DIY Monkey Curtain Rods

We needed curtain rods for my son’s room and I wanted to do something unique. He loves monkeys, so my wife drew a pattern and I made them. As you’ll probably notice his room is still done in the horrible 80’s paneling, so as of right now they are unfinished as we will probably paint them when we redo his room.

Endgrain pine cutting board

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So being unwilling to throw out the cut off from the sink I decided to try my hand at making an endgrain cutting board. I ran the off cuts from the ends and the sink through the table saw to make them all a consistent thickness and then flipped them on edge to run through my table saw again to joint the edges. After they were all square and the same dimensions it was a simple matter of gluing them all together and letting it sit in the clamps overnight. After it came out of the clamps I used the belt sander with a 36 grit belt to take off all the squeeze out and to flatten the cutting board. Then the boy and I worked up through the grits to 120 and then used the random orbit sander from 80 to 150 grit. After liberally applying a coat of mineral oil I let it sit for a couple days and reapplied. That was a month ago and now it is our go to cutting board. It needs the occasional reapplication of mineral oil to keep it looking fresh but other than that it is great.

Bedroom renovations

It was a bit of work but I got it all done in 2 weeks. Yay!!! I added four 400 lumen LED lights which means we have light in our bedroom. Now I have to build some built ins for the closets and then some new doors and we’ll be living in the lap of luxury.

Kitchen renovations…

So this stage started back in September when I milled up a log with my Alaskan mill (my woodmizer isn’t set up at home yet, and the log was too long anyway). Then we did a significant amount of hand planing.

On Halloween I pulled the kitchen cabinets off the wall (sorry I thought I had a before picture) and then started pulling down the drywall. After putting up some temporary walls under the ridge beams we completely committed and with the most powerful sawzall we cut the studs.

We used a drywall lifter and a significant amount of brute force to lift the beam into place. Over the following week we got the wiring re-routed and the supports to tie the beam into the outside wall in place.

Now the renovations are practically done… Right?

Working as a family…

I feel incredibly grateful for a family that I can do projects with. As many of you know we are renovating our house, not as quickly as it could be but happening none the less. Over the last week I’ve been using my Alaskan saw mill to make a 21 foot 6×8 Douglas fir beam. Why not use the wood mizer you say? Well it can only cut 20 foot long logs, and its been moved to its new location and not set up yet. Anyway, here is a short video of a bit of hand planing.

DIY Canning Peach BBQ Sauce

We love peaches, but can only eat so much jam… we also love to BBQ so naturally this week we made peach BBQ sauce.  I was a little worried, but it turned out great!

Peach BBQ Sauce

6 cups of chopped, pitted and peeled peaches

1 cup of chopped peppers (I used a mix or red, green, yellow and banana)

3 cups of finely chopped onion

3 tbps of fresh garlic (pressed)

3/4 cup vinegar ( I used pickling vinegar for the higher acid content, 7% instead or 5%)

1 1/4 cup honey

1 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce

2 tsp red pepper flakes

2 tsp dry mustard

2 tsp salt


  1. combine all ingredients in a large stock pot.
  2. Bring all ingredients to a boil or medium heat.
  3. Reduce the heat keeping mixture at a light boil/simmer.
  4. Stir frequently for about 30 mins. or until the mixture has thickened.  ( It won’t be thick like commercial sauce, it will be a little running, but will thicken when cooled. )
  5. Process for approximately 20 mins. in a boiling water canner.  (this depends on your jar size and altitude.)




The manly rooster…

Our chicks are getting bigger, this morning we heard the first crowing from the rooster. I’m sad it wasn’t the first squawks but I still thought the manly crow from this guy was entertaining.