Paint Memories

Today was laundry day. Usually EJ goes with me to help me, but he had to work six days this last week and I knew he was really tired, so I drank only ONE cup of coffee and then I loaded the dirty clothes in the car and went to the laundromat, leaving EJ home sleeping. When I got back home, I took the baskets of wet clothes to the back yard, and then I went back into the house to fix breakfast. When JJ left for work right after breakfast, I went outside and hung the clothes on the clothesline. I really enjoyed the morning, which was sunny but nicely coolish.

After I finished hanging up the clothes, I paused to think about how to spend the rest of my day. I decided that this would be a very good day to paint the front porch. I have wanted to paint it for a couple of years now and was determined to paint it this year, but was afraid I’d run out of summer before I could get it done.

Everything moved from the porch
Everything moved from the porch

I moved the patio table and chairs and all the plants off the porch and under the lilac bush. Then EJ helped me get the paint supplies together. I started to sweep the porch, but EJ ended up taking over the task while I found some old clothes to paint in. I am not a neat painter and tend to get paint all over myself. I used to have a shirt and shorts that I always painted in. I never washed them so they contained the memories of years of painting projects. I could point to spots of paint that had been used to paint our bedroom when we first moved in, and spots of paint used to paint our living room once or twice, and both times we painted the bathroom, and a LOT of paint from the last time we painted the porch. The last time I painted the porch was maybe ten years ago or so. JJ was 8 or 9 years old and he helped me. We ended up getting into a paint fight. It probably started when one of us accidentally painted the other, and then the other not-so-accidentally painted the first one, and before you know it, we were both deliberately painting each other until we were covered in paint. It was very fun. Sometimes I sort of miss those days. Teens tend to have too much dignity, worrying about what people will think, and being embarrassed by their Mom’s silliness. it’s not until they get older that they remember how to be silly again.

I think I threw the paint shirt and shorts away a few years ago when I was cleaning out closets and drawers. Now I will have to start a new paint shirt and shorts with new paint memories.

Painting our porch.
Painting our porch.

EJ didn’t want me to paint parts of the porch that were in the sun because he felt those areas were too hot. So I painted the half of the porch that was in the shade. Painting is another task that I do not LOVE like I love reading and walking Danny, but which I find great pleasure doing. There is something very soothing and relaxing about painting, especially when it’s outside on a sunny and coolish day.

This is where we bought wood. From one post to another is one face cord.
This is where we bought wood. From one post to another is one face cord.

After I finished painting the porch, EJ and I went to buy a face cord of firewood. A face cord is a stack of wood that is eight feet long, four feet high, and about 16- to 18-inches deep. In previous years, we bought our wood from three people who cut and sold wood in their spare time. This year, two of the three appear to no longer be selling wood. We drove to the third, but the man wasn’t home. EJ called the phone number on the sign and the guy said he’d be home at 5:30 p.m, so EJ said he’d return.

When we got home, I painted the porch again. The whole porch was in the shade by this time, so I put a second coat of paint on the half that I had painted earlier and a first coat on the other half. I also painted the steps.

After I finished, I had just enough time to get cleaned up, do the dishes, and take the clothes off the clothesline, and then it was time for my Hebrew class, which I co-teach with a friend. We teach our class through video-chat. We have students from several different states and even from another country. Pretty cool.

While I was teaching, EJ went to get the firewood. Usually the guys we buy wood from help load it. I was glad EJ had help since I couldn’t help him this time.

After my class, which ended at 7 p.m., I went out and painted the whole porch and steps again. Tomorrow I will paint the second half again, and then I think I will be finished.

We unloaded and stacked this truckload of firewood
We unloaded and stacked this truckload of firewood

When I finished painting, I started stacking the firewood into our woodshed. I didn’t tell EJ that I was stacking it because his back has been hurting, and also his shoulder, and I didn’t want him to hurt them even more. I had unloaded and stacked about a third of the wood when EJ discovered I wasn’t still painting the porch and he came out to help me. JJ helped a bit too, and it went faster so we finished before it got dark. Now we only have nine more face cords of wood to buy to be ready for winter.

After I got cleaned up, I made popcorn and relaxed and wrote this post. Now I must get back to work and fold the clothes.

I have been busy from morning until night. I am tired, but it is a good tired.




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