I have a rule. It’s a newer rule, actually. Last year, our new year’s resolution was to only buy things we needed. Granted, the definition of need shifted as the year progressed. Wine definitely emerged from the luxury to the need category as 2011 progressed. So even though I wouldn’t say we were champions at our last resolution, it did instill in all of us the habit of stopping and asking ’do we really need this’?
So the rule I am referring to is my three-day rule. When I want something, I wait three days. If I still want it, I will buy it (usually). If I forget about it, even better. Occasionally, this rule disappoints me when I wait the three days, go back to buy it and it’s gone. But then I get all Dalai Lama about it and declare that the universe didn’t want me to have it anyway.
That’s a long way to say, when I can’t forget about something, I really need to have it. And my most recent obsession is a chalkboard I saw hanging in the kitchen of our friend’s house. (Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, as these are the friends whose mid-century thrifting inspired me and led to my chairs.) It is a huge over-sized school chalkboard that they got from Marquette University. We are talking like 12 feet long huge. I saw it right at a time when we were struggling with remembering all the kids’ schedules. (Seriously, if we missed one more trumpet lesson, I think Ainsley would have been kicked out.) From the moment I saw it, I had to have one.
I started my search on Craigslist. I found one from an elementary school on Queen Anne, but at $250 I just couldn’t justify it. Then I decided that it didn’t have to be vintage from a school, but could just be a regular huge chalkboard I could order. But man, those are even MORE expensive. And then Jennifer, DIY genius friend, said to me, why don’t you just make one? Wuh? She said, yeah. Get some MDF (double wuh?), some trim and chalkboard paint. Easy peasy.
I will spare you the details of my first solo visit to Home Depot to purchase those items. Let’s just say it was a level of humiliation that involved leaving my keys in the ladies room, needing to have them re-cut the MDF because it wouldn’t fit in my car the first time (4×6′ doesn’t work. 3.5×5.5′ does), and pretty much running down a whole mountain of those orange shopping buckets with my out of control cart. I am so glad I didn’t run into anyone I know.
Maeve and Ainsley primed and painted the MDF with primer and then two coats of the chalkboard paint. I painted the trim. Brett measured and cut it. He attached it with liquid nails, which I had no idea even existed. We all held it up while he attached it to the kitchen wall with screws and mollies (is that how you spell that?). And voila! Our very own over-sized chalkboard.
We decided to make the majority of it an over-sized calendar to keep track of everyone’s schedules. We made the lines with paint pens. It doesn’t looks as perfect and crisp as I would like, but I am learning that things never really turn out perfect and crisp with this whole DIY thing. I notice, but I am assured that no one else will. (Right?) For less than $20, I am pretty darn happy with it.
And apropo of Father Time, below are some photos from an awesome New Year’s evening we spent with said friends above in their lovely MCM house. (Like mother, like daughter, eh?