My garage is an absolute mess.  I keep building and setting up work benches and they keep getting filled up.  I had this space underneath the window with all the paint cans just piled up and decided to build another work space with shelves here.  These really are the easiest shelves to build.  These I built all by myself and total time from start to finish was under 2 hours.  Now, they still need a trim and maybe one day I willl get back to them and place the trim but for now they are fully functional and useful.  This bench is where I  do the final staining and painting on projects to leave the actual workbench free from this clutter.  
Tools:

Router
Miter saw or circular saw to cut the 2 x 4 to height (or have the warehouse store do it for you) 
skill saw
Power Drill and bits
Level
measuring tape
marker or pencil
clamps


Supplies:

3/4 Plywood cut into width and depth needed
2 x 4's cut to height need (how many will depend on height) 
2  -1 x 2"  cut to length of shelves 
2" screws
1 1/2 " screws



The shelves that I made were 8' x 2' which is one sheet of plywood cut down.
The legs are cut to 37 inches so that the overall height is roughly 38" tall.  The reason for the height, I use quite a few of the plastic storage bins and they are roughly 17" in height on average.  This way I could have two rows of them or 3 if I used the top of the shelves as storage.

How to start:

I started by lining up the 3 legs and clamping them together and then clamping it all to my work bench.  A mark was placed at 18" and 19".  This is where the "trench" or "dado" will go to that you can inset the shelf.  I trenched it out to 1/2 inch
Picture
Here is the dado with a little oops at the beginning. I had set the depth too much. This is a 1/2 dado
Next, I cut the sections out of the plywood so that it would set flush.  Because 2 x 4's are not actually 2 x 4, you need to subtract the 1/2 for the depth and cut it to that.  So my notch cut in the plywood was about 1" in depth.  Cut out all three.
Picture
I make a little triangle notch so that it is easier to "turn the corner".
Next.  I attached my 2- 1 x 2 to the wall using 3 inch set screws set at all the studs.  The bottom rail was set at 18 inches (the top of it) and the second is at 37".
Next, I set the legs into the bottom shelf and screwed them on using 2" wood screws.  I then flipped it so that the shelf rested on the bottom rail and set that with 1 1/2"I  wood screws.  I then placed the top on and afixed that with 1 1/2" wood screws.
This is an incredible easy and fairly inexpensive project to do.  You can finish this up with a varnish or waterproof if you like and also add trim.  I will probably just leave them as they are.

I hope that description was not too confusing!  If you have any questions, please email me or leave a comment.   I also have a YouTube channel where I feature many of my recipes and Challenges, Speed Draws and soon some of my DIY's.  If you would like to check it out, click on this link:  Bristlee One

Thank you for stopping by and remember, enjoy life.
It's the one you have,
Tammie
 
 
I found myself at the beginning of 2015 to be in need of a bigger desk then what I had.  The desk I had was only four feet long and 18 inches wide.  Not much could be done on that desk.  I was constantly stacking things up around the desk and on chairs or throwing stuff on my son's desk.  When I bought my house the old owners left quite a few odd and ends about the property and in the spare garage.  One of the things they left were 2 old file cabinets.  They continued to sit in the garage collecting black widows for several years.  Now that I was in need of a bigger desk and no money to buy the one I wanted, it was time to be ingenious.  I had been at one of the warehouse stores the week before and had them cut down a birch plywood sheet for some shelves.  I had a piece left over that was 62 inches by 24 inches.  It was not quite deep enough because the cabinets are 26 inches in depth but I thought, what the heck who would really care.  I already had the birch trim to go around it so the only thing left to buy was the spray paint for the cabinets.  
Picture
I used a spray paint for metal that also contained a primer. The white took me 4 cans to cover the two file cabinets.
I started out by cleaning the cabinets, removed a few spots of rust with some steel wool.  The spray paint that I purchased already had the primer in it.  I used spray on the metal so that I didn't have the brush strokes.  Just remember when spray painting not to rush it.  Use overlapping sweeping motions back and forth.  Apply a light coat, let it dry and then another and another until at the thickness you like.  Make sure not to over spray or it will drip.  Let it dry between coats.
Picture
The Red spray paint also contained a primer
For the top, I sanded the wood first with a 60 grit followed by a 100 then a 200.  Wipe it down with a lightly damp cloth to remove all sanding dust.
Let the wood dry.
I used a nail gun and glue to apply the trim just on 3 sides (not on the back as the wood was not wide enough. If you wood is wide enough then go ahead and put trim on the back.  I sanded the trim before attaching.  
Fill nail holes with wood filler, wipe and let dry
Apply the stain that you like.  I used a Golden Oak. Apply in the direction of the grain.  I use a lint free towel to apply and a lint free towel to remove excess.  Go in the direction of the grain.
Let it dry for 24 hours.
I then applied my polyurethane (use a good brush so that it doesn't leave stroke marks)
I applied one coat.
Let it dry.
Sand with a 200 grit.
Use a lightly damp cloth and wipe off dust.
Let dry 30 minutes
Apply a second coat of Polyurethane.
Repeat above.
Apply a 3rd coat and repeat above.
That's all it took.  Seriously.

Total cost was about $30 and that includes the wood piece used (originally $44 for the entire sheet), polyurethane, stain used, sandpaper, spray paint (I used 4 cans, 3 white and 1 red), steel wool.  I did see some of these cabinets at a garage sell for $4 each and over at the thrift store for $5 each.  You could also use a pine plywood sheet to reduce the cost.  The most expensive was the spray paint and I could have gotten it cheaper with coupons or at a big box store.

I hope that description was not too confusing!  If you have any questions, please email me or leave a comment.   I also have a YouTube channel where I feature many of my recipes and Challenges and soon some of my DIY's.  If you would like to check it out, click on this link:  Bristlee One

Thank you for stopping by and remember, enjoy life.
It's the one you have,
Tammie


 
 
Getting over the fear of new things is always the first step to take in any home improvement project.  I know the first time I put in a toilet by myself, I was terrified that I would screw it up so badly that I would end up with dirty toilet water all over my floor and into the bedrooms.  That didn't happen of coarse and the install only took a total of 15 minutes from start to finish.  Believe it or not, changing out a toilet is usually very easy and simple (as long as the ring is intact and in good shape, if not you may have to call a professional).
Most toilets come with almost everything you will need to install it.  Also, the "guts" as I call it in the tank is usually pretty much preassembled and installed for you.  Working wise there is the base, the tank, the tank lid, the toilet seat, the wax ring and the two anchor bolts with wingnuts and the anchor bolts and screws to hold the tank onto the base.  The only thing that you have to buy separately is the hose from the wall outlet to the toilet.  I always change it out when I install a toilet.
The toilet above was from a bathroom renovation that I recently finished.  You can find the details here
First things first.  Turn the water off at the toilet.  Drain the tank by flushing the toilet and then the toilet bowl itself.  Usually you will have to use a thick sponge or towel to get the last of the water out of the bowl.
Now disconnect the water line leading to the toilet

You have a choice at this point, you can remove the tank or remove the entire toilet (tank still attached).  I do it as one unit as I am always just disposing of the toilet anyway.

Loosen and remove the nuts at the base of the toilet (see picture above).

Rock the toilet towards you to loosen it and then pick it up and away.
Inspect the ring for breakage.  If you are not going to set the toilet right away, plug it with a thick towel, make sure the cloth is large enough where it won't fall down inside.

I always replace those side bolts as new ones always come with the wax ring.
Items to purchase:

Toilet
water line
wax ring with anchor bolts if not included with the toilet


To install the toilet (how I do it)

I turn the base of the toilet over and press on the wax ring just hard enough to make it stay.  Then turn it right side up.  Align the two bolts with the holes in the base and set the toilet down.  You can actual feel when it is place.  Push it down to set the wax ring.  
When tightening the side bolts, just done't tighten one side down.  Slightly tighten one side and then the other.  Keep switching back and forth until the toilet is down all the way.  Check to make sure it is not rocking.
Once the base is installed, now place the tank as per the instructions from the manufacturer.  Mine was pre-assembled so I only had to place it on and then using the provided wingnuts tighten it down.  Again do it side to side.  Do not over tighten or you will crack the porcelain.
Install the toilet seat and lid.
Attach a new waterline and tighten. Turn the water on slowly and look for leaks.  I usually wait a few days before caulking the bottom of the toilet just to make sure I don't have any surprises.  When I do caulk, I leave a 2" gap in the back.  This helps to ensure that if I do have a leak, I will know about it!

That's it.  That's all there is to installing a toilet.  Many toilets now include the wax ring, check the contents of your box before you buy.  If not included be sure to buy the type that has the new anchor bolts for the bowl.

I hoped this helped.

I hope that description was not too confusing!  If you have any questions, please email me or leave a comment.   I also have a YouTube channel where I feature many of my recipes and Challenges and soon some of my DIY's.  If you would like to check it out, click on this link:  Bristlee One

Thank you for stopping by and remember, enjoy life.
It's the one you have,
Tammie
 
 
When I first moved into my house 4 years ago, I knew it was a fixer upper.  I could see the potential the moment that I walked into the house.  Even though the carpets were a horrendous color, the walls were dirty, cobwebs hung from the ceiling and everything in the house was outdated, I knew it was home.  In my fantasies it was like a tool wherehouse commercial.  Everything would be quick and easy, I would be a superhero of home improvement with the lights of the heavens shining on me and music soaring in the background.  Angels would surely sing my name and clerks at the big box tool wherehouse would bow to me.   Reality check.  So many corners were cut by the old homeowner that nothing has been easy.  Any time I want to do a "simple" job, it turns into a gigantic cluster (insert expletive here).  Even just changing out sockets.  It's an easy job.  I've done it countless times.  Normally to change out a socket, I'm to the point that I don't have to turn off the power, well I didn't until this house.  The wiring is messed up, hence the reason I found quite a few of my outlets don't work.  One outlet had power going through the ground! How that never caught the house on fire is beyond me.  A "simple" sink install had to be reworked due to a 50 degree corner!  What?!  There have been so many jobs that "had" to get done that I stopped concentrating on one area and became flighty in what I was doing.  It was my step-mom who finally said "stop".  Now that the bedrooms are done, concentrate on finishing one area.  That's what I'm doing now.

I decided that since my son and I spend so much time in the family room (also called the game room), that would be the first project.  I had pulled the carpet up some three years ago because I couldn't stand walking on it.  You know in crappy hotel rooms with that really dirty, matted, greasy carpet........? No, just me?  The carpet was beyond, beyond gross and had to go.  It did, but not without a fight.  However, that will be in the next blog so read on.  The first thing that I did after getting the carpet up, was take down the popcorn ceiling and retexture.  I wish that I had taken pictures of that but alas I did not.  Needles to say that I have gotten very good at taking down that kind of ceiling.  Do note, if your house was built prior to 1979, have the texture tested for asbestos prior to taking it down.  There are online companies you can send it to for the testing.  It cost me $115.  Luckily no asbestos in my house.  I took down the popcorn, filled all sheetrock nail holes and any imperfections, used ceiling primer, retextured and then did the final painting.  Easy peasy and that was done in two weekends.  Now onto the walls.  See the walls, the walls have wood, there is no sheetrock under the wood.  I painted the wood.  Yep, for all you screaming out there, I did it.  Painted right over it. Actually I put on two to three coats of primer for wood, let it cure for almost two weeks and then painted over it. This room was dark and dingy before and then with the walls painted, wow.  What a difference.
Picture
The Family room 2 months after moving in. I was sleeping in here because I was giving my room a complete make over (floors, ceiling, walls). See the carpet, that is the top carpet, there was an even uglier one completely glued down underneath it. See the walls? Wood, all wood, with no sheetrock under it. Great, just great.
Picture
My son and dogs 3 years ago. My son is now almost 5' 7" tall and the littlest dog is blind. However, see the carpet he is standing on. EVERY. SQUARE. INCH. GLUED. WTF. Oh and see the tile in the kitchen, ugly, ugly, ugly (sorry if you like it). Once this room is done, I'm tackling that!
Removal of Popcorn ceiling

Tools:
Scraper
Water tank with attached nozzle 
Plastic sheeting
Tape
Trashcan
Compressor with Hopper (to spray on texture, this can be rented from your local hardware store)
dust mask
gloves
safety goggles
Sheetrock patch or mud
Ceiling Paint Primer
Ceiling Paint

First have your ceiling popcorn tested for asbestos.  With that done, you can move on.  This is going to produce a lot of mess and dust.

Start by taping the plastic to the top of the wall (where the wall meets the ceiling) and drape it down the wall and over lap the floor by 2 feet or so.  Next tape down sections of plastic in 8-10 foot sections to the floor and slightly up the walls.  This way anything you scrap off the ceiling will fall on the plastic and you can clean up as you go.  The plastic on the walls protects from the stuff coming down and sticking to the walls when you scrape the ceiling.  The plastic on the walls will stay up until your ceiling is complete.

You are going to use warm water only in the water sprayer as long as the popcorn does not have acrylic paint mixed with it.  Spray water on the ceiling starting in the farthest corner.  Spray only sections approximately  5 feet by 3 feet.  Do not over saturate since the sheetrock underneath will get too wet. Spray wait a few minutes and test by hand to see if the water has penetrated. You really, really need to wear safety eye wear and a dust mask as this is going to produce lots and lots of dust.  At first spray two areas, when you are done scraping the first area, spray the third area and begin scraping the second area.  This way as you are scraping one area the other is soaking.  As you move side to side in the room you can roll up and discard the plastic. Be careful when scraping, you don't want to gouge the sheetrock.  Once all the popcorn is off, let the ceiling dry for no less then 24 hours (depending on the temp, the cooler the temps the longer you need to let it dry).  Believe it or not, it only took me 45 minutes to remove all the popcorn (the room is 33 1/2 ft by 17 ft) The ceiling needs to be absolutely dry.  

Remember to leave the plastic that is hanging from the ceiling to the floor covering the walls.

Now patch any gouges, sheetrock screw holes, cracks ect.  Let the patch dry.  Sand flat.  I used a flashlight on the ceiling to be sure that I had found all divots, holes ext.  Let this dry over night.

Now get a good ceiling primer paint.  Paint the sheet rock using a roller.  Let this dry at least 24 hours.

Now for the Texture.  I did a knock down and I'm sure there are all kinds of ways to do this.  In fact on YouTube you can search and find hundreds of videos.  If this section makes you nervous, I would suggest watching a video.  Depending on the size of your room will depend on what you want to use to spray the texture.  I ended up purchasing a compressor and hopper (what you pour the mixed texture into and is attached to the 'gun') with gun because I have so many rooms to do.  I like the knock down, so I purchased the dry mix.  My room is so big that to buy the cans of texture would have cost more than a hundred dollars. The Dry mix was thirteen.  Mix it in a bucket until it is the thickness of pancake mix (or just a bit thinner). The best way to mix is using the attachment to a drill (see picture).  Prior to this it took forever to get it into solution and it would be lumpy.  Buy or rent the drill bit attachment, it is so worth it. Have a ladder or rolling ladder available.  Begin in one corner and spray in sweeping motions.  Your arm is going to get tired.  Wait 5 minutes after spraying an area and then use a trowel to "knock it down".  This is a sweep of what you sprayed on to just flatten and spread the texture a bit.  I would suggest doing a little practice on a piece of sheetrock prior to doing it on the ceiling.  You will know what you like and how thick you want it.

After applying and knocking down the texture, I let it dry for a week (I also had to work).  Next was the ceiling paint.  They actually sell a paint called "ceiling paint".  I don't know if it's special in any way but it is just a flat paint.  I rolled on two layers.

Now take down the plastic covering the walls.


Picture
attachment for drill that mixes. I've used it also for cement (smaller quantities about 2 gallons)
Picture
Just with the ugly carpets removed and the ceiling retextured and painted, the room is much brighter. Oh, and that red brick extends 15'. Still don't know what to do with it, but I have some ideas!!
Painting Wood Paneling

The walls in this room were completely covered with thick wood paneling.  I weighed the advantages of removing it and then hanging all new sheetrock.  The savings in time, material and money by just painting it was well worth it.  Trust me, my Dad cringed when I told him that I was painting the wood.  It was just so dark and well, manly.  It had to be painted.  It was like being in a cave.  
I wiped down all the wood first and then patched all the holes with a wood filler.  The baseboards were already gone (I had already taken up the carpet, see this post).
Picture
Carpet removed, ceiling retextured and painted, and primer going on the walls. What a difference. This photo is looking South in the room where as the ones above are looking North. The room is 33 1/2' long by 17' wide.
I purchased a good primer that is suppose to go on wood.  Many of the primers will tell you that it will cover in just one coat.  That is all bull.  I haven't found one yet that can do that.  If you look at the picture above you can see over the door how thin the coat is.  That is one coat.  If you are covering wood, make sure there is no varnish, otherwise you might have to rough it up a bit with sandpaper.  I also do not buy the paint that is "Paint and Primer" all in one.  Made the mistake one time and one time only.  Primer first and then paint.  The color is richer.  I covered with 2-3 coats of primer and then just one coat of my actual paint. For the walls, a Satin, doorways are Semi-gloss.
Picture
My desk and art table are now set up in the corner. I may move the elliptical back into this area also. We shall see.

The room is still not quite done but the finishing touches will have to wait until I am employed again.  I will put up crown molding the the double doors by the couch will become a swinging bookcase.  I have a bar in this room also right next to the bathroom.  I may turn the entire thing into a bathroom and install a shower. It would certainly help when family is staying.  I don't use the bar except to house the snake and lizard so it wouldn't be a loss at all.  Installing a floor drain would be the toughest part.

That is about all for now. 

I hope that description was not too confusing!  If you have any questions, please email me or leave a comment.   I also have a YouTube channel where I feature many of my recipes and Challenges.  If you would like to check it out, click on this link:  Bristlee One

Thank you for stopping by and remember, enjoy life.
It's the one you have,
Tammie

 
 
When I bought my house five years ago I had such plans, big plans, grandiose plans.  That all came to a screeching halt when I realized how much work it was to remodel your house on your own.  It doesn't mean that I'm not going to do it.  It just means that from here to eternity my house will be in a state of flux.  Ok maybe "eternity" is stretching it just a bit but it is going to take a good long while.  Since moving in I've finished my bedroom and my son's bedroom.  That's it.  I'm almost done with with the Family room but the crown molding will have to wait until I go back to work as will the permanent floor.  Right now I have painted cement, just click here, and you can see how I did it.
With all that being said, since I wanted to remodel the family room it behooved me to remodel the small bathroom off the family room first. That and the toilet was shot and we popped a leak under the sink but that is beside the point.  The picture above is the finished product while the picture just below is the horror that I started with.  
First things first, the tile floor had to go however, of coase nothing is as easy as it seems.  This floor extended out to the family room.
I bought the tile remover scraper that the big box store told me would make it "come right up". I don't know what universe he was living in but it's not mine.  That tile didn't budge.  You couldn't even get the scraper under it.  We (my son and I) then took sludge hammers to it and broke the tile, THEN we could run the scrapper under it.  That is not the end of the story.  The scrapper only gets the big stuff off.  Sometimes, ok most of the time, a thin layer of the quickset is left behind or rather it was in this case.  I'm not even sure they used quickset but hey, that is just an opinion.  It took about a week to remove the last of the quickset. I was still working at the time and only could work on nights and weekends.  Once we got near the bathroom, the gross toilet needed to come up.  Toilets are easy breezy to remove.  Shut off the water to the toilet, drain it.  In the actual toilet area get that water out, you may have to use some rags or siphon it out. Remove the water line.  Loosen and remove the side nuts.  I left the toilet complete (didn't take tank off) as I was just dumping it. Rock it out and remove. Inspect the metal ring for damage.  Stuff some rags into the hole or you might get fumes (we are on a septic tank).  I also had to remove the baseboards in the bathroom prior to removing the flooring but after the toilet.  Yuck.
Once the toilet was up and the tile removed, I took off the sink.  I wanted to save the cabinet but the yellow tile had to go which meant the entire counter top and sink.  This was pretty easy as there were only 4 bolts holding it on and some old glue.  I didn't care about damaging it.
Sorry, I forgot to take pictures of the sink and counter removal.  First turn off the water to the sink. Disconnect the lines to the faucet and remove the faucet.  Disconnect the drain and remove.  Under the sink, there were 4 large bolts, I took those off.  I then removed the tile from the wall.  At this point it was a matter of a small 5 lb sledge hammer and brute strength.  Really, that's me, brute strength.  It really came off pretty easy.  Start to finish was about an hour.
The cabinet was so old and overworked that not much varnish was left on it.  I filled the two side holes with wood putty and took off the trim.  Using a hand sander, and #60 paper, I sanded the cabinet after removing the cabinet doors. I followed the #60 with a #100 and then a #200.  I did the same on the doors.  Once all the sanding was done, I used a pre-conditioner on the wood because it is pine.  I followed the pre-conditioner with the stain which was Golden Oak.  This is just a matter of how dark you prefer it.  I usually just wipe on, wait a moment or two and then wipe off excess. I let the stain dry for 48 hours.  I then used a varnish.  Apply your coat.  Let it dry at least 4 hours and lightly sand with a #200.  I put on 4 coats this way.
I had to do some minor patching on the wall around the sink cabinet to get it ready to paint.  In hindsight, I should have painted before doing the cabinet, maybe next time as there are two more bathrooms that need refinishing.  Once the patch work was done, I painted.  At this point there was no plans for a chair rail to to in.  That idea came from the debacle that was the sink.
To save money, I decided to purchase the all in one counter top sink.  Good for me!  It was the moment I placed it on the cabinet that I knew there was a problem.
Do you see the problem?  The back edge is even with the wall, now look at the left side.  If you tried to square it up, one or the other had a large gap but to make it worse, a gap that was at an angle.  Just bitchen.  I called people, I went back to the big box store. They all said the same thing, you can make a custom cabinet for the corner or put back in tile to hide it.  No, but that is when I got a brain stormy idea. What if I used tile to hide it.  I could ever so slightly tilt the tile to hide the gap.  Hence the chair rail was born in the bathroom.
Since I had already bought a sink with a backsplash and I didn't feel like cutting a bunch of tile to match the same size, the green strip idea was generated.  I think it worked out rather well.  In the picture above, the tile is going in.  Once it was in, I caulked the bottom.
Now before the toilet, the floor tile needed to go in.  I had never put down tile nor had I ever cut it.  I watched a bunch of YouTube videos and read a bunch of articles and basically it was "just go for it".  I bought a tile cutter (electric) that cools with water (there is a basin that you fill so the blade runs through it).  Purchased the tile I was going to use and quickset.  I thought about buying grout that I would have to mix, but in such a small space... why.  I purchased the premixed grout.  Then I went and did a silly thing.  I decided that it needed a pattern.  If you have never lain tile before nor cut tile before, this was not a great idea.  I did it anyway.  I cleaned the floor, laid out the lei lines using crayon and began laying out the tile before cutting it. Once It was where and how,  I started the cuts.  This also meant that I was cutting most of the corners to fit my pattern.  Once all the pieces were cut, I laid them out again to make sure it was how I wanted it.  Then I numbered the back of each piece and numbered the floor area.  That is when I started laying down the quickset and placing the tile. I started in the corner behind where the toilet would go and worked my way out. I used the larger spacers.
Picture
laying out the tile prior to cutting
Picture
Tile is down with the quickset. You an see some of my cutting errors around the diamonds. Aw well.
I let the quickset dry for a week and then using the instructions on the back of the container, grouted the floor.  This had to be the easiest in the entire process.  Just make sure you have a good tile sponge and lots of clean water.  I let the grout dry for another week before installing the toilet but first I installed the baseboards.  I didn't take any pictures of that either as it was pretty straight forward.  I have a mitre saw and the angles were pretty easy in this small of a space.  
The toilet was easy also.  Make sure the two anchor bolts are in good shape or replace them.  They always supply them with the wax ring. I like to use the extra think wax ring.  Stick it on to the base and then line up the anchor bolts and press down.  You can feel the toilet settle into the right place.  Tighten down the anchor nuts but do it in a pattern.  Tighten one side and bit and then the other, do not tighten down one side all the way and then try to do the other side.  Install the tank.  Hook up the water line, slowly turn on the water, check for leaks.  I usually wait a few days then caulk the bottom.  I never caulk all the way around, leave the back open incase you get a leak.  This way you will know it.
Picture
Grouted, baseboards in, toilet in, and doors replaced on cabinet.
The last item was replacing the light switch and the outlet.  I replaced the outlet with a GFI since it was at the sink.  
That was the entire bathroom remodel.  If I hadn't been working at the time it probably would have taken a max of two weeks.

I know that I was light in the instructions and really, there are so many videos these days.  I do have a video that I made installing another toilet that will soon be up.  I am also about to start a hallway and will film taking down the popcorn ceiling and retexturing. Wahoo, doesn't that sound like fun?  If you email me, I can fill you in on anything you would like to know.
I hope you enjoyed this DIY project.  If you did, leave a comment below.  I also have a YouTube channel where I feature many of my recipes and Challenges.  If you would like to check it out, click on this link:  Bristlee One

Thank you for stopping by and remember, enjoy life.
It's the one you have,
Tammie
 
 
There were many things that I had planned to  do with my family room floor, one of the choices was tile. However I could not find a tile that I loved, I mean really loved.  I kept buying a few tiles and laying them on the floor for a month or so and after a while I was thinking if I kept that tile, I would need to gouge my eyes out soon.  This went on for three years.  In the meantime the cement floor was looking ratter and ratter. The old stuck on glue was retaining dirt and the cracks were standing out more and more.  Time to do something, anything.  Then I lost my job.  Damn.  Ok, don't panic.  There must be something that I can do to the floor to make it, well, not so ugly.  I decided to paint it.  After reading blog after blog on how to paint a cement floor, I kust decided to go for it.  One of the things they all had in common was to use the garage floor paint.  Did I listen to that sage advice?  Noooooooooo, why would I?  This will surely bite me in the ass sometime down the line.

What I did do though was spend a week scraping off the old glue.  My house was built back in the mid 1970's and the carpet, every square inch of it, had been glued on.  Oh my gosh, it was the ugliest carpet you had ever seen.  Don't believe me?  Just see the first picture below.  It had been in the house so long that it was shedding the fiber from underneath.  There was also an ugly carpet on top of the glued down one.  Why did I scrape off the old glue? I really didn't want to use acid in the house.  My son and I have to live in the house.  The problem with using acid are the fumes and the fume retention.  I've used acid on a floor and it can take a few days before the smell really goes away.  You really should leave it opened up for a few days and since we have had two attempted break-ins, no thanks.  To get the glue off, I used boiling water in about 2 foot sections.  I poured the water on, let it sit for 5-10 minutes and then used a scraper.  It does take some elbow grease to get it off though.  It took longer to get the hideousness that was the carpet up then it took to get all the glue off, which is actually a good thing.  The rooms over all dimensions are 33' x 17', it's an odd room.
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The ugly aqua carpet was on top of the orange awfulness . Every square inch of the orange awfulness it was glued down.
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Sorry for the bad picture but hey they ain't all good. This is my son helping to scrap the stuff up.
After getting all the glue up, I filled in cracks and all the holes where I had to knock out the nails that attach the rug.  I used a cement filler in a, believe it or not squirt bottle.  Let them dry for a few days and then I sanded these down.  Next I washed the floor, swept it, swept it again, vacuumed it and damp mopped it again.  Then I didn't let anyone into the room for 48 hours because I needed the concrete to be absolutely dry.  Tape any areas that you do not want the paint to get on.  Do not allow the tape to overlap the concrete, you don't want the tape to pull up the paint when you remove it (use an exacto knife or sharp blade to cut away the tape when you are finished).
Now was the time to paint.  I used a white cement sealer for the first 3 coats.  The sealer was to stop any mold and mildew and hopefully from stuff soaking into the cement.  I let it dry at least 4 hours between coats.  
Now for the design.  I did not want to paint patterns or use stencils, I'm basically lazy.  I wanted something that would pop but I could put down fast.  I had quite a bit of left over paint from the bar area (some how I had ended up with two gallons of it) and I thought that I would use that.  This is where I made my mistake. That is a latex paint and meant for walls, not to be walked on.  Not thinking about it, I grabbed a large spackle tool and my paint.  I then poured in an arc the white paint cement sealer and then much less of my tannish paint.
In the above photo you can see at the very top the paint that has been "blurred".  The bottom of the photo shows the poured paint.  I then took the spackle tool and used it at a 45 degree angle and made a rough arc, sweeping back and forth.  I didn't press down as I wanted only to blur the two together without completely mixing them. I did this in 5' x 3' sections at a time so that the paint above it and next to it would not be dry.  You really have to make sure the temperature out is not hot and not humid.  If it is above 80 degrees F out side the paint will dry much too fast.  Also, no direct sunlight while you are applying the paint.  My entire floor took me about 45 minutes to complete.
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Moments after application
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Prior to the top sealer going on. Do not drag anything across it, the paint needs to cure!
I let this dry with no one walking on it for 3 days.  I then used the appropriate top clear coat meant for garage floors.  I applied that over two days, 3 coats with 8 hours between coats.  At this point I realized the problem with the latex paint, it might not dry hard.  I let the whole damn thing cure for 30 days.  We did not walk on it or use it at all.  Now the paint is not "even" like you see on a wall.  I left it more "marbled", meaning there are raised areas like with tile.  You can see it in the next picture.

I can say that we have been walking on it for six months now and no problems.  It cleans really easy and no scuff marks.  On the bottom of all the furniture I have placed the soft pads so that it doesn't scratch the floor.  The room is so light now.  It is still is not done.  I am about to build the book cases and the TV stand for the room, I also want to put in crown moulding.  Once those are done, I will post the finished product! Oh and yes, the baseboards are in.  I still haven't decided what to do with the double doors (you can see in the top photo the doors are still unfinished). One idea is to take the doors out and build a swinging book case.  The doors lead into my living room.  I really like the "hidden" door idea but will have to wait a bit to buy the hinges which are kind of pricey.

I hope that description was not too confusing!  If you have any questions, please email me or leave a comment.

Thank you for stopping by and remember, enjoy life.
It's the one you have,
Tammie


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The floor with the top sealer drying
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This is when I was starting the baseboards. Probably the easiest part of the entire job!
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I have my art table and office desk set up in the other half of the room!
 
 
Have you ever had a build that just got away from you?  You start out with good intentions and somewhere along the way it goes to hell in a hand bag.  A couple of weeks ago I decided to make the dogs their own bed.  I'm hoping to keep them off the couches but I seriously doubt that will happen.  It's really just something for me to do and use up more of the left over wood.  Right after I decided to make this thing, I came down with strep throat.  Yea me.  The first two days were like chewing glass.  I bulled through it though and drew out the design that I thought would work.  See, I have this piece of pressed board that was originally the top to my art table.  One thing lead to another and a couple of the screws pulled out during the assembly of the art table  so I made my own top from ply wood (birch).  It's a beauty.  Any way, I kept the old top thinking that I could use it.  So to make a long story short, I thought it would be perfect as the base for the dog bed.  Yes, it is BUT and here is the but., Never, ever, ever build when you are sick. It just doesn't go well.  All the flaws will be hidden but I will know they are there and it just pisses me off.
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These are the four legs clamped together prior to using the router to make the dado joints. Line up to make sure the dado is in the same place on all legs/support.
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These are the legs painted. You can see they are resting on the dado joint. If you do not have a router, no worries there is still a way to inset the legs.
This build really did get away from me.  The short end of the legs was suppose to be the top but somehow I flipped it when I put it together (don't build when you are sick!).  This build will depend on the size of the bed that you want.  It is easily adjusted for your pet.  Do remember, if you make it bigger you will need a center brace.  Ok, here is what I did for the size of bed that I wanted:


Supplies:

4 -2x4 @ 10" (legs)
1- 3/4" thick plywood cut to your dimensions (mine was 24" x 33" so all wood is based on these dimensions)
4- 1"x3"x 6'  
1- 1" x 2" x 10'
paint of your choice
sandpaper or sander
wood screws
wood glue
drill
Mitre saw
Skill saw
router (optional)
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I measured and marked all the corners that I wanted to cut away. This way the legs sit flush with the wood after I dado the legs. If you don't have a router you would make your notches the same depth as your wood but would need to brace them. I used a skill saw on the corners.
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This is how I had intended to make the dog bed but in my delirium, I placed the bracing on the top. This image clearly shows the dado to fit the base of the dog bed.
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The bottom arrow indicates the direction of the wood screws prior to adding the slates, this is also the direction for the side bracing. The top arrow is showing some of the nail holes that I apparently did not fill that well.
The Build:

Each leg had a dado to fit the baseboard flush and then each leg was painted prior to the addition of the base.
If you do not have a router but still want the look above, cut the notches the same depth as your legs and then glue and screw them on.  You will definitely need the forward and back bracings to stabilize the legs.
Each leg was glued on and two wood screws were used per leg.
Bracing across the front and back was glued and screwed on also through the legs (bottom arrow, where picture is showing underside of the dog bed)
Side slates were cut to appropriate size for each side and then painted.  I used a miter saw to angle cut all the corners.  You don't have to and can straight cut them. I ran short in two placed and angle cut the boards to fit together.  I then glued and used the nail gun to keep them together.
Slates were glued at the legs and anchored using the nail gun, fill in nail holes with wood filler, wipe off excess and let dry.
One last coat of white paint and done
If you have any confusion about this build please leave a comment and I can answer it for you.

Thanks for reading and remember,
Enjoy life, 
it's the one you have!

Tammie
 
 
You are probably thinking "What" no frame, what the hell does that mean.  Well, let me explain.  We live in horse country, there are lots and lots and lots and lots of flies.  Have I said how many flies there are.  I cannot put a traditional screen on our front door, one because it's a double door (and I think it would look funny) and two, because we have a blind dog.  My son's dog, Lord Darth Vader, who (whom?) he named when he was 6 even though the dog is snow white, had his eyes removed last year.  Thank goodness I was working at the time.  The dog had a degenerative disease of the retina called PRA (Progressive Retinal Atrophy) and then his lenses luxated (fell back into his eyes).  All very gross.  He gets around on the property just fine, in fact you wouldn't know he was blind if you saw him from afar walking and running on the property.
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He was a rescue that someone, during the time of the housing crash, had tied up in an abandoned house and left to die. He was about 5 months old at the time, had all his adult teeth plus all his baby teeth and demodex mange. He was one day away from being euthanized when we adopted him. Undershot jaw and all..
What this all means is that we cannot have traditional screens on any of the doors or he can't get out.  We have dog doors out in the garage that go outside but he just won't use them.  My mom was at HomeDepot and happened across their "frameless" door screens.  They have a rod at the top and the two pieces of screening material slide on like curtains.  There are magnets that help to hold it together and you can use the velcro to stick it to the frame of your door.  I bought one for my door leading into the garage but it is about an inch to an inch and a half short.  I didn't like that.  Besides to cover my front door it would be $40.  Yes, without a job, I'm cheap.  So instead I bought screening material for $12.95.  I had some left over birch 1x2 that I had already stained and varnished.  The only other thing that I would need are weights and magnets.  For temporary weights, I cut 1 1/2" wide by 7" long pieces of left over laminate flooring.
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1 x 2" Birch cut to the width of my door frame.
Here is what I did:

1-- 1 x 2" Wood (anything of your choice, pine would also work)
2 elbow brackets
wood screws
screening material about 4-6" wider than your door frame
staples and staple gun

I should have taken more pictures but I was in a hurry to get this done as I was also working on another project that I will be posting soon (it's not done yet).  I laid the screening material out and measured how long that I wanted it, don't include the wood or where you will add the weights.  I then folded a portion of the bottom twice and sewed a seam, this area is for the weights.  I then cut it in half length wise for the opening.  Since mine is a double door and we like to open both during the summer, cuz it gets smokin' hot in our house, I cut it where the door handles are.  Here is where I blew it, so don't do my mistake.  You need the two pieces to overlap when you attach it.  That is why the 6" larger than your door frame.  You need it to overlap the frame of your door on the sides and to over lap by at least two inches in the middle.  I am going to add a strip down the middle to take care of the problem.  Lay the wood at the top of the screen with excess screen to the right of the wood, have the side you want facing out be face down.  See the picture below.  The bulk of my screen was to the left in this picture.  See the bottom right arrow, it shows the excess screen beginning to fold over.  From the left of my wood, my length was 81 1/2" because I wanted it hanging below my door as there is a step and I knew it would help the dog.  Now, make your first row of staples so that it stays in place.  Now grab the excess and fold it back so that the fold is where I have the dark line below, staple it again all the way across.  Do this again by folding it back, followed by one more.  After each fold, I stapled it. I left the excess to help with blocking the flies.
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Hope having this picture it makes more sense. The over all length of the screen, not including the wood, is 81 1/2" and this includes where the weights are. You can see that I don't have a good overlap, I will add a strip that will have the magnets on them. I will also add magnets to that which is above. The magnets can be added by sewing a pocket from a square of screen material or any material onto the screen, and match it up with one on the other side. Overall, it took me about under 2 hours for the entire thing.
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Lordy making his way out of the screen for the first time.
The pictures above are not 10 minutes after hanging the screen, he was able to make it out and back in with no problems.  Our other dog, had more difficulty.  She keeps running into it and then thinks that it is solid, she has been waiting for Lordy to let her out and in.  She'll figure it out.

Hope this wasn't too confusing!

Enjoy life!
Tammie
 
 
Why do I call it a "left over build", good question.  I use materials that I already have laying about the garage or house from older projects.  This time it is a side table for my son's room.  Up until recently he had a loft bed.  Now that he is over 5' 5" at 12 years old, the bed was just too small for him (even though it was a double, it was so close to the ceiling that he could no longer sit up on it.  He had to crawl into it like a cave).  So we went to Ikea and he picked out a new bed that is black and very low to the ground.  Because he likes to have drinks in his room (no not like that type of drink, sheesh), he needed somewhere to set them.  He has been using a TV tray that has already fallen over once.  I believe the old milk is still on his floor, hence the reason he has laminate and not wood or carpet.  Boys.  

For this build I just kind of built it on the fly.  I didn't download any plans nor draw it out.  I just knew that I wanted it 20" overall height and square.  Why square, cuz I'm using a piece of 16 x 16 left over tile (do note that just like wood, it's really not 16 x 16 but just a squosh under).  The tile is the top of the table.  The rest is out of pine, but I figured with a tile top it would last a whole lot longer.

I had some left over 1" x 4" pine boards, an 8' long 2" x 2" pine and a box of tile from a bathroom remodel (which I will post soon).  Perfect.  I started sanding all and then cutting the 4 legs all at about 19 13/16" (to take into account the tile thickness) using the 2" x 2".  I then measured the tile and cut the 1 x 4 to fit (8 of these), I left just a bit of an overhang.
I then assembled the below squares using glue and my nail gun.  I assembled two of these below.  It will make more sense when you see the whole build.
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Prior to glueing and nailing.
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The black arrows indicate where I used a dremel to level out legs. The Pinkish arrows indicate where I used the screws. I use the Grip Rite Fas'ners. These were the #8 1-3/4" 4.45 cm. I use the Grip Rite's for almost all my wood projects. As you can see I used one on one face and then two on the other showing face. In other words, each leg was fastened by 3 screws. The bottom square was attached using the nail gun. I used Porter Cable 18 GA 1-1/4" Brad nails.
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The arrow shows that I shaved the leg and then painted. Pine will soak up paint or stain and you can use a pre-conditioner on it if you like. This took 4 coats of paint. I waited 1 hour between coats.
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Here it is prior to glueing the tile on. I have yet to decide if I want to cut another piece for the second shelf or just leave it. Can out pretty good, I think anyway.
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Here it is in my sons room. He decided that a second shelf was not needed. He's happy with it so that is all that matters. By the way, I also put in the floor you see, baseboards and paint. I also removed the popcorn ceiling and retextured.
Ok, here is the long and short of it on putting this bad boy together.

Wood Needed:
1 x 4" 
2 x 2"

1 16 x 16 tile (you can buy these individually at any of the big hardware stores like Home Depot or Lowes)
Screws
Nails (if you don't have a nail gun, you can always attached the second square with screws)

Before Cutting I always sand my wood.  It is much easier to sand the longer pieces then futzing with the smaller.  Yes, I do use an electric sander, if you don't have one and plan to do several projects, I strongly recommend getting one.  I start with the 60 grit and get all the rough stuff off, then follow with the 100 and follow with 150.  Once assembled, then I finish with a 200 grit.

Cut the 8 pieces after measuring your tile.  
Cut the legs.

Put them together with glue and the nail gun, nailing at the corners.  

Take one of the squares that will be your top and place one of the legs into a corner with keeping the square on your surface (as if the table is upside down).  Clamp the leg in place.
Take another leg in the opposite corner and clamp it in place.  Using your level, check to make sure the legs are level with each other.  By using the clamps, you can move the legs up or down.  If these two are level, go ahead and set all three screws.  Now slide down the second square.  Clamp in the next two legs and slide up the bottom square and clamp into place.  Check your level on all.  If all good, attach last two legs and use the nail gun to place the second square.
Turn it right side up and set on floor and check for level.
Fill nail holes with wood filler.  Finish sand and paint.
To attach the top.  I used Gorilla glue.  Lightly moisten the top edge and spread the glue.  Place top on and square it up.  Place weights on top and let dry at least two hours.

That's it.   If you have any questions, please don't hesitate.

Enjoy Life!

Tammie

 
 
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This is the first of the DIY posts!  

Eek, so this is the beginning of my work bench.  I've been in my house for 3 years and kept putting off the work bench but the garage is soooo packed now that it's almost impossible to find things out there now.  I'm pretty sure we may have lost someone out there, search parties are still out.

So, instead of a whimpy 20" or 24" wide, I did a whopping 36" and 100" long.  Woot.  I'm used to laboratory benches with plenty of room.  I wanted somewhere that I could build in drawers and such for my nails and screws and little bits.

Below are pictures taken during the build, apparently I never took one of the completed project which I will.  Swear.  The top is a dual layer of 3/4 inch plywood.  The bottom layer was the crappy everday plywood whereas the top was the better quality.  I had HomeDepot rip the plywood for me but all the other cuts are mine.  Oh except the legs, these are 4 x 4's and I had HomeDepot rip these also.  They should have been 28" but I had them accidentally cut at 29" so the overall table is a smidgen taller than what I wanted.