Before I get into how this week went for my learning project, I want to quickly highlight two new tools that I will be using moving forward to better document my learning project.
The first one is Screencastify. This is a simple free Google Chrome browser add on that I can use to record my screen. It was super easy to download, and a small icon is now located on my tool bar so that I can quickly access the program. It allows me to record my whole desktop or just one tab. This is a great tool for better showing the online resources I am using for my learning project, but I can tell it will also be a useful tool as I move through my academic career and into becoming a practicing educator!
The second new tool I’m using is called Gif-Maker. This is another free Chrome browser extension, and much like Screencaster has a small icon located along my toolbar. This one opens another page where I can upload images or videos and create a GIF. There are some settings along the side that are straightforward to use. This is going to help me with something I feel is lacking in my learning project posts. It’s not nice to look at a large block of text so I feel like GIF’s will make be a great way to break that up.
Moving on, this week was pretty brutal! We finally had some nice weather so started the week by power washing the rest of the fence in the yard and left it a few days to dry. I figured it would be a great week to try and remove the old paint along the older portion of our fence. This went horribly! However that was not because of the resource I used this week. I found myself on this article written by Matt Smolsky. This article had great step by step instructions, as well as a list of things you will need, any warnings, and even some helpful hints. Unfortunately I didn’t quite listen to this resource! The article suggests using a quality paint scraper to get rid of the paint, however I didn’t immediately have one at my disposal, but I did have a power sander. I figured I could just skip the scraping step and go straight to sanding. This did not work so I made my treck to my local Home Hardware. I chatted with a worker there (can’t say enough good things about Home Hardware, the employees are always extremely helpful) who suggested I also pick up some paint remover. This was a bit of a pain as it was messy to put on and dried very quickly, and since the instructions said to keep the area wet for 30 minutes, this was a challenge!
The scraping itself was not that difficult, however once the paint was removed I was able to get a good look a the quality of the fence, and it was obvious that it was in pretty rough shape that was beyond any reasonably repairs. I think I will need to reevaluate if doing this portion of the fence is worth the time and effort it will take to complete!
The other project I started again this week was to finish staining the other fences, as last time I had just done the area where I wanted the garden boxes to go. This also did not go as planned! Despite the fact that I purchased an air sprayer (nothing too fancy, a simple hand pump was all I figured I’d need), something went wrong with the stain itself. The stain went on in such a paint like layer that it was too thick to work properly in the sprayer, and left a horrible finish on the fence! Luckily this was an area of the fence that I was considering removing anyway, but I’m at a loss as to what went wrong with the stain! Check out this comparison between an untreated portion and the freshly stained portion.
When we purchased this house, the entire kitchen was painted in a horrible brown colour, and it was one of the first things I ripped out! As soon as I saw what looked like brown paint on the fence, I knew I had to stop and figure out what was going on. The only thing I could think of was that somehow the stain must have turned bad after I used it roughly two weeks ago, as it was very watery then and was easy to apply! Anything I googled just gave me recommendations on how to remove old stain, so I think I’ll have to do some more research. Thankfully I picked up two more cans of stain which will hopefully last me the rest of this project!