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Blogging about gardening in zone 4, marriage, our golden retriever and life in general.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Painting at the Lake

For some reason, DJ and I sometimes find it hard to actually relax at the lake. You look around the house and there is so much to do. When we got to Harrison over Memorial Day, DJ mentioned that, you know, it wouldn’t really be too difficult to paint the decks. They really needed it, and it’d mean we could walk around out there without getting slivers. Maybe our foolishness had something to do with living in a condo where we rarely do exterior yardwork. Either way, my mom isn’t a fool, she knows when to jump at free labor!

The lower deck near the front door.
The second floor deck.

It was in really rough shape.

So over Memorial Day weekend, DJ, my mom and I washed and stained the decks on our house at the lake.
DJ sprayed down the decks to lift all of the dirt and old paint off.
I washed the upper deck in my swimsuit. See the reflection of the lake in my sunglasses? It was one of the nicest Memorial Day weekends in a while!

We started painting the next day after the newly washed decks dried. I knew the dry wood would soak up the paint.

Right now he's wondering why I love to come to this place so much. Everytime I drag him out here he's put to work.

Painting the decking was fun. I did it with a big roller brush that I just dipped into the can of paint, then spread it around like sailors swabbing the deck. The paint makes a huge difference, huh?
We finished painting the decks in time to actually enjoy some Memorial Day weekend fun. But as you can imagine, a nicely painted deck really brings out how shitty the house looks. By the end of Memorial Day weekend, I told my mom that I’d come back out for a week in July to help her paint the house.

I should preface these next photos by saying that the existing siding is in pretty crummy condition. My parents know this, but still aren’t sure what the long-term plan is for the lake place, so they don’t want to reside it at this time. We didn’t do an incredibly good job repainting it this summer. We didn’t prime the boards; some of them are so warped and cracked it wouldn’t have mattered. We didn’t really even pre-wash it too much. Mom also bought paint that was like glue, in hopes of holding some of the siding together!

We started painting on Sunday, and finished above the upper deck and the front (to where I was brave enough to go on a lader at least) of the house by Monday at noon.

Mom and I got into a good rhythm of being up by 7am and painting by 7:30am. It’s usually hot in Coeur d’Alene the last few weeks of July, and the lake-facing sides of the house were the south and west elevations. There was no way I wanted to be up on a ladder painting in 90 degree heat. Nu-uh. Nope. No Way. I’d rather get up early.

Why yes, yes I did paint in a swimsuit top and skirt. With my hot pink swimsuit bottoms. It was hot out, I wanted a tan, and didn't have any gym shorts I was ready to throw away yet.

Since I’d mysteriously lost a contact lens between Friday night and Saturday morning, I had to wear my contacts until DJ could ship me contacts. Yeah, that was awesome. Let’s just imagine how I looked in my spandex biking gear, a hat and red glasses. Like a major band nerd. The glasses also occasionally got in the way painting, and now have some paint on them as a souvenir. Who wants Lasik surgery? >>>this girl!<<<

Sandi, hanging out a window. She's also quite photogenic!

Painting the lake-side of the house was tedious. There are a lot of windows, and its two stories in most places. This meant that we had to position the ladder just so with my mom reminding me to “be careful” and “watch the window” and “oh don’t break the window” every time we moved the ladder. Thankfully, we successfully got through the whole week without breaking a window or me falling off of a ladder.

My mom is a champion painter. She’s meticulous, but quick about it. And she spent a lot of time this week leaning out of windows and stretching and bending in funny ways.

Batrick, hanging out.

By Tuesday afternoon we’d moved around to the side of the house, and were making progress. Holy heck, we might actually finish this soon! We pushed on through, and painted all day on Tuesday. About 2pm, we were working on the area right above the kitchen door when a bat came out of the peak. AAHHHAHAHAH holy freaking moly! A BAT. During the DAY. I named him Batrick, and Batrick was a total buzzkill for the day. We decided to give Batrick some space while I sprayed the house for insects and mom went to St. Marie’s for more paint.
The kitchen deck, where the BBQ and "beverage" fridge are. Batrick's nest is just above the door.

I'm going to use this photo to point out the fantastic legs my 50's something mother has. Seriously. Cellulite? Not on her!

Mom fought road construction to and from St. Maries and I jumped into the lake to cool down. Another advantage of wearing your swimsuit while painting at the lake! Once she got back, we went to work painting away. Since we didn’t really want to get too close to Batrick’s nest, and we couldn’t reach it too well anyway, we divulged a paintbrush on a stick to finish the job.
Moving the ladder back and forth made me appreciate the power pump class I've been going to! It was a shoulder workout.
Mom also picked up some cream paint to do the window trim with, as a way of shaking it up a bit. And she’d of had to go into Spokane for the trim paint, which would have been a hassle. First we primed them with a white primer, which was really, really white. Then we went over them with a more cream color.
Why yes, yes I'm still painting in a skirt and swimsuit. See that lovely lake behind me?
Remember this deck from Memorial Day?

Overall, we finished up the whole house by Friday morning, with exception of some back gable painting that my dad did to finish things up. It was a big project, but I’m glad to say that the house looks so good now. Mom hired someone to finish the high part of the front gable and fix where the rock wall had moved out.

The problem? The good looking house brings out how bad the yard looks…

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