28 July 2020

Look at This Photograph

Leftover from the painting project is an issue.

There is a big collage frame that I'm not going to put back up because the frame is aged and more to the issue: I'm kind of over the photos. The condition of the frame is not the thing but this is: the collage has much older photos of my family and I'm feeling Meh about putting them back up. 

I mean, I get that the point of having a photo wall(s) is to have a visual representation of your life history.

But what if it's not a history you necessarily want to see?  
Because they don't feel like my family.  I can look at the girls or Little Nephew and feel happy.  Seeing photos of my parents or brothers, however, I've realized just makes me anxious or sad.

If we do math, I have been a Jones (not my surname) for almost thirty years.  I have only been a Smith (not my maiden name) for nineteen years, many of which I don't remember and some of which, I don't want to.  I has Satan's surname for less than two years so it doesn't count on a variety of levels.

So, anyway.  Some visual context: the main wall everyone sees has photos of Kevin & I, the fam, racecar, truck, and puppy.  There is a photo of Little Nephew and another of the girls, otherwise my family is not represented on that wall.  

On the opposite wall by my office, there are some photos of my family and other photos like what's on the main wall. A mixture of current-ish and older ones.  I have photos of my grandparents when they were young, because seeing them does make me happy. However, I haven't hung my brother's wedding portrait up yet.  (and I love my sister-in-law) 

You might be wondering: no, my family does not come to our house.  We stopped inviting them to an annual barbecue because they didn't ever come.  I don't have them up for the holidays because our house is tiny and not made for entertaining.  So, it's not like they're going to be here, look at the walls, and notice that they are not represented. 

If I were to channel Marie Kondo, this collage does not spark joy so leave it down.  But then what do I do with it?  Change the photos, and/or have Kevin paint the frame. Or store it in Monica's Closet, or rehang it.  Too many options for my busy brain so here we are.

And then as I was browsing the thousands of photos on my phone (not exaggerating) I realized that I can put our friends photos on the walls. Tah Dah! Problem solved! I like our friends. I have photos of them! They don't make me anxious or sad. 

I am going to pick my favorites (photos...and yeah friends, lol), order prints and put them into the frame instead.  Because they do make me happy and they are good memories.

Painting is just so complicated, who knew?  Lol.

23 July 2020

Paint It Black

See, I told you I'd tell you this story.  Sometimes I do actually follow through.

We spent two weekends painting the shop.  I thought it would take a weekend but I was super wrong.  This is not unusual as I historically underestimate how long things actually take.  Also, I did not anticipate that Kevin would have many of the same habits/coping techniques that I would.  It's fun working with someone just like yourself *shaking my head*

First, some details:

It's only a one car garage that has been built by Kevin and his dad, in phases, over thirty years.  It is super nothing fancy.  We did the exterior two summers ago and was way overdue for the interior.

It's never been completed, meaning the walls were never taped and spackled or textured.  Never sealed up at the floor or ceiling.  Never properly trimmed around doors and windows.  The wallboard is tan, not only because it has aged but because when it was installed it was not grey/white like wallboard is now.  

That being said, we still didn't tape, spackle, or any of those kind of words.  We did do a goodly amount of drywall repair with paint this weekend.  And well placed shelving and posters.

It turned out pretty cool, if I do say so myself.  The wall above his workbench still needs finished and Kevin is doing the ceiling because I'm super, extra, not doing it.  Next is the floor, which is under debate; whether to do paint or garage tile.  I have a feeling this will be a while though.  Like another tens of years.  Especially since we were so careful when we started not to drip paint then by the end of the project was all "Oh, it's just a shop floor."

Two side-notes about this project: I told Kevin that I would immediately, without warning, take his brother to the dirt if he commented negatively in any way.  Today was the day and I'm pleased(?) to say that I was the grownup and ignored him.  He chose a random untouched piece of wood trim on the ceiling to ask about. Not the cool paint scheme, not the newly installed trim, the windows. Nope, a random piece of trim on the ceiling.  

AND, I have a bet with Kevin that he has his wife paint his garage the exact same way.  Because he feeds the green-eyed-monster on the regular.  If Kevin does it, he has to do it.

I am not scared of spiders.  Usually I will let them be, unless they are in the house.  If they are in the house, it wavers between catch and release and burial at sea.  Well, we live in the woods and this is an old shop.  Kevin did a good job at keeping spiders at bay but the webs are a whole other topic.  There are now a few that are a permanent part of the wall texture.

There is a heater in the shop that has trim around it.  However, the trim for the floor would not fit under it.  So this resulted in me laying on my belly on the concrete floor and painting underneath.  This was one of those me muttering "No other wife would do this for their husband" moments.  Kevin agreed but then also wondered if he should take a photo "Because isn't that the kind of thing you post on social media?"  He was joking but there was enough seriousness that I hurried to finish.

I learned what it is like to paint with me because Kevin has similar habits.  Clutter spins him out and the need to put things back as soon as possible is great in him.  Or, sometimes he'd get frustrated and things would pile up.  This is where I am triggered and going around throwing things away, putting away tools, etc. just so I could focus.  

At one point, he reached The Frustration Level.  I am very familiar with the level, see Sandy Wall that Remains Unfinished.  I was able to talk him down by explaining that he was just at the This Is Never Getting Finished stage.  He said something like How do you know? And I muttered "Because.I.Have.Painted.The.Entire.Inside.Of.The.House."  He was quiet after that. Hmmm.  

Finally, I have to say that painting with black paint is SO SATISFYING.  I was in my Happy Place for sure.  I was actually thinking of more things that I could paint black.

It's been so long that we can't remember which 
puppy chewed the edge of the door
Notice the ugly ceiling and imagine an ENTIRE
shop like that

21 July 2020

Weekend Update, Multiplied by Four

Oh hai.  Did you know time passes?  Sometimes it just gets away from me.  I am alive, everyone is well. Just took a break for a bit. Apologies for any worries.

 So, here's what's happening here:

I don't know that my re-assimilation into real life is going to go well.  I've found myself losing patience more easily when I have to deal with actual people.  (I had a shipping issue and I wasn't more normal amenable self)  Also, we had a contractor and inspector here at the house and I found I was exhausted by all of the people-ing at the end of the day.

For the first time in my ENTIRE life, I did not attend a celebration at my family's house for Independence Day.  Mostly due to the stay home order and because I've been trying to get out of it for a few years now.  It's a much bigger topic than I want to visit in this post so I'm just saying: that happened.

Oh, but my family still gathered.  (Sorry, BFF K, you have to hear this again.)  My brother travels for work, my other brother works in a giant factory, my niece traveled to another state and attended a music festival.  AND...they all went to the mom's for the holiday.  Tiny house, probably about 10-12 people and they were inside because it rained.  Now you understand why I happily skipped it.

Instead, we watched Hamilton; which felt more patriotic actually.  OMG, I loved it just from listening to it hundredity times and now I only love it more.  It was interesting to match what my imagination was to reality.  I picked up more information that only visual can give you, because: of course, which made me love it extra.  I 100% cried at the end, again.  I'm going to watch it again when Kevin's not around, multiple times.  He liked it but I think once was enough for him.  And I can crank it up super high.

GiGi: I already bought the cream colored paint BUT I very MUCH want to know what color you suggest!!! Tell me!!!  I haven't finished in there yet, much to Kevin's dismay.  It's on my to-do list this week (month)  (year.)

I've completed painting the bedroom's "easy" wall, which is the one with two doors.  The only thing left is a huge blank wall that mirrors the living room wall that I painted mocha.  It took over three hours to paint so yeah, there's that.  And the big ladder.  Also, still haven't fixed the sandy wall.  I just can't get motivated for it.  It will probably take only about an hour, I just can't with it.  And I haven't decided if I'm going to repaint it all anyway.

AND Then, we have to paint the exterior of the house.  Kevin thinks we can do it over a weekend and I think that's just, well, ADORABLE.  We were going to have painters do it but they have flaked on us. SO not looking forward to that. 

AND THEN, we spent two weekends painting Kevin's garage.  It has never been truly painted.  We did it once, in a panic (the title of my autobiography, probably)  when we were moving into it when the house was being built.  I will write more about that next.  (No, I will.  I WILL.  Shush)

Update on Rosie.  My genius idea of having her live under our bed didn't work as planned.  It might still work for others, just not us.  Because of the carpet, she had trouble getting home.  She'd push the base around and not go home.  Booo.  So now she lives in the office.  We had to nearly take apart a bookcase to find the #$%@ outlet but it's done now.  I continue to love her though.  Best purchase I've made in quite a while.

Oh, but I have found that she's A.D.D. like me.  I've had to find her a few times because she wanders the house in no discernible pattern.  I take partial blame because I keep moving her home.  One of the best parts is that I got an alert that Rosie was stuck when I was in town. I had to text Kevin to go rescue her.  As she still makes him a little nervous, I got great joy out of it.

We are still in Phase Two her; although there have been warnings of going back down to Phase One.  Masks are required everywhere now, finally.  I've purchased extras for us and the parents.  It's become kind of a hobby now: shopping for masks.   When I washed one of mine, I realized it was 100% cotton so I had to remember if I even still had an iron.  (I did)  The others are polyblend so it wasn't a thing. It felt like just one more thing, though.  

The border remains closed and will probably remain so until the new year.  This has bummed me out more than anything else.  We really miss our friends.  We miss racing too but mostly our friends. It will be nearly two years of not seeing them if the border remains closed into 2021.  

Working from home has slowed down.  July is a scheduled slow month so motivation to come work in the office has disappeared.  And I had not considered how hot it gets in here during the summer, adding to the lack of motivation.  

It appears that I will be doing this for a while though. At least through the Fall and then possibly as long as my contract will allow.  Right now, it's through September 30 (been extended thirty-days) but I'm to expect another extension.

Well, Kevin's parents decided yesterday that they needed to go to HOME DEPOT.  I know.  Kevin and I both kind of chastised them about WHAT THE ACTUAL HELL making better choices.  They needed a carpet protector so I ordered one on the amazon for them instead.  I suspected that they went to the grocery store the other day and now I'm fairly certain that they did.  Especially since they haven't given me a list for a while.

The point being is that it feels like they're starting to sneak out, like teenagers.  The logic given yesterday was "Well, everyone HAS TO wear a mask!"  Yes, and some still do not because #freedom.  And you're still eighty-years-old and WHAT IS SO IMPORTANT to risk it.  Instead they said "we're just going to go for a drive" and we both know they probably went to Denny's or something ridiculous.  There's only so much we can do.  

Right after I finally got my f-i-l's phone situation settled, their internet tanked.  Of course it did.  After another trip back to town, it was just a battery.  An easy fix, overall, but the last thing I wanted to do after All of That.  Then this morning I got a phone call because the m-i-l's tablet "was black. I can't see it"  THAT'S not disconcerting AT ALL to hear.  

She did not, I repeat: DID NOT, turn down the dimmer on the screen NOR DID SHE turn off the wifi.  Kevin mentioned that "She really should lock up her tablet because clearly it is not safe from the people who break in at night and mess with it."  

So there are the highlights, I think. A little bit of everything and nothing.  

Hope everyone is well and staying safe.