It began with the carpet. Know how carpet salespeople talk about high-traffic areas of your house? Our entire house is a high traffic area. The living room carpet has been trampled on, danced on, rollerbladed on. It's been used to demonstrate snowboard moves and skateboard tricks. It's been peed on by cats and burned by sparks from the fireplace. Even though we cleverly chose carpet the color of mud, years of spills have taken their toll and even the brown is showing stains. The only part of the carpet that looks even remotely like carpeting was the part under the couch.
It was time for a new carpet.
But is it ever possible to do a single home improvement project without getting sucked into three more?
It was my husband's fault. Or perhaps, I should say, his brilliant idea. Last night, we all worked together to move everything out of the living room. The drum set, guitars, and amps got piled into my bedroom. The orange tree got shoved into my office, where it most certainly does not fit. The couch and comfy chair got piled into the kitchen area, after we moved the table and put all the kitchen chairs up in the boys' bedroom. The piano got rolled away from the wall. My daughter and I ripped up the carpet, yanking it from the floor and wrapping it into one big roll. Then, in a move which reminded me of a scene from the The Grinch Who Stole Christmas, an effort that took six of us, we shoved the whole thing out the front door.
That's when my husband looked around and said, "Hey, so long as the room is empty, maybe we should paint the walls."
Easy for him to say. He conveniently had to work today, and the younger boys were in school. Boy in Black and First Extra had other plans. But Wonderful Smart Beautiful Daughter and I decided that we could do the whole project in a day and have the room painted before the new carpet arrived tomorrow morning.
So that is all we did today. We took down curtains. We pulled up staples from the old carpeting. We spackled. We sanded. We painted.
We did nothing but slave away at this project all day. Well, maybe we took the time to go out to lunch with my parents, driving out to a nice restaurant on the lake. And perhaps we took breaks for eating and talking and writing the occasional email. I may have looked at a blog or two. But mostly, we worked together in the echoing room, congratulating ourselves as scratches, black marks, and strange stains disappeared under a new coat of cream paint. By sunset, the room looked brand new.
That's when we noticed that the kitchen area could use a little paint ....