Thursday, June 23, 2011

Late Night Stripper

No, No... Get your mind out of the gutter.... not that kind of stripper!

I've been neglecting the blog because.... well just because.  It's been pretty rough on the equine front and about to get worse, so I'm avoiding talking about it for another day or two.  Again just because.  But on the home front, it's time for the grand unveiling.  It's been finished for about 5 days and it has taken me about that long to recover!!

I've been ignoring the fact that the dining room wallpaper needed to come down.  When I selected the paper all those years ago, I liked it because it was old-fashioned looking..... Like something my grandmother might have had.  Consequently it held up in a retro sort of way.  But finally even I had to admit that it was one area of the house that really could look better.... maybe at this point THE one area that could look better with a more modern look.  I was being stubborn about not wanting to change it and then I realized that symbolically it would be another way to let go.

So last Monday,  I marched in and tore off a small piece.  Now there was no turning back.  I HAD to take it down.  That night I cranked up some music on iTunes and set to work.  

By the second day (remember with Joe up in Virginia, I still had plenty of other things to do... pets, yard etc), I had gotten to the big wall.... sliding and moving the furniture into the center of the room.  Who needs weights at a health club when you've got oak furniture?!  And isn't a Stairmaster just a poor substitute for a ladder?  

Over the last 8 years, I've taken down wallpaper in 8 rooms. If there's a secret to success and a smooth final outcome, it's slow perseverance and knowing the way to repair the damage and properly treat the walls after the paper is down. Complicating things at our house is the fact that we were too dumb to know that our paper hanger have prepped the walls and not hung over raw Sheetrock.  That paper was Stuck on.... as in Stuck with a capital S!

Each time I get a room finished and see how perfect a job I've done (back-patting going on here) I consider that I should take my show on the road and do this for money.  Maybe I could have a reality show on HGTV.... I could call it "One Little Strip at a Time" and people might think it was X-rated!

Day Three of Stripping....... working for several hours each day.... 

One of my assistants.... asleep on the job!   Wallpaper all down, walls treated with Gardz, beginning to skim coat areas with joint compound and sand smooth.

Skim coating was completed and I had gone into Baton Rouge to run a few errands on Friday afternoon. Then I got a call from the new realtor that there was going to be a showing on Saturday at 3 pm.  Oh My!!!! Sheetrock dust, furniture heaped under the plastic..... it looked pretty bad.  Plus I'd been ignoring the rest of the house and the barn while I'd been stripping paper and sanding walls for the last 4 days.

I wonder?  Could I get the house and barn ready for the showing AND finish the dining room in 18 hours?   It "only" needed a coat of primer, 2 coats of paint, all the furniture and china moved back and the curtains rehung.   Never offer me a challenge!  You know I had to try!

I haven't pulled an all-nighter in quite a while....... It was sort of like a one woman version of Trading Spaces!   And Ta-Da..... by 2 pm with an hour to spare before the showing, I had finished painting, had moved everything back into place, washed my brushes, swept out the barn and gotten the house spic and span.

I was doing a final walk through checking for cat hairballs, turning on lamps and and locking the jewelry chest.  Then I was going to wearily wend my way out to the RV with the dogs where I was going to rest my aching legs and  sleep for the first time in 30 hours.  The showing was in 45 minutes.  Perfect timing!

And then I got the phone call.

Cancelled.  As in not coming.

Did anybody hear me screaming??

Oh well it was still worth it.... sort of.

Pretty nice if I do say so myself!


  1. OH . . . MY . . . GOD ! ! ! I can't believe you did that. I feel Sooooooo guilty!! However, since it is now safe to come home, I will see you Friday night. (at least that is the plan as of this minute)

  2. I will never, ever, put wallpaper up in my house again.

  3. Love your end results! When we purchased a home in Maryland in 2000 I died because it had so much wallpaper to come down. Not sure why anyone would put the stuff up in the first place. It's so much work to get rid of it, isn't it?



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