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Exterior Painting is a Pain

There is still nothing in my life to report that isn’t a house update. The kitchen cabinets are 99% done. All the doors are hung; all the drawer fronts are installed. I still need to paint the cabinet carcasses above and next to the fridge, and on both sides of the stove. Both processes involve the removal of the appliance in question, so I’m not exactly rushing. Other kitchen stuff that needs to be done is scrubbing and paint removal on the floor, patching and painting the last bit of ceiling, and patching and painting the last teal wall where the wet bar was. It’s just never quite done, and I haven’t quite reconciled myself to the idea that this is how it’s always going to be. There will always be something. On the bright side, Connecticut just repealed the sales tax on energy-star appliances until July 1, 2008. Sounds like a good time to buy a new fridge to me! I may think about replacing the stove a little sooner too. That’s not an insignificant about of money in taxes.

In other house news, I got most of my outdoor painting done last weekend. There’s a little outdoor "vestibule" when you walk up to my door. With it being enclosed on three sides, on the north side of the house, AND painted the same deep red as the rest of the house it was horribly dark. Two of the three walls were self-contained and didn’t flow into the rest of the house, so I painted those two walls tan. I painted the ceiling the lightest color beige on the same paint chip card, and the door will be that color also. It is SO much lighter that it’s hard to believe. I really like it. I’ll like it even better once the door is painted and a new (white) screen door is on. It’s a much more welcoming area now. I also installed the new dark-sky light fixture. Unfortunately you can see the bulb because you look "up" at the door and fixture, but I guess you can’t have everything. It’s larger than the one that was there, and looks much more in scale with the area. It’s also more effective because the light is being sent "down" instead of "out." The part that gave me fits about installing it was the necessity to cut away clapboards in order for it to fit properly. Cutting holes in the side of my house makes me nervous. But between Bob’s Dremel and a chisel, I did a fairly neat job. Now I feel more confident about installing the one by the front door. I also know for a fact that my clapboards ARE cedar.

Once I’ve gotten a second coat on the outside doorframe and we’ve installed a new screen door, I can tackle the actual door. I was really hoping to paint it in place, but they made such a mess when it was painted last time that I feel like I need to take it off the hinges to really clean things up appropriately. There’s paint all over the hinges that I’d like to scrub off, and that’ll just be easier with the door off. I foresee my back door on sawhorses in the middle of my kitchen. That will be quite the photo op. I’m hoping to get that done this weekend.

Tuesday was a root canal first thing in the morning. Can anyone tell me why dentists expect you to be able to communicate? "Tell me if you need more suction" the assistant says. I’ve got two people’s hands and half a toolbox in my mouth. How? Semaphore? But at least that’s over. I get the crown done in a couple of weeks, and my dental work for the year is done. Every year we pick the tooth that needs work the most and do one root canal and one crown, which just about brings me up to the yearly limit on my dental insurance. My endodontist is convinced that if he leans hard enough that he can get my jaw to flex just a little farther. So I’m on soft food for the moment.

So here’s the current short term "to do" for the house, in no particular order:

*Finish painting exterior frame and install new screen door
*Remove back door; paint interior door frame; paint door
*Install new front door light
*Build new cabinet doors for laundry area and upstairs bathroom
*Cut new inserts for buffet doors and glue in place
*Paint out laundry alcove, walls and ceiling
*Paint and install new cabinet doors for laundry alcove (as soon as they’re built)
*Install new molding in half bath (already cut and painted)
*Hang mirror in half bath
*Clean paint off kitchen floor
*Find a date to hold the much-delayed housewarming party

It looks like a huge list, but it’s mostly a lot of little "last 10%" stuff. I think we can get a lot of it done this weekend. Who knows – maybe I can go back to *parking* in my garage soon!

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