anyone more ‘miracle savvy’ than HIM.  Well, he must have had way more important prayers to answer because when I woke up the next morning my walls were still two-toned!  Oh well, I tried.  So off to the airport I went to pick up Poppy and gently break the news.  I greeted him with a big smile, a big kiss, an “I missed you very much”, and an “I love you very much” and then proceeded to go into my story of trying to do a good deed that backfired.  When we walked into the house Poppy looked all around and his comment was “Holy Mackerel Mic!”  El… instead of getting mad, Poppy just started to laugh.  I am not sure if he was in shock or just chalked it up to a typical ‘Mimi’ incident, but honestly, his giggling made me breathe easier.  Together we decided that before I attempt to “fix” it, he would talk to a painter friend of his to see if that is even feasible or if we should just hire a professional to take care of it.  I am opting for the professional, as I no longer want to re-paint.  It is kind of a boring job and I don’t want to give up another whole day to it (I’ve moved on)!

So that is my story for this week Ellie-bean.  I think the lesson I have learned is to leave the house painting to those who know what they are doing, and I should just stick to finger painting with you.  After all, those kinds of smudge marks are always welcomed!
 (the latest beautiful Ellie original!)
(your portrait of Poppy)

Love you El!

1 comment:

  1. HaHa, Mic you sure can write a funny story, and I never heard about the painter's tape. I know Ellie and you willl laugh when you share this story in later years.