Monday, May 25, 2009

Latex. Paint, that is!

Well it's been a busy couple of weeks, it has.  A while back I finally called a contractor to come see about replacing my retaining walls in the front yard.  They're currently old brick and are tilting and cracking with the weight of ages.  I want to see them replaced with some nice looking field stone.  Mmm, rocky.  But the price he gave me was way too high.  He did, however, give me a reasonable offer on a house painting.

My house was last painted when I was around.. eleven?  Twelve?  Something like that.  Many eons ago, anyway.  They painted it themselves, actually, to save money.  My mom was always about saving money even when we had plenty of money saved up.  She would almost never let us run the AC in the summer.  It was only with much persuasion and begging that I was able to get a window AC in my room when I was 16.  Anyhow, it's been a long time since the house was last painted and it's been flaking and chipping a lot in the past few years.  And some of the masonite siding and wood trim was warped or rotten with age.  Not to mention the gosh darn woodpecker holes.  So I decided I needed paint far more urgently than a new wall.

Well, it's done now.  Except for some odds and ends like the doors and steps.  I wanted to go for tannish gray walls and black trim.  Little bit goth, ya know.  But the gray turned out much lighter than expected, like a very very light beigey gray.  I had an anxiety attack or two worrying about how that would look.  It turned out okay, though the contrast of the light color and the black is starker than I had planned.  Ah well.  The house certainly looks tidier!  They replaced a lot of the damaged boards and caulked my cracks...  yes.  So that should last a long time.

Distressingly, they discovered some termites when removing a damaged board.  They hadn't gotten into the framework or anything, just the wet, crumbly stuff, but still.  I've never had termite problems before.  So I had to get the termite people out here to take a look.  They're going to dig a trench around my house and fill it with poison, it would appear.  They wanted me to get rid of a ton of cardboard boxes my dad had left in a corner of the basement for some reason.. rainy day boxes, I guess.  It's been pouring rain since then, though, so I haven't been able to get to work on that til today.

My basement is really more of a dirt floored, deep crawl space accessable only from the outside.. it's about 6 feet at the deepest end and about a foot at the shallowest.  Sadly it's not very suitable for a dungeon.  Well, it's dirty and dank and such, so that's not so bad, but it's also full of bugs, spiders, and the occasional Arkansas scorpion (they're small and pale, but pack quite a punch).  It's not really a place I would want to leave someone tied up in.  Not responsibly, anyway.  Alas. 

It's been pouring rain for a couple days and the deepest part, which I had to cross, was flooded with several inches of water.  I had to take a few spare cinder blocks from behind the house and put them down as stepping stones.  Then I moved a ton of dirty old boxes of all sizes out of the cramped corner.  They're piled up outside now, taking up half the patio.  I'm not sure what I'll do with them, as I'm not sure the garbage men take heaps of loose boxes.  Well, at least it's done now.  One of these days I need to totally clean out all the ancient detritus from my basement, but I guess I could wait til I have a slave.  Slave labor, you know.