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

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

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.

Possibilities are now endless…

What poor fool hasn’t had the dream of owning a sawmill? I submit that anyone with a Y chromosome has at one time or another fantasized about owning their own sawmill. Well… Through a fortunate series of events I am now the proud owner of a Woodmizer LT10 sawmill. It’s older but nonetheless exciting, and its a lot quicker than my chainsaw mill.

Even Mrs. Birch gave it a try. This is with a rather dull blade. It cuts much quicker with a sharp blade on it.

Yay renovations…

So we bought some new appliances, largely because our old fridge was failing at its primary function. Not only would it freeze the vegetables in the produce drawer but it would let the ice cream in the freezer thaw… So we pulled the trigger on a new fridge and stove. The stove was a simple replacement…20160604_223315562_iOS




This necessitated some changes in the kitchen… starting with pulling the trim and door jambs off to get the fridge through into the kitchen. Of course once you start down that route there is no turning back…20160723_231925378_iOS

But at least we got the fridge in… 20160808_180202055_iOS    20160808_191128237_iOS

Its bigger… 20160808_195410067_iOS

That’s everything from the crowded old fridge into the new fridge and there is still tons of room. Of course we opened the wall because we have some other renovations in mind, so stay tuned to see our slow progress.