Not The Blandings

looking at life through paint-splattered glasses

And I thought the paint tray incident was bad…

Alrighty now, where to begin?

Oh yes.  The dining room project, which has been slightly sidelined by the seriously sublime new gas range.  Because how could we I possibly let something so lovely go into our stuck-in-the-70′s-and-not-in-a-good-way kitchen?  I couldn’t.  Thank you for agreeing with me.

And so began a wee little project of updating the kitchen for the sake of the stove.  (side note – I had planned on repainting the kitchen anyways, but not until later in the fall when there was more time.  Best laid plans….)  Step one was repainting the walls.  Ok, done, no problem.  Step two was a bit more gutsy – painting the laminate countertops and backsplash.  I just couldn’t take the burn marked, mustard veined surface any longer, but didn’t want to shell out big bucks for a new surface until we gut the entire kitchen down the road.  So painting it out became the best option.  It started out well with the priming.  But not so much after that.

You see, I couldn’t just pick a basic paint, noooo. I had to choose Rustoleum’s Hammered Metal paint.  Do you see any hint of trouble coming?  You should.  After applying 3 coats and in a slightly stoned state (because of the oil paint, honest) the paint decided it did not want to cooperate and left roller streaks.  Everwhere.  Its like it was drying before even rolling it out.  So we moved onto plan B.

Our paint sprayer.  A Titan something or other, picked up on craigslist a while back and sadly we’ve yet to use it.  Its been lent out to a couple of friends though, which became part of the problem.  We figured the sprayer would leave a much better finish on the countertops, and anyways, it was worth a shot.  So out into the backyard we went to set it up and try it out on some scrap plywood.  I should mention that there will be no pictures today due to wanting to remain in my marriage.

So DH started up the sprayer, and found out it was clogged.  It appears the last person to use it didn’t clean it out properly, so it took about 30 minutes for DH to take most of the machine apart, clean it all out and rebuild it.  Not exactly a tension-less time period, I can tell you.  Finally the sprayer started to cooperate with us.  One hose was in the tin of paint pulling it up into the lines.  And that’s when the machine decided to become an acrobat.  And suddenly flip backwards.  Sending the paint can flying and spewing its shiny, globby, oily contents all over DH, the backyard and anything else it could possibly cover.  Insert expletives here.

I’ll spare you the details; they weren’t pretty.  Worse than the mess was the newfound growing problem – the paint sprayer either needed to be used immediately or cleaned out before the paint dried in the lines and ruined it.  But the required paint was all over the backyard and DH.  So I bolted to pick up a new can of paint, and returned to find DH in new clothes but no new mood.  Fair enough.  He got the machine running with the new paint, and the sample board looked great.  Things were starting to improve, including his mood.  Until the cat chose that moment to streak past DH, right through the puddled paint, across the deck, through the backdoor, and across the laundry room floor to suddenly (thankfully) halt just before the slate hall floor.  Would you dare to imagine what metallic cat prints look like across all of that expanse?

The next 10 minutes were spent bathing a frantic cat doing an amazing interpretation of an octopus on speed.  Fun times.

Back to the kitchen.  DH managed, after all that, to maintain his sanity and did a great job spraying the counters.  They’re dark and sleek, and when we finish with the rest of the space, including the cabinets, hardware, flooring etc, this kitchen might just be able handle such a beastly new range. 

So after such a near-disastrous debacle, I’ve learned a few  notes: 

1. banish the cat from any area where there is paint, may be paint, or paint may be found in case of explosion. 

2. never ever lend out your paint sprayer to anyone, less you end up having to rebuild the whole machine and test your vocabulary. 

3. after all this, I won’t willingly use oil based paints ever again.  I like my brain cells. 

On the plus side, my new found skills in trucker swearing really came in handy.  I should see if there are any local competitions for such things….

A Tale As Old As Time

An age-old story; you’ve heard it a million times before.  You tell yourself that you’re just going to pop into Ikea to pick out a few new bits and bobs for this room and that space, but before you know it, you’re leaving with a new 5 burner, dual-fuel, convection, sleek black industrial slice of loveliness.

Or maybe its just us?

Let the Dining Room Drama Begin

Alrighty, after my lovely paint kaffafle a few weeks ago, I managed to pull on my big girl painting clothes again and climb back onto the step ladder.  Minus the balancing paint tray.  Lesson learned.

It hit me that we’ve been living in limbo for almost 3 years with our house, putting off painting the dining/living room area because of planned renovations to come.  The arguement about waiting to tackle some larger projects first has gotten old with me.   The icky smoke-stained walls and hideous floors are bad enough, but the obtusely ugly light fixture taunting me daily has been the last straw. 

From repurposing a hand-me down dining room set to new flooring, we’re attempting an overhaul to our dining room.  Because my goal is to have people come over without having to appologize for all this ugliness.  And for our family to feel at home here too, of course :)   I’ll try to share it as its happening over the summer, and I promise not to spare you all the ugly details.  There’s enough of them, that’s for sure.  Shall we begin on a prettier note, just for kicks?

I just ordered this bit of loveliness from Overstock.  I think we’ll replace the chain with a solid rod, but that’s tbd when it arrives. And that can’t be soon enough, so we can finally be rid of this hopeless 1970′s reject:

I promised you ugly, remember?  Sorry if you haven’t had enough coffee yet this morning to stomach this, but maybe if you add something to your coffee first?…. nope, still bad.  There’s just no way to make this fixture look any better, except maybe when its in the garbage bin.  Yes, it will probably look quite lovely in there.  I’ll even take a picture to prove it.

Can.  Not.  Wait.