Heavy in the Paint

Once the walls were prepped, Terry jumped into painting with fierce resolve. Wednesday afternoon he set up the sprayer, then put on his spacesuit and sprayed a coat of primer. For a number of reasons, once you start applying a coat of paint you want to finish it in the same sitting… so Terry and Colin stayed on site until after 9 Wednesday night to get primer on every wall and ceiling in the house.

Thursday dawned and we welcomed the newest addition to our team: Nat the painter. Nat took charge of the sprayer and put a coat of paint in the closets and on all the ceilings. Now, a few notes about the sprayer. It’s by far the fastest way to get a coat of paint on something, but it goes through 5-gallon buckets FAST. Abby and Kari made multiple trips to Home Depot to resupply. So far we’ve needed some 45 gallons of primer, and I think 15 gallons of white tinted paint for the ceilings.

Terry and Nat prepare the sprayer for ceiling paint.

Terry and Nat prepare the sprayer for ceiling paint.

The sprayer requires a steady hand and a proper technique to get an even coat of paint, so none but Terry and Nat have handled it. And even in the hand of a professional, the spray isn’t very precise. You can’t, for example, spray a ceiling one color and a wall another – the colors will splatter over one another.

Well, that’s exactly what we want for most rooms in the house, so once Nat finished spraying the ceilings we whipped out rollers and brushes for the walls. We started in the kitchen. Kari cut in around the perimeters… she has an amazing touch with the brush and got her paint right up to the edge without marking the ceiling at all. Abby followed with a roller. They’ve completed two coats in the kitchen; next up are the living room and library.

Abby and Kari paint the kitchen a lovely cream.

Abby and Kari paint the kitchen a lovely cream.

Outside the house it’s cold, wet, and windy. But plenty of work remains, namely siding and decking. On Thursday, we sided our way up the south face of the house upon three increasingly muddy ladders. And on Friday, we decked about half of the west-facing porch with increasingly numb fingers. We dress in plenty of layers, but I doubt a glove exists that can keep our fingers warm without compromising the dexterity we need to hold a screw. Sometimes you just have to suffer a little.

Marking a trim line on a piece of siding.

Marking a trim line on a piece of siding.


Major progress on the front porch decking. Weather is hideous.

Major progress on the front porch decking. Weather is hideous.

So I’m kind of thankful that the sun sets before 5 now, forcing us indoors to finish out each day. Colin installed temporary bulbs in a number of light fixtures and Terry plugged in a portable heater on each floor (which heat the whole house thanks to our amazing insulation). Electricity enables us to work inside at all hours… it’s a blessing and a curse.

So never mind the darkness
We still can find a way.
‘Cause nothing lasts forever
Even cold November rain.
-Guns N’ Roses

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