Saturday, March 2, 2013

Call the Police! 'Cause I'm the Best at Drawing Chalk Outlines

Hey, remember when I said that pregnant women are smug? Now that I’m knocked up people have been asking me to retract this little statement of mine. But I stand by it. We are all so damn smug. Oh yes, I’m sure that includes me too. I mean, I haven’t seen it happening just yet, but I’m sure it’s in there somewhere – just waiting until I’m really big and round to come on out. But, until then, the only thing I’m smug about at the moment is the sweet, sweet chevron I* painted on our future nursery wall.

*GAR won’t actually let me paint anything right now. He’s worried about the fumes turning our baby into a mutant. The doctor said I could do it but GAR argues that he’s also a doctor (though NOT a medical one *ahem*) so, fine, I’m letting him win this battle, for now. I guess my point is that he did the actual “painting” portion of this project, but I’m still calling it “my” project because I did all the hard stuff. You’ll see.

Within mere days (if not hours) of learning I was pregnant GAR painted the entire nursery a nice light gray color (before you ask the obvious question here, yes, we will be finding out the gender of the baby. But, we’re not really “paint it blue for a boy, pink for a girl” type of people so, in this case, the overall paint color is purposely gender neutral because, let’s face it, this room will soon be filled with plenty of girly or boyish accruements, thereby rendering the need for a gender specific paint color unnecessary). But, of course, we are nothing if not people who embrace bold, vivid colors and, therefore, I felt we needed some big “splash” to make the room itself come alive. After some thought I decided to attempt a chevron pattern on one wall in the most eye popping, I would only use this in a kid’s room, color – Kermit the Frog green (I think the actual name of the color was “Apple Martini.” But, seeing as this is a baby’s room, that name sounded less appropriate than likening it to a shade of Muppet).

Initially I was hesitant to attempt this task myself. It seemed like something that could be really tricky or complicated to execute. But, honestly, it was really quite easy … just a smidge labor intensive.

Because I’m a perfectionist I decided to start by drawing a giant grid made of 12”x12” squares all along the wall with chalk. I used a ruler to do this (and resisted my urge to also use a level, which I’m sure would have driven me crazy because NOTHING in my house is level and I’m sure it would have thrown me. Instead I just stayed as straight as possible with the ruler, while frequently stepping back to eyeball it to make sure it also looked even from a distance), though I’m sure I could have simply done large horizontal and vertical chalk lines using a taut piece of string that stretched the entire length of the wall … but didn’t think of that, so sue me. I’m sure you could also cut a piece of cardboard or something to the size you want and use that as a template for your squares. Damn! I am thinking up all sorts of shortcuts now. Anyway, point is, I used a stupid, non-time-saving ruler.

The chalk outline was the longest part of the process actually (though I can’t be sure because I didn’t do it all in one sitting – I’m too fat … I mean, pregnant … and lazy for that). Then it was fairly simple to make the tape lines connecting the bottom corner of one square to the top corner of the next square – and so on. In my photos it looks like some chevrons are wider than others. In fact they are the same width. It’s just the way I chose to do the tape (along the top of one row and along the bottom edge on the next … which is hard to explain but, if you look closely, maybe you’ll see what I mean by that). But, really, this is as simple as connecting the dots.

Then I just wiped off the chalk from the areas that needed to be painted and let GAR get to rolling it on (see, I told you he had the “easy” part).

We pulled off the tape and viola – nearly perfect chevrons! (Okay, so we still have to wipe off the chalk on the gray areas, and there was some bleeding through the tape that we need to clean up a bit but, from a distance, perfection!)

I love the combo of bold pattern and bright color together. The green color could read a little masculine to some, whereas the chevron shape could be seen as overly feminine. But, together, this duo of shapes and hues leaves me feeling like either a baby boy or girl fits right into this space (plus, you know, it’s a baby – it doesn’t have an opinion on whether or not their room suits his/her individual style. The tyke is just worried about when someone is going to clean that gunk out of its diaper). So, yeah, call me smug if you must. Instead I’ll call it pride in a job well done (pat on the back)!

And since I can’t* paint (see note above in case you forgot the dubious reasons I made this statement), and obviously I can’t be doing heavy lifting, hard physical labor or a whole lot of other stuff I need to do to renovate, that means I’m pretty worthless in the home improvement arena right now. So really, all I can focus on from this point out is making everything in the house look “pretty” – which includes myself because, frankly, I’m getting bigger by the moment (plus I swear this kid is sucking out every last bit of youth and attractiveness I was still desperately clinging to. Old wives tales dictate that this happens when you’re pregnant with a girl because, as the story goes, girl babies “steal their mother’s beauty” but, honestly, I’m not yet smug enough to buy into all that ... and I’m certainly not going to rush out a buy pink everything based on folklore. I’m more apt to think I look like crap because I’m bloated and tired. But, I’ll admit, having my beauty stolen does sound a bit more fairytale romantic, doesn’t it?)

Since I refuse to buy gigantic, unflattering maternity clothes so early on, I’ve invested in this crazy stretchy band that goes around the top of my regular pants to hold them up even if I can no longer button them (which, of course, sounds totally sexy). I haven’t had to try it out just yet (I’m still stretching my zippers to the limit) but I’m guessing I will this upcoming week – GAR and I are headed out on our Babymoon, our last big trip before we’ve got a wee one in tow, and we’re going to jolly old England (London mostly). And, trust me, I plan on eating my share of fish and chips (and whatever other disgusting fare that the British are known for preparing poorly) while there. Talk to you when I make it back from across the pond!

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