Tag Archives: diy

If We Were Having Coffee 3/14/2015


If we were having coffee…

Today you’d find me moving slower than normal. Oh, don’t worry the coffee and cake are fresh, ready and waiting. It’s just my body refuses to move at normal operating speeds.

After a very long week of equipment repairs at work, muscles seemed to laugh at the thought of getting out of bed this morning. I swear this spring every piece of equipment in the yard has ganged up on me.

Ah well, better now than when our season is in full swing!

If we were having coffee…

I’d ask if your town has noticed old man winter finally running out of steam for the year. Around here his icy grip is getting weak.

Just like a movie villain hanging onto the edge of a cliff about to fall to his doom in the canyon below, one can feel his grasp slipping. There’s nothing to do but stand there smiling as each finger tip slips away. In the words of Bruce Willis from Die Hard… “Yippie Ki-yay *!#%**

Another rough winter is just about over. In many ways I’m darn glad to see it. In others, well I kind of wish he would stick around.

The answer to the question floating through your head right now is yes I am a bit crazy. But think about it for a second….

While all of us are ready for t-shirts, blooming flowers, and the wonderful scent of fresh cut grass, Are you really ready for mosquito’s, humidity, oppressive heat and millions of spiders?

If we were having coffee…

I would tell you that my list of things I never want to do again before I die grew by one more item last night.

I learned real quick that enjoying a missed episode of the TV show Bones does not go well with pizza! Yep, that sure was a short dinner.

If we were having coffee…

I’d offer up one last salute to another gorgeous winter…




Fair well snow drifts,  icicles, and frozen lakes.

If we were having coffee…

I am sure by now you would have noticed that while still making progress on our renovation, things have slowed quite a bit.

Time for all those little loose ends has been short, but it’s almost done. At this rate another two weeks should finally have us ready for the carpet to be installed.

If we were having coffee…

Wow our time goes fast. I must get my butt in gear now. Today is working on the house day. This weekend has been shortened by a day since my beloved Jeep needs some attention tomorrow. At nearly 200,000 miles, she’s given me a list of items that are tired and need replacing.

So today will be sawdust and stain. Tomorrow rust, grease, and mud…

Any body out there have a 36mm axle nut socket I can borrow? It’s the one tool I seem to be lacking, and Mama hates it when I tool shop. With all the cool toys in a big boy toy store, walking out with just one… Well that’s like eating just one potato chip!

Until next week then. Yeah I am still way too busy… But I will play catch up with everyone soon.

Here’s to a week of fresh spring breezes, soul warming sunshine and a chance to break that bad case of cabin fever I am sure all of us have!

Don’t forget to swing into Part Time Monster’s linky and say hello to everyone. It’s a great place to make new friends.


If We Were Having Coffee 2-15-2015


If we were having coffee…

I’d share the adventure that kept me from having coffee yesterday.

Cold biting wind and blowing snow found me packing the Jeep early yesterday morning for a quick one hour drive out to the middle of no where. (Yes, even the tiny little town in which I reside is closer to somewhere than nowhere!)

My destination was in the heart of farm land south of Lansing to pick up a couple beams from a 175 year old barn that came down. Nothing but two lane roads and miles and miles of fields.

It is usually a pleasant and scenic drive. However with a nearly thirty mile an hour wind driving large fluffy flakes of snow, I could barely see past the nose of my truck.

When I could, large shapely snow drifts filled my vision just before I blasted through them. I had to chuckle thinking my ride must look similar to our young dog bounding in and out of the snow drifts last weekend.

But this was much more serious. I quickly lost count of the cars in ditches, and even one that went into a large drift head first. Only about half the car could be seen protruding out of the snow.

A trip that should have taken only a couple hours turned into a five hour event of nerve wracking magnitude, complete with a white knuckle grip on the steering wheel. But I made it, safe and sound. As much as I wanted to snap a few pictures to share, I could not bring myself to focus on anything except where the road should have been.

And by ten o’clock last night, those ancient beams formed by nothing but hand tools, with markings of an age gone by, had found their new home right down the middle of our living room and one between the kitchen and dining room.

While they may not be for everyone, the rustic touch they add to the house is a pleasant one for both me and Mama.

If we were having coffee…

I’d ask how your week went. I hope this hot cup of Joe finds you healthy and warm with a smile on your face.

If we were having coffee…

I’d tell you just how crazy the week around here really was. Our newly wed daughter received an astounding offer. Our neighbor decided it is time for him to move on and offered his house to the young couple at an amazing price.

After a few days helping them work details and chase a mortgage, it looks like they will soon be moving in right next door!

Even Mama’s comfort cruiser is back on it’s feet again!

And a false alarm with our young St. Bernard had us frantic. This tale is  one for a post all it’s own as we learned something very interesting about large dogs.

She is fine and healthy, but I shall leave that right there until I have time to post a very interesting fact anyone with a large four legged family member should be aware of.

If were were having coffee…

I’d hint at a wonderful idea that thumped me in the head as I careened through snow drifts yesterday. Of course the thought is only in its infancy, and there are a lot of details I have not had the time to think through, but I want to start a my own link party.

The theme is the secret and one I am not quite ready to share. So stay tuned! I need to get through this reno in the next two weeks before I open the doors at work again. Once I have that completed, I should be around here a whole lot more and have the time to focus on the link party.

I’m afraid I am all out of time for this week, so as I finish this cup I’ll remind you that Part Time Monster has their linky HERE should you like to meet up with others for coffee.

Until next week (and I’ll do my best to meet you Saturday morning), may your week be filled with laughter and snowball fights.

If We Were Having Coffee


If we were having coffee…

I’d have to apologize for my absence last week. If you recall, I had mentioned heading out of town to spend some much needed time with my parents.

Well, the week was chocked full of wonderful times. For the first time in a few years Dad and I shared some time on the ice. The fishing was lousy, but I could not have asked for a better chance to get some one on one time with him.

And no, I did not leave out Mom. We meandered around the mall, bounced in and out of a few craft stores (she’s a quilter), and even enjoyed a chilly winter day exploring Shipshewana Indiana.

For those unfamiliar, Shipshewana is in the heart of Amish country. It’s a throw back in time to handcrafted furniture, horse drawn buggy rides, antique malls and even a flea market.

If we were having coffee…

I’d ask how 2015 is treating you so far. I truly hope all is going smooth.

For me, this new year is already filled with to the brim with more to be done than I can find time for! Most of it is good, but I am really wondering how to get my missions accomplished before returning to work in a few short weeks.

If we were having coffee…

You’d notice some walls missing in the house. The idea originated as a modest kitchen remodel, and before we knew it Mama and myself had sketched out a new floor plan for the entire front rooms. Living room, kitchen and dining room are now becoming an open concept floor plan.

The goal of course is that I complete the remodel before returning to my job.

It is a much needed reno. Our home built in 1970 remained original until now so it’s time to bring some modern spark into it. But just a little. We  love the old wood trim and character that comes with it.

If we were having coffee…

About now I would have to excuse myself. While I enjoy our coffee time, if I am to keep on schedule I really need to slip my tool pouches on and get to work.

Please understand I have a lot on my plate so my writing and sharing time has suffered. But I will be sure to have a fresh pot of coffee ready next Saturday morning.

Until next Saturday then. I hope you have a stellar week!


They Will Not Fit Behind My Ear!

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Pens and Pencils.”


In my world, pens and pencils are still more common than a keyboard.

Very often you’ll find me with my trusty mechanical pencil in hand sketching out a project that is in my head and ready to come to life.


Inside my workshop, pencils are used for notes, dimensions and layout of whatever I am working on.

Once completed, a project and all it’s notes are filed away ready to be pulled out at a moments notice should I need to replicate the piece.

I often build unique items, such as the small plywood boat that takes center stage in my book Desperation Floats.

Projects like that are always subject to change. Planned shapes and angles need modification in order properly come to fruition.

Computers can never replace a pencil in the hand of a carpenter. They are just not job site friendly.

And most of all they will not fit behind my ear!


What Have I Gotten Myself Into?!

It’s been coming for a while, I knew it and so did Mama.

The time has come to do some renovations on our beloved family home. At first glance it all seemed so simple- knock out a couple walls add new counter tops and cabinets, and presto, back to a happy life.

And then I sat back and really looked…. Yep bearing walls, electrical wiring in the way, a floor register that needs to be relocated, and plumbing that needs to find it’s way across the room.

This just got expensive and time consuming!

Oh well, the end result will be worth it.

There is only one ittsy bitsy, teeny weenie detail I am looking for a volunteer to help with…

Does anyone want to come over and clean the spider webs out of the crawl space for me?

Is The Pen Mightier Than The Hammer?


I’m not one for resolutions, I find they are a good way to blow my own self esteem. Goals for the coming year however- that’s the way to go.

And among those goals are some definite repeats from last year. Heck some have been on my goal list for several years.

But this year I have a new one. The number one goal-

Complete and publish my first fiction novel. It’s the next step from my 2014 goal of becoming a writer. Whether or not my writing sucks has yet to be determined, but I am a writer (of some kind).

So 2015 I will be a novelist. That should blow the minds of my kids!

Maybe it is time for me to fully explain what I am doing here.

I’m just your average Joe. A working man who found decent money in the realm of construction. Geometry and fractions ruled my brain, and my weather beaten body abused by both mother nature and the need to feed the family.

In the back of my mind I always wanted to write. To be able to put pen to paper and stream words together in a vivid tale that gave life to  some crazy event or story that would leave folks clamoring for more.

I suppose it is a dream many of us here share.

Then the kids began to grow up and explore life outside the small protective world Mama and I offer. Long story short, I felt the need to prove to the kids that anything is possible when you put your mind to it- after telling them that for years.

So, 2014 became a year of chasing my dream. Starting with research, then into actually doing. I must say I have surprised them while at the same time giving them something to think about.

I have this blog, and nearly one hundred followers (A great big Thank You to each and every one of you!) and my first book- Desperation Floats.

It is short, only about 10,000 words and 39 (ish) pages. But for me it is the greatest accomplishment to date except for my family.

It symbolizes the reality of a dream I have carried since my teenage years. And is one most of the world thought was beyond my grasp.

Other things that make it so special I have technology to thank for. See, I had been told many times things like- “On your budget, you’ll never make it.” or “We prefer someone with REAL writing experience, get back to us when you have at least a published article.”

In this day in age, absolutely everything (except the editing) I have done right here from my home office.

The words are mine along with the actual events the story is about. Thanks to GIMP– (and one frustrating, hair pulling learning curve!), the cover of my book is solely mine as well.

A picture taken from my smart phone, dressed with a title and my name, then resized appropriately is what you see.

The publishing and marketing of Desperation Floats brought about another month of aggravating and stress induced learning. Every little detail (many of which I still have not perfected) combined to blow my mind and question just what I am doing.

What have I come away with? A slam dunk right in the face of every dream poo-pooer out there who said I would fail.

Am I a well known author? Nope, I may only be that cloudy sediment that settled to the bottom of a barrel of the finest wine, but I at least I made it into the barrel.

I’ve made more than my share of mistakes, but my biggest goal of 2014 has been reached. Onward and upward we go, no regrets and no slowing down to look back.

I have taught myself and the kids- Don’t let money (or lack of) stall your dreams. For a creative mind, there are ways of reaching that star you always thought you couldn’t pull from the sky.

Matter of fact as I mill about on the bottom of this barrel, I meet other folks who have found ways to reach their goals. One of which found a route I had not seen before last week.

He is a fellow blogger here named Oscar Hokeah.  And he is one I will keep an eye on, and support his progress as he reaches for the stars. You can find out more about him and his Indigogo campaign here.

And so I go off into 2015 with one great big question.

Is The Pen Mightier Than The Hammer?

All The Riches Money Can’t Buy

Some days I feel like I live under a rock. Today happens to be one of them!

Around here, the gifts are bought, wrapped, and under the tree. Thus removing me from the frantic Christmas shopping that clogs parking lots, storefronts, and even intersections.

Today the house had a need, and I being the caregiver of said house, needed to make a trip to Home Depot. Two days before Christmas is not when I want to be heading to town.

It was an errand I grudgingly took up. To start with I am not one of those suburbanites who believes the place is the best thing since sliced bread.

No, I am an urbanite (if that’s a word) out in the sticks who much prefers a real lumber yard or hardware store.

That being said, I knew the fastest way to what I needed was through their door, so I went- grudgingly.

I have to say I found my self astounded at the scene I walked into. The place was a madhouse complete with screaming babies, crashing carts and oodles of people all scowling.

I watched one man shout into his phone about the proper color of a battery for a cordless tool, and a pair of late teenage boys fighting over who had the best gift for someone.

Giant sale signs hung over aisle blocking displays that took a constant pounding as people in too big a hurry tried to pass each other without slowing down.

In truth the whole thing made me sick to my stomach. For some reason, I guess me being out of the shopping mode (thanks to Mama I don’t have one of those), I felt like I had been removed from the scene. Merely an observer.

Is this what Christmas has been reduced to?

Maybe my brain is stuck in another time, or quite possibly I do live under a rock. Only to be let out when some giant alien child tips that rock too peek under it.

All of my kids know, I don’t care what they do or don’t get me. All I want is for us to be together Christmas day.

I see the day as a family party. After all, it is the birthday of Jesus, let’s celebrate!

Food, games, and laughter that’s what I want. A time to build new memories, talk with each other, and share another fabulous meal that Mama so lovingly prepared.

All the expensive gifts you can keep. I don’t need them, and I don’t want them.

But that one thing I do want, can’t be bought in a store or for any amount of money. It’s priceless, timeless and given from the heart.

That’s what Christmas is about- Giving from the heart.

Merry Christmas Everyone!

May your day be blessed with all the riches money can’t buy!