My husband, Tom, and I have been married for 32 years – yay us! One of the components of our successful partnership is paint. This was evident from the first home we purchased in 1990 to the home that we have now. Our first home, a Parkland rambler, was outdated and dingy so before we moved in we painted that place with 13+ gallons of various versions of “white” – walls, ceilings, cabinets and trim. That painting chapter was marked by regular visits to Rodda and music from “New Kids on the Block” (my torn, faded jean shorts could have probably earned me a spot in their lineup!). Transforming our home together, via paint, was confirmation that we were grown ups and a team.
House #2 was new construction in Puyallup – a lovely home built by the Zetterberg family. This was a huge step up for us and our well regulated budget allowed for 1 choice of paint color – this was now 1999 and being was really in . . . so, I chose beige. I walked into the unfinished but newly painted home and I hated it!!! We were a couple of weeks from moving in and had been living with my wonderful grandparents in between homes (so like, several months!) – we were really looking forward to completion and moving in. I woke Tom up at 3am and said, “We have to get in that house tomorrow and start repainting” – I was making a plan! The next morning came and Tom talked me away from “crazy”. We soon moved in, and our finished product actually turned out okay even with the beige color. That said, over our 8 year ownership, we did change the colors of several rooms and Tom always kept our “hot wheel bumped” trim shiny white with regular touch ups. This paint chapter
proved two things to me – Tom really is a dedicated partner in that he’s willing to paint anytime/anywhere BUT he’s also willing to make me face the reality that maybe I just need to calm down a bit and let things take their proper course.
In 2007 we moved to our current home, a 1914 craftsman that again, required transformation and paint was the first cure! For this home we graduated to the Benjamin Moore paint palette and leaned into the ever popular grays – Dior Gray in the dining room (goodbye red!), Balboa Mist in the bedrooms, and some color called Shark Gray that I don’t think they even make anymore
– anyhow, there was a lot of gray! Since then we have again, poured gallon after gallon of paint into trays and continued to refine the aesthetic of our home – now favoriting more shades of white (Sherman Williams, Alabaster) and whispers of color (SW Sea Salt). Each room update has allowed for creativity and cohesiveness and color always has a major role. In this home not only have we (I say “we” but I really mean Tom) mastered the “even” seam along old growth molding via caulking, I think it will be this home that has truly marked very meaningful years for our family.
2021 has also provided us with new paint opportunities as we’ve taken on a vacation home. This endeavor has proven to be even more interesting as there has been a paint shortage this year (yes, that’s a “thing” caused by demand, freezing Texas and a plastics shortage). Fortunately, we started early in the season and were able to complete an entire exterior with my new favorite – Benjamin Moore Kendall Gray (but color matched using Sherwin Williams paint – yes, we are those crazy people now!). We’ve moved away from torn shorts to athletic wear (I think we are more “controlled” painters now – not so many splatters) and the “New Kids” have been replaced with Brandi Carlile for the perfect background audio. This home represents the culmination of many years of hard work as we have continued to build our life (aka “get old”) – we love the sunsets and the peace.
In our case, paint has been a tie that binds and has marked distinct seasons of our life. When folks ask me what the key is to a good marriage, I always answer “paint”! I’m sure we’ve been through 100s of gallons and have 100s or more ahead of us!