8th March: Like Christmas, But Better

Where to start? Just when you think it can’t get any busier, it does. I had a ridiculous idea that with the days getting longer, I’d be able to find the time to stop and breathe, even for a moment but no, it seems that the longer days mean, well, longer days. I suspect that if I had to hold down a full time job and do this I’d have been sacked a while ago, or dead from decision-making and exhaustion. And paint inhalation.

Wagner Pic 1 of a series

Wagner Pic 1 of a series

I’d like to introduce you to the new man in my life, Wagner. He’s an absolute God and even Rich can’t help but be a little in awe of his superhero-like ability. We have James from TMK Tiles to thank for the introduction (see one of the Feb entries for how we came across him).


Last week, we had a bare plastered, soon-to-be kitchen and I had a bit of a panic. The kitchen was arriving on Monday and Rich and I had four days to clean the grout off the floor (four washes) seal the grout (about 20mins), make a decision about the paint colour (a record three sample pots – usually about eight) and then the horrible two coats of primer and two or three coats of colour – all whilst not making a mess of the new floor.

We also had Chris P, the Crown Jules, Jimbillybob and Looloo all coming for a Saturday night bender in the ‘van – which meant Sunday was written off from the start, so that left three days, Thursday, Friday and Saturday. Richard hasn’t had a day off since, well, I can’t really remember so there was a celebratory atmosphere, with an underlying tension of ‘shit, are we going to get it done.’

Oh yes, in steps man of the match, Wagner. A 260-odd quid airless paint machine that was going to help us spray our way to finished kitchen glory. If he worked.

I'm pretty sure I should have read the destructions first

I’m pretty sure I should have read the destructions first

Obviously, we didn’t even get started until well into the afternoon on Thursday, but which point my panic levels had risen to at least 2. I got Wagner out the box, put him together, poured the paint into the hopper and read the instructions. Yep, should have read the instructions first because the button I needed to press to activate the filter was at the bottom at the hopper, which I’d just filled with paint. Doh. Richard was amused. At least, after nearly 20 years, I can still make him laugh 😉

I definitely got that wrong. Oh fuck.

I definitely got that wrong. Oh fuck.

Finally, having poured the paint out, made a bloody mess pressing the button and poured the paint back in again, we were ready to rock. I bagsied first go because I’d done all the legwork, all the prep and bought the machine. On he went, WAAAAAAH, dunk. Ok, try again. WAAAAAAAAH, dunk.

Yep. Wrong. Have to pour that paint out again.

Yep. Wrong. Have to pour that paint out again.

We spent an age getting him to work. Every time pressure would build up in the gun hose, you’d pull the spray trigger for three successful seconds and the thing would pack up again. What a piece of shit. Mid-afternoon Thursday.  Panic level now at 3 – the thought of rollering x 5 = too awful.

We got to thinking that the paint was a bit thick (Homebase Matt for New Plaster = v. good, all 10l tubs in Cambs sold– sorry), so Rich mixed in a load of water. Oh yes, that did the job. No clogging of the gun, just a clean, fine mist of a spray, everywhere.

I was given the ‘opportunity’ to use the gun for approximately 38 seconds, until my manly man of a hubster told me I didn’t quite have the knack and he’d take over. I can manage building a house and all the stuff that goes with it, but not manage a paint spraying machine. Fine, you can clean the bloody thing too. So, I stood and watched as he covered himself in paint, and, very successfully covered the walls. In about ten minutes.

Rich, in 20 years

Rich, in 20 years

On Thursday night, my panic level had disappeared so we got a bit drunk. I can tell you that in two and a bit days, we got two coats of primer on the kitchen, then rollered on two coats of Slipper Satin (funnily enough, the same as our old kitchen – looks totally different with all this light), I did all the corners, cutting in round windows, etc. We would have sprayed the Slipper Satin but if you think petrol’s expensive then try running Wagner on Farrow & Ball. And anyway, Wagner left such a lovely finish, the rollering was a pleasure and you couldn’t even see the brush marks from cutting in.


Stu pointed the hearth ^ looks fab

We were delighted. Over the weekend, we managed not only to paint the kitchen (Stu was even impressed with our professional and tidy finish) but we also managed to prime the entire old house upstairs, twice on the ceilings and stud walls. Come Monday, it was as if we’d been waiting an age for the kitchen people. Stu and Paul have revised their original decorating schedule. They reckoned it was going to take four months. Ha, with Wagner on our sides, we’ll have finished painting well before that ridge is on 😉

Hubster gets the measure of the gun...

Hubster gets the measure of the gun…

They don't call him Fast Eddie for nothing. Actually, they don't call him Fast Eddie, we did!

They don’t call him Fast Eddie for nothing. Actually, they don’t call him Fast Eddie, we did!

So this week, the kitchen has gone in. Fast Eddie and the Boys appeared Monday morning and had left by Tuesday evening. We’d nicknamed him Fast Eddie before he’d even turned up for the job, but it was an appropriate nickname and I even brought cake day forward (chocolate) in celebration. I’m going to save the kitchen stuff until the stone has been fitted. They took a template today so should be on in a week or so., then it’ll look more than delicious. Again, Stu liked. ‘Simple, like you.’ Charming…

Lovely Little Geoff came up with goods. Yous should see the front door...

Lovely Little Geoff came up with goods. Yous should see the front door…

And, big news, Little Geoff the joiner (Jarrett and Lawson, Oundle)brought the windows over for the bedroom. What. A. View. Finally, we can see what we’re going to be waking up to every day. Man, we’re soooo going to need some sort of blinker device. They are brilliant and a fantastic match for the Howarth’s ones, I have to say, I’m well chuffed to finally see out through glass than looking at the felt and wondering what’s beyond. They fitted a treat. Christ knows what kind of curtains I’m going to put in there. Still, nobody can see which is just aswell. If you had seen what Richard did when he saw them 😉

That’s all for now. Looloo bought Rich Series Two of Game of Thrones for his birthday and we’re hooked again. My family are mostly playing the lead roles.  Much as I’d like to tell you all about the kitchen, front door and staircase, I’m going for a box sessionathon. And anyway, got to keep you all hanging on!

We’re up to about 65000 views now but every one helps so if you’re going to do one thing today, send someone a linky to the blog please. I’d like to bump up the figures, if only so I can get a book or gardening deal off the back of it. Got to pay for the bugger somehow 😉




3 responses to “8th March: Like Christmas, But Better

  1. Love the pic of Rich covered in paint! Always wanted to try one of those paint guns. When we finally buy a house, I am definitely getting one.

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