Home Improvement – T-minus 10
September 2007 (Sep 24th – 28th)
The countdown is at 10 days until Octoberfest and it wasn’t supposed to be like this. The room is a disaster, and I have no idea if my loosely contrived plan for the windows will make them look any better.
Thinking of a song from Rush’s latest album, Far Cry, “Sometimes I feel I’m on top of the world and the next it is falling in on me. I can get back on. I can get back on…”
I don’t know why it matters so much to me, but it does. With renewed determination, I was going to get this done one way or another.
My head was spinning that week. Five days to fix what previously took me weeks, if not months, to complete.
I refined the plan in my head. I just had to test it out before implementing it and hope my family doesn’t disown in the process. I re-wrote my task sheet down to the day, including what I can get done in the morning and what I can get done at night in order to stay on track and may the gods be good, I’ll have a presentable room for Octoberfest.
Third time’s a charm. I knew by heart now what wood I needed to buy. I’ve also gotten very good at the table saw, staining, and sealing gig. The trick was how to paint the windows and picking out the right color. (you know how that goes for me)
I painted the casement windows in the morning, and sealed the trim at night; then did it again the next day for a second coat. The new paint will look better against the stained trim, but I’m a crazy man this week and I want to take this a step further… I’m going to attempt to faux paint it to look like wood.
I had tested this all out on scrap wood, so I knew what I was getting into. I didn’t follow a book; I just made it up as I went along. I first sealed the paint with one coat of poly. This is because if I didn’t, the next step of using an oil based stain to faux with might wreak havoc on the paint. The first coat of stain is to further tint the paint and to texturize it to give it a base grain look. I put the stain on with a sponge, let it start to dry, and then use a dry brush to feather it.
The second pass of stain was to create a more distinct wood grain effect. It didn’t matter so much how you got the stain on, it was all in how you took it off. I found a technique with the dry brush that seemed to work and I think the final effect is pretty good. Actually, it looks really good. I surprised myself once again with what I am capable of.
I put up the trim Friday night (thank you again, Paslode) and in five weekdays, I turned it around and did what I thought was impossible. I fixed it. I feel better.
On the weekend I can start to clean the room for Octoberfest and then take my time during week to prepare all of the other things on my list to host this party. I have calmed down and I’m at ease with how everything will work out. It was going to be great no matter what state the room was in and I just felt better about the whole thing.
Truly, while Octoberfest is obviously near and dear to me, the remaining 51 weeks of the year matter so much more. The blood, sweat and tears I’ve (…we’ve) poured into this room will all be worth it because this is the place where I know many memories will be made with my loving family. I can’t wait to share it with them. After Octoberfest, I will finish it up and start thinking about how great the Christmas tree will look in this room with the snow falling outside and the wood stove keeping us warm.
Thurday, October 4, 2007 – 9:33 A.M. (10 minutes ago)I just got a call from the carpet installer; the carpet is in currently northbound out of New Jersey.
T-minus 3, 2, 1…
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