It’s been a year?

I can’t believe that it’s been a year since I updated this blog.

You wouldn’t believe the spam comments I have to filter through…

I finished the live edge mirror project. LOL

Now we’re all stuck at home because of the Covid-19 pandemic. It’s been…interesting. Two weeks so far, and we’re going a bit stir crazy. That seems to be a reasonable trade-off. The only time we leave the house to get something from the grocery store or to mail something off at the post office.

Live Edge Mirror Project

Jessie’s determined to clean out our room and so we’re working on projects to make that space more comfortable. We’ve cleaned out a ton of stuff that got thrown in there before the wedding this summer and we’ve just never cleaned up.

In the bathroom, we ripped a medicine cabinet off the wall that we’ve hated since we moved in. We have a basic piece of mirror glass and we’re taking a piece of apple wood that came from a tree that died in our backyard and make a live edge border on the left and right side of the mirror.

The first step was taking a branch off this tree, and letting it sit inside for a couple of weeks to make sure it was nice and dry. I started trimming protrusions off the branch until it was smooth, relatively speaking. Then i build a sled and tried slicing planks off the branch with my band saw.

That was a disaster. The band saw I have has a dull blade apparently, and apple is a VERY hard wood. The saw blade deflected all over the place and I got nowhere near a cut through the board. It was straight enough for me to move over to the table saw and go from there though.

In the end I had a huge pile of scrap wood

And two decent boards to use

Tonight I took a piece of the scrap and put a light coat of polyurethane on it to see what it’ll look like if we decided to seal the whole piece. The color comes out a bit better with the polyurethane on there, and it’ll protect the whole thing since it’s going into the bathroom and there’s a lot of moisture there.

I keep re-learning the same lessons over and over…

My last post was in September. I was hoping to do better.

Here’s what happened: I got busy. I was spending every spare moment I had working. I need to not do that. After all…all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy.

So, here’s what’s been happening. We had the wedding. It was wonderful. This was the first of many new memories we hope to make at this new property.

After this happened we went on a family vacation to Idaho.

Then…things got super busy. Mainly because it wasn’t. Let me explain…

I own a small store that sells tabletop games. Board Games, Card Games, etc. We sell literally NOTHING that people need to live. Everyone started doing their back to school shopping and things got slow. SUPER Slow. So, I started working on all sorts of projects that could help things out. Adding stuff into inventory that we’d bought and never processed, getting our inventory reorganized. And all that took TONS of time.

The next thing I knew it was almost the end of November. The year was almost over, and I didn’t remember what had happened in the last several weeks. It was a blur of sleep, work my day job, work my small business, repeat. My business partners were telling me I’m putting much time in, so were my parents, my friends, and most importantly my wife.

It’s not like I didn’t do other things, but they were wedged into my life and weren’t that relaxing. I hadn’t taken a break and I was burned out. It’s a thing I do…repeatedly. Somewhere in here were several birthday parties (including my own), several Sounders games, and a bunch of other things that should have been bright spots but I was so stressed and busy I don’t remember much of it.

At the beginning of December Jessie and I took four days and went away from everything. We spent four days where I didn’t have to worry about anything. We did some shopping for Christmas and spent the rest of several blustery days on the Olympic Peninsula just watching movies in our condo and just letting ourselves get bored. It was wonderful.

So, here we are at the end of the year. Well, almost. Tomorrow is the end of the year and we’re going over to my parents house for a belated Christmas party. I have goals for the new year. There are many things I want to do and work towards. But for 2019, what I endeavor to do more of is just relax, let go of things I can’t control and spend more time at home.

Been busy, so it’s been quiet

We’ve been pretty busy the last couple of months. Our brother-in-law had his wedding on our property, that ate up most of what we were doing in July. We went on vacation about 10 days after that event was over. I’ve got lots of photos from those events, but no real time to post them yet.

…stay tuned.

A Bridge to Nowhere, Part 1

Kegan’s wedding is coming up at the end of the month, and half of the event is going to take place in the back pasture, and half of it will take place on our back lawn. We’re working hard cleaning up the property to make it more welcoming for folks, and part of that project is to update our footbridge over the creek. I wanted to add some handrails, fix the stairs, and add an arched entryway to the path.

So, on the 4th of July, with the weather being 89 degrees, overcast, and muggy as I’ll get out, I went out and set posts. Our current roommate, Stevie had already cleaned up the stairs running down to the bridge and she’s working on a footpath for the kids that goes down to the water so they don’t have to run through the mud to get there.

Thursday evening, I found several likely candidates in our cedar trees to make handrails out of, and added some rails to the project. The idea is to take the curved cedar boughs that need to be trimmed out of the trees anyway and make them into a nice, natural looking railing system. So far it’s working out ok. I’ll post more as the project moves along. The posts on the bridge are going to stay tall, in the hopes that for special events (like the upcoming wedding) we can string lights and other decorations across the tall posts.

Camping…sort of


Last weekend our little family spent the weekend out at Kayak Point campground with some friends from the Wandering Havoc Games. The goal for our friends was for their kids to spend some time without the benefit of electronic entertainment.

Unfortunately for me, I was tied down at Wandering Havoc, so I didn’t get to spend too much time at the beach. I managed to make it out there for a good portion of Saturday, and we spent some time hiking down to the beach from the campsite and then watched the waves lap on the shore for a few hours. Zoe has a great time with John, who was about her age. They both love to talk, so they got to talk to each other pretty much nonstop for two days. It was nice having Zoe focus elsewhere though. She can talk…a lot. At times it gets wearing.

It was also nice for me to be able to spend a few hours away from everything. I get wrapped up in the game store and getting the next thing done, and lose my perspective. I’d show you some photos of the beach, but I was too busy enjoying it to take a photo.

Hacked again

So the website keeps getting hacked. Not sure how that happens, but I’ve installed a BUNCH of stuff to help prevent this from happening in the future.