Now that all three of our kids have grown up, married and bought their own homes, I am getting to do some really fun projects for them. If you follow my blog, you know that I love doing things with my hands and home projects are one of my favorite activities. If you are new to my blog, you can click on the category “At Home” and you will find a number of home project posts.
Our oldest son was the first to take the buying plunge, but their first home was a condo they renovated before moving in and their second home was a brand-new town home that didn’t need any work either. So, my home projects while visiting them have been limited to assembling things, like these bookcases, which were still fun.
Our daughter and her husband…
…were next up to purchase their home which was an almost 100-year old house in Seattle. My daughter’s father-in-law helped them soon after moving in with some renovation work in the kitchen. I did a few small things over some of my many visits but the most fun I had was in 2018 when I tiled their kitchen counter, turning this…
If you are interested in seeing more on how this project progressed over the week I was there, you can click here.
Then just last April, our youngest son and his family bought their first home. Since they also live in Memphis just five miles from our home, I have had many more opportunities to help with projects (hopefully our two older kids that both live on the West coast won’t be too jealous).
First up was to build them a doormat for the front door, using a design I have been using for several years.
Next I did some outdoor electrical work installing a flood light and electrical outlet.
But the then fun really began.
I love to paint and the first room to paint was my granddaughter’s bedroom. She loves pink so obviously pink was the color of choice. She enthusiastically volunteered to help.
But then I remembered her dad had also “helped” paint once when he was little, so I captured this shot of her reminiscent of her own dad’s young efforts.
Then this past February, I got another painting assignment—their hearth room, eat-in dining area, and kitchen.
While I love to paint and have had a good bit of experience, I am not what you would call a professional painter. But I am a perfectionist and so do the very best job I can to resemble a professional job.
For me, the first step is to apply unlimited amounts of blue painter’s tape to ensure nice straight and sharp lines, followed by brush work to get where a roller won’t fit.
I brought over my 8-foot ladder and my 10-foot ladder not knowing which would reach the tall vaulted ceilings. In the hearth room, I estimated the tallest parts to be 12-foot, but I could still reach with my 8-foot ladder without standing on the top step.
After moving out the furniture, it took me a day to tape and paint two coats with a brush. On the next day, I was able to roll two coats (the really fun part as you see so much progress in a short time) and when I removed the tape the following day, it looked quite nice.
When I started in the kitchen, I found that with the kitchen cabinets in place, the 8-foot ladder did not allow me to get close enough to the ceiling to paint. My 10-foot ladder is actually a 20-foot extension ladder and when I climbed up to see how far up the ladder I would have to go to reach the wall next to the ceiling, I felt the ladder could slip on the tile floor and plunge me to the ground.
I really did not want to test the strength of my 60+ year-old bones upon falling so, I enlisted my wife’s help to perch on the bottom of the ladder to give me support while I did the brush work. When she got a call and was asked what she was doing, she decided to take a selfie to show her friend.
A cute shot of her but not so flattering a one of me.
Once I got to rolling and could rest the ladder at the top edge of the cabinets over the countertop, I could relieve my wife of her helpful duty.
I had estimated that we would need three gallons of paint and as I started the second coat, I realized it was going to be close. By the time I reached the last wall (the largest in the kitchen), I had run out of paint. So off to the paint store I trekked and then in no time, had finished up the job.
It ended up taking about 3.25 gallons so with the remaining paint, I had enough for another fun project—painting my granddaughter’s bathroom as well.
Now that I have finished these few projects for our kids, I look forward to more fun projects in the future!