Last Wednesday or Thursday, my husband, as he usually does if he knows we are going to be spending the weekend at home, started talking about all of the things he was going to do around the house. Which means outside, in the yard, as that is his domain.
Mowing the grass, raking, weed eating, cleaning out the gutters or garage — you know, “man work.” The interior is, of course, my area, and I always list off things I want to get done too — cleaning out various drawers/closets/the fridge or pantry and always laundry, the never-ending mountain of laundry. Sigh. It’s relentless.
I actually kind of get jealous of his outside projects. He usually listens to music on his headphones and it kind of looks more fun than folding underwear. It’s probably just one of those grass is greener on the other side of the window-type things. I mean, at least I get AC, right?
But much like him, I am always overly ambitious about what I can actually get done on the weekend. It’s never the complete list. Especially during college football season, as game times have to be factored in, as well as how long it takes to watch, cry and get over whatever heartbreaking story Tom Rinaldi is telling on “College GameDay.” Damn you, Rinaldi!
On Frank’s own “pre-game” show last week, he said he was going to pull ivy off of the garage and then casually mentioned something about maybe repainting our front door and porch trim.
Wait … what?
Usually, I don’t care to have any input on what he does outside, but he had plans to paint the exterior of our “home sweet home”! Well then, he would certainly need my help, as we obviously need to change up the color scheme. I mean, if he is going to go to all of that trouble, why paint it back the same old boring color, right?
So I went down the Pinterest rabbit hole. Pinterest, a word every husband and contractor has come to hate. But, you know, it had to be done. And I found exactly what I wanted. One photo from some really obscure website from Lichtenstein or somewhere like that — which had absolutely no information and, more importantly, no paint colors listed.
So began the task of trying to color match it. I spent a lot of quality time with Benjamin Moore and Sherwin-Williams. And I mean, A LOT. People were starting to talk. But I finally narrowed it down to seven colors I needed little samples of to “test out.” Seven colors that were almost identical, I might add.
But on Friday night — or, as I like to call it, “New Look for Old House” Eve — the colors were picked! After staring at them for seemingly hours, in morning light, midday light, evening light, artificial porch light, it was such a relief. I was so excited. And I was so happy my husband decided to do this project for me! What a great guy! I am so lucky!
But for some reason, he didn’t get up on Saturday morning at the crack of dawn eager to put the most thoroughly studied shades of blue in the history of time on our front door. What was wrong with him?
He started pulling the stupid ivy off of the stupid garage, as if that was more important.
I was like, “Um, when are you going to start painting?”
He was like, “I don’t know. I said I wanted to get the garage done too. And it’s really hot.”
I quickly calculated the amount of time left before the Auburn and Alabama kickoff times. If he did the garage project first, there would be very little — if any — time to get the doors and porch done on Saturday and only half a day of labor available on Sunday.
The realization hit hard. I may have to wait until next weekend (gasp!) to see this project come to fruition. Nooooooooooo! I want it now! Today! Whaaaaaaa!
Bitchy wife things like, “Well just forget about it. Clearly you don’t really want to do it,” were said. And the relative huffiness in the air was as high as the humidity. Did he not know how much time I had spent on the internet, for heaven’s sake? My work would not be in vain! No sir!
You might be asking, well, why didn’t you just paint it yourself?
I would have, but Frank does not let me paint. He likes to say that I paint like I cook. I cook the hell out of something (I don’t burn it, I’m just messy in the creation) and I paint the hell out of something. This is true, but the end result does not turn out the same when I paint. I am a good cook and can clean sauce off the stove. Paint off the floor, trim, clothing, shoes, forearms, eyebrows isn’t quite as easy.
But desperate times called for desperate measures. I would show him. Maybe I’ve gotten better!
As he kept working on the dumb garage, I decided to start priming the soon-to-be smartly painted door. Somehow he got wind of my evil plan, and quietly came around front and put a very large tarp on the steps without saying a word. (That was a good move on his part.)
I carried on. Lots of thoughts went through my head. Like: God, it’s hot. Ugh, this priming is going to take forever. And I’m going to have to paint this stupid door again with the color, not to mention the column and the railing. God, it’s hot. This is going to take forever. Auburn is playing LSU in a few hours. That is supposed to be a good game. This is going to take forever. Ugh. I just want to go fold underwear inside. Whose idea was this?
I wanted to give up, but like any good passive-aggressive wife trying to make a point, I persisted.
I finished priming and started painting the trim, somehow still getting paint all over myself and the porch (even with the tarp). I really do suck at this.
About that time, Frank had gotten all of the ridiculous ivy off of the moronic garage and came around to “assist.”
I relinquished my paintbrush and said I was sorry. “I don’t care if this gets done today. I was just really, really excited to see what it was going to look like.”
“I know,” he said, giving me a look that would have sent me into a rage an hour earlier. But at that point it was one I knew I deserved.
I’m pretty sure Frank will never, ever verbalize his plans for the exterior of our house again, but I will say by the end of the weekend, the front porch and door looked fabulous.
And even the stupid garage looked a little less stupid.