Monday was one great misadventure.

Monday. Noon-thirty.

I'm leaving work. I call Bill as soon as my shoes hit the parking lot pavement.

Familiar giddy feeling when his voice picks up on the other end. Salutations and nicknames are exchanged.

"I'm just leaving work," I say. "You?"
"I'm in Spanish Fork with the Bird and the Bean, hunting down replacement blinds the right size for the kids' old bedrooms."
"Where do you want me? Do you need me to come South to help with the blinds/kids? Should I go North to get a head start on helping Ali with her house until you guys can meet us out here? Or should I head East to Mom and Dad's to work on organizing our lives in their basement, and to help you load up the truck to go to Ali's when you get back?"
"No, no. Don't come South - these blinds will be easy, and then we'll be headed back your way. You could go to Ali's - but I'm not sure if she's out there, yet."
"Okay. But won't you need help loading up the truck with the stuff in the garage to take to Ali's?"
".... Yeah. That would probably be helpful."
"How about this. You do the blinds. I'll head to Mom and Dads and work on unpacking our stuff until you guys get back. Then we can put the kids down for a nap, I can help you load the truck, you can head out to Ali's, and I'll follow you when the kids wake up."

Naps are holy grails for us. Sacred, but sometimes illusive.

"I like it" says Bill.
I feel pretty good about my pretty-good plan. "First things first, though. I gotta get me some LUNCH because I am STARVING!"

Pregnant Stepper = precarious.
Pregnant Hungry Stepper = downright volatile. Also, a little like Hungry, Hungry Hippo's.

So, half an hour later, I find myself in my parent's basement - which was to be our home for the next two years - unpacking boxes and half-listening to a Glee re-run playing on Hulu from Bill's computer in the corner.

I hear my phone ringing upstairs.

Got there just too late. Phone reads: Missed Call - Billy Mac.

I call him back.
I call him back again.
Nothing again.
I'm doing that thing where I'm calling too soon, and Bill hasn't had a chance to hang up his phone, yet. So I wait.

My phone rings.

Dark voice Bill.
Looming-dread Stepper.
"What's wrong?"
car accident hurt kid pulled over bad news from family hurt kid we're suddenly broke car broke down arrested for breaking in to our vacant home...
"I need your help. I was moving the paint into the Harry Potter closet and the lid wasn't on tight and it tipped over and there's PAINTEVERYWHERE."
...spilled paint.
...Not hurt kid, not hurt husband, not sudden undexpected bankrupcy. 
Spilled Paint I can handle.
"Where are the kids?"
"They're fine. They're just hanging out. Stepper, there's paint all over the carpet, the walls. I can't move because there's paint all over me!"
I couldn't help but laugh a little. My poor husband in the midst of a paint explosion in that small closet room, the kids carelessly playing in the empty family room.
"Just hang on," I said. "I'm on my way."

Half an hour later, I arrive at the Spanish Fork house. 
I open the front door, and Bill appears from the closet, frowning. COVERED in paint. It was in his beard. In his eyelashes. He looked so desperately discouraged...

...and I burst out laughing.

"Oh, honey!" I said. "You poor guy!"
And as Bill regaled me with the story of his mishap - and lamented me with the unfortunate calamity of this disaster when we were SO CLOSE to being COMPLETELY FINISHED with prepping this house for selling, we set to work. 

Bill stood at the sink, working dried paint out of his arm-hair.
I knelt in the closet, mopping up paint with the one towel I could find to bring.

We looked up paint-removal strategies from the internet. "Latex Paint," said the internet, "is a toughie. If it dries, you're toast. Good luck, man."

So we obediently oscillated between dabbing and dousing (with a detergent mixture). But this bucket-full of paint spill on the carpet/walls/husband was not exactly the same as the tablespoon-spill on the carpet-square the internet was explaining about. 

We needed to pull out the big guns.

So we rented a Rug Doctor. I was skeptical.

But...several new-from-the-store towels and even more rolls of paper towels later, we hauled that Rug Doctor sucker over that damp and painty carpet, and...

It LOOKED like it did the trick. 
We couldn't be sure because it was wet when we left - and we weren't sure if it was dark because of paint or because of wet.

but I'm optimistic.

I might go check on it tomorrow when I'm down there for work. Or I might not. Because, dangit, we want to be DONE with that house!

"I had the Bird in her car seat," said Bill. "I was taking pictures of the house before we loaded into the car - the LAST THING I had to do! So I was moving the paint into the closet so it wouldn't be in the shot."

I groaned.

"We were so close," he said. "So close - and then colossal disaster."

I drove the kids home, and Bill went directly to Ali's house to offer what help he could so much later in the game than was planned.

The kids hadn't had a nap that day. Neither of them. Yet they kept their cool while Mom and Dad were freaking out in the closet.

I am a seriously lucky Mom.

And the house? FINALLY DONE.

See it here.

Tell your friends.


craftyashley said...

Just wanted to let you know you've started off a chain reaction of a rather late quarter-life crisis. I was telling my husband that I thought we should just move to where we want to be, try and find him a job, or if not I could use my handy dandy graphic design degree... we'd have to foreclose on our house. We'd probably live in a 2 bed. apartment (with three kids) for a while- but wouldn't it be great to MIX THINGS UP a little bit? We're in the middle of drafting a Will and getting life insurance for heaven's sake. We're too boring. And settled!
That's when the husband shook me by the shoulders and said "Shut up. We're staying right here for now. Be happy about it." That's when I said, "But Stepper is having fun, crazy adventures! I'm bored!" He gave me a blank stare because he doesn't "do" blogs.
Anyway, just thought you'd like to know.

The Aprecios said...

I love your posts, but in all honesty, I wish you would take pictures. Couldnt Bill have stood there a minute longer while you got the camera? The paint covered husband picture would go down in history Im sure :)

That Girl said...

Hungry? Pregnant? And you didn't have a meltdown?

You're my hero.