Archive for September, 2011


Young Bull Elk

Every now and then someone will link to my blog to settle an argument or to prove a point.  WordPress dutifully alerts me to the link and then I get to read all about it.  Americans love to fuss and fight  — I don’t claim to understand it or know how to stop it and don’t really care if it ever does stop, but sometimes the argument just becomes too tempting not to listen to.  You know, like when your out to dinner quietly having a meal and you begin to realize the couple a few tables over have begun to argue.  They begin quietly and try to pretend they’re civil beings and sometimes the argument will escalate into something so appalling and funny – because it isn’t you stuck in a completely irrational argument – that you’re drawn in to discover what the fuss is about.  Here’s a link to a conversation on a message board that led back to my blog.  tm.asp-m=5663702&appid&p=1&mpage=1&key&language&tmode=1&smode=1&s  Glad I could assist.  Below is a picture of a young bull elk, which has absolutely nothing to do with the above link or this story for that matter.



A Summer Project: Finished

The last part of this project meant digging up some grass, laying down some bricks along the edges, adding stepping stones, a few paving stones for steps, throwing down some cedar chips and adding a small statue for decoration.


All-in-all, this value-added project, while somewhat time consuming because of a lack of experience, turned out pretty nice – in my opinion.


Thank you for reading and following along.

The End


A Summer Project: Part Three

One of the most difficult things about a project like this is figuring out how to get it done.  After all I don’t do this kind of thing for a living and neither does my father.  Putting on the railings with pickets, became the hardest part of the project because we had difficulty figuring out how to make the pickets at least appear to be evenly spaced.  The first section took nearly four hours to complete.


This project was also done during the hottest part of the summer, when my personnel preference is to sit inside sipping tea in the air conditioned comfort of a favored recliner.  Drenched in sweat and somewhat satisfied that we had figured out how to put the railings and pickets together we called it a day, deciding to resume work two days later on my dad’s next day off.  We also agreed to move the assembly part of the railings and pickets into the basement where we could continue working more comfortably.


It made a world of difference because assembling the remaining railings and pickets and putting them on the porch took less time than the first section combined.


Attaching the face boards around the bottom of the deck was the last thing we did that day.


With the porch finished, the only thing left on this project was the uninviting walk across the lawn.

to be continued.


A Summer Project: Part Two

When we finished framing the porch we took a break…a two week break.  My dad is seventy-four years old and insists on working.  He has every other Saturday off so the work continued two weeks later.  I took some time off from my job and we focused on getting the porch done.

The project’s next part involved adding the composite decking.  The composite deck material, from Menards, reportedly has better durability and longer life than treated wood or just plain wood decking material.  Ease of use also factored into using composite materials because this decking material clamped down with screws and fasteners provided in the composite deck kit.


The clips catch the board’s edges and each subsequent board then helps hold the previous board in place.


With the deck planks all in place the easiest part of this project was next – sliding the post sleeves over the 4x4s.



The tools used on this project included battery powered drills, electric drill, a saws-all, skill-saw, jig-saw, overhead power rip saw, table saw, a cut-off saw, saw horses, hammers, tape measures, and a level.


Putting everything away took nearly as much time as the actual work.  This is how the project looked at the end of day two.


to be continued…


A Summer Project: Part One

With all the improvements done to my parents house since they moved in, they decided it was time to do something about the trailer park front-end of the house.  Unfortunately, I don’t seem to have a before shot, as in what the house looked like before we began this project.  The front of the house had a very uninviting set of steps and no walkway or path leading to them.  So to get to the front door of the house you would have to walk across the lawn.  Most people wouldn’t.  The first thing done was to rip down the set of steps and frame the new addition, or the soon to be front porch.




With the framing started we then added in the cross supports.


The level is a three foot long level to give you some idea of the size of this project.



My dad believes in overkill so he added one more 4×4 just left of the door to help support the center of the porch.


to be continued…

September 2011

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