Sunday, September 28, 2008

Aargh! I'm so over scrubbing...

...and cleaning

....and sanding
....and filling
with my faithful companions, bleach...
and a rickety ladder...

and music to pass the time.

In the June holidays I thought that I would paint the girls' bedroom. "It should only take me a week," I said. I didn't count on the time it would take to strip the peeling windows, and fill all of the gaps between the boards and clean off the accumulated mould and dirt from...God's knows how long ago this house was last cleaned. The old lady we bought it off wasn't exactly able to keep it spick and span, and that's putting it nicely. So in that week I was able to clean and fill 3 walls and strip one window. Nothing more. So this is where the girls have been sleeping for the last three months.
The sleepout in all it's messy glory...

(I'm being brave and letting you see the real state of things in our house.) Their furniture is stored in the hallway, their pullout drawers are under my bed, and there is just enough room to walk up beside their mattresses in the sleepout, which is usually their playroom. Needless to say it isn't conducive to a orderly room.
So these holidays, I swore that no matter what it takes, I am finishing their room and getting them OUT of the sleepout. One more day it should take to finish scrubbing the ceiling and filling the gaps THEN I can finally start painting. Oh, but wait, the original paint is oil-based and I'm going to use water-based, so the primer will have to go on first. Doh!

But I just keep thinking of how good the room is going to look, once I'm finished with it. A rhapsody of pale blue and white. It already looks so much better just having the layer of filth gone and the cracks all sealed up.

But I would so much rather be doing this....

or this these holidays.

Also these are the girls bunk beds which I will be painting white. They are a horrible orange pine with, I think, a varnish over the top.

Does anyone know what I'll have to do before painting them to make sure the paint sticks. Please, please, please don't tell me that I'll have to sand them. Isn't there another way?


  1. Hey Esther,

    I know of stuff called "ESP - Easy Surface Prep" and says on the tin "no more sanding"!!! Firmly bonds paint to any surface...even glass... Basicallly you wipe it on... allow it to penetrate for 5 minutes... Then wipe it off thoroughly and paint anytime after 90 minutes... You do need to remove all loose paint and make sure the surface is clean ('greasy,waxy surfaces - scrub with fine steel wool soaked with ESP')... I havnt used it for any large furniture myself so don't know how works out but did for smaller items that have worked fine... Dad put me onto this stuff actually...

    Man it looks like hard work at your place... But I am a little jealous at the idea of accomplishing something so great yourself... hmmm, its only my fault... So you're inspiring me... maybe Ill attempt the cubby painting this afternoon... well, start the process anyway... :) we'll see... I am a master at starting projects - thats not my particular issue.. ha ha... Good on you for attacking the unfinished task! :)

    Love Mary :)

  2. Lovely to hear you are getting there with lots of sweat and tears. You will get there, and the girls will have their room back. Thanks for your latest blog entries. Great to see the photos, your story you are telling and the great memories. Liked the one on the brisbane romp. have you found out how we actually went? did they put times and results on their website.
    Today, we went out to Laidley with kids to support Mike in the State Team Time trials. It was hot, I was the support car, haven't done this in ages. The kids were over it by the time we got back to the start, but we didn't leave till two hours later. Mike was waiting to get their result which was 4th, he was a bit disappointed.

    Gotta go, only a week left of the the holidays. Will be busy with girls this week, they are doing intensive swimming lessons for the week. Happy Painting,
    Love Bec

  3. Hi Esther

    There are several products made by the same company that makes Penitrol
    One (ESP) is wiped over to create a very adhesive surface for paint to stick to (eliminates sanding)

    Another (EB) is added to the waterbased paint to make it stick to virtually anything.

    We recently used EB at the new offices at Rosalie.

    Have a look at their website and then talk to your local paint supplier. (I suggest you use EB at 1/4 parts)

    Good luck


  4. Hi Esther, Great blog.... I look forward to reading what your next update willbe. I have been enjoying it.

  5. Awww, my entire house looks like your girls room. When you are trying to do up a place its murder to keep clean and sort everything out.
    I'm sure everything will look beautiful once its finished.

    Ummm, I'd sand the wretched one of them sanding thingies that is electric.

  6. I totally share your pain when it comes to redecorating an old house. We bought a house from the 60s and have been working on it on and off for awhile. It takes some serious elbow grease.

    Thanks for the book recommendations the other day. I will look into them. I can always use another series to hook my girls on.

  7. Yeah try liquid sandpaper. You can get it at hardware store...I don't know what the names would be in Queensland. I LOVE Anne of Green Gables I have been rereading them and I read the prequeal to a new author explains what happened before she came to Avonlea. I thought the lady did a pretty good job of getting Montgomerys writing style down. Love Laura too. I have always thought I was born in the wrong old movies, books, music etc. cherry


Comments make me happy. Spread the love.

Get to know me

  • I love the smell of cinnamon and vanilla.
  • My favourite flowers are daisies.
  • My favourite trees are pine trees.
  • I always like to have the bickie jar full and a cake on the cake stand. I know...not that healthy, but so good to look at.
  • Autumn is my favourite month, although I do wish we had more of a change of colours up here in Queensland.
  • I love Anne of Green Gables and Laura Ingalls Wilder. They started my love affair with "old-fashioned" stuff.
  • I'm a boots and jeans kind of girl, but also love vintage skirts and dresses.
  • I like sewing and am in love with quilts at the moment.
  • I love reading. (I have a weakness for archeological thrillers and historical romances, but not Mills and Boon-type ones.)
  • I love old houses with character. No new estate houses for me. (Sorry Rosie.)
  • I love vintage/cottage/farmhouse decorating and pretty pinks and blues, with a splash of red for colour.
  • Polka dots can make me sigh with delight.
  • I have 4 chooks. They are MY pets. Another tick on my dream-come-true chart.
  • I don't eat dessert much any more. I'm not dieting, I just don't want it. (Does that mean I'm growing up if I say no to an icecream cone?)
  • I'll still always say yes to chocolate though!
  • I like to sit on the front stairs in the sun, to drink my morning cup of tea, while I contemplate what to do in the garden.
  • I've got the gardening bug again recently. It comes and goes with the weather. I'm envisioning cottage flowers in pink, blue and white to go with my green picket fence.