I feel like I have been writing this blog post for about a month; in reality because I have. I was looking for photos to go with it and any time spent in old photo albums always leads to distraction. Then it’s close to Thursday again and I think I’ll do it as a throwback feature but somehow don’t hit publish.
I have spent several hours over the last few weekends disconnected from the world but connected to my task. There is loads of time for reflection when you spend hours doing something that isn’t complex.
I came to several conclusions and perhaps they have analogies in life but first I should give the background. I have even gone on a treasure hunt for photos to include so it could almost be a Throwback Thursday feature as the history to this activity goes a long way back in my life.
I remember begging and offering to pay for the paint to redo my room. I would have been about 15 at the time. Dad and I went to to the hardware store to purchase lilac coloured paint and he proceeded to teach me how to cut in and roll. I moved on from there to do the entire barn the next summer. The summer after that I worked, for money, to paint the curling rink in my small town.
There was then a few years where I didn’t pick up a brush as I lived in a nurses residence and then a couple of rental properties. We built our home in 1984 and there hasn’t been many years that I haven’t been painting since then. It always seems like it is time to change colours or refresh the fence. During the city house years our children had input into their room designs. I learnt some interesting techniques doing their ideas like splatter painting the wall black, yellow and red to match the Mickey Mouse border. Or the bold black and metallic silver X on Spencer’s wall.
Moving into a heritage house has taken that painting up a level as there were multiple fancy walls in be house which I, with the help of many, have replicated. Just learning to paint plaster itself is a challenge and then add in picture rail colour changes on a uneven roof line. The basement bedroom has an old fashioned textured wall paper that had a multi colour treatment that was pain stakingly slow and difficult to do. The tin ceiling was the next learning curve but I love paint and a challenge.
I get more excited buying new paint brushes than I do shopping for clothing. I don’t mind climbing up and down off ladders and scaffolding. Priming is my least favourite phase of painting because it’s boring. I love that first coat of colour! I’m ok with the prep work but when it’s time to wash up I’d rather throw the brush or roller out. I don’t because inherently I am too “thrifty” to do that. The great thing is that most paint jobs aren’t projects that take forever to complete. The siding on our house was a bit like that but rooms or picture frames or office walls are a fun thing to do.
The analogy to life is that you only see the completed paint job but it’s way more complex than how awesome the colour is or the design on the wall. There are so many decisions that go into this and so many little details that someone viewing the wall doesn’t get. I guess the analogy of “walk a mile in my shoes” comes to mind to see the behind the scene details in all of life and don’t just judge the cover by the paint on the wall. Sometimes we paint it the wrong colour and have to change it, sometimes we spill the whole can of paint (that’s a bloody true story and it was on carpet!) and sometimes the paint colour is off but we carry on. Each time we paint we improve a little, having learnt a few lessons from the last go around which is rather like life itself.
PS I give up. I have been hunting and hunting for my very first photo album that had a picture of my friend and I painting the rink. I have no idea where the album has disappeared to and I’ve temporarily given up looking.