Sunday, 20 December 2009


You already know I'm no fan of Christmas fuss, and I'd happily run away for the entire holiday season and amuse myself doing the stuff that pleases me: reading, walking, writing, observing nature and exploring new places.

Sometimes one must compromise, though. I live with my mother and Christmas means a lot to her. I have one sister who doesn't participate on account of her religion. I have one brother who has taken his family and sailed to another island for their Christmas vacation. That leaves me to provide the 'family' and 'celebration' in my mother's Christmas.

So, my little getaway in a far-flung beach house with a writer friend begins after the big day, as I wouldn't dream of leaving my mom alone with her turkey and Christmas tree on December 25th. And, since a big part of the excitement for her is getting the house all spruced up, I offered to give her the gift of a newly painted living, dining and kitchen area.

I bought the paint on Wednesday, and figured that I'd have it all done by Thursday night - two coats on every wall as we had decided to change the colour from coral white to shy shrimp. It's four days later and I'm still not done. The pale peachy-shrimp colour on the catalogue swatch just looks pink on the wall, but it's a pink with a peach undertone, so we're not too disappointed. It might not be the colour we envisaged but it looks quite beautiful.

And I ache. Climbing ladders, balancing a can of paint in one hand while, bent at odd angles, I apply the colour to walls, stooping, stretching, lugging, pushing and pulling heavy furniture and large appliances around - it all adds up to pains in muscles I'd forgotten existed.

I'd come out of this painting jag fitter and trimmer - if the exertion wasn't making me so hungry I devour everything in sight the minute I step off that cursed ladder.


Chennette said...

ah, pity about the pains. but think about how well-deserving you'll feel by the time you get to the post-Christmas retreat :-)

Lane said...

What a great gift for your mother.
And you need a few extra calories after all that exertion. Painting is a tough job!

Enjoy your break. x

Anonymous said...

Since Christmas-soreness and step-ladder-ripped-ligament are part of Christmas, I recommend at least six months of Palates and intense weight training before the big season.

ChrisH said...

Oh you get the Very Good Daughter Award - I can see your halo from here. Hope all goes well - merry Christmas to you and yours!

JJ Beattie said...

What a great idea for a present! Have a good one and a fab trip with your friend after...

Debs said...

That is such a wonderful present for your mother. I remember deciding to repaint my daughter's bedroom one weekend when she was away as a surprise for her. Needless to say I nearly killed myself finishing on time.

Bluestocking Mum said...

That's a fab idea - you are very good daughter.

Just to let you know I received the book safely - my prize - and look forward to reading it soon.
Thank you so much.

Wishing you and yours a very Happy Christmas and 2010.

warm wishes

Liane Spicer said...

Chennette, the pains are all but gone, and even though I shouldn't have to feel I've 'earned' my retreat, I really do!

Lane, she's very pleased indeed. Painting looks so easy when someone else is doing it. o_O

akalol, I've been exercising of late, but obviously not enough to prepare me for painting marathons.

Liane Spicer said...

ChrisH, Merry Christmas to you and the painter guy (canvas beats walls any day!) and all the rest! My halo is shimmering this week. It won't last though - soon be crumpled in a corner and Mom and I'll be back to our usual squabbling selves... :)

Thank you, JJ! You have a great one too!

Debs, 'nearly killed' is how I felt for awhile there! I keep forgetting to multiply my estimate of the time and effort it'll take to do anything by 5! (And the cost too.)

Liane Spicer said...

Bluestocking Mum, I am a good daughter, aren't I! My mom needs convincing, though... :D

Glad to hear your prize arrived safely. Hope you enjoy!

A very Happy Christmas and 2010 to you and yours too!

Flowerpot said...

well done you and have a good break anyway - got some liniment for those pains?!

Liane Spicer said...

Flowerpot, thank you, I'm rather proud of myself. No liniment necessary - the pains are all gone, along with the chocolates... :)