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A 10-Step Guide To Painting Rooms, If You Forgot You Have Kids

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WOMAN PAINTING ROOM
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I woke up today, determined to be productive. A go-getter. A person who cleans things.

Which is why I'm currently shopping online and drinking coffee. Well, initially, I typed it as "coofe," so let's all thank the inventors of spell check and the makers of coffee for giving me the presence of mind to hit "search and replace."

Doesn't matter. The point is I've spent the last two days painting bedrooms and a little staring-into-space time is warranted. We're thiiiis close to being ready to list our home.

I can feel it in my bones. My brittle, caffeine-fortified bones.

Painting the bedrooms has been my final Everest. Yes, I understand it's contradictory to imply there's more than one Everest in any particular situation, but my grasp on metaphors is slippery at best. My balance isn't so great either, but that didn't stop me from perching perilously on a dining room chair and edging against popcorn ceilings like my life depended on it. For added fun, the children have been turned loose in my workspace.

(Who's idea was it to keep them home for preschool, anyway? Oh, right. That was me.)

Today, I will perch once more, determined to knock out this last bedroom and pull this house together in one, unified color palette symbolizing mild saleability.

What's that you say? You have a painting project you're also wanting to complete that's just above sub-par?

You also have children, but forgot before you committed to home improvement?

Step this way, my friend. You came to the right place. Pooling my experience with materials, cheapskate tendencies and an overwhelming urge to throw paint brushes through plate glass, I've compiled a list that should help.

A 10 Step Guide To Painting Bedrooms, If You Forgot You Have Kids

1. Reevaluate

Do you really have to do this? If you're super rich, I'd go with selling your house as-is or just burning it down and having someone rebuild it. Oh, and there's always the saner option of hiring someone to repaint the room for you.

If you, like me, happen to be strapped for cash, decide weather you really have to paint at all. If you don't absolutely have to, scrap all painting plans and go spend quality time watching your kids not step in paint. If you do... Godspeed. No one can help you now.

2. Decide on a color palate

Sure, a nice cream is wonderful, but will it hide the inevitable dirt? In my experience, something that falls under "Earthtones" will hide poop, and anything filed under "Slate Grey" will cover up the time your toddler took a hammer to the wall. Very Zen.

3. Buy supplies

Whip out the old credit card and go to town. One brush for edging, another one to replace it when the baby shoves the first one down the vent that's missing a cover. Pick up rollers, trays and paint thinner for when you're simultaneously weeping and trying to get paint off the duvet the preschoolers rolled for you.

4. Save the receipt

Go back to step number one and really mull it over. It's not too late to turn back.

5. Ok, you're optimistic. I like that. Unfortunately, now is the time you have to get to work.

Put a movie on for the kids and try not to cry into your newly-filled paint bucket because none of them want to watch what you picked out.

Pro Tip: Tears thin paint. Try to cry into your shirt. If you do hit the bucket, really sell the lighter color to your house guests as "Feathered Buffalo." It sounds very Anthropologie. If any of your friends point out the room resembles diarrhea, start yelling about how uncultured they are and storm out in search of boxed wine.

6. Outline

You managed to get the room edged while the kids fought over something irrelevant. Sure, you could've mediated, but when someone insults someone else by saying they build a better pile of saltines, well, that sh*t's gotta work itself out.

7. Let me see you do that roll

Slide to the left.

Now, slide to the right.

Never mind. You're not getting any painting done. Try to convince the kids a truckload of popscicles just fell from the sky, into the backyard. Commence trying to paint again.

8. Second coat

More like one's good enough for most people. So what if you can still see the hand-drawn mural of Ponce de Leon discovering the Fountain of Youth? Moving on.

9. Nice and Trim

Remember that time you were trying to roll the walls and you rolled all over that fresh, white molding because the kids dumped the tray of paint down the stairs? Sure you do. It's why you drank this morning. Now that it's midnight, get back in there and finish the job, soldier.

10. Good enough

Spots? What spots? Hand prints? Just put a dresser there. Can't find any of the outlet covers because you stepped on half of them and the kids threw the rest in the trash? Hmm, you're not sure, but isn't it very European not to cover outlets?

Doesn't matter. The room's done, and all you have to do now is enjoy your new life in Feathered Buffalo.

Tres Chic.

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Follow Paige Kellerman on Twitter or Facebook. You can read about her pregnancy with twins in her first collection of humor, At Least My Belly Hides My Cankles.