Friday, February 26, 2010

That's Done It

The slight but ever-so-apparent heavier coat of Relaxing Green glaze just above and below the shelf rail was still apparent this past couple of days. So when I got home from work this afternoon, I dabbed a bit more glaze on the less-dense parts of the closet walls and smeared it in with the pad.

Very good. That should do it.

And I brushed a second coat of the semi-gloss onto the wood trim. Not on all of it-- I scamped and only painted the parts one can readily see from the closet doorway. I mean, you read of those Greek temples where even the nonvisible elements above the column capitals were perfectly carved because the "gods" could see them even if humans could not. But my God reminds me that when He said "Be ye perfect," He was not referring to the head trim inside 15" deep closets.

So, good enough.

Well, almost. Because after I'd gotten everything put away, all sponges and brushes and pads washed and all the paint and glaze back down the basement, I noticed that I'd applied the glaze a little heavily in one spot . . . right where I could see it from the open door.

Oh, bugger. Back down cellar for the tinted glaze, the faux finish sponge, and a brush . . . Back upstairs and started wiping glaze away with a wet rag . . . oh, look, too much has come off . . . dot some more back on: better, not quite good enough; the green base coat hints through in other places but nowhere else with this texture . . . Can't sponge on a heavier coat, though, or I'll have the same problem all over again . . . OK, that's done; put everything downstairs and away again; came back upstairs to deal with dropcloths . . .

Oh, bugger, again. Drips from the wet rag have run down the wall and left marks. OK, let's even that up a bit. Wipe, wipe, wipe.

Oops, wiped a bit too much. Back down the basement for the tinted glaze, the faux finish sponge, and a brush . . . Dab a bit more on-- don't get too much-- Goodness! I wish I could match up the texture in that one place! Maybe I ought to have let it alone entirely! What can I do to make it the same?

But then I took off my glasses. With my eyesight, I couldn't tell a lick of difference. And nobody else will notice or care. It'll do. It's done.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

A Little More, Maybe?

I was hoping to make a post declaring that the faux finish portion of my little hall closet painting project was done.

But after applying the second coat of pale green glaze (tinted with Behr's "Relaxing Green") and letting it dry and hour or two, I think there's an uneveness about it that isn't random enough. The finished effect should be rather like marble, and you don't really get that when the glaze has gone on heavier, say, just below the wood rail.

So I'll look at it again in the daylight. If I'm not satisfied with it then, I'll dab some more glaze on here and there to create the look I want.

Yeah, I know, it's a hall closet. It'll be full of table pads and vacuum cleaners and spare boxes of Kleenex. I don't care. The color seems to be working well with the hallway finish and I want it done right.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Here a Little, There a Little

This evening-- o the excitement!-- we have primer applied to the wood trim inside the hall closet. Usually I wouldn't tackle that till the wall surface painting is done. But with the faux finish, I thought I'd do primer first so that if any random drips ended up dried on the walls, the final glaze coat would provide some camouflage.

Whatever. At least, the woodwork looks better with the beige covered. And I got the drips wiped off the walls. And off the stripped wood floor, mostly.
Which wood floor is why I'm doing the closet painting now. All spots can be removed before the finish goes on.

I suppose if I were an expert painter I would have taped off the door casing and got a nice even edge to the primer around there. But that messy edge will be covered up with the stop moulding, and I have more important things to think about in life than that level of perfection.

I guess I could give the primer an hour or so to dry then slop on the top glaze coat. But I really need to do my taxes.


Meanwhile, in other news . . . Look what I discovered in my front border when I got home from work this afternoon:
Here"s the daffs emerging in this 34 degree "warm snap," maybe as a nod to St. David's Day this coming Monday. Hope they'll survive when the freezing weather hits again.

Monday, February 22, 2010

In the Closet

I figured out why I couldn't find the gallon of faux finish glaze base on Saturday.

It's because it was a gallon of glaze base, a whole, unopened gallon of glaze base, and according to my Quicken register I returned it to the Big Orange Box Store in September for a refund.

Well, ok. So yesterday evening I went to the Blue and Gray Box Store (it's closer) and bought a quart of their version of the stuff.

I learned last summer that those little color sample pots you can get at the paint store work just fine for tinting the glaze. Normally, you wouldn't want to use them on your walls, since they lack the binding ingredients that paints have. But mixed in with the glaze, they're fine.

And I have a sample pot of a pale whitish-green that did fine for tint the first coat of faux finish glaze for my 2nd floor hall closet, with the addition of just a bit of the basecoat green.

Got it sponged on late this morning. Nothing artistic or fancy about it; it'll have another layer of the same tone or lighter on top. The idea is that the texture will be the same as in the hall, but the pale green color will pick up the base coat on the outside.

And if it doesn't, quite, no big deal. It's inside the closet, for goodness sake.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Some Actual Work

By all rights, I should have been doing my income taxes today. A lot will depend on the AGI it throws up. But is taking forever to send me the user ID I can't remember, so I'll deal with that when it comes.

So instead I actually got something done on the house.

Late this morning, I gave another crack in my Study ceiling the Big Wally's treatment. Funny, but it wasn't as bad as I'd thought. Only one or two places were even sagging at all.

Oh, well. I'll rake out the crack and fill it and the drill holes with joint compound that it should be fine.

Another plasterer came around about 11:30 to give me a secod bid on my plastwork. Guy wants $50 than the other plasterer I spoke to in late January, but he wants to use 1/4" sheetrock with finish plaster over. And he doesn't think the loose crumbly plaster in the flat part of the ceiling really needs to be cleaned out. Hmm. Not so sure about that. I may go with the other guy regardless.

Then this afternoon I started painting the 2nd floor hall closet. I hadn't planned to do it, but once it was cleaned out so I could strip the floor, I realized it couldn't stay as it was. Beige walls, beige ceiling, beige trim, beige everything. Very dark, very dull, very drear.

Here's how it looks now:

Whaaaa??? What was that about the beige paint being dark?

Patience, patience, mes amis. My idea is to use white glaze over that dark green base and end up with a soft green that will coordinate with the green-rose-light peach color of the hall.

Well, that was the idea. But down the basement I found that the can of white glaze is very small and I'd rather save it for touch ups in the kitchen. Well, all right. The little jars of sample paint make excellent glaze colorant . . . yep, here they are in the paint cupboard. I think I'll do a pale green first and then a cream color over that. That'll be even better than flat white. But . . . where did I put that other gallon of glaze solution? I know I had it!

Never mind. I'll look for it tomorrow. Barring unforeseen accidents, I still have tomorrow.

Awkward News

This isn't the sort of thing I'd usually mention on my houseblog, but considering that in the near future I might be posting even less often than I have been lately, I suppose I should say something about it.

"It" has to do with some physical symptoms I took to my doctor this past week. Had an imaging test yesterday, the doctor took a look at the results, and unless some strange and extraordinary and happy anomaly is taking place, I have cancer.

And not a particularly curable cancer, either.

Driving home, I got to thinking about the house and the state it's in. I'd really, really like to get it done, at least the wood trim and wallpaper projects I've had going the past, oh, seven years . . .

Weird, huh? A person's facing major surgery and chemotherapy, which maybe it won't be any use in the end, and she's worrying about the renovations to her house???

Well, yeah. Though I suppose I don't have to explain the impulse to any diehard houseblogger.

Why do I care? For any number of reasons, in no particular order all jumbled in together.

Because if I do peg out in the foreseeable future I'd like to think I'd left something finished and beautiful behind. Because if I recover, I'd like an orderly environment to recuperate in. Because until I pay off my mortgage, I'm only the steward of this house, and it would be irresponsible to leave it torn limb from limb. Because working on the house will keep me from moping about my prognosis.

Yeah, I know there's no way I can get the trim refinished and back up before my surgery. At least, I hope there wouldn't be time for that. This isn't Canada or Great Britain-- yet. I want this damn growth out-- ASAP. But I do want to stop wasting time and get done what I can before I go in.

Of course, there's a lot of stoopy pleh business things I'll have to take care of when I would rather be shellacking trim or whatever. So I think I'll try to come up with the funds to have the plasterer do the repairs in my Study ceiling. I really wanted to do it myself. This past week I found a local store that can sell me all the plastering supplies I need, and I had it on my calendar to go buy them today. But no. As much as I'd like to point to that ceiling repair and say, "Look at that! I plastered that! It's real keen!" that's not where my energies should go. White-painted plaster is white-painted plaster. Anybody (well, any plasterer) can do that. But I doubt I can get anyone to shellack my trim the way I want it done.

And God willing, I'll be spared to do that.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Snow Notes

One of the happiest things about the past few days of snow, snow, and more snow occurred when the neighbor across the street borrowed a snowblower from the neighbor on the corner and plowed the whole length of the front sidewalk. Making two or three passes. On both sides of the block.

That was Saturday. This called for a demonstration of gratitude, so Sunday I made house cookies for him and his numerous family and took them over yesterday evening.

Last night and today, it snowed again. By the time I got up (which wasn't early, school being cancelled again), not only were both sidewalks snowblown, but also all the walkways up to people's houses.

Boy. My great-grandmother's sugar cookie recipe must be even better than I imagined!