Some advice that I had read in an older issue of Model Railroader was not to use too much ballast when applying it. You can always add more later but removing glued down ballast causes a mess and you feel bad after destroying an area you worked on. Of course I did not follow this advice and regretted it later. The one thing model railroading teaches you most is patience. It can be hard to wait, even for an older modeler, because in the end all you want to do is run those trains. I used heavy, medium and fine ballast on my track and applied it in stages, heavy first followed by medium after letting the heavy dry. I used the fine ballast in areas where passenger service is and at road crossings but not everywhere. Painters tape is good to use to cover frogs and any other moveable points, It's a pain to replaces a glued down turnout after you spill glue on it.