When I tell people I love to paint, I have the impression they think of impressionism. Monet. Renoir. Cassatt. Painters like that.
I love those artists, but when I say I'm a painter I mean something different. I paint walls. And houses.
We'll start with the walls. See this color chart? This was a gift from my husband, and it's one of the most beautiful and personal gifts he's ever given me. It says he truly loves and accepts me.
And that's not easy. I have a habit of walking into a room, looking thoughtfully around, and declaring something like this: "This room wants to be yellow!" I have painted and repainted every room in my house multiple times. One year, I repainted my living room seven times--did I mention my living room is 15' x 30'? It's a large room. Right now it wants to be a lovely soft brown called Latte. But I'm not sure how much longer that will last. My dining room was "Optimistic Yellow" for quite some time. Until I realized it wanted to be "Naval Blue." My sewing room was "Hydrangea" until it wanted to be "Snowball."
I think this mania is contagious. My sons are only teenagers, but their rooms have been at least four different colors in their relatively short lives. All it takes is a weekend and a ladder!
Here's another photo of my personal stash of paint cards. Don't you just want to start rolling it on?
Three summers ago, I looked at my 102-year-old house and noticed it wanted to be repainted. My husband lowered his eyes and reserved comment when I declared I would paint the exterior of our house all by myself. Our Ohio home is an "American Four-Square" and quite tall. With a full basement, two stories with high ceilings, and a full walk-up attic, you can imagine how high those attic dormers are. Luckily, I have no fear of heights and I consider climbing a ladder with a bucket of paint excellent exercise.
I set up ladders and planks, scraped the entire house, primed it, and brushed on two coats of paint. It took 25 gallons of paint and two months, but it's immensely satisfying to pull in my driveway and see the fruits of my labor. I also saved thousands of dollars doing it myself!
Sure, my neighbors thought I was crazy. Cars slowed down as they passed by while I was perched way high on a ladder serenely brushing on paint. My parents worried I'd hurt myself, but a close call with an ugly spider was my only scare.
Can you believe I painted my house white? I toyed with other colors, believe me. But conformity won out, much to the relief of my husband and neighbors. One of these days, I truly believe my house will want to be "Lilac" or "Picnic Green." I'm sure my neighbors will understand.
I hope you'll visit me at www.amiedenman.com to see my other
creative works: romance novels.
I'm so glad Under the Boardwalk is available, and the second in the series now has a name: Carousel Nights. Can't wait to share it with you this summer!