Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Back to That Pie...

I finally managed to snap a couple shots of this pie before it disappeared! Did you see it? Good thing, because it is GONE! Recipe is down there on July 15th...

Sunday, August 23, 2009

The End Is In Sight!!

Well, Friday I ran errands and painted nothing. Margo & Debbie BBQ’d our tri-tip for us so we’d have a good supply of taco meat for the coming week, and they supplied us with some yummy chicken. Dinners during this painting marathon have been a real problem. By the time I get done painting and we get all our stuff cleaned up, it’s after nine, I’m beat, and now I have to fix dinner! Although I was planning to paint on Saturday, we had intermittant T-storms all day, so I opted to lay low w/ice packs for another day. Today, Sunday, a lot of the pain in my hands is gone and, even better, Margo’s hubby Gary came over and sprayed the high areas and eaves on my last three sections! Wahoo! I filled in some lower areas, and all that is left is one wall section that might take me all of 20 minutes after work tomorrow. After that? Nothing but trim! I will provide pictures of the finished product – right now the entire yard looks like a hurricane ripped through it!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Why Am I Still Painting???

Oh yeah, I’m not done yet! Drat. Sunday the 16th I was up bright and early at 6:00 a.m., ready to hit to ground… I mean ladder... running, but both of my wrists felt like someone had tried to twist my hands off while I was sleeping. I slogged down a couple sips of coffee, some Aleve, and promptly fell asleep on the couch. Until noon. I woke up in more pain than I was earlier and spent the remainder of the day with both wrists swaddled in ice. Drug my ice packs to work with me and used them in place of the wrist rest at my keyboard. So, needless to say, nothing got painted on Sunday or Monday. I painted on Tuesday night until it got too dark, a little more on Wednesday, and I had to work tonight. The wrist pain has eased up, but I have zero strength and now, I THINK I HAVE KILLED MY TRIGGER FINGER!! It hurts worse than both wrists did together. Good thing I can operate left handed. This weekend I only have three (of nine) sections left to get a 2nd coat on and then I’m done except for the trim, which Sister Debbie has been helping with. We also got the new outdoor lights mounted - what a difference. What have I learned? I should have bought TWO guns like I originally wanted to. Typical hubby response, “yeah, you should have.” Why do they always say that after it’s too late? The Ryobi is really so easy to use and we could have had more help from friends if there had been something for them to do. Another plan that I heard about from a couple of people – you know, when I was hanging out in the paint section at Home Depot – was buying the $500 airless sprayer, painting your whole house, and then selling the darn thing in the paper with the standard “only used once” descriptor. Two different people told me they did this and only lost about $75-$100 of the original purchase price. They could take their time and not rack up rental costs. Not a bad plan! Would I do this again? To save all those labor costs? You bet I would. Will I ever quit whining about it? Probably not.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Painting... still.

Proof I’m over that ladder thing… mostly. Still don’t like it!

My elf bit the dust. He’s been putting off the replacement of the other hip, and all these days of standing around handing me tools did him in. Here’s a picture of my not-so-able and willing pit crew. Inspiring, aren’t they? Good thing I’m not paying either one of them a dime! And, they still want dinner - can you believe that? Still nice to have them out there for moral support - that way I'm not whining and cussing to myself all day long. Note to Connie - this proves I am NOT overworking your boyfriend! Note to J. Davenport - I noticed that the 8-foot ladder I'm using has UC-880 stamped on the side!

Friday, August 14, 2009


Here's some pics of the new paint... it looks REALLY yellow against that primer, but it is really more of a cream color. I thought I'd try to blend in with all the dried rye fields that surround us.

Fire Control

In the midst of this painting thing, our neighbors behind us had one of the traveling Basque sheep flocks over for a few days to knock down the weeds on their 20 acres. These sheep cover much of the Tehachapi area during the summer months.
No comment on the ugly porch post - I'm all over that!!

House Painting

Dang, still need a picture of that blackberry pie...

Anyway, something we’ve been putting off forever – painting the outside of our house. Truly, it should have been done ten years ago when it first needed it AND when hubby was able to get around better. And yeah, when the "good paint" wasn't upwards of $150 for five gallons! We talked about painting every year, and every year we decided we would definitely do it … next year. Well, that darn blue paint which I have HATED since day one, was now 22 years old. So, “sister” Debbie spent part of a week power washing the whole house for us; then Margo & Gary came over with the BIG ladder and all their painting “stuff” and spent the weekend getting us started with the primer. I bought this really cool Ryobi power sprayer (el cheapo corded version) which was supposed to be way better that the comparable el cheapo Wagner gun. Having never used anything except a two-inch brush, I had nothing to compare it to, but, I LOVED IT!! Very fast, no blobs, and even though you have to refill the little barely-over-a-quart jar about every ten minutes, it covers a lot of area well and quickly. Of course there was that “learning curve” part where hubby was “teaching” me how to use the gun – TOO FAST!! TOO SLOW!! TOO CLOSE!! TOO FAR AWAY!! WRONG ANGLE! WHAT ARE YOU DOING??!! It was almost funny. I told him he was lucky he wasn’t white… as in PRIMER white!! I totally understand how frustrated he is that I am having to do this instead of him. But now, he says I am a way better sprayer than any guy he’s ever seen. Well, of course I am! Now for the bad news. The little atomizer valve? (it comes with two) It has to be replaced after about 5-8 gallons of paint. Okay, I can live with that, but do you think you can find them? Anywhere? Well of course not! Because that would have made sense!!! I was quite angry when I was finally able to talk to “technical support” and they had absolutey no answer as to why these things aren’t available or when they would be. I told them how stupid it was to sell a tool that was worthless within three days. You know what their great solution was? Buy the Wagner ones. Huh??? Fine! So, I am stocked up with Wagner atomizers that spray horribly and spit out blobs everywhere. Very upset. But, I press on. All the primer is done, including eaves and fascia boards. You can see the icky "before" blue if you scroll down to my summer window shade covers.
Primer Over Icky Blue

Update: Well, I’ve been hitting it hard in those few hours of daylight after work, and Thursday I got off at noon, but it was so windy I decided a much-needed nap trumped a couple hours of painting. Today, Friday, I got the second coat on the front of the house which means we can use our front door again and all that is left for the front is the trim and to install the cool new lights I bought.

I am happy to report that I am virtually over my lifelong unexplained ladder phobia – the 12-foot peaks did it! Gary loaned us a 12’ foot ladder and I love it! I’ve never been the least bit afraid of heights, just ladders. Makes no sense. Hubby has been my pit crew/elf – hands me the paint gun when I move my ladder every 40 seconds or so, hands me brushes and guides, and thus far has managed to keep me from tripping or strangling myself on the extension cords. We’ve blown through 13 gallons of primer; and the first 5-gallon tub of paint. I hate to guess how much just the paint is going to cost once we’re done. My normal life is non-existent during this whole project, I’m pretty wrung out and not real sure when I'm supposed to accomplish things like “dinner”, “laundry”, and “shopping”. I need more elves...

P.S. Guess what showed up via FedEx today? Two new atomizer valves and a spare paint jar! Free! I am amazed. Mr. Ryobi is temporarily off my hit/voodoo doll list. Hubby says there is no Mr. Ryobi. Good thing. He’d’ve been in pain these last few days!