Wednesday, June 1, 2011

it's HOT!

it is hot hot hot outside!  with the humidity, it is borderline unbearable out there.  plus today marks the first day of hurricane season, so we get to listen to the fear mongering of weathermen/women from now through november.  they're getting right to it, too.  the top story on the front page of The Weather Channel's website is this little gem speculating about which cities are the most overdue to be nailed by a hurricane.  here in the florida panhandle, "jim cantore" is a bad word.

i am going to (mostly) blame the heat for my lack of progress on my bench project.  i don't have a work room, basement, garage, etc., and it is so hard to get excited about hanging out in the backyard to roast and work on it.

i sanded it down by hand about a week ago, which wasn't too bad.  (i found a $10 working hand sander at a yard sale a few days later though, so if i can ever hunt down the buffet of my dreams i won't end up with my shoulder in a sling from trying to sand it!)  i've put two coats of stain on the top so far, and i'm planning to do four.  i ended up buying a different color stain called antique walnut so i could get the minwax stain that already has poly in it, and the finish isn't nearly as dark as i wanted.  i'm not sure if i'll keep it or if i'll sand and paint over it, but it's good staining practice regardless.  it's really a challenge to keep a "wet edge" when it's 90 something degrees outside haha.

here's the bench in it's current state.  see how light the stain is?  not even close to the dark walnut look i wanted.  we'll see what another couple of coats does.
the legs are still raw because i haven't started painting yet.  i figure at this point i might as well wait until i finish staining in case i decide to paint the whole thing.
there were some great yard sales last weekend.  it's definitely my new addiction.  i'm really excited about finding a hand sander.  i also found a beautiful glass decanter for a couple of bucks.  it will look splendid on my silver tray i found for $1 that will hopefully end up sitting atop my buffet that i am still hunting for!  (no pics because the tray and decanter both need a good cleaning.)

the other item i found was a heavy concrete planter for $10.  i've been drooling over these big, heavy, outdoor planters forever, but i could never bring myself to spend the money on a new one.  i dug the last $5 hydrangea off the back of the shelf at home depot and set it all up where my patio meets the edge of my pool surround.

i also relocated the bird feeder to the new pot, which is far away from our fence and any low hanging limbs.  i learned the hard way that i'd put my feeder in a spot that was easily accessible to the fat, hungry squirrels that live in our oak tree.  after two days of having the thing completely emptied overnight, i finally caught one of the little buggers bowed up on the edge of my bowl going to town.  at least i know the thing is sturdy enough to support a fat squirrel's weight, i guess!
it looks like i'm going to be very busy with school for the next couple of weeks, but i'm hoping to at least finish the stain on the bench.  i'm also hoping to try this project using mod podge, food coloring, and glass jars.  it looks like we might host a pool party for july 4th, and i think these would look cute around the pool with some sand and tea lights inside.

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