Monday, August 06, 2012

House Painting: Exterior

The sun is strong this morning and the ground is still under a dewy web. It's 8:45 and I'm sitting in the living room, enjoying coffee that can hardly pass for lukewarm and some yogurt that may or may not be expired. I tossed a handful of Grape Nuts in just in case. I figured I could just focus on the bite of the cereal rather than the bite of aged dairy. It seems to be working. In all honesty, I'm pretty sure it's not expired. But it is the yogurt that I kept stacking new ones on top of after each trip to the grocery store, so I can't be too careful. And I think it says something about July on the container. Moving on.

I have today off and then I work half a billion hours again. Working a lot always confirms my decision that a) I don't really want to be a mom and b) I'm usually more productive at home when I'm stacked with hours at work. This week's fun? We started painting the exterior of our house. As of August 15 we will have been in this house for 3 years...I think it's a good way to round out the third year.

This is pretty much what the house looked like when we bought it. Dusty Grandma Blue. Not like a dusty grandma but more like dusty AND grandma. Busy railings and too many giddy bushes to keep tamed. Stupid river rocks that ended up taking us hours and hours and a mountain of buckets to remove. There was also blue carpet on the porch, but I ripped it out before the photo was taken.
You may recall when I posted about removing the bushes a while back. Those things were pretty gnarly...the roots were incredibly smitten where they were and put up a damn good fight. I was so happy to have them gone. Ugh. We removed the railings on the same day. And by "we" I mean my mom and I. She's a bit more gung-ho than I am when it comes to house stuff, so it's nice to have her around when I need to get shit done. She's coming over in about an hour, actually....and I have a lot to do before then. Blogging isn't supposed to be one of them. Whatever, who wants to spend 45 minutes sweeping, mopping and vacuuming when you can try your luck with 17. Funny how fast we move under pressure, isn't it?
Anyway, here you can see what the porch looked like after the shrubs were yanked. You know that interview question on interior design websites that goes something like "what's your biggest embarrassment?" Well, my answer would be "The entire front of the house." Yeah, it has looked like this for some time now. I won't say how long, but some time. We are finally moving forward. It's about damn time...I don't know how much longer I could keep parking the car with my eyes closed. That blue was really getting to me.
And so, as of yesterday the dusty grandma blue is finally on it's way out. After about 12 trips to various hardware stores and Sherwin WIlliams and 30 swatches later, I ended up with 7 samples [mostly all on different days, of course.] And then, after almost pulling my hair out, I finally [FINALLY] found the right one. I didn't realize how hard it would be to find a good green. But alas, I did find it after much perseverance. 

And here's the craziest part- I picked it from a swatch. Yeah. After spending lots of time and money on all those different samples, I was at my wit's end. The paint store is 21 miles away-- not really what I consider to be convenient. What was convenient was that they were having a 40% off sale. The problem was that I became short on time and had to just PICK something already. So, after shuffling a million swatches that I marked "too gold"..."too blue"..."too brown"...and "too green" I took the plunge and asked Joe to get 5 gallons of Sherwin Williams "Meadow Trail" while I was at work. I looked at the swatch for the 50th time and just knew it had to be the one. I felt kind of bad sending him on a Sunday,  which I thought was the last day of the sale and was sure to be crazy. Turns out it actually ended on Monday. Oh well. 

So yesterday we painted for 6.5 hours. The beer helped. I didn't intentionally include it in the photo but I guess it just happened to be there. Central Waters Ouisconsing Red in case you're curious. Anyway, we are really excited to be able to paint- the heat here has been keeping us at bay for weeks now! I'm extremely happy with the results...if you are looking for a good rustic green, you should really try this Meadow Trail color. I can finally look at the house without cringing-- it fits in much, much better than that blue. Next up is new exterior lights, some chairs and paint for the porch. A walkway is in the works as well. I can't wait to decorate for the holidays now! Before I never wanted to because frankly, I didn't want people looking at the house. I know- it wasn't THAT bad....but it wasn't that great either. Definitely not something to be proud of. 

So a question for you: have you painted the exterior of your house before? What color did you go with? What do you think of it?


Norbert Floth said...

Sounds like you did a lot of work, particularly on the painting department. But I think it all paid off. The Meadow Trail color definitely goes well with the front look of your house. It looks warm and welcoming. Unlike the dusty blue color, this rustic green shade is perfect for the house. Thank goodness you trust your intuition!

Missie  Rice said...

So, how does your porch look now? Have you completed adding the lights and furniture? I hope you’ll post photos of it, so we can bask on the beauty of your project. =)

Erin Lang Norris said...

Hi! Well, we were never able to finish it because of hectic end of summer schedules, but hope to get everything done next summer. There's a lot I want to do, but we'll see how far we get. ;)