Friday, August 21, 2015

Get Rid of a a Doggy Door

My parents have been living in their house for about 15 years. During that time  zero dogs and zero cats have lived in the house. The previous owners put a doggy door in the door between the garage and house, but even if we had a small animal it wouldn't have been able to use the doggy door because it was boarded shut to conform with fire safety regulations.

So this un-used and un-usable doggy door sat there for years and nobody ever looked at it or thought about it until one day my mom decided she wanted that door to be painted black. My dad painted the door and suddenly realized that he hated that defunct doggy door:

Once he pointed it out we all wondered how we possibly walked past it for so long without doing anything about it, because now we all hated it.

But how do you remove a doggy door? Google had lots of ideas for putting a doggy door in, but not for hiding one. So my dad made a plan to get rid of the doggy door:

Using a bit of trim and some bead board he made 6 panels (3 for each side) to make a panel style door and mask the doggy door! Note, after experimenting he found that the composite trim (the molding made of pressed sawdust and glue) is not strong enough for this project. It splits and crumbles and doesn't look good. Get the real wood trim. Melamine bead-board works great though.


He used Liquid Nails (pretty pattern optional) and brad nails to attach the framed bead-board. This is actually a picture of the door with wet Liquid Nails after one of the panels fell off, which led to the discovery that the nail gun had actually run out of brads while securing the panel below. Oops! So if you are thinking Liquid Nails is pretty strong stuff and you probably don't need any real nails for this project, then you are wrong.

Luckily it landed glue-side up and it didn't take long to put the panel back up and secure it with nails! Then of course he had to paint it black:

Ta da!!!
Ta da Ta da!!! Great job Dad!!! In unrelated news my mom is now installing doggy doors on all the other doors in the house...



Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Is it Hot?

So literally her whole life, until recently, McGirlie has been babbling nonsense at me. One day, the nonsense babbling stopped abruptly, and she shifted to saying things that have actual meaning and need an actual response. Unfortunately this shift did not coincide with a shift to readily-recognizable-English. Also unfortunately, I didn't catch on to the shift right away. I feel kind of like the last kid on the playground to find out about cooties, or the last adult in the world to get a smart phone...wait...

Anyway, the other day I was serving no-bake cookies to the kids and McGirlie kept saying, "Izzih'ot? Izzih'ot?" instead of eating her cookie. I responded in full-on exuberant baby-talk, "Yeah cookies! Yummy cookies!" and she just kept saying "Izzih'ot?" It took a while, with me babbling nonsense at her, before I realized she was asking if the cookies were hot!

I am pretty sure this is how it looked from her point of view:

So Mama made these chocolate cookie lump things that I knew were going to be delicious, because Brother was going on and on about wanting to eat them. Everything my brother has or likes is incredible and I always need to have it too because if it wasn't fantastic then he wouldn't want it.

Anyway, Mama made this HUGE deal saying, "Don't touch these! They are hot! Hot! Hot! Owie! Hot! They are HOT they will give you owies! No no! Don't touch hot!" Seriously. Just going on and on.
So I didn't touch them, but then like 5 seconds later she says, "K! Who wants to eat one of these????" And I was like, Woah. Are you sure about that? Just a minute ago these were death lava cookies and now you're all like, "Who wants to put these in their mouth???" Is this a trick or a test or something?

So I asked, "Is it hot?" No response. She just kept scooping the cookies of Mt. Doom onto my plate. So I asked again, "Is it hot?" This time she answered, kind of. She was just going on and on about how yummy they were and that they are cookies, yummy cookies.
Now I'm sure; this has got to be some kind of test. I know they are cookies, yummy cookies, I am just trying to find out if they are also cookies that will consume my face in burning death. Mama is wily though, she avoided the question repeatedly. I kept my cool. Mama has a tendency to babble a lot of nonsense for hours on end, so I just kept patiently asking, "Is it hot?" Even though she just kept squealing "Cookies yummy! Cookies!" Don't worry friends. I didn't crack. I just kept calmly asking, "Is it hot?" over and over until she finally told me that they were not hot anymore.
It can be frustrating living with someone who is so intent on talking but makes no sense most of the time, but don't worry I am training her. Plus I totally aced that test.

Monday, June 15, 2015

Tree Painting

I made a painting, a great big watercolor painting! I was pretty nervous to try out watercolors but my dad, and my friend Sara Gourley gave me a lot of good tips and encouragement to get started. So I watched a hundred youtube videos and got to work.

You have to soak watercolor paper and then tape it to a flat surface so it won't buckle while you are painting it. I taped mine to our card table. Unfortunately that table is made of some kind of space-age plastic that nothing on this earth can stick to. After about the 3rd day of painting all the tape let go. Nooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo!

 But I already had a lot of paint on it so I just decided to work with all the buckles. I do not recommend this, unless your life is just so easy that you are looking for a way to make it difficult.

 Luckily the paper I used was really heavy, so things worked out in the end.

I'm happy with how the painting turned out, but I am probably most impressed with the frame Handsome Bryce made for it. Sometimes I just stare at that swirling cherry grain and forget about the painting.

If you don't paint, and you wish you did, I encourage you to give it a try. Maybe your paper will buckle and be a horrible mess, but your brain will grow and maybe the horrible mess will turn into something you love. Thanks again Sara, Dad, and Bryce!