I supposed it's not often that you might be sitting on your back porch and hear from the yard next door, "Oh, no.  Jesus lost an eyeball."  But that is the kind of thing that my neighbors get to hear - especially this week during Grouting Week.

Here are some of the mosaics all lined up on the back porch tables, waiting for grout.  Aren't they beautiful?

I almost wanted to leave them like this - like a big, glass quilt.

However, the grout was waiting, so the boys and I got all of the grouting tools ready and set to work.  I had them do the grout adhering/smearing, and I took responsibility for the removing.

I didn't take any pictures during the process because we were up to our elbows in grout and I couldn't touch anything without making a huge mess.  Actually, I really made a huge mess without really touching anything extra at all.

The boys worked so well and hard that I enthusiastically told them to just keep going - grout them all!

And they did, which was a big mistake.  I'm not sure if you know this, but you really have to wipe the excess grout off within a very specific time frame - or it hardens to basically concrete thickness.  And of course, in my wow-I-have-such-good-help-here-they-can-not-stop zeal, I had them grout way more than I could wipe off in the still-wipe-able time period.


I should have known better.

Just in case you ever want to try this, let me fill you in on the progression of wiping off grout as it progressively hardens:

First you wipe it gently off with a wet sponge, paper towel, or soft rag.
Then you kind of rub it off with a plastic tool like you use to scrape food off of dishes.
Then you start using a rough dishwashing sponge and apply some elbow grease.
Next you move to scraping it off with a screwdriver/small picks.
At the final, most desperate stage, you are using a hammer and screwdriver/chisel combination.

Not fun.  And then your husband will come in and find you stooped exhausted and weary-eyed over a pile of mosaic tiles and ask, "But why didn't you get help with these?"

To which you will respond tearfully, "But I l-l-love to grout!"

All of that is basically true except for the tearful part.  I really do love to grout - there is something really gratifying about discovering the beautiful glass pieces again after they've been covered up.

But not the screwdriving, chiseling, almost jack hammering part.  Nope, not so much.

Barbara  – (5 April 2012 at 17:10)  

I love all the colors. Can't wait to see them in the church building hall.

Anonymous –   – (7 April 2012 at 19:02)  

You are amazing. Really and truly.

I love your beautiful work and your beautiful heart. If I could get to California, I'd bring a chisel and get to work.

Anonymous –   – (7 April 2012 at 19:03)  

P.S. That was from me--Jana/Lubbock

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