I wanted to make it count, so I spent every possible hour there Saturday and Sunday. My three priorities -- even though I still have many other things on my "list" -- were to finish the gazebo ceiling, stain and seal the upstairs cedar wall, and seal the upper cabinets in the garage.
When we last left the gazebo, I'd started to paint the ceiling shades of light blue and grey. (I KNOW IT ALL LOOKS LIKE ONE COLOR.) Once I'd gotten all the paint on three of the panels, I decided I liked it better with a few of the boards left natural. So I sanded it back off the last ones I'd painted.
Well. Then they didn't look the same as the ones that hadn't been painted at all. So I either had to go ahead and paint the ones I hadn't painted yet -- only to sand the paint back off -- or decide that I could be happy with it the way it was.
I tried to be happy with it the way it was. GUESS HOW LONG THAT LASTED. One week. That's how long that lasted. Technically, quite a bit shorter than that, since we don't even live there yet. It was really more like an hour.
Saturday I painted the rest of the panels, then sanded the paint back off. Internet. Have you ever. I mean, the whole thing just about drove me nuts.
After I got done with that, I moved upstairs to the kids' loft, where we have that new wall of cedar. Here's what it looked like when it was newly installed.
I'd purchased four shades of Minwax stains that I'd tested on scrap pieces of cedar in the garage, and I started putting the first one on random pieces on the wall.
At the end of Saturday night, this is what it looked like.
I wasn't going for anything really drastic ... just some variation in the wood tones. It did take me about six hours Saturday and then another six hours yesterday to get the entire wall stained and sealed, so it was a LOT of work for maybe not a lot of intense results.
I spent a good bit of time about 12 feet up in the air on this ladder, which was leaned against that wall because the legs couldn't spread out on the steps:
Good thing I'm not afraid of heights.
In the end, I added the darkest stain I had -- which I wasn't sure I was going to use -- in a few spots. It looks better in person than it does in this picture, probably because I took this with my phone at night.
This might be a little truer sense of the colors ... I don't know. I'll attempt to get better pictures in the daylight with my nice camera soon.
Regardless, I'm glad it's something I tackled myself. My painters wanted $1,400 to do it. Um, nope.
Let me tell you something, Internet. Before I started this on Saturday, I'd never stained anything in my life. All I did was read the directions on the can.
Saving $1,400 can be a very motivating factor.