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  • alpineflower

On the bench

It's busy around here! There are so many balls in the air, plates spinning, irons in the fire - pick your metaphor, or mash up all three to really get a feel for how things are at my house right now. I started a part-time temp job earlier this month to get our replacement minivan fund started, it's been spring break (two different ones due to two different schools), Easter, the twins' birthday, and springtime, with all its yard work and open windows and everyone in and out.

Plus, I've had something of an uptick in my shop work as well. Last fall I decided to build a 8'x12' shed in our backyard so that I could take over the garage with my tools. I built the frame for the floor, and then it got cold. Six months later, this is what I had:

Note the warp. Even pressure-treated wood rebels after six months of winter. I texted my brother, who works in construction, if I could go ahead and build on this or if I should start over, and he never got back to me, so I took that to mean go ahead, and now that frame has a floor. I've framed the side walls, and I'm hoping to get them all put together with sheathing so that when my parents come out later this week, my dad can help me frame the wall with the door and we can add a roof. I've been procrastinating on building this for a long time because it's so intimidating to consider building an actual building, but I finally have gotten over myself and moved ahead.

I'm also building a shelf for my friend Wendy, who took the fabulous photos that are throughout my blog. I'm going to learn how to use dowels for joinery, and I'm going to make it out of walnut; right now I only have this mockup made out of cardboard.

Fortunately, Wendy is a very patient person. This is almost as intimidating as the shed project.

Another patient person is a friend of mine who asked me to build a picture frame for some original art she has. Our timing was poor: she asked me about a month before the craft fair, and it's taken me rather longer than I'd like to get her frame figured out. I used maple, which is lovely to work with, and I'm giving it a light coat of stain. When I stained it, I discovered to my dismay that maple really needs wood conditioner to make the stain absorb evenly. So this week I planed and sanded all the stained wood off, and I'll be trying again today to get the thing put together.

These are just the projects that I'm actually in process with. I'm also designing and building some raised beds with a friend of mine, and I'm designing a desk for a client I met at the craft fair. I've also been selling some of my craft fair items, so that's been great.

I'm excited to have so much going on! I only wish I had more time to devote to getting all the things done that I want to do. My biggest priority right now is to finish the shed so I can have more room to work on everything else. But it's great to have so much business, and I'm happy to be working.

Thanks to everyone who messaged me with encouragement after my last blog post. I so appreciate your attention and support!

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