Thursday, July 9, 2009

Cheap Labor

I had what I thought was a great idea for a summer activity. The kids love home improvements, love to paint, love to help with projects - so I would have them help me paint and organize the garage. Brilliant!

I wouldn't mind if the painting was a little messy - it's the garage!

I wouldn't mind if we drip a bit here and there - it's the garage!!

The kids would be so happy. My garage would be all spiffy. Win-win!! Yay!!

So we took things down and threw things away and cleaned (and cleaned and cleaned) spiderwebs and leaves and other yuckitude off of the walls. Then Sprout and I went and bought some gray-tinted primer and went at the first wall.

Two hours later:

1.) The wall looked exactly the same as when we started (apparently the paint guy at Lowe's was WRONG when he said we didn't have to tint the primer...not happy with him AT ALL.)
2.) Sprout was very annoyed with me for insisting that we paint the entire wall and not just a strip at her waist height.
3.) My back was broken from bending and stretching and painting.
4.) It was time to call in the professionals.

But Tater was very unhappy that he hadn't had a chance to paint. Poor Tater.

Today I went and got a quart of the paint the professionals will use to paint the garage and let the kids do the bottom half of the primed wall. The nice lady at MAB even gave me painter's hats for them to wear!

Tater went to work with a brush on the bottom, Sprout had a pad painter (which I find much much easier to work with than a roller). They started out with lots of energy and I was being all (sort of) zen-ish about their technique.

It's the garage. It's the garage...that was my mantra...

They did a really good job and even took turns every 5 minutes or so so each of them could try the different tools.

Tater and I took a break to play some tic-tac-toe. Which he then carefully painted over.

They even finished the entire wall - about halfway up.

Sprout was again annoyed when I suggested that we had to fill in all of the spaces. But she did it in (mostly) good spirits.

I would declare this partial project as a success. No major fights. No major messes. Over an hour of entertainment and busyness that didn't involve electronics.

The pros come next week to finish. They apparently don't have an "only the garage" if I can figure out how to get these guys on ladders (without causing myself a heart attack, which is the tricky part) we might have them do the rest!

Although I don't think I possess that level of zen. Even if it is just the garage...

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