Wednesday, September 3, 2008

A Man and His Tools

Don and I are what you could call "closet renovators"!  We do a lot of it, and for the most part, we do it the hard way!!  For example...The first house we lived in Morden was a cute little home.  When we started fixing up the exterior, I, being a lover of shutters, decided that we needed them!  I remembered that my dad had built the shutters on our family home, so I was determined to build them myself!

Back to the 'doing it the hard way' story.  With louvered shutters, the "louvers" are actually strips of beveled molding, that you attach in the shutter frame.  Most people would use a power mitre saw to cut what ends up being dozens of strips.  But not me, so determined was I, and not wanting to wait for help, I set up in the garage with a plastic picnic table (yes, one of those white, anything but sturdy, resin tables) and you guessed it, a hand saw and a mitre box.  And away I went, cutting little 8" strips of molding.  But, wow, the satisfaction that it gave!  

Another project in the Morden house was installing some crown molding.  I've read that a crown molding project should never be worked on by both husband and wife, in an effort to protect a marriage! Anyway, using MDF moldings requires either the use of a brad nailer or to predrill all your holes and then use a hammer and nails.  Well, being the beginners we were, and without a budget for all the fancy tools, we once again set off with our hand saw, trying to get those tricky backwards and upside down corner cuts.  Then while precariously standing on whatever furniture we had, holding the moldings up to the ceiling...predrilling....and finally nailing it in.  (And yes, our marriage survived)  (barely)!!

Then there was the whole electrical issue.  This (for once) did not involve tools, just wires.  Scary!  We managed to remove an old light fixture, and rewire the new one.  I was left standing up on yet another plastic chair, holding the fixture in place above my head, while Don ran downstairs to flip the breaker to make sure we had wired it in correctly.  How convenient.  Let your new bride stand beneath the fixture, which began shooting sparks as soon as the breaker was flipped.  We now contract out any wiring issues.

On to house number 3, where a new fireplace surround and mantle was required.  By now our skills were becoming honed, but still minus the power tools.  All credit goes to Don who somehow was able to make all of the cuts off site (at the lumber yard) and bring them back home to assemble.  I was very proud.  

There are many more stories to tell, but I'll fast forward to this week.  We're upgrading to a king sized bed and my dear husband is set on building a platform frame for the bed.  Finally he said,  "Enough is enough.  Let's stop talking about getting an aircompressor/brad nailer, and just get one".  So off him and Brady went, to Canadian Tire for some manly shopping.
Now today, I find him and Brady in the garage.  Brady playing around with some scrap wood, and Don sitting down with paper and a pencil.  I asked him what he was doing.  He said he's planning his next project...a entertainment type unit for the components beside the TV.  Now you have to understand - this is SO unlike Don.  It's always me, dreaming and sketching, trying to convince him what "he" (we) need to build next!  This is just awesome....he's inspired to keep building and I'm totally pumped about what we can create next!  And I can definitely say, it's going to be a whole lot easier with some (wo)manly tools!

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