Sunday, March 11, 2007

Always Underestimating (A picture rich post)

I have a problem. It's a pretty big problem. Huge. And it affects everyone around me. It is the fact that I grosely underestimate the time that I will spend doing something... anything... everything. Obviously, I even underestimated the amount of pictures I would show you. (I apologize if you don't have a broadband connection...)

But mainly, I underestimate the amount of time it will take me to do projects. Hence, that's why you don't see much knitting and crocheting results. There's not much more to show than you haven't seen since the last time.

My latest project though, I vastly underestimated. I thought it would take simply an afternoon. So I set up to do it Saturday afternoon after I had fulfilled my obligations in the morning time. It is now Sunday night (granted I've lost an hour but don't get me started on that tirade and how much I think it's stupid...) and I still have not completed my project. It is however, in presentable condition and I will now share my project with you.

See this is my house as of Saturday afternoon. (Really, you've seen it multiple times before, but I'll show you once again so as to point out the project.)

And there, on the side, you can see our "beautiful" porch (patio, whatever you feel like calling it). We love the fact that it was built onto the house and already for us when we purchased it, but I loathed the fact that it was a little bit of an eyesore comparitavely to the house. I wondered why the builder didn't put siding on it or anything to make it a little more appealing. Especially for us, since it is a main feature of our house that is always visible from the road (unlike most here where the designs have the porches/patios on the back of the house).

Here's a closer picture (forgive the items on the porch, we are still working out storage and have things rotating through there.)

And from the side (a side of which is also visible from the road when the neighboors aren't home and your approaching that way).

I had mentioned to Chad that it would be great to paint it and with the weather being so nice, he got me the supplies to do so. And with that, I set out at starting the project on Saturday I think about noon. I removed the pine straw (you can slightly see the pile in the back) from the areas and scraped the dirt back from the bottom of the wood. Then I set about putting masking tape up on the screen, because I'm clumsy and would not be able to do it with out the masking tape.

See how nice it looks. (Ha, ha!) After struggling with that for much longer than anticipated (although, had I not have been talking on the phone while I was doing it, it may not have taken me so long, but I like to do things with my hands while I'm on the phone... I know that's why I have knitting and crochet, but I'm getting away from the story and all my stuff was inside anyway...) and using the entire role of masking tape, then waiting for a small rainshower to pass; it was about four when I was able to start putting primer on the boards.

Of course, at that point Chad had awaken (it doesn't help that I tried to fix a few boards and hammered to the porch that is attached to the side of the house... stupid me) and came out to help me:
You can also see there that the masking tape I had taken so long putting up, was arguing with me and starting to come down...arrgh. We did what we could reach from the ground together (with the exception of the base), Chad more patient than I with the brush and myself with the roller on the big boards and worked our way around it. By then it was getting dark and we were hungry so we packed up for the night and had dinner. Besides, there were plenty of areas that we couldn't do because I had been through a whole role (60 yards) of masking tape and didn't have everything taped up and ready to paint because I needed another role.

This morning, (about 1130 after I had a meal with Chad who is on a work rotation right now) I started again. I came out to discover the masking tape I had up was coming down.

I struggled to put that back up and then started taping new areas with the painters tape that Chad had stopped and bought for me this morning. Now, let me note here that neither Chad nor I have ever believed much in spending more for colored masking tape that they call painters tape, because it's the same thing. It was all the store had this morning that prompted him to buy it and I will now say that there is at least some difference because in taping the rest of the porch with it, it was no where near the struggle it had been. The tape was stronger and stuck to the screen without argument and is still up there in the sections I haven't pulled off. When I have to redo this project in a few years I will use painters tape only for the reason that it sticks to screens better.

Then I was able to finish the primer:

The pictures (not that there are many because I am a messy painter, just look at my hand:
and that's just the left hand, never mind my predominate right hand) are not that exciting in going from primer to paint. Plus, today it was just me, Chad had to sleep for work.

But by the time I finished the primer and moved onto paint, it was late enough to know that I'd better just paint the important presentable parts (the upper screened parts) and not worry about the base until after they were done. I made it around the porch excluding the base with daylight and managed to get some tape off to be able to show you:

I think it looks much better. Here's another whole house picture to give you the whole impression:
And from the street (what can I say, I like pictures):
Now, all I have to do is paint the base all the way around and remove the tape from the back of the porch and I'm finished. I plan on doing that come morning.

I also owe you more pictures from last week and have plenty from the trip I took to Fort Dorchester. Of which I also underestimated how much time I would spend there and how interesting I would actually find it. I also have a few from just looking around and snapping.

I'll start with the just looking ones:

There are plenty of anatoles and geckos that roam our porch, such as these I caught a couple of days before painting:
(See why I had to hammer some boards, they like to hide in between the inside boards and the outside boards.)

I also got a couple of hawks in flight:

I also tried to catch the waning full moon one night when it looked a pale yellow instead of white:
But I need to work on my nighttime photography.

And I caught a couple of images of the rainshower, the drops on the plant:
And the wetting of the concrete as it started:
Being the best of the bunch.

Now the Fort Dorchester pictures.

Fort Dorchester is a small "park" run by the state that is the historical site where settlers first inhabited the county of Dorchester - pretty much a precursor to Summerville in the Charleston area.

They are in the process of excavating it, so I wasn't sure what I would find, but there were more than ample picture/art opportunities. As always I have taken my pictures in color and then some of them I have altered for effect to see what I can do in the way of being artistic.* I'll point those ones out to you.

Here's a little history for you:
I took this picture to mark that these were the start of the pictures for this site.

What is left of the fort that is mentioned in the sign:
This picture is enhanced a little for color, drawing out the verge of spring for SC.

Inside the fort:

Both are also color enhanced.

Close up of the brick enhanced wall (done by settlers, not modern day)that was previously made from just a lime and shell (and something else I'm forgetting) mixture.

The backside of the fort:

This one I antiqued some in the upper portion to give an older feel to yet left the bottom with the grass alone, as a way of trying to show present mixed with past.

Close up of the crack.

The Ashley River:
This was the main road connecting Dorchester with Charles Town (the orginial spelling of Charleston before they wanted to dissaosciate with the English past).

Excavating for artifacts:
Some of the artifacts found:
There's nails, porcelin, glass, pipe stems, and other small items in there.

The "market"

High Street:
This was the main road through the settlement. It leads up to the fort. Obviously I made this one antiqued for effect.

The bell tower to the church that once stood there. The church was destroyed by fire, war, and the settlers moving away from the settlement.

Same bell tower, different angle, black and white for effect:

Inside the belltower:

This is actually a lucky shot and all I had to do was lighten it ever so slightly so that you could really see the brick.

The cemetary:

I really enjoyed it and will have to go back as more becomes excavated. Plus there were a few things that I couldn't see along the Ashley River because it was high tide.

But this will do me for now, and I'm back to that underestimating time thing again because it has taken me over an hour to make this post (uploading all the pics and stuff) and that means it's almost Monday and I've just barely squeaked this post in on time.

Later everyone!

*I believe in taking pics as I see them in color and then I edit only for artistic effect. But that's just me and my work. Each photographer has their own opinions as to how things should be done.

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