Sunday, March 18, 2007

In sickness and in health, in good times and during home improvement projects

Adding a new and extremely needy human being to the household has nothing on painting the family room when it comes to things that test your mettle as a couple. First there is the decision to paint or not paint the hideous wood paneling that was installed, with great pride I'm sure, in 1964 when the house was built. When we moved in a little over a year ago the deal was I could either paint the wood paneling or the kitchen cabinets. The deal was renegged as soon as the last box was unpacked and it was time to start painting.

About a month before Charlie was born, Ryan said "You know what? We should really paint over this paneling." Miraculously, he lived to tell the story. So he and I waddled off to Walmart, picked out a pretty shade of yellow paint and brought it home. As soon as we walked in the door, Ryan said "You know what? I think that color is too bright, let's 'wait' on the painting." I don't remember exactly what my reaction was but I'm sure I probably shouldn't post it anyway because Ryan's mom reads my blog.

Fast forward to a couple of weeks ago when I finally got fed up with our family room looking like a dark cave. I dusted off the old can of yellow paint (that we picked out t-o-g-e-t-h-e-r) and painted everything I could reach without moving heavy furniture. I even did two coats so it looked nice. And Ryan was right, it was way too bright. I emailed A:

"A, I just painted the family room and I am in so much trouble. It looks like the f***ing Copa Cabana in here!"

The color really grew on me over time though that day and I was quite proud of myself when Ryan came home that night. He walked into the room and stared silently at the painted walls for a few seconds before summoning the diplomacy to say "Oh great! You started painting!" Since then he has referred to my yellow paint as "primer". I referred to it as "The paint that is going to stay just the way it is until you take the time to repaint it, Mr. Picky."

Saturday, Ryan took Charlie to Lowe's so I could rest and get some things done around the house (and they also brought me some iced tea and a breakfast taco when they came home). He picked up a selection of Ryan Approved Paint Colors so that I could choose a new color. I picked one out (the color was pretty but I really was swayed by the name: Vanilla Bean... mmmmm ice cream) and he bought a gallon so, in his words, he didn't almost have a stroke every morning when he walked into the family room and in my words we could make the family room booooorrrrriiiinnnnggg.

We started painting that night after Charlie went to bed. I painted two coats on one wall and added a coat of white around a door frame. Ryan was still working on the wall he started on. I used all the patience I've learned in the last three years of marriage plus one child to not screech "For heaven's sake Michelangelo it's not the Sistine Chapel!! What the hell is taking so long???" And he used all his husbandly patience to not go nuts on me as he rubbed paint drips out of the carpet. Wisely, we decided to throw in the towel around eleven at night, leaving all the furniture and toys pushed into a heap in the middle of the floor.

We finally reached a point we are describing as "finished for now" tonight around eight thirty. We were able to move the largest furniture back where it goes, hang the pictures back up, and say kind things to eachother like "I like the way you were so careful on the moulding" and "What a pretty color you picked out!" (Even though someone keeps saying "I'm sure it'll grow on me" and someone else insists on replying "Well I sure hope it does because in the name of all that is holy we are not repainting again").

I love him. Look how well he treats me:
Mmm the variety
I do love cereal. Even icky colon blow Total, official cereal of post-partum women everywhere.


Anonymous said...

Nothin' says lovin' like a big bowl of Captain Crunch! I just finished off a box the other day.

Art Nerd said...

Hi! I've headed on over from, and immediately bookmarked your site. Love! Girlcrush! And even better, artsy references are my batsignal!

Anyway, nice to "meet" you, I'll be back!