My hands are raw…

Well the Christmas break was full of all the usual family visits, making sure we saw as much of our two clans as possible, in the little bit of time we had. The kids got nicely spoiled, and Nic and I made out alright ourselves.

But on top of the festivities, I took some of my time-off to work on my long term To Do list that I have on a white board behind my desk.

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Before

If you’ve visited our house, you probably couldn’t miss the giant gaping hole in the wall where our TV sits. The previous owner, who is not quite as handy as he thinks he is, had built a TV cabinet into the wall, sized especially for his massive, old-school projo TV. Our TV is considerably better, but looked rather silly stuck in that hole. Unfortunately, the basement is literally built around the cabinet, so ripping it out with less than complete caution would probably bring the house down on top of me.

So I eventually decided to renovate it to fit my needs better. When I got a gift card to Home Depot for Christmas, I promptly went out and bought a jigsaw and started cutting. In the past week, or so, I’ve nearly finished my plan, building a shelf for the TV, and adding a back to the main cabinet.

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During

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After

I personally think it looks a million times better, although the final phase isn’t done yet. Rather than have the TV sitting on the shelf, I’ve ordered an articulating wall-mount arm, so that the TV will float in the cabinet, and can be pulled out and pointed in any direction. To that, I’ll add some blue rope lights so that (hopefully) there’ll be a subtle electric blue glow coming from behind the TV whenever its on…

But we didn’t stop with the TV cabinet (which has only just stopped reeking of wood finish.)

  • Nic’s parent’s bought Benjamin bunk beds for his room, so on Saturday we had a little birthday part for him and built his new big boy bed, graduating Abigail to the convertible crib that can be changed into a small bed when she’s ready.
  • With some of the Christmas money my parents sent us, we took a trip to Ikea and finally started decorating the living room. We got some really nice shelves and bookcases, and I have one small project left to build a picture frame for an African mural some friends gave us, that should pull that room together nicely — at least until the kids are a little older and its primary use is no longer for storing pastel colored toys, watching cartoons on Treehouse, and serving as a secondary dining room.

I feel like I’ve been building furniture for months, but its worth it. Once again, there’s this pride of… ownership, or… power over your own house. Having wrestled it into what you want it, with your own hands (and power tools) makes it feel that much more like home.

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5 thoughts on “My hands are raw…

  1. The arm for the TV will be nice but make sure that whatever it’s mounted to can handle the weight. If the TV happens to be a plasma it’s VERY heavy…we have one mounted on a swivel to the wall and you should see the bolts holding it to the studs in the wall…even took our trainer to help us mount the TV on it. But it works fantastic now that it’s up there. You’ll like that feature a lot.

  2. Oh ya, I made sure the beams that will hold the mount can hold my weight. Our TV is only 20lbs (a major reason we chose that one, over a similar LG model that weighed 47lbs — my back couldn’t take that!) so it should be fine!

  3. Yeah, well I couldn’t hold a candle to your grandfather, and your father-in-law is no slouch with his hands either, so we got you surrounded!

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