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The 3 Surprises of Painting

Painting Skye's Room

Notice how bright it was when we started?

Skye’s moving.

Which can only mean one thing – physical labor.

There’s the packing and the carrying and the unpacking.

And this time there’s the painting.

Though I’ve painted plenty of rooms, every time is shocking.

For every time, I forget just how hard it is.

(I’m not that bright.)

Then I’m unpleasantly reminded by the

3 Surprises of Painting.

Painting Skye's Room

There's also the dismantling of the windows. You know, if you're into such things.

1. You’ve Forgotten Supplies

I always forget just how much stuff you need to paint.

Like hammers. And screwdrivers. And scrapers.

Each of which we’d forgotten and had to scramble around to locate.

And that’s not even talking about actual painting tools.

Or the lighting required for adequate photography.

Which is, as you all know, essential.

Painting Skye's Room

Notice how dark it was by this step?

2. You’re Not Ready to Paint

Do you think you’re prepared to start painting?

Well, you’re wrong.

(And that was obviously a trick question, poorly done you.)

First you have to carry everything out of the room.

Then you have to delicately place it all in the hallway, perfectly cutting off your means of escape.

Then there’s laying the drop cloth and washing the walls and discovering that the area where a border had been is covered in stickiness so there’s calling your mom to find out what to do and then spending an hour breathing in vinegar fumes and then, finally, the taping.

And after that, there’s going to be painting.


Painting Skye's Room


3. You’re Going to Get Gooey

This might seem intuitive.

But it’s not until you’re actually covered in paint, finding pieces on your clothes and in your hair and, surprisingly, on your eyelid, that it sinks in.

Painting just isn’t for the weak.

Or for people with enough money and sense to pay others

But I clearly wouldn’t fit in that category,


{ 21 comments… add one }

  • Tracie August 16, 2011, 10:45 am

    When I think about the actual act of painting a room, it feels fun…but when I remember all these things, the work that leads up to it, I remember that painting is NOT fun. Not at all.

    But the pictures are great!

  • Mindee@ourfrontdoor August 16, 2011, 10:45 am

    You nailed it.
    I have been unwillingly painting rooms for over 20 years now and get all three surprises each and every time.

  • Pickles & Dimes August 16, 2011, 10:55 am

    YES. You detailed it perfectly. I love that blue color, though!

    I once had to paint a ceiling. One of those popcorn textured ceilings. It was the worst painting experience of my life, hands down.

  • Marie @ It's a Kind of Normal August 16, 2011, 11:08 am

    It’s always fun to have a fresh new room, but I always, always forget about the work involved!!!

  • Skye August 16, 2011, 11:48 am

    Thank you SO much for helping! I was going to say I owe you, but I did help you paint that one time. So I only owe you like 5 moves. Right?

  • Lori @ I Can Grow People August 16, 2011, 11:52 am

    “Painting just isn’t for the weak.” INDEED. I’ve spent the last decade as a professional scenic artist, painting scenery for theater, opera and the like. It is a delightful combination of fine art, decorative art and house painting. A lot of people don’t believe me when I tell them how exhausting it is. Or how sneaky paint is (I have found paint on my bra and underwear. More than once.)

  • John August 16, 2011, 12:30 pm

    I always hung fabric whenever I rented, specifically to not have to paint (and because Mexican blankets and my Pink Floyd wall hanging kick ass).

  • Stephanie @ Our Marriage Adventure August 16, 2011, 1:19 pm

    If you are up to painting then feel free to come visit me. I have an entire house worth of trim and cabinetry to paint. No really – the WHOLE house.

  • SpilledInkGuy August 16, 2011, 1:19 pm

    It’s all about the process.
    Is that what people say?
    I don’t know… I can never tell.
    My ears are usually full of primer by the time they get to ‘about’…

  • Citymom August 16, 2011, 1:37 pm

    One of the joys of growing older is having enough disposable income to hire painters 🙂
    There is too much junk to cart out and then you have to CLEAN the roller???
    Get real. it is exhausting.

  • Shell August 16, 2011, 1:38 pm

    Painting is one of those things that always seems like it’s not going to be a big project… and it always is!

  • Missy @ Wonder, Friend August 16, 2011, 3:07 pm

    Amen to that. It’s not the act of painting I hate so much. It’s the prep and clean up that kill me.

  • Katie August 16, 2011, 5:49 pm

    Painting works my last nerve! I would love to paint my front room a different color, but I don’t just have the willpower to do all of the steps!

  • Craig August 16, 2011, 7:59 pm

    I tried to skim – I really tried to read fast – but I just can’t read you fast. I’m afraid I’ll miss a smile – and it’s true – if I do read you too fast – I miss the smiles. You have smiles between the words – in between the letters of the words – and even in your periods. I’m finding through the months of reading you that it is absolutely impossible to read you without smiling. Thank you for this Megan – smiles from beginning to end. And I’m sorry for overusing the word smiles – anyway – God bless and keep you ツ

  • Jennifer@browneyedandblessed August 16, 2011, 8:52 pm

    Absolutely. we’re currently working on painting our bathroom, a small bathroom. We started this project on Saturday, cleaning up the walls from the glue from our wallpaper, Sunday we taped & primed (took us all day because we didn’t have enough paint), yesterday we painted (with enough paint it took us two hours), and tomorrow we’re doing all the touch up work and hopefully putting everything back on the walls. 4 days to paint a room less than 200 sq ft! Painting is not fun.

  • alonewithcats August 16, 2011, 11:36 pm

    You can’t spell “paint” without “pain.” Coincidence?

  • blackhuff August 17, 2011, 8:21 am

    Looks like a lot of fun to paint with you ladies 🙂

  • Allison August 17, 2011, 11:39 am

    Sad I wasn’t there! I was thinking last time I didn’t do all that stuff, but then I remembered I came late so you guys were already painting, and I was only there for the fun part!

  • Missy Jill (What's Going On Here!?) August 17, 2011, 11:42 am

    Prepping for painting can get you a good leg shot. Who knew?

  • Bodaciousboomer August 17, 2011, 12:05 pm

    Over the years I’ve found it much easier to just move.

  • julie gardner August 17, 2011, 5:22 pm

    Someone smarter than I am once said, “It’s funny because it’s TRUE!”

    Oh my. Painting IS one of those endeavors that’s surprising every. single. time.
    You nailed it. Or painted it. Or whatever.

    Nicely done, lady.
    Skye is lucky to have you. And a whole lot of blue tape.

    Oh yeah.

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