Monday, September 18, 2023

This n That Weekend Recap


Monday already, eh?  It was an interesting weekend.  Thursday, I took advantage of a small burst of energy.  Ever since March we have been without handrails going upstairs and downstairs.  We're used to it, we've altered our center of gravity, especially when going upstairs with tea in hand or something.  The plan was to immediately strip them which I started April 4th and obviously got off track before our vacation at the end of the month because the one for upstairs basically became a piece of furniture lying across the living room and half the dining room with the Mr and I both stepping over it without thinking.  Then the summer spent with Mom and that horror show and it was the last thing I wanted to think about.  So when I looked at it and was tired of it, I scraped off the rest of the paint where I could then stained it and put three coats of dead flat poly on it.  Of course the bottom of it looked like a shit show so I got the discontinued Retique It I had leftover and painted the bottom and called it done.  We brought it inside Saturday morning on our way out the door.

We went to an outdoor vintage fest with zero expectations and they were met with gusto.  I am happy to report it was not as anxiety inducing as last week.  (Please do not interpret that as 'she's getting better/healing!' or whatever because just the night before the Mr and I were holding each other sobbing about how we can't believe we're never going to see her again and Sunday I had no less than five sobbing breakdowns.  It just means I was able to hold it together for an outing for a few hours.)  

It was full of a lot of meh but a few things of interest.  The signs from our loved ones were everywhere.  It was the 19th anniversary of the passing of my FIL and as we walked in 'his' song played and the Mr and I looked at each other in amazement.  There was a boutique with my mom's nickname in it, and a pansy box that my grandma absolutely would've jumped all over and I would've been more than happy to buy for her.

The Mr also saw some toys from his youth for some fuzzies.

When we got home. it was time to jump on getting that rail back up.  I have been dreading this for MONTHS.  We do not have those brackets that stick out from the wall, we have blocks of wood.  The Mr had written down the height of the blocks when we removed them in March but you know, would it all line up?  Even putting up pictures has been challenging with our new ultra thick walls but after some snappiness on both of our parts, it got hung.

I'm not going to lie, I freaked when it first went up.  I wasn't sure I liked the stain. A lot is going to change and it looks like a crap fest with the still white opposing rail but I need to strip, stain and poly the other one going downstairs first before doing the same to the one opposing the one going upstairs.  Not something I'll be doing until after the holidays more than likely because otherwise it'll tear up the living area again and I don't want to hear it or live with it right now.  Then sometime in the distant future we'll replace the carpet after we get someone in here to try to help us deep clean the hell out of the carpet on the stairs.  I'm really tempted though to just paint the rail white again and say screw it but either option is going to be a lot of work.  Which would you do?  Paint it white which entails taking the rail back off, shellacking, priming, painting, sealing and re-hanging or stick with the dark.  (I'm curious- I'm not saying majority rules.  Just to clarify! 😂)

I put something like this and another picture above on personal social media asking the same question.  Responses really weren't much help and seemed to be geared more toward not liking the iron balusters we're using to replace the wood ones I've hated for almost 30 years. (Which wasn't the question so thanks for making me feel like crap about what we like.)  In the end, there's only one opinion I wanted.  One I'll never get again.  One I could almost hear.  "Whatever you decide to do sweetie, it will look great!"

I want my Mom back.

I was in a bit of a foul mood and the looming project of finally getting around the shellacking the walls made me just slop some on the bedroom wood that was exposed.  I wasn't going to rip the room apart that night and it would be interesting to see if the next morning was a little less choky.  My Lord, applying it was horrid and the fumes were worse than anything  I've ever worked with.  I put the fan on 30 minutes later praying I hadn't just made things worse for myself.  It had thankfully dissipated when it was time for bed.  Because my sinuses are a steel trap for three hours, I told the Mr after he got his sniffer prepared for the morning, he'd need to come in and sniff around to see if the smell was any better.  He did say that it smelled improved and when he smelled where I shellacked compared to where I hadn't, it was a world of difference.  

Then it was time to see if the townhome builder was going to make the decision about the railing.  As we talked Saturday night about the baluster project, he wondered if the builders used just screws or screws and construction adhesive to put the wooden slats on the stairs.  If they used adhesive, that would totally screw up our chances of having minimal sanding, gouges and holes to fix which do not stain the same as the rest of the wood and it would be pointless to try.  The Mr scored the paint on either side, popped off the screw covers, unscrewed and wiggled whilst we held our breath.

Score!  It did not appear to have adhesive!  This part is the stringer, it'll be repainted white but the handrail will be the dark walnut.  It is going to be a pain in my butt to get that stupid thing scraped because I'm NOT kicking up dust using a sander and coating everything again for months to come.  While all of that was happening, I got my uber head of cauliflower in the crock pot.

Vegetarian taco meat for both of us for two lunches in the upcoming week is ready to roll.  

Then we headed up and got a bunch of crap out from under the bed and I got to shellacking the wall length shelf and the wood panels left that I couldn't get the night before.  While that dried, I moved loose pictures in a shoebox to a photo storage case of Mom's.  A good amount of pictures of Mom and pictures of people long gone that make me feel even more alone.  Where is my family now?  I never expected to not even be 50 and be going through this.  I thought maybe we'd be just dealing with losing Grandma as she would be 84 this year but nope...she's been physically gone 5 years, mentally not knowing me for 9 years and now my mom is gone at barely 66.  That picture case at worst will end up in the trash, likely at an antique shop and at best maybe my cousins would pilfer through them before throwing them away and keep a few.  Sigh.  I feel too young to be having these thoughts but if nothing else has been learned its that we're not promised getting old.

Oops, did my lapse into grief lose a few? 😜

Then I covered the shellac with dead flat poly to get rid of that God awful sheen which made the bedroom look like a 1973 Sizzler and hoped it wouldn't create an all new problem.  I suppose we'll know for sure in 10 years if I haven't expired from vapor induced disease.  Then we settled in for the evening.  No workout Sunday because we burned over 760 calories the day before and my hips weren't having it with all of the activity.

Today I have a second opinion going on so if you could think some good thoughts, I'd appreciate it.

How was your weekend?

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  1. It was an interesting weekend but the important thing is you were at least able to enjoy being out for some of it and we also both got a lot of stuff done that has been put off for some time. Baby steps. With me you will never ever have to apologize for being sad about Mom and I have no problem adjusting plans in the future if you ever feel like whatever we're doing just isn't right with your feelings that day. I am just glad you at least got the chance to enjoy a day out in the fall.

  2. You had a very busy weekend and got much accomplished. Every tiny bit helps, even if it doesn't feel like it in the grand scheme of things. And how projects NEVER feel like progress is being made because there are so many pieces to each and every thing that needs to be done. I think the railing looks fabulous. You'll know which way you want to go with it. Sometimes it's hard when both choices make sense and both have a good look to them. I'm glad you got out for a little while and perused around the vintage shop for a little while. A change of scenery is nice every once in a while.


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