Every year about this time, for just a few weeks, small window of opportunity opens. The weather becomes warm enough to finally crack the windows and let some fresh air in, but summer’s heat and humidity have yet to descend. The dark months of winter give way to spring sunshine that illuminates the dingy, neglected corners of the house. The robins have returned to the yard, baseball is back on TV, and it’s time for me to paint something.
This year, I’m overdue. What had become a ritual rite of spring for me was thrown off last year by my second, part-time job. The window of opportunity came and went while I was busily straightening stacks of Perfect Fit V-Neck Tees and pitching Old Navy credit cards for grocery money. But now, with a new floor scheduled to be installed later this spring, the time has come to undertake my most ambitious project to date. I’m going to paint my kitchen. Cabinets, too.
When we moved into our house back in the summer of 1997, I looked at the pale blue and mauve wallpaper border in the kitchen, the one with the precious little gingerbread-style houses and the kitties and puppies printed on it. I looked at that wallpaper border and I thought, “That hideousness has got to GO. IMMEDIATELY.”
Nine years later, it’s still there. And daily, it mocks me. One by one, the knobs on the cabinets have broken and detached themselves. The dark stained wood of the cupboards has grown progressively darker and more grimy.
I would love to rip out the whole mess and replace it with brand new cabinets and countertops. Or, even better, get rid of the entire leaky, dingy, crawling-with-ants (Already! In April!) house and buy me a fancy new one with a giant, sparkling kitchen featuring ample storage space and task lighting. But given the budget constraints involved, the only thing I will be replacing is the hardware. And maybe a that miserable kitchen faucet. Maybe.
Doors and hardware will be removed. Surfaces will be cleaned and sanded and cleaned again. Professional paint store people will be consulted. There will be priming, and there WILL be painting. Emboldened by past victories in first one bedroom, and then another, by the transformation I imparted in the sunroom, and by my triumph over unimaginable adversity in the bathroom (and the nightmare wallpaper that had been ionically bonded to the walls since 1947), I am braced to give it a go. Tomorrow, I will embark on a reconnaissance mission to Home Depot.
Pray for me.