Sunday, August 9, 2009

Imaginary Colors

First thing's first: Where did we leave you last? I think it was around here:

Ever since Barrio left the country in March, you could say we've been fairly paralyzed in terms of work. We hadn't even taken down the ladders propped against the left side of the house that he was using to put up siding - it's a bit of a miracle that they weren't stolen. We refocused on some other parts of our lives. Work for me, a new internship for Matt. Life went on. We celebrated with neighbors on the Fourth of July:

...and enjoyed a second visit from our friends Asher and Diana:

Check out Matt's frisbee moves!

Last month, however, we reached our one-year anniversary of living in Durham. Ironically, the date itself - July 27 - found me right back in Boston, doing a photo shoot and visiting wonderful old friends. I've been thinking a lot about the way the last year has unfolded, and where our lives are now in Durham. I never seem to find the time to get centered enough, still enough, to actually sit down and expound on it all in writing, though, so instead I think it's important that I focus my energy, and my little window of time between shoots, on catching you up a bit. Continuing the process of documenting.

The great news: we've hired a new contractor! Woody and his team started a couple of weeks ago, and the first thing they did was remove all the rest of the vinyl siding we hadn't attended to yet. Here's our house, naked for the first time since who knows when, all its many and mysterious flaws exposed to the world:

Slowly but surely, the crew has been getting siding up, and replacing the last of our crappy old windows with the new four-over-ones.

Duke Energy came by and took down the huge sweet gum that was interfering with their lines between Jennifer's house and ours. We didn't really mind - except that they left all the stumps and debris for us to enjoy removing.

Lately, finally... we've been experimenting with colors. Here was our first attempt with some Home Depot samples:

Which weren't what I had in my head, and after enough neighbors asked, "you're painting the house gray?" (not at all the name of the color in my head), we made another run for samples:

Yeah, it's weird: the color scheme in my head, one I've been dreaming about for months if not years, involves the happy marriage of a deep, smoky eggplant (not too gray, not too purple), and a bright, straight-up red (kind of like the folding chair in the photo above). But I can't seem to find this perfect smoky eggplant - or maybe it just doesn't exist. The current contenders are much closer... right now, of the colors above, we're (well, I'm) leaning towards the one in the middle. But still looking.

Below: Jennifer, Una (canine), Eleni, and Keelee stop by on a walk.

And Lisa stops by to enjoy our color neurosis.

And I'm proud to introduce the newest member of our family... at least the process involved what I imagine to be the complication of adopting a child... our new couch.

Also known as Cleveland's New Seat.

I don't have a great photo (and it's hard to tell by this one), but we repainted the hallway. The lemony yellow and mustardy yellow combo just wasn't working for me. Now we have a banana-yellow on top, and a medium/light gray underneath. I'll get a photo soon.

So here we are. August is pretty much shot for me as far as time in town to photograph and blog - after this very busy Durham week, I'm off again for more travels for work. Which is part of why having a contractor we trust is soooo wonderful. Come September, I hope the siding project will be completely done, and maybe the house will be painted. If we're lucky, the back deck will be underway, and perhaps we'll even have the start of a fall garden in front, maybe some clearing in back.

Stay tuned, friends... you've been with us this long.