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Phase 1 of the Deck is Done

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When I shared with you the Far from Perfect Patio furniture I told you the deck wasn’t ready for you to see yet but as of 11:00 a.m. today, phase 1 of the project is done! Woo hoo!

We have a great group of friends who love to get together to hang out, eat, and drink. Mostly we just want to be together. In early March, everyone showed up at our house for supper. The weather was nice and the group ended up jammed on our 12x 12 back porch.

I took this today and am dying because I forgot to take my next project out of the picture but this is the back porch. The porch is about to have a makeover too. Imagine 12 people in folding chairs, around the table and avoiding the grill on this space.

Having our friends all crowded up on he porch got us thinking that we needed a bigger space in the backyard. We also didn’t have an easy way to move from the carport to the back porch. Most people went through the house to get there. We decided that the best solution was a 12 x 20 deck to connect the porch and the carport. The porch faces west but there are a lot of trees back there to give evening shade.

The first step was to clear the space, grade it to a slight slope away from the house and attach ledge boards to the house and porch.

He did get help to put the giant pergola posts into the 36 inch deep holes. A hardworking college kids came out to help him. Once the pergola posts were in I drilled pilot holes in the deck boards and he screwed them to the joists. We got the whole deck down in one day. Then we headed to our friends’ hot tub to work out the kinks. I didn’t take a single picture of the deck until we got the giant header boards up. I was too exhausted to think. Once again thank goodness for the college kid. We could not have done this alone.

The top of the pergola tested us. We got all rafters up then went on a scheduled camping trip. We returned and it stated to rain. It rained every day at least an inch for a week. We then left again for another camping trip. When we finally came home and could work the pressure treated boards had warped some. We, an I do mean we, Had to get up on the ladders and had to work hard get them back where they belonged so that an end board could be attached at each end. I recommend working with treated lumber as quickly as you can. It is very wet and as it dries it changes shape.

Finally, today Mr. Math got on top of the pergola and attached the cross pieces. We selected rested 1×4 for this part. It took him a while to get things set up but he finished the cross pieces in about an hour. The clean up took almost as long.

I put this watermelon on the table to remind myself that even though we were not super speedy getting the deck done to this point, we weren’t idle. We planted a pretty high garden this year that included squash, zucchini, green beans, purple hull peas, corn cucumbers, tomatoes, tomatillos, okra, cantaloupe and watermelon. I am pretty proud of us.

In the near future we will be wrapping the posts with cedar and adding a wind screen and place for the grill to go. While waiting for the treated wood to be ready to stain we are moving on to the porch. It is in desperate need of love and attention.

I hope that this trying time finds you and yours safe and healthy.

We love to hear from you.

Blessings,

Karen

DIY Monochromatic 3 Dimensional Art

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I do love finding treasures in the trash. Two weeks ago on my way to work there it was. A giant framed art piece leaning against a trash can waiting for the truck to whisk it off to the landfill. If you know me at all, you know that I stopped and jammed it into the back seat of my car. I did not have an idea what I wanted to do with this piece. I already have a huge chalkboard and recently made a paint chip piece from another large framed print. I knew something would come to me if I would just be patient. While looking through Pinterest, ran across this artwork for sale.

Truly Madly Deeply
I loved it. Our master bedroom is a little lacking in artwork. Something like this piece would be amazing, but $515.00 plus shipping is way out of my comfort zone. I thought the idea of a monochromatic piece above our bed would be restful. I have  been happily married to my best friend for over thirty years. I think that the words from the Savage Garden song just fits in our room. I knew that I had found inspiration for the rescued art piece.
I developed a plan.  Use the frame and hopefully the print, look for letters that are the correct size, map it out, glue it down, paint it then ta-dah.  Oh how I wish things went this well for me…

The plan worked perfectly until I priced out the letters. It cost $40.00 for the letters and spray paint- and that was with a coupon! I was thrilled to find that the print in the frame was glued to hardboard and was stapled into place. I really thought this would go quickly until I discovered the frame was not painted, it was covered with a sort of wallpaper like stuff that had to come off. After I determined that the frame was solid wood and worth the effort, I peeled off the paper that came off easily then got busy with a wire brush on the parts that did not come off easily. Two hours later the frame was clean.

As I got ready to put the letters down I recruited the math teacher that lives at my house to help. No way did I want to mess up a $40.00 project.  I have whole pieces of furniture that didn’t cost that much!  He mapped it out for me with a ruler. I carefully drew a pencil outline around each letter before I started gluing the letters down one by one with E6000 I already had on hand.

After the glue down process, I applied weight to the whole thing in order to make sure they were stuck to the board completly.
Next I had to fill in the holes in the bottom of some of the letters with painter’s putty. It had the nerve to turn coolish this week so I did not get the chance to spray paint the picture for a few days. It was torture to see it sitting there not painted, but I have been feeling a little under the weather so being in the unheated garage was out.
Finally, Friday after work the stars and planets aligned.  Low humidity, no wind and warm enough to paint. I chose Krylon Ivory in a satin finish.

It looked pretty rough afte the first can of paint.  Why oh why do I think I can get away without priming?

Sooo after a trip to the store for spray primer and more paint…grrr.

I ended up with this beauty.