Inspiration struck this weekend.

Our house, entering its 27th year, could use some updates. Unfortunately, so could our combined income, which has remained relatively static since the 2008 economic downturn.  On my Friday afternoon drive, I gave up the major goal of a master bath remodel and mentally adjusted to paint, chalk, and some spackle.

It’s one of few times that commuting on US23 has done me any good. I had forty-five minutes between the exit ramp and meeting a friend for a glass of wine to hit the hardware store. “Skyline View” is lovely, almost a Wedgewood blue, very in keeping with my cedar saltbox house.

In my former remodeling dream, our shower would be tiled all the way to the ceiling, eliminating peeling drywall. If you’re over about 5’8″, regular tub surrounds don’t cover the splash.

Goodbye, pale yellow. Hello, mildew resistant Skyline View.

I patched the shower, chalked the sink and counter, scrubbed white tile. While the paint dried, I spray-painted picture frames, the old brass light fixture and the vanity handles. I’m a fan of Rustoleum these days; if you haven’t tried it lately, you have no idea the face lift awaiting old items in your house.

Why do you suppose that simply changing colors, adding a fresh coat, is so uplifting?

The basic issues are still there: splashing tall people, one sink, one light over said sink and none in the shower (a particular problem with corrective lenses in my strength – shaving legs is dicey). But shined and polished, we’re “staged” for a nicer experience in getting ready for work.

Staged: not quite perfect, but enough razzle dazzle to impress.

Do you suppose this is why women change hair color?

When you live in a place that experiences all four seasons distinctly, you’ll find that people stage quite a bit. In spring, you see chill tolerant pansies in pots. Summer brings gardens, manicured lawns, and sprinklers. Fall, you’ll see straw bales and pumpkins all around. And winter, evergreen wreaths and snowflake-themed items abound.

A little razzle dazzle. Things may not be the full upgrade we’d prefer, but we’re willing to put on a fresh coat, anyway.