My husband and I hold our hands up and admit we will never be Mr & Mrs DIY no matter how much we try. That statement is not a copout for shirking, but a mere fact based on trial after trial. But this said, we are house-proud and do take great care in making our house and home. We ensure that all decorating, maintenance, and those must-do jobs, are carried out with a minimum of fuss and expenditure. We’re not totally useless and will only ever use home improvement contractors for the jobs that are well out of our league. Sadly, that’s quite a lot of jobs!
A few weeks ago, it was out with the home improvements catalog again as we sifted through ideas for a complete overhaul. I think we probably bit off a bit more than we could chew this time as we seem to be up to our proverbial ears in home improvement chores. We don’t know which projects should take precedence which means that we have started a lot of projects. We have finished almost none. We knew that we were going to have a lot of home improvement projects when we first looked at the home. It is quite small place and the previous two owners didn’t seem to care for this charming little house and DIY home improvement was certainly not high on their list of priorities.
When we first moved in, I felt like I was at camp. I thought that we were in over our heads, but with a few ideas we came across on the many home improvement shows on television, we soon found ourselves quite comfortable. Being comfortable is not always a good thing. We were constantly working on the home during the first three months, but things have begun to taper off during the winter months. I am amazed by all the projects we did finish.
There was no escaping the fact that we had to definitely paint the house.. This was the first major home improvement project on our task list. The house was a corpse-blue hue and it was literally crawling off of the wooden structure. Fortunately, we moved into our new home in August, so the weather was fine for painting. The major obstacle to the do-it-yourself project was that the house was originally painted with an oil-based paint. Then it was painted with vinyl paint, and again with another oil-based paint. I have no idea where their home decorators collection of ideas came from!
The home improvement experts at our local hardware store suggested that we either have a professional blast the horrifically deteriorating paint off of the house or we scrape the peeling paint off and use an oil-based paint to cover it. As we’d already invested quite a bit of money to move into our choice location, we really wanted to avoid taking out a home improvement loan at this stage. We’d sooner look at home improvement loans further down the line for things like add on rooms and bigger projects, but not for DIY. So, we decided to scrape the paint off ourselves. I was just glad that we chose a small home. We scraped and painted around our work schedules and our baby’s schedule and somehow, we completed the project before the winter set in.
I am a little disappointed in our first home improvement task. We did manage to scrape the old, flaking paint off of the home. We counted five colors ranging from the corpse-blue to fluorescent green to bright red on the flakes of paint. This was an extremely painstaking task that I would not wish on my worst enemy. Once we finished that, we found the actual painting to be quite pleasant. Oil-based paint is very easy to work with.
Oil-based paint is not always easy to find. Here is where my disappointment lies: we had an extremely limited number of color choices because no one really uses oil-based paint anymore. We originally had a peeling, corpse-blue house. Now we have a neat, clean corpse-gray house. I wanted a pale yellow house. The next home improvement project will have nothing to do with painting the exterior of the house, but one day we will look into siding in shades of yellow for our charming little home.