Everyday life goes on.
But sometimes, like yesterday, I barely limp along. Here’s the countdown: 3 loads of laundry; 2 meals; 1 load of dishes. And an everlasting research project on which gas logs to purchase for my sister’s soon-to-be-lovely house.
It makes me wonder where I would be without my sister’s house, where I’ve devoted so much of my time since Daddy died. Her renovation project keeps me going; it provides me an a creative outlet for ‘making all things new.’ Today’s trip will make four for the week.
Much of the work is messy. Stripping old wallpaper, that has hung around so long that its become part of the wall, is in the running for ‘least favored job’. It certainly takes the most time…the most patience to subdue.
But worse still, is removing the popcorn texture from the ceiling. More than half-finished, by now we have the process well-defined. We wet. We scrape. Then instant gratification: we are rewarded as the rejected popcorn rains down upon us.
It lands everywhere with a wet mournful thud. Before it’s all said and gone, we are covered with parasitic popcorn. Small consolation that it is, our hair is protected by shower caps that we sport while undertaking the messy chore. But no matter how carefully we cover the floor — whether it be with newspaper or old sheets or plastic drop clothes — cleaning up the remains still takes as long as the stripping.
If the result weren’t so satisfying, I’m not sure we wouldn’t have stopped with the first room. But oh… the difference the missing popcorn makes! The rooms seem larger, the ceiling height more spacious. Our popcorn removal has been the most dramatic transformation thus far.
My sister and I laugh about how anyone (in their right mind) could have once regarded popcorn as a lovely texture. Was it just one of those things that didn’t receive much thought, because everyone was doing it? I can almost hear my mother saying, “If Billy and Julie were to jump off a cliff, would you jump too?” But to give credit where credit is due, popcorn texture lasted much longer than its swinging sixties cousins — does anyone remember shag carpeting and mirror wall and ceiling tiles?
And my favorite job? Well… that would be painting — tinting the walls whatever lovely shade my sister has selected. And today, I’m applying my second coat of finish paint to the kitchen.
Today, with a paintbrush in my hand, life will not be limp. With a paintbrush in my hand, the walls and ceilings will take on new life. The old will pass away. With paintbrush in hand, God will be uppermost in my mind. Those words from Revelations 21 will come to life, as in the presence of God, I will be “making all things new.”
With no need of kneelers or candles, with no need of bowed head or closed eyes, today I will be praying with paint and popcorn.
I quite enjoy the process of stripping wallpaper; something satisfying about dedicated destruction, something allowed that would normally be forbidden, like picking a scab.
Wish I could help more.
but prayers are with you, anyway,
Viv, I’m told wallpaper actually comes off in entire strips in some parts of the USA — I’ve never experienced this phenomenon, but understand it has something to do with properly prepared walls.
In every case, my removal projects always result in wallpaper coming off in pieces the size of confetti!
Thanks for your prayers.
I’m laughing and laughing. Protective tape is “supposed” to be able to stay on the side of a boat for a couple of weeks and then pull off easily. It’s one of the selling points. Yet how many hours have I spent with a razor blade and solvents, getting the darned stuff off? Too many.
Those popcorn ceilings look ghastly from this distance, but so does that shag carpeting. Oh, and the ceilings with “acoustical tile” in the “rumpus rooms”. Goodness, me. Our basement rec room had black and pink square tiles, and a turquoise bar. Ah, the 50s!
I never would have thought of shower caps – what a clever idea. I’d have to wear goggles, too, so the stuff wouldn’t get in my contacts. I don’t know – bowed heads and closed eyes seem reasonable in the circumstances.
In any event, there’s nothing like physical activity to heal the spirit. Not only that, I’m enjoying following the progress on this little project!
You are so right about the healing power of physical activity. Funny how pure physical work aids healing of the spirit. But it does.
Today is our next (and we hope) final installment of “Nightmare in Popcorn Alley.” Over half the house is done and we’re ready to be done with this triple feature!
Your fifties basement sounds fun and very beatnik-ish.
Somewhat related, I enjoy looking through a mail-order catalog I regularly receive — Vermont Country Store — I remember you receive your share of catalogs too, so maybe you receive this one as well. Talk about a blast from the past. MuuMuus and mocassins — my mother’s attire in the early sixties — Peanut Butter Logs and Clove Gum — treats I enjoyed from the corner grocers. But where, or where is that Chum Gum — two pieces for the price of “one red cent?”
What is it — about revisiting the memories of youth — that can also be healing?
Just stopping by to wave, and chuckling a bit – your “top posts” look like a holiday weekend has arrived. Chocolate, potato salad, cranberry orange bread…
Hope your weekend is great!
Always kind of you to stop by, even when all I have to offer is ‘stale’ popcorn.
The ceiling popcorn is now history; and I’ve been working like a mad woman (you’ve only the need to ask my husband for his corroborating opinion) to verify my moonlight madness. But boy, is the moon gorgeous as I make the late drive home from working at my sister’s house.
I’m taking a few days off though — so I look forward to getting caught up with my blogging friends.
Have a great holiday. Hope you and your mom are doing well.