As avid Followers can probably tell, we've been out of commission for the past few days - thus the lack of posts. It started last week when we started painting the house. As soon as Alli went to bed and Mommy B and I had dinner, we pulled out the paintbrushes, rollers, tape and ladders and painted until the wee hours of the night - which is about 11pm for us these days. Our mission: paint almost our entire first floor (which thanks to our open floor plan includes our breakfast area, dining area and TV area), our main entry way (which includes a 2-story foyer), up the staircase and the second floor hallway (which runs the entire length of the house).
We planned everything out early last week: which walls we were going to paint each night, which colors we were going to use on each, and how we were going to paint the second story walls that can only be reached by using a 30-foot extension ladder. That last part basically boiled down to me climbing up what felt like a rickety ladder, taping the areas I could reach, making another trip up with a brush and bowl of paint to get the edges, and making a third trip with the roller to cover the larger areas. Once we had those areas painted, I had to make return trips the next day to remove the tape.
Even though it was a lot of work, Mommy B was a great teammate. She helped tape and paint the edges first, then I followed behind her with the roller. I didn't let her up the big ladder - not with our next child on the way. You don't really notice how many scuff marks there are on the walls until you're a foot away from them with a paint brush in your hand. I wish I had the total square footage that we covered in the first two phases, but that would require way too much effort. Put it this way, we've almost gone through an entire 5-gallon bucket of paint - and we haven't done a second coat on anything.
But I have to say, the house looks great. This whole project was three-fold: 1) cover up all the scuff marks on the walls from the original owner moving in and out and us moving in, 2) cover up the original boring antique-white that the builders used on the house, and 3) give the main living spaces a fresh look and making the white trim really pop. Well, mission: accomplished. We picked a color that was subtle enough that you probably wouldn't notice right away if you hadn't been over in a while, but made enough of a change that things we didn't notice before look much better.
We hit a few bumps along the way though - not with the painting, but with Alli. Since we'd been staying up later than normal, Mommy B and I were starting to feel the effects by last weekend. That's when Alli decided she would get sick. Booo! OK, it wasn't really her choice, but she's been feeling and looking all-around miserable. She woke up a few times a night, just sobbing in her crib. We would go in to check on her, and she would be drenched in sweat. During the day, she just wanted to be held and everything seemed to make her cry. She was still eating, but wouldn't play at all and screamed when we tried to put her down. She was running a 102.5 fever for a couple days even though we tried to keep her on a steady dose of Tylenol and Motrin. We couldn't tell if it was a lingering ear infection (diagnosed on her birthday 3 weeks ago), more teeth coming in, a stomach bug (she was very gassy and had a few "messy" diapers) or a virus of some sort. Mommy B and I even joked last night that it could be Scarlet Fever or Hay Fever - we had tried every remedy we could think of, so we had to make a joke about something.
A couple nights ago, she awoke around 2:30am and was absolutely miserable. We tried more medicine, changed her diaper, walked her around the house, numbing liquid on her gums, more milk in her bottle, you name it. I was walking around with her in my arms with her head on my shoulder, just crying her little eyes out. I was about 30 seconds from plopping her in the car and driving around with the windows cracked until she fell back asleep - it was the only thing I thought might work. But we walked back into her room and she began reaching for her crib. I placed her down on a dry spot and she immediately stopped crying and went to sleep. Thank God.
There isn't a worse feeling in the world than knowing your child is in discomfort and you've tried everything you can to make them feel better to no avail. You can't help but feel like a bad parent - especially because Alli is still at the age where she doesn't understand what's happening to her or why. She looks to Mommy B and I to "make it all better", and there isn't a more disappointing time in my life when I can't do that for her. Mommy B took her to the doctor today and I hope that they can figure out what's wrong with her.
So - as you can tell Mommy B and I have had a rough past few days. We took Monday night off from painting to recoup a bit, but were back taping the upstairs hallway (final phase) last night. Alli had a better night's sleep and hopefully we can get our smiley, happy baby back soon thanks to the advances of modern medicine. I guess we'll have to see what happens.