Snow Paint Snow

If you thought we had given up on the house, we haven’t.  The events of the last few weeks have definitely slowed our forward progress. We are slowly gaining back our momentum as we near moving day.  Z in Salem snow storm First there has been snow, then Matt’s trip to California and then more snow. His flights on both ends of the trip were delayed or cancelled by snow, and on the trip back he spent an overnight in a plane and a second overnight in a hotel the airline paid for in Atlanta.

For this entry I just want to talk about paint for a bit.  The entire interior needed a fresh coat of paint and Matt and I wanted to pick just the right colors and really make it our own.  Sounds simple enough…… to begin we had to do a little soul-searching and figure out what colors we wanted to live with in the main part of the house Living room and Dining room. Since those two rooms were attached we wanted to coordinate with each other and the existing furniture and rug we were bringing to the mix.

The good news is the evolution of sample paints from most of the major manufacturers since I last painted walls.  The bad news is the evolution of sample paints…  All the manufacturers that I tried, Sherwin-Williams, Valspar, Behr, all had cute little sample sizes of paints available for a small price.  Sherwin-Williams comes in a jug style container and is easy to hold while painting.  It is also the largest of the samples.  I have lots of leftovers.  Valspar is a nice small and the cheapest of the three but I had a tough time dipping my brush into the small can.  Behr’s sample seemed to be the best of the three.  Not only did we find the best blue ever.  It was an easy to hold jar style container.  Just the right size.  I learned to sample the paints on several walls.  The existing colors and light conditions can really play with the end result.

We found that the paint samples never looked like the color that was on the paper swatch the paint company hands out. The colors also looked different after they dried and at different times of day depending on what angle the sun was coming from or if it had incandescent or fluorescent light on it. Too many variables! It was difficult to get the right amount of color tint, shade and saturation. Browns came out too yellow or green, and the blue often was either too blue or too dark. The dining room has been dubbed the “boy scout room” because the colors we used inadvertently turned out to be those brown and tan earthy tones in the boy scout uniform. That room may get a redo at some point. The paint does look great on the walls after the wallpaper was pulled down.

I am happy to report that all the paints came in low VOCs (Volatile Organic Compounds- the bad stuff that makes it smell).  It was interesting to learn that the pigments actually added some of that into the paint.  So even if you get a low or no VOC paint you will be adding some back into the mix with the color selection.  We did run Sherwin-Williams out of the Harmony paint and switch for one of the colors.  It really made a difference.

Ecru in the LR

After much deliberation the colors finally came together in the end.  In the living room dining room we use Roycroft Suede and Ecru (think boy scout olive and khaki) and then in the bedroom we used a beautiful soothing Prelude blue (light slate). The bedroom gets its second and final coat today.   I will hopefully add a picture tonight.

Matt’s idea for the leftovers is to paint the closets.  We will probably do that for some of them.  I am not sure that I can handle a closet with 6 shades of blue.  Perhaps a spring birdhouse painting party?


Trip to Anaheim

I’m on my way back from a work trip to Anaheim. There was a lot of blogging going on with my work blog, and I’m kind of tired of that now, so now I’m gonna blog here. I didn’t use many pictures on the work blog, so I’ll put the pix here. Since I’m not much of a photog, expect a lot of that expressive blur effect…

I hate flying. I’m like the bad news bears flying. My flight leaving Roanoke was delayed a day because of snow. I had called the travel agency people, and they wouldn’t reschedule me earlier to miss the snow, so I had to wait for the flights to be cancelled. I missed all the best stuff I wanted to do on Saturday and Sunday. So I tried to give up my seat to get a free ticket or something, but they wouldn’t do it.

They routed me through Detroit. Roanoke to Detroit to Minneapolis. From the frying pan into the fire… but somehow the northern cities didn’t have any problem with snow. Anyway, there is a cool fountain in the Detroit airport.

Each individual jet would shoot separately and it looked like rigid arcs of bent metal flying through the air. Kind of cool.

When I arrived in Anaheim, I had some sort of foreign shuttle driver (surprise), who must have recently taken a citizenship class. He dropped us off if we answered questions correctly, like who was the first president actually born in the USA, what are the state capitals that start with B, which state capital doesn’t have any of the letters of the state in it, which US first lady was not married. If only he had asked something reasonable, like what is the airspeed of an african swallow carrying a 1 pound coconut by the husk.

Never did catch his name, just be wary of blue Super Shuttles in Anaheim driven by middle eastern fellows. Maybe he is overcompensating a little, but he definitely showed that he knew American civics better than all of those of us who were born here.

While I was there, I stayed on the 14th floor, overlooking so much asphalt and concrete and reddish brown smog…

I even had a great view of the pool…

At the conference, we were in the arena, which easily seated the 5000+ SolidWorks users.

The arena looked nice from the outside at night too…

Inside, at parties, we ate meat, rrrripe off the bone in the words of Gimli the Dwarf!

We did other manly things like jumping remote controlled trucks over ramps…

And check out the SolidWorks electric hot rod…

and other manly cars…

Even Brian, with his “Mac Daddy” title on his badge showed up.

After the conference a group of us went to a Ducks vs Detroit hockey game.

The stadium was big, and there was a good crowd in there. We were on the next to the last row of seats…

They even let me fly the remote controlled sheep and drop stuff o. Ok, I didn’t really fly it. I just made ppppppbbbbbbtttt sounds as it went over…

Now on the other end of the trip, another snow storm, and I’m stuck in Atlanta after an overnight flight from Salt Lake City.

While there