Monday, June 9, 2014

Chalk Paint

A while back I took a chalk paint class with a friend and I finally got around to finishing the project. It was a nice way to get out and spend some time with a friend. We used a product I had never heard of before.

I've read lots of other blogs about chalk paint and not very impressed. Chalk Paint Powder seemed different. Instead of over paying for a limited number of colored paints. This just mixes in to any latex paint you want.

We painted small wooden trays. I initially tried to paint 2 colors with traditional black on the tray bottom, but I didn't have detail brushes to use and the edges weren't as nice as I had hoped.

After letting the paint dry while we perused the store, we used wax to seal the paint. There is a difference to waxes. The texture and ease of use of Fiddes and Sons was really nice and I would highly recommend for any of your waxing needs.

I used a clear wax on mine for a more modern look. While my friend gave hers an aged look with the darker wax.

I immediately decided that this would be great for my girls to use, and wanted brighter colors than what the class provided. I used some materials that I already had on hand for a quick update.

The tray is an excellent way to corral hand made beads and other jewelry making supplies.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

What Doesn't Kill Me...

Earlier this spring we gave some much needed attention to a large tree in our yard. For years I trimmed as high as I could so that I could mow the lawn without poking out my eye. But it was slowly growing into ours and our neighbor's homes. Something needed to be done. 

While I was away on a field trip with my eldest, several guys with some pretty heavy equipment rolled into the yard and hacked away. In addition to getting the limbs off the houses, they weeded out the sickly and dead branches. 

When I got home that afternoon I was a bit shocked at just how much of the tree they had removed. A few days later the clouds cleared up and My Vet and I went out to deal with the stack of firewood left behind. Then I noticed how much sunlight was shining through.

So many times I have grown limbs that were abruptly removed from my life. Limbs that were so much a part of me, it hurt, I've weeped, I mourn the scars that will always remind me of them. Yet I continue to live and grow new limbs.

It seemed like forever until the leaves started to grow and the wounds started to heal. Now suddenly I see things that I couldn't before, flowers are blooming in new areas, grass is growing. A neighbor was inspired to trim his trees as well, another told me how they could see farther now too.

Whatever you are walking through, whatever fresh wounds you are nursing, keep your eyes on God. He is Good ALL the time, trust in His plan. God made the tree, He certainly knows how to make it grow best. He also sees who is watching you. 

Monday, June 2, 2014

In the Gutters

Now that the long, cold, snowy winter is over.... it's rainy season. Yeah! (Italics of course signal sarcasm.) The best part is that all the rain has brought to my attention that the gutter over the mainly used door, is in serious need of attention.

When you choose to stand in the rain a ways back from the door, reach through the downpour open said door, jump through the downpour of water and close the door behind you might be a redneck have a problem.

While picking up supplies for my last project, I grabbed a few extra gutter hangers. We have long term plans to replace the siding so right now isn't the time to update the ugly old leaky gutters. Instead I opted to make repairs.

You can see in the picture that the gutter sags over the door. since water always runs downhill, it collected in the handy spot over the door, and then spilled over and dripped through the seem. Since it was sagging away from the fascia, water would then run behind the gutter and onto our heads.

A couple of gutter hooks quickly fixed the sag, and tightened it back to the fascia, behind the drip edge.  If you are planning on installing or repairing gutters I highly recommend the invisible gutter hanger over the spike and furrule method of attachment. The gutter hanger uses a long screw to attach, while the spike just gets hammered in. The gutter has to withstand all kinds of weather and pressure, a screw is going to hold up better in the long run. Besides the invisible gutter hanger is just that, invisible from the ground I am calmer just thinking about the smoother cleaner finish.

As you can tell by the photo I also removed leaves and debris while I was up there. I noticed a missing end cap that I will pick up when I return the extra piece from the main gutter project.

** the door on the left is not broken. I have a hanging screen that I use when it's nice out. It keeps away most of the bugs, and at about $10 was cheaper than a custom screen door for french doors. I do gaze at the nicer one with dreamy eyes, but with kids and a dog the screen curtain is functional.

$331 @Lowes (wouldn't that be lovely though?)
$10 @ Walter Drake