The Big Project – the beginning

Back in August (doesn’t that seem like forever ago?), a couple days before closing, I got harassed by my insurance company- worried the underwriter wouldn’t insure the house because the exterior of the house clearly needed maintenance. Um, duh. I’m buying a short sale! I know it needs maintenance! Anyway, I had to promise my insurance company that I planned to repaint the exterior this fall.

It needed it big time, but of course, once fall was here I was wishing I’d given myself more time. Honestly, I’ve been dreading this one big time. And I’m not a person that dreads much- well other than plumbing, I always dread plumbing projects. Anyway, the exterior painting — it needs to happen, ready set go. I also realized I shouldn’t put this off until the leaves are falling because it will be colder then AND i can just imagine being the girl who paints her house and turns around to see hundreds of leaves sticking to the wet paint. That awesome mental image was enough to motivate me to sooner rather than later.

I’m trying to break this monster project into smaller projects so it isn’t so overwhelming (I am really good at these mind games with myself). So this weekend was the weekend to begin phase 1: the siding.

The bush is gone (well, mostly gone!)

The bush is gone (well, mostly gone!)

Friday night I left work an hour early, rented a power washer, and called the little brother for some help. We retrieved my dad’s extension ladder from my other brother’s house and unloaded the outdoor furniture from my grandparents house in my yard, and unloaded the beastly heavy power washer from my car. Brothers are great.  Just as we unloaded the power washer, it started raining. Nooooooo! So much for picking the weekend with the 10% chance of rain (on Friday). Owen went home and I was pretty bummed about the rain- I only rented the power washer for the 4 hr deal so it had to be back at the rental place by 9 am on Saturday. Hmmm. It rained for a bit and then I decided to go out and work in spite of it.

Soggy homeowner- but the bush is gone!

Soggy homeowner- but the bush is gone!

I ripped out the big ugly evergreen bush. The bush needed to go and I knew I couldn’t paint that part of the house with the bush in the way. Well, I still need to get the stump / roots, but most of it is gone. Then I removed another bush. And by now the rain had mostly stopped. So I hooked up the power washer and washed the outside of the house. It didn’t take terribly long and I suspect I could have been more thorough, but the light was fading and I had to finish!! By the time I was done, I was drenched, not just removing the bushes in the rain but the spraying from the loose hose connection on the power washer.

Owen came back over the help me load the power washer back into the car (that thing is heavy!) I ordered pizza and we hung out for awhile. Have I mentioned how much I love that guy? Next I picked up a friend from the airport, picked up a key from another friend, and picked up my ladder from their house. Meanwhile it rained and rained and rained. I started getting worried about when the house was going to dry out!! What the heck? Why all the rain?

This is how I felt about the rain myself

This is how I felt about the rain myself

Saturday morning I woke up later than planned and had to go immediately to get the power washer back to the rental place. I picked up house paint and headed home. I settled on “Wildflower Honey” yellow paint. I was nervous to go too bright, but didn’t want to go too pale yellow either. I think this fits the bill nicely.

Coffee was the first order of business. Then the scraping began. Scraping and scraping and scraping. The previous homeowner wins the prize for Half Ass whenever she painted. Clearly she’d slapped a coat of paint on to make it look good (probably just to sell it!) and she didn’t scrape any of the peeling paint off.

Scraping paint

Scraping paint

This makes for a lot of paint peeling – and needing to be scraped. The front was the worst. Scraping and scraping and scraping. As I sat on the roof, scraping a terrible paint job on old wood siding, I realized that the sun was finally coming out, the birds were singing, the people behind the hedge have a pool, and it was a great day to be out on the roof. God is good!

IMG_1998

Rotting shingle with previous color on it- yellow! Destiny!

Rotting shingle with previous color on it- yellow! Destiny!

The part where the house looks worse than before all that work

The part where the house looks worse than before all that work

Woo hoo! A side of the house that needs no scraping (the newest siding on the place)

Woo hoo! A side of the house that needs no scraping (the newest siding on the place)

Mid afternoon I ran back out to grab a bundle of siding shingles to replace some rotting ones and a couple tubes of caulk. I replaced the rotting shingles, caulked, scraped some more. And then Karen and Kitty showed up! Hooray friends! We decided to get a coat of paint on the front of the house, even if there is still scraping to do. I was beginning to worry my hand would remain a claw permanently if I didn’t do something else. Karen and I painted for awhile as Kitty played in teepee. Then Kits joined the painting – I love that girlie. The painting help was good, the company was the best. I have the greatest friends!!  We painted until dusk and then Karen and Kits headed for home, while I wrapped brushes and sat down… never to move again. At least not until tomorrow. Feeling great about the accomplishments of the day, but sure to be sore in the morning.

Replacing rotted siding pieces

Replacing rotted siding pieces

First bit of yellow! I LOVE IT!

First bit of yellow! I LOVE IT!

Painting buddies

Painting buddies

 

The Claw! After a long day of scraping and painting, I'm not sure I'll be able to un-claw my hand.

The Claw! After a long day of scraping and painting, I’m not sure I’ll be able to un-claw my hand.

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