Sunday, April 1, 2007

WIP: Living Room Makeover

My living room makeover started in late January. Most of the work is taking place on weekends, so progress is a little slow.

Before anything could happen, I had to empty the room. I gave away the seven-foot hide-a-bed and a largish side table, dismantled the entertainment system, moved the TV stand, bookshelf, exercise machine, and recliner into the middle of the room and draped them with old bedsheets for protection. No TV since January, except in my bedroom!

With the able help of my younger daughter, I stripped the cedar-shake paneling from the south wall and found that when we put that masterpiece up back in '79, we not only used finishing nails, we put a loop of glue behind each piece. That left a really interesting texture on the wall. We also ripped out the narrow baseboards, which were only on two walls anyway. Those would be a couple more long stories I won't go into just now.

In an amazing swap session, I gave away my big wooden dining room table and six matching chairs, plus two side chairs, and was given a smaller table (with two big leaves!) and six upholstered chairs with casters. My almost-new coffee table is now in the dining room, between the new Oyster White loveseat (still wrapped in plastic) and chair that I bought to replace the couch. All of that in the dining room leaves only a narrow path in which to maneuver. I have renamed the kitchen/dining room area "my single-wide."

February 2007:
A couple of nice young men came in and took down the disfunctional track light, scraped away the popcorn ceiling, patched the big hole where the chimney used to be, and hand-troweled texture onto the ceiling and the walls. Heavy on the south wall. Money well spent.

An electrician friend helped move the track light wire from its off-center position to the middle of the ceiling and install an outlet box with a support bar for a ceiling fan. Because I have a brave and brilliant and athletic daughter who is slender enough to crawl through my so-called attic, my electrician friend (who tried but could not fit his 6'4" body through that space) did not have to cut a BIG hole in my ceiling to do this. And now she knows how to install an outlet box with support bar. I patched the little hole (at the original wire position) and faked the texture with spackle.

March 2007:
I put two coats of latex enamel on the wood trim and on both sides of the closet door. Two coats of Kilz on the ceiling and one coat of Kilz (tinted for primer) on each wall, to restrain twenty-eight years of nicotine absorption. Two coats of ceiling white, one coat of Moody Blue on the north and west walls, two coats of Soft Serenity on the south and east walls.

That sounds so simple. Even peaceful. The words just don't bring up a mental picture of me *climbing up the ladder, painting three feet of ceiling/wall corner, climbing down the ladder, moving the ladder.*
Repeat from * to * about 96 times. Roller painting is, by comparison, a piece of cake.

Bonus: Between January and March, I lost ten pounds.

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