Why is it that I always make mistakes in a big way? Remember the horrific PB Event?...oh the horror.
This is what I've been working on this week (and the book...and the piles of laundry and the humongous mess in my kitchen that's still there after my 9 day trip back home...because I'm outside and the house falls apart when I'm doing a project). Yes, I'm fixin' up the patio again. About 6 years ago I decided to Acid Stain our concrete patio (original plan was pavers). I taught myself how to do it (you know I love a good project and new skills) and it turned out beautifully...very mottled...coffee brown...high gloss finish...perfect.
Two years ago I decided it needed another dose of the clear gloss sealer on top as the shine was gone...problem was the company could no longer ship a solvent based sealer to me as Pennsylvania had changed to a no VOC state. OK, well DH had just sealed the concrete drive and sidewalk with an expensive 10 year water-based sealer and there was some leftover...works for me! So I got out the sprayer and sprayed away...one coat was good, but two coats was even better, right?...I stood back when I was done and admired my work.
The next morning I woke up and grabbed my cup of coffee ready to head out to the patio to bring the furniture back on...AHHHHHHH!!! The patio was GRAY!!!! WTFrick!!!!! I panicked...WHAT HAPPENED?!!! Maybe it's not dry yet?!!! NOPE....DRY!!!! I get out the bucket of sealer and call the company to ask WTFrick?!!! The put me in touch with the 'Specialist' and after explaining what I'm looking at he says 'I keep telling them they need to add "NOT TO BE USED ON SMOOTH TROWELED SURFACES" to the instructions...It's only meant for broomed surfaces!' After seething for a moment I asked what I could do to fix it...his answer 'Well, you can try our cleaner, but I doubt it will come off without using an industrial floor sander'...umm NOT AN OPTION...'Or you can just let the sun and wear take it off.' AHHHH! I bought and tried every cleaner out there to no avail...I tried testing other strippers and sealers...nada.
So, for two summers I've had to look at my mistake...the gray haze still isn't all gone, but I couldn't stand it anymore (who likes to be reminded of their mistakes). When I was in Ohio last week I found some solvent based sealer (actually marked 'Low VOC' as they are moving toward 'Green' as well)...and yes, I bought two gallons and smuggled it over state lines! Stop yelling at me...we're a green family (DH works in the green-build industry)...I have not one, but two recycling cans as large as a trashcan (plus a paper one) that we put out every week....but I couldn't stand my patio anymore...Yes, the solvent based worked...the gray haze is still where some of the furniture covered it up (you can see the gray...see that rectangle right in front for one of my cushion boxes...outdoor rug, umbrella base), but it looks SO much better and SUPER shiny. Oh, and my neighbors think I'm crazy...I have to keep screaming and running at the birds who keep landing on the gazebo frame (top isn't on yet) and sh*tting on my patio...the sh*t will probably be permanently in the finish now....*sigh*.
OK, I waited until it hit 50 degrees this morning to put on the second coat and just came in to find out on TV that we're expecting 'severe thunderstorms and large damaging hail' around 6pm this evening (about 9 hours from when I finished)...the sealer is not supposed to get wet for 12 hours after applying...*sigh*. If I wake up to a gray patio tomorrow morning (or worse...hail chicken-pox marks all over it) you'll be hearing my screams from wherever you live!
Now...back to the "every five-years" job...I hate maintenance jobs that no one will ever notice you did, don't you? I've been sanding the the rust off our wrought iron patio furniture all week with a drill and a wire bit. Here's where I ground the rust off my leg (and my fading bruises from my work at the folks).
Wow, we bought some of this 22 years ago when DD was first born! I've got the first coat of spray paint on (see all the furniture out on the grass...OK, hard to see against our woods, but trust me, there are 11 chairs, a table, a bakers rack and about 10 plant holders out there). I had to take a shower between coats I couldn't stand myself...I was so covered in black spray paint (I no longer look blonde). I wonder what color the rain will turn my black furniture?!
Yes I'm a risk-taker...and I'm blonde (underneath the spray paint). Enjoy your evening...I'm praying for sun...and stay off the patio until it dries!