Hi Guys. This is my first time posting on here. I've been lurking and reading and lurking some more and this site has been a WEALTH of information to help me with this project that I've embarked on.... so I figured I'd start a journal up here, and maybe help keep someone from repeating mistakes that I have made while learning in the process.
This WHOLE project started.... (Drumroll please....) Because we decided to paint a room. (yes, you read that right.) It had this godawful flowery, stripey, yucky wall paper that my mother put up when this was her house. (she has since moved and I've taken over the house) It was her formal dining room, and we are converting it to a living room/family room type of thing.
A quick little bit about me: (this will prove relevant as you move through the thread.)
My nickname is McGyver. Anytime people need to figure out how to do something or fix something, I am always the first call. (Flattering, but sometimes annoying.) I spent sixteen years as a landscape Nurseryman, and can probably speak more latin plant names than all but one or two people in North Jersey. (Joisey as the New Yorkers call it... LOL) I got laid off a year ago and vowed never to back to the business, and my back thanks me for it. I now fix Glass. (Think fancy Waterford Crystal champagne glasses and all sorts of artsy fartsy stuff like that. Hey... It's paying the bills.) Now that all of that is out of the way.... Let me explain how this all really started.
"Honey... can we strip this wallpaper off and repaint the room?"
"When do you want to start?"
::::Mumbling to self:::::: (I don't really WANT to start) "I dunno. When do you want to?"
So like any good man would... I made a godawful mess of stripping wallpaper, scraping Wallpaper Glue, Sticking my fingers together with said Wallpaper Glue.... and all that kind of stuff. Then there was the Spackling and sanding.
(I swear, this will get on to aquaria related stuff soon.!!!)
This is what I was left with:
While working on the room, I moved a few times, an old 85 gal aquarium. It was in my possession because I was asked to "Turtle sit" for two months, for friends that moved to South Carolina. That was two years ago. Way I look at it.... It's mine now. I had to let the Turtles go because they out grew the tank in six months. (and I told the folks that I did too.) So I said:
"Honey.... I want to set this tank up and make it the focal point of the room"
"OK. Now get painting."
::::Mumbling.... Grrrrr... Inaudible:::::
And so we went on painting.
And then it hit me! I'll set up a "Dog-Quarium!"
I don't believe Dear Marie was going to let me go through with that plan, but I DID get a chuckle out of her....
So.... I decided to set up an aquarium. I've had many over the years starting when I was just four. Then for my first job I worked at a pet store. I had Oscars then until my well meaning mother washed the windows directly over the tank and the overspray did in my Oscars.
Then I had a "Native aquarium" for years until my pickeral ate me out of house and home. I had him in there with some sunfish that were bigger than him... Crayfish.... etc....
But I've always dreamed of an aquarium with lots of gorgeous Cardnals schooling together, Kulhlies rummaging around......
So.... I like to do things right. First I was going to get one of those cheap photo backgrounds, throw some plastic plants in there and fill'er up.
But like the true Plant Geek I am.... I decided to go with real plants..... and THIS..... is where it all got interesting. I started researching lighting and substrate, and stumbled across "Concrete over styrofoam" backgrounds....
::::Wow. That looks cool. I can do that!::::
So then I spent a WHOLE bunch of time researching backgrounds.....
"HONEY!!!! Put the computer DOWN and come help me paint!"
In the interest of not making this particular one TOO awful long, I'm going to stop here and continue with a new entry....
"FLYING STYROFOAM.... Or.... Pink Styrofoam tracked all over the house!"