Monday, December 4, 2017

Fence Picket Snowman

Updated December 2017, Making more snowfriends!

What fun! These are sitting on my front porch.

 I had a few fence post pickets hanging around so I decided to turn them into snowmen. These are pressure treated, six feet long and 5.5 inches wide. I cut two from one picket, leaving the dog ear on one and one without. These were very quick and easy to make. I started by painting 1/4 of the top of each picket black as well as another piece of wood for the brim. Nothing fancy, just pieces of pallet wood I had in the stockpile. 

Log slices painted brown then detailed with white paint.

Log slices for eyes & a cute triangular nose painted orange.
I painted the bottom 3/4's (give or take, I just eye-balled it) with white paint. Not having a ventilated area to work it, I used a small paint roller and a can of exterior paint that I had on hand. I had the black Rust-Oleum paint from my log snowman project, which covers very well. I'm sure spray paint would have made the job go quicker.
The nose was another scrap of wood cut in a triangular shape, then painted orange. For the eyes and buttons, I cut small discs from a log, the same discs I was using for my other log snowmen.  I glued everything together plus used small brad nails, hammered in from the back. I couldn't use my nail gun because the smallest nail would have been too long. :(
Keeping each other company!

Now, to paint the mouth and tie on a scarf, he's outside on my porch, ready to great you!
Bundled up in a fleece scarf during a snowfall.

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

National Anthem Twin Fiddles at the New Britain Bees

Ginny & Sue "Twin Fiddlers"

We've had so much fun playing twin fiddles for the New Britain Bees!
Every year they welcome us back so we'll continue the unique tradition.

Friday, June 16, 2017

Weathered Patriotic Door Decor

Here's a great patriotic display hanger for your front door. I used a 5.5" fence picket, so it's a low cost deal. Great for Independence Day!

Thursday, January 5, 2017

Craftsman Style Chalkboard

I'm really excited with the chalkboards I made during the holiday using Rust-Oleum Ultra Cover Colonial Red paint. Three of these chalkboards were requested by a friend of mine, as she wanted to give them as gifts. She gave me a rough size but requested a "barn red" type color. 
This was a plan from "anawhite" but I used my own dimensions in order to get three 16" x 24" boards out of a 2' x 4' panel. I framed them with 1 x 3's with a 1 x 2 on top and bottom. The finished overall size was 20" x 29.5". I made a total of six and kept one for myself! I love the color, they were very pleased with it.
Kreg jig makes joining easy! I've since upgrade to a K-4 model

Ready for paint!
The chalk board overlaps the opening by 1/2" all around. Opening is 15" x 23", chalkboard is 16" x 24"

Fastening the chalkboard to the back.

Great addition to my kitchen!

Sunday, November 20, 2016

Snowman Logs

I'm so inspired to make these funky, cute snowmen from discarded logs. I used some really old, wormy, beat up pieces that were laying around my yard. This wasn't the best idea since there were creatures still living inside! My friend, Linda gave me a few "newer" logs from her woodpile and I was on a roll. Don't worry, I baked the older wood in a low oven for a few hours, that should do it!

I started with 3 1/2" to 4" or so logs and cut them on my miter saw at 2" thick. Please be careful and don't cut right to the end. Give yourself enough room to hold on and keep your hands far enough away from the saw.  Next I cut a smaller diameter log, about 3" or so, then repeated with whatever I had. No time to be fussy, these are rustic.

The hats were cut from the smaller diameter logs, also 2" thick. The brims were about 2 1/2 - 3" diameter but cut about 3/4 - 1" thick. I'd say use whatever you have. I chose to paint them black but I left one or two natural.

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Wonderful Outdoor Piano Bench

At home in my back yard flower garden!

A friend of mine had their deck floor replaced and she asked me if I wanted any of the scrap pieces. I certainly have a reputation of taking any "stuff" to re-use. There were various sizes of 5/4" thick x 6" wide pressure treated wood, mostly in various lengths, ranging from about 14" to 26" long.

I needed an outdoor bench! I looked around the internet and my Pinterest collection and found a great plan from Artsy Chicks Rule. This is exactly what I wanted since it uses the top boards that run the width of the bench. Oh, now what about if I make the 2x4 frame to accept 8 boards, I'll have an octave and paint them like piano keys. I used the legs from an old footboard in the front and 4x4 scraps for the back legs. I'm so pleased and it's such a fun place to sit.

2x4 frame, I used some really old wood!

Bench frame assembled with fancy front legs from a footboard.

Organizing and painting the "keys"

Black keys = sharps & flats!

Painting the frame with leftover exterior paint from my shutters.

It's right at home among the summer flowers.

The petunias are taking over!

Saturday, March 19, 2016

First Race!

Here's the deal. I was getting chubby and eating too much of the wrong foods. After my doctor told me that my cholesterol was close to 300, I decided to change my ways. I gave up chips, cookies, crackers, cake, candy - well you get the idea. I just ate REAL food and was careful about what was in the ingredients. No high fructose junk, bad oils, GMO's, sugar or prepackaged convenience foods. Oh, and definitely no fast food stops!

So, this started the first week of September 2015 and the weight began to come off. Fast forward to the middle of January 2016 and I decide to start walking and get some serious exercise. OK, we all walk but really making an effort to walk three times a week for two miles each time.  Cold weather, snow or wind didn't stop my walk. Now I want to jog. I looked on the internet for running advice and tried to follow a pattern but it progressed too fast. What the hell, I can barely run 15 seconds. I kept at it, and after a few weeks I found some really sound advice.

Follow your body!
Warm up with five minutes of walking.
Run and walk by your body.
Alternate running (until you hear your breath) & walking until you catch your breath.
Stick with just 20 minutes of running time, 3 days a week.
Stay happy, don't push yourself, keep it easy. No pain.
Finish with a 5 minute cool down, just walk.

Now I decide to enter the Shamrock Race, the two mile run. After all, how many women in their 60's will compete? Seriously, I was just happy that I was able to give it a try, my running time was pretty close to the last year's 3rd place winner. How did I do? Yes, I came in 3rd place on March 19th. I ran as long as I could, then I walked until I caught by breath. It only took a half dozen steps. I finished two miles in 22:26, complete with an award and pictures taken at the end. Success! I'm 40 pounds lighter and getting stronger and healthier each day. I plan to work hard at maintaining the exercise and eating habits. Wish me luck!