Friday, November 7, 2014

Q-Tip Touchups!

Here's a shortcut you can try next time you've got to touch up a few nail holes or wall dings in your home.  Rather than get out a brush or a small roller and a tray, pick up a Q-Tip.  Yes.  I really mean one of these things:

Here's the scoop:  a Q-Tip is perfect for small touch up areas. 

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Tuesday, November 4, 2014

My Shortcut to the Movie Theater

"Century Theaters" by  taviamcgrath is licensed under CC BY 2.0
Hey, we all love shortcuts, don’t we? At any rate, I love shortcuts. I love the idea that there’s a path, a way–a quicker way–to get from point A to point B than the path that everybody else is taking. Yeah . . . shortcuts are cool. At least, they’re cool when they work. When they don’t . . . we’ll that’s another story.

Years ago, I was attending a seminary in Kentucky and for the first time in my entire life (at least since I graduated from elementary school)–for the first time in my entire life since elementary school, I was cool and people actually wanted to be around me–even girls. Of course, it was all because I was one of the few people there who had a car and therefore that meant I could drive them places and drop them off at malls and restaurants and come back and get them later so they wouldn’t have to ride the bus or just stay home . . . but hey, like I said, girls wanted to ride in my car with me and whatever their reason, I wasn’t arguing.

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Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Cleaning a Deck is EASY with Benjamin Moore's RESTORE and BRIGHTEN!

Every now and then I stumble into a project that is easy and remarkably rewarding.  This was one of them!  We found an old deck that was slated for demolition and we decided to try out some of Benjamin Moore's wood cleaning and brightening products.  I expected the products to work, but the results were amazing!

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

The Inevitable Forgetting of Important Things

Andrew is a habitual "Forgetter."

My family and I just wrapped up another Little League season and among all the wonderful things that baseball season brings into our lives, there's one thing that I could do without:  the Inevitable Forgetting of Important Things.  

There are a number of Capital Letters in that phrase, so let me explain:  Whenever there was a baseball game on a week night, our evening would devolve into chaos quite quickly.  I'd arrive home from work five minutes after the time we should have left.  To get back on schedule, I'd typically eat dinner without chewing it while I changed my clothes and brushed my teeth. This was a multi-tasking miracle in regards to the number of tasks accomplished at once.  However, because of the diverse nature of the tasks, it was also messy and somewhat disgusting.  Still, it's what was necessary to get to the game on time.  So I did it.  

Once that strange combination of eating/teeth brushing/clothes changing was done, I'd run out to the van, hop into the driver's seat, turn the key and then, for the first time in the entire evening, I'd pause. Turning around, I'd stare each of the kids in the eye, hold their attention for a second or two, let the import of the moment sink into their little heads, and then I'd ask:  "Do you have everything?"

It was a simple question.  A question meant to jog their little memories.  A question meant to make them ask the question in their own heads:  "Do I really, truly have everything I might need for tonight's athletic event?" 

Instead, every time I asked the question, they'd respond immediately, with absolutely zero thought (and with some exasperation):  "yes, dad".

Well, I've got five children and the oldest two are13, so this isn't my first rodeo, so to speak.  And so I would never let them off that easily:  "You have everything?  Really?  How about your glove?  Your hat?  Your bat bag?  Your bat?  Your cleats?"  I'd rattle off every single piece of baseball gear I could think of as they answered with an immediate "yes" to each item.

Finally, after what felt like a 30 minute deposition, I'd turn around in my seat, ease the van out of the driveway, and begin the journey to the baseball field.  And every single time, after I was far enough away from home to make going back frustrating, I'd hear it start:  the scuffling of their little fingers as they clawed through their bat bags looking for something.

I'd hope against hope every time I heard this that they were looking for a Mento.  But no.  After about 30 seconds of frantic scuffling, someone would nervously clear his throat as happened several nights ago:

"Uh, Dad?"

"Yes..." (through gritted teeth).

"Ummm.  Funny thing . . . you know when you asked if we had everything and then listed off all the things?"


"Well, you know what you forgot to list off?"

"No.  What did I forget to list off?" (through gritted teeth again).

"Well . . . and this really is hilarious . . . you never asked me if I was wearing my cup."  At this point the kid usually breaks into nervous laughter and falls silent. No one else typically laughs at this point because they know trouble when they see it.

I try to keep my cool and clinging to a very unreasonable hope, I ask:  "Are you wearing your cup?"

"Ummm.  Not technically.  I actually forgot it.  We'll have to go back and get it.  But don't worry.  I'm pretty sure I know where it might be..."

Every time.  Every game. Oh, sometimes they'd forget gloves.  Sometimes, it was their bat.  Maybe their hat, their sunglasses, their Gatorade . . . it doesn't matter.  Whatever it was they forgot, it was always something we'd have to go flying back to the house to retrieve.

And it drove me nuts, stressed me out, and got almost every single game night off to a rocky and uncomfortable start.  All because we weren't organized.  All because we were starting something without having all the right equipment.

Well, the same thing often happens when we're working on paint projects. We start the work and after we dip our expensive brush into a new gallon of oil-based paint, we realize we forgot to pick up paint thinner.  Or we pour our paint into a tray and realize that the roller cover we had isn't the right one for the project. Or--and this just happened to me a week or so ago--we run downstairs to grab that paint brush we've got in the basement only to find that we didn't clean it out well enough the last time.  Now it's unusable and we're standing there with our paint can open and no brush to apply it with.  

Click here to download the file!
When we forget to amass the right tools for our paint projects, we find the stress level rises quickly.  Our schedules are thrown into chaos, and all too often (if you're like me) we try to make things work using the tools we have, not necessarily the right ones.  And usually, the results are frustrating and disappointing.

The good news about all of this is there's a fix.  At least for the paint project part of it (I don't know how to fix the baseball stuff!).  Anyway, the way to make sure you've got all the right tools for your next paint job is as simple as using a basic "Project Checklist".

We've got one that you can download by clicking this link.  It's a simple tool that will help you mentally go through your project ahead of time.  The list will recommend certain items and most of the time, you'll discover one or two things you would never have thought to gather ahead of time.

Tackling a paint project can be a very rewarding and fulfilling experience.  It can even be somewhat of a stress reliever--almost therapeutic in a way.  Just make sure you've got all the items necessary before you start and you'll discover how smoothly a project can go!

Friday, July 18, 2014

Meet the Hopsons!

OK, so you've got vinyl siding on your home in a boring color.  What do you do?  Well, you can do what the Hopson's did in the video below or, you can repaint it with Benjamin Moore's new Revive Vinyl Siding paint.  Watch the video and decide which method works best for you and your family! 


After watching the video, if you decide on the Revive option, stop out at any RepcoLite location throughout West Michigan and let us get you started with the right information, tools, and, of course, the perfect color of Benjamin Moore's Revive!

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

We've Officially Moved Out of the 80's!

Well, the store remodel at our 17th Street (Holland) Factory Store is finally complete!  It took a while and was a little chaotic at times (most remodels are) but things are finally back together!

Here are just a few pics showing the store before the remodel and after:

Here's a shot taken as we were beginning the remodel...
Here's the same area after updating!
Another shot.  (We've got a few empty shelves to fill, but we're getting there!)

Another shot of the store BEFORE the remodel...
And a couple of shots after all the work...

It was a lot of work (and we've got a little bit to do yet), but it was worth it.  A visit to our Factory Store on 17th Street often felt like a trip back in time to the 80's. Now, with the addition of Benjamin Moore Paints, brand new displays, and, most importantly, the Benjamin Moore Color Chip Rack, we're working in modern conditions once again!

If you live in the Holland area, stop out and see our newly updated store and check out our new line of Benjamin Moore products!

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Coming Soon: Benjamin Moore Paints

Just last week, we started renovating our 17th Street Factory Store in Holland.  And we're all feeling a little displaced right now.  Our paint stock isn't where it used to be and we're constantly surrounded by builders and electricians and the smells of construction.  And yes, like all construction projects, it's a little inconvenient.  A little messy.  

But the good news is the reason for the project.  We're not just updating the store for aesthetic reasons (that's part of it, but that's not the important part!).  We're digging into this project because we are bringing Benjamin Moore Paints to our location!

A few years ago we started the process of adding Benjamin Moore Paints to our shelves.  It started with a location here and then another one over there.  Time went by and we added it to store after store, but now, finally, once this project is complete, we'll be able to finally say that we've got Benjamin Moore products at EVERY RepcoLite location.

And so, right now, we put up with a little construction dust, a little mess, a little inconvenience.  But, in the end, after all the work is done, we'll have a beautifully updated store, a full line of Benjamin Moore products to offer (in addition to all the paint that we originally carried), AND a store staffed by some of the best "paint people" around!

Changes are coming.  We can't wait to post updated photos of the new front counter....

The process of pulling up the carpet has begun.  (We got tired after getting this front corner up.  We'll get the rest later...)

Here's the store as it looks now (and how it looked over 20 years ago!)  The updates are much needed--(and we can't wait to see Benjamin Moore labels on the shelves!)