Painting a house….14 hours in

I’ve collectively put in around 14 hours of painting so far into my house. I thought I’d be a bit farther along, but alas, I should be used to this. It always takes longer than you think to finish a project. Especially when that project involves painting an entire house, even if it’s just little ole ours. So far, I’ve gotten the far west side painted, parts of the south side (ran into sun so I had to quit), and some of the north side done. My house isn’t a square since it comes in at one point where the deck is. It’s more like a polygon, so in reality I have six sides to paint. And although I only have around two sides painted, and progress is going slower than I thought it would, I’m still happy with it. I also keep reminding myself that I still have a boat load of trim to do as well. The trim is going to be a creamy off-white (no I haven’t picked it out – took me a flippin’ month to pick out a body color). The body color is called Mined Coal, and I’m using Behr Marquee exterior in Satin.

So here she is in all here partially painted glory. More to come once I finish.

IMG_4497 IMG_4824IMG_4750 IMG_4823I just noticed that you can tell we got quite a bit of rain (hence my paint delay), just by the grass from the before and after pics. Ha!

Gimme an inch…

This last weekend started out quite normal. It was our 9th anniversary so we celebrated with dinner and a show with local artist Emily Wolfe at Lamberts BBQ downtown. We had a great time, despite me deciding to try heels and ruining my feet. It was still fun.

Saturday was a trip to visit some breweries as we have a good excuse right now. We signed up for Barks for Beers, which is a great fundraiser, raising money for therapy dogs. We pay for a pint glass, and we get tickets for a free pint at a dozen breweries in town. The catch is that you have to hit them all by the end of the month. So far we’ve hit three of 12 so we have some work to do. We met up with some friends and had a good time hopping from Independence brewing down to Hops N’ Grain brewing.

Sunday, we decided to upgrade the bathroom a little since we plan on having some friends over during Memorial weekend.

Gimme an inch and I’ll take a mile….

We started out thinking about framing the mirror. I’d seen a cool idea on Pinterest (of course), on framing your big 3′ x 5′ standard mirror they stuck in every 80’s house. So we trekked to Lowe’s thinking we’d pick up the boards and be on our way. Well, then we decided, if we were going to frame the mirror, why not paint the cabinets too? They’re currently oak veneer. We could paint them white to make the little bathroom a little brighter and cheerier. Okay. Check. Paint the cabinets too. Oh, and we should replace the cartridge that’s been leaking in the shower. Picked that up. Oooh, let’s replace the shower head too. The one we have looks kind of ugly. Since we’re replacing that we should replace the handle as well. And since we’re here, we need quarter round to finish out the entry as well….

I went to Lowes for $10 primer and $20 for boards and left with a $200 bill. Lowes is worse than Target or Costco for me.

I don’t have any finished pictures because nothing got completely finished but many things are 80-90% done. We got the trim down in the entry but just need to finish with caulking. Same with the new shower head and handle. The mirror needs the top section and caulking for the frame. And I need to add another coat or two to the cabinets. THEN, pictures will come. We’re hoping to have this all finished by the end of this week so when our friends come out during Memorial weekend, we don’t have to put up caution zones in the house.

The weekend was mostly rainy so we had to set up shop in the living room and garage. We hate messiness, so at least it’s motivation for us to keep moving ahead.

A weekend of productive planning

I didn’t get much done this weekend. I had this list of things I wanted to do, which included hanging up another new window blind and finishing up the entry tile, but none of that got done. But I’m okay with it because we did a lot of planning instead. Planning doesn’t immediately show results so sometimes it may feel like you didn’t do anything, but in reality, you did so much.

Saturday was wrapped up in volunteer work at the library, then a trip to the Pecan Street Festival to see Royal Teeth for free. The show was great and the people who showed up were entertaining. It was like the state fair but with more homeless people.

Sunday was all planning. We’d had a guy from a landscaping company come in and do some consulting for us on Friday, on how to improve our backyard. Right now, it’s uneven, rocky, and patchy. We have a very large deck that needs replacement, and a big shed that’s taking up more room than it’s storing stuff. He gave us some good advice on what to do and what not to do, so now we’re trying to figure out exactly how we want to tackle our backyard work.

We went to Treehouse, a very hippie-type green home improvement store. The prices are a little steep but they have a lot of neat stuff that gets the creative juices flowing. They sell everything from reclaimed wood, to recycled glass counters, to water barrels, metal roofs, solar panels and ceramic grills…which is where I lost my husband for about a half hour…

After Treehouse, we ventured to the more normy home improvement store of Home Depot. We looked at deck options as we’re currently trying to weigh between wood and composite. The current deck needs to be redone as it’s old, too big, and is not in good shape. We plan on cutting it down to about half size, to give us room for an outdoor kitchen and hangout space.

On top of this, we also finally decided on a color for the house. Of the three we were looking at, we ended up deciding on Porpoise, which funny enough, was the most brown of all the colors. I know I’d mentioned that I really liked gray, but that’s why you talk these things through before making any decisions. Usually, the more I talk out decisions, the better I feel about it. This color is great because it has a lot of brown tones, but depending on the light, definitely has gray in it as well.The two colors below are both porpoise, but at different angles.

aIMG_3821 IMG_4529

Half this deck will be gone and in it’s place will be a kitchen. Goodbye blue house, hello porpoise.

The husband also started drawing out some plans for the backyard. The bottom right of the picture shows our to-be shortened deck with chairs and a small table. To the left of the deck is the simple outdoor kitchen. and above it, the rectangle, is a picnic-type table. Currently that area right now is part deck and part grass. Once we downsize the deck (I can’t imagine what’s underneath it), we’ll even it all out and add crushed gravel. We also plan on making a fire pit area and vegetable garden to the far left, against our back fence.

Lots going on, and it’ll take time, but I’m excited for it. We’re working on something that’ll be a retreat for us, as well as a great place for friends to gather.


Next up is calling painting companies to see how much they would charge to prep the house for us to paint. I’m cool with painting the house, but the prep work is daunting on this house. If we can swing it cheap enough, we might just have someone take a few days to prep, so we can go in and just start painting.


Finding something or somethings that you love to do is so important. If you only work and go home, you tend to burn out quickly, get stuck in a rut, and wait for something to pull you out. I’ve dabbled in a few things like sewing, a couple of sports, and writing. But my favorite hobby is painting. Not so much pictures but walls. I love finding the perfect color and painting the walls of my house. It transforms a room for about $30. I have one more room to paint, the master bathroom, then I will have painted every wall in the house. Currently I’m painting the master bath ceiling, which is something I hate to do, but it was necessary. The previous owners had no talent when they painted but loved to paint every room dark Army olive green. And they slopped it on the ceiling and counters unfortunately. Most of the room’s ceilings were fine as is but this one was yellow and bad. In one area, it looked like they tried to cover up a spot they painted on the ceiling but they used a shiny yellow-white color so it was beyond obvious. I felt like if I painted the walls but left the ceiling, it just wouldn’t be the same. I wanted this bathroom, to change, to feel warm and spa-like. Right now, it feels like a rental, with base oak cabinets and off white walls.

Trying to paint sometimes feels like extreme yoga.
Slowly but surely coming along. It definitely makes a difference.
I plan on painting the beam as well. I think it’ll be the same color as the cabinets…whatever color they end up being.
That small amount took me about 20 minutes, so….

As you can see, navigating through a bathroom is not all it’s cracked up to be, regardless of what you’ve heard. You can see where I’ve started the painting process, and it does make quite the difference, which makes me glad I’m doing it. Next will be the walls (I’m thinking a warm blue/green), then eventually painting the cabinets (gray? white?); haven’t quite figured out that scheme yet, and maybe upgrading the light fixture near the shower. It’s not the main light, so it doesn’t need to be extremely bright. It just helps light up that corner since the bathroom is quite long. Tune in to see the finished product. Hopefully I’ll have the ceiling, and maybe the walls done by this weekend (fingers crossed).

And since I will have run out of interior walls to paint….onto the exterior!!

A few kitchen updates

dishwasherOur new dishwasher is in place. Unfortunately it’s not really hooked up since I’m missing a sink…

stoveOur flooring that will go in the living room and kitchen. It’s a vinyl planking that’s highly water resistant and scratch resistance.

wallOur new stove and fridge. They’re all so shiny!

I’m still missing a sink and counter tops but I’m slowly getting this renovation finished. We did add some pressboard on each side of the stove and on parts of the base cabinets so we have some place to work, although I still have to wash all the dishes in the bathroom.

Unfortunately I don’t think it’s going to be finished by the time I head out for six months, but I guess then it will be a wonderful surprise when I get back.

Kitchen renovation – week I don’t even know anymore

I apologize for the gap between posts. I’ve had quite the couple of weeks. First of all, I have had some issues with Home Depot still coordinating with me. I talked to the assistant manager and we came to the conclusion that my main frustration had been with the construction company. I was supposed to go over pricing with Jim the contractor, but he never contacted me back. I’ve gotten so stressed and tired from trying to coordinate between Home Depot and the construction people.

On top of this, I had to replace my car’s timing chain because I failed to get my car in in a timely manner. This put me back a healthy $1500. Meanwhile, the assistant manager contacted the construction company’s manager and I ended up talking to him instead about pricing and what I could do to cut some of the costs. After talking with him and letting him know my frustrations with Jim, I felt a lot better. I then got a call from JB hunt letting me know my cabinets were ready to ship. Woo hoo!!! It was finally starting to feel like we might get a kitchen. All I felt like I was doing was spending money. I then called the construction company to let them know when the cabinets were coming in (as I was instructed to do). I was told that Ashley would be calling me back as she is my coordinator. I called them on Tuesday. Today is now Friday. My cabinets come in on Wednesday, so if I don’t hear back by Monday, I’ll have to call back again. This company so far has been pretty bad about timeliness. I’m just hoping she is busy and she will get back to me soon.
For a couple days things felt like they were finally starting to line up. My mom and mother in law came into town so we’ve been hosting and touring them around as much as possible in between all this craziness.
But of course good feelings can’t last. On top of the $1500 timing chain, my car’s brake pads and rotors are warped and I need new tires. Granted these things are maintenance related,  unlike the timing chain, but when your car is 11 years old, even maintenance feels like too much money. The hunk a metal is probably worth $2K so when I’m putting hundreds into it, it just feels like I’m throwing money into the proverbial fire. I know this is still cheaper than 72 payments with a new car but I start to get nervous with how long this can last. My car is now at 167K miles. I’m taking her down to Biloxi in the spring so we’ll see if she comes back with me six months later. Anyways, I digress.

In the meantime, while we’ve been waiting on the cabinets, we did paint the living room walls. All are now white except one Ocean Voyage accent wall. I absolutely love it. The color has brought on a level of warmth and completeness into the room, even without the new flooring yet. I’ll let you decide what you think, but regardless, I’m keeping it. I’ve gotten a lot of compliments on the flooring as well, but that must go as restaining it, plus staining the kitchen floor would cost at least twice as much as putting down gray plank flooring.

living room
To top off this crazy couple of weeks, my laptop’s motherboard most likely blew so I’m actually writing this all on my iPhone. You do what you gotta do to keep the blog going, right? I’m going to fiddle with the laptop to see if it’s possibly not the motherboard, and just sticky memory, or something else. It’s been popping to life here and there. I’ll definitely have to back up the harddrive onto an external drive if I can get it to pop to life one more time.

I hope to having a working laptop again, as well as a fully functional kitchen within the next few weeks. Wish me luck and I hope to post sooner rather than later.


We got a little sleet down here in Texas. Needless to say, everything shut down. Fine for me. Blogging in my pj’s works for me.