Monthly Archives: July 2014

Door Drama: Part Three

It’s been a long time since I wrote about any progress to our front door, and any of you who’ve kept up with this blog for a while may have thought we’d forgotten to finish our  “plan”. (I assure you, I had not!)

But…the time has finally come!

I’m really excited about this post because, not only was it a heck-of-a-lot more work than anything we’ve tackled before, it has also really helped to update the exterior of our home.

Okay, so if you’ll remember, here’s how our front entry looked June of 2012:

DSCN0023

We painted the doorway white some time shortly after that and then attached shutters in July of 2013:
DSCN0640

Fast forward another year, and here we are!IMG_0753

IMG_0754

The process began months (or, really a year or two) earlier with plans for our roofed pergola. I cannot stress this step in the process enough. Sometimes it felt like we were beating a dead horse, but since we were (are) amateurs, it was critical in minimizing our stress once we entered the building phase. We talked about what each of us was envisioning. We researched ideas and sketched out our plans. We tried to anticipate what problems we could face. We priced lumber and supplies online. We talked with people in our lives who knew how to build. We made an exhaustive list for our Lowe’s trip.IMG_0967

Then, we set a date to build and recruited some help. This came in the form of my brother-in-law who helped with the manual labor (my dad threw out his back days earlier but still graciously managed to come and help out for a while), my in-laws who brought lunch and helped with just about anything else we needed, and my mom who kept the chilluns so we could actually focus and get stuff done. The hubs and I were talking about how DIYers get all the glory for rolling up their sleeves and getting dirty, but (in our experience) it takes a village to get the job done. We’re so grateful to everyone who helped us out!

The first step was to tear out the old awning, see what was left underneath, and power wash the area before we built over it again.IMG_0696

As in true DIY form, we did experience a few hiccups in our plan. The biggest one was the way we attached our posts to the concrete slab. We unsuccessfully tried a couple of frustrating methods before using L brackets and bits designed to drill into concrete.IMG_0721

The second most frustrating step was the way our corrugated steel bowed. IMG_0730

Even when we drilled it to the pergola while pulling it taut, the front bowed. We remedying it by attaching 1×2 pieces in between each rafter. In the end, we like the look better than without it.IMG_0755

IMG_0756

 

One of the hardest parts about the project both in planning and in execution was building around that little corner. It was a pain because that affected the 3 inch slope on the last rafter. Let me tell you, math is an important skill in building!IMG_0751

Because we used pressure treated wood, we have to wait a while until we can stain it. But the plan is to stain it the same color as the shutters and then paint the concrete gray.

August 2011:DSCN0512

 

July 2014:

IMG_0753

We had many moments of frustration, but we knew that we’d feel pride once we were finished. And we do. One of the areas where I feel most accomplished is in anticipating the cost and sticking to our budget. We built this puppy (including the painting and staining that have yet to be completed) for right around $250. IMG_0755

IMG_0733

 

One thing is for sure: it was a learning experience. And it doesn’t hurt that it’s still standing! 🙂

 

Leave a comment

Filed under DIY projects, home improvements

DIY Twin Duvet Cover

Our three -year-old is now an old pro at sleeping in a “big bed”. When we first transitioned him out of the crib, I realized that he was used to only sleeping with his blankie. Even the pillow at the head of the bed was new for him. So, I slapped a fitted sheet on his bed and called it good.

Lately, though, I’ve been feeling like he might be ready for covers. The blankie barely covers his legs and he is *better* about staying covered while he actually sleeps. I have a twin down comforter that I saved from when the twin bed was mine in college, so the only real question was how to cover it. (Notice the pun reference?)

I headed to Goodwill with my mom one day in search of some inspiration. We decided against blue and gray (that I was thinking of doing) since it could clash with armoire if it wasn’t just the right shade. There wasn’t a great selection, but my mom found this cute patterned sheet at the last minute:

IMG_0676We paired those subtle green circles interspersed in the pattern with a vibrant solid green sheet. We liked it because it was fun, coordinated well with the colors in the room, and wasn’t too babyish. (since he is three afterall!)

After throwing them in the wash, I simply put the “right” sides together and sewed across one side and the bottom. As it turned out, the sheets weren’t exactly the same size, so I laid it out and pinned the opposite side with both sheets flattened out:

IMG_0667

After sewing that side, I cut off the excess and sewed it once more (in case the green sheet frayed at all).

Then, I flipped the whole thing inside out and stuffed it with the duvet. I really wanted this thing to stay put (as sometimes the comforter can move around inside the cover), so I opted to tie a few knots with embroidery thread to secure the whole thing.

IMG_0670As for the top, I folded the green side over and did a wide hand stitch with embroidery thread. I’ll have to take all that apart whenever I wash it, but it made for a nice temporary fix, anyway.

IMG_0673

For a simple afternoon project, I’m pleased!

IMG_0738

IMG_0741

Unfortunately for me (since I make bed), Liam informed me that he’s not ready to get rid of his side rail just yet. 🙂

 

Leave a comment

Filed under home improvements, nursery, Uncategorized

A Priest and a Prince

I haven’t been able to finish hearing this song lately with dry eyes. Such encouragement for a weary soul:

 

It’s so easy to cash in these chips on my shoulder

So easy to loose this old tongue like a tiger

It’s easy to let all this bitterness smolder

Just to hide it away like a cigarette lighter

It’s easy to curse and to hurt and to hinder

It’s easy to not have the heart to remember

That I am a priest and a prince in the kingdom of God

 

I’ve got voices that scream in my head like a siren

Fears that I feel in the night when I sleep

Stupid choices I made when I played in the mire

Like a kid in the mud on some dirty, blind street

I’ve got sorrow to spare, I’ve got loneliness too

I’ve got blood on these hands that hold on to the Truth

That I am a priest and a prince in the kingdom of God

 

I swore on the Bible to not tell a lie, but I’ve lied and lied

And I crossed my heart and I hoped to die, and I died and died

 

But if it’s true that you gathered my sin in your hands

And you cast it as far as the East from the West

If it’s true that you put on the flesh of a man

And you walked in my shoes through the shadow of death

If it’s true that you dwell in the halls of my heart

And I’m not just a fool with a fancy guitar

No, I am a priest and a prince in the kingdom of God

 

*Fool with a Fancy Guitar from Andrew Peterson’s album Counting Stars

Leave a comment

Filed under faith