Category Archives: Other Projects

One Eye Hook at a Time…


In a previous post, I was deliberating whether I was going to drill a hole in the top for an screw eye hook OR drill a hole through the wood slice, I finally found some eye hooks that would for my ornament project, so I decided to go that direction. After consulting about whether a pilot hole was needed for such a small screw eye hook, turns out that a 1/16 drill bit was just the perfect size. I had every intention of using a vise and the drill press for this project. However, the 1/16 drill bit is super tiny, so I figured I’d stick with an electric hand-held drill. After designating the drill site with an ordinary push pin, I got the wood cookie all cozy in the vise. The screw-in part of the eye hook is relatively short, so I didn’t need to drill a super-deep hole. As I had suspected, Bradford Pear is a pretty hard wood. After getting the hole as deep as I needed it to be, I set forth screwing the eye hook into the wood cookie. For some reason, I can’t find my needle-nose pliers, so I had to use regular pliers, which worked just fine.

I’m delighted that this stage of this project turned out to be relatively simple. Always nice when something goes well.


Bathroom Update


While on vacation this winter, I was able to help with a master bathroom update. I figured it would be simple…a little spackle, some sanding, apply the paint, and ta-da! Oh my goodness, you’d think I’d have learned by now that projects (no matter how big or small) always end up being more than a simple anything. Of course, there was a good amount of spackling to be done. Nearly all of the trim (crown molding, baseboards, and door & window frames) required attention with re: to caulking, which just happens to be one of my favorite painting prep tasks. We took down the little storage cupboard and the mirrored medicine cabinet (which had a crazy fuchsia color behind it). The cupboard was in good condition, so it just got to sit aside during this whole process. The medicine cabinet was updated with the same white paint as the vanity base. Which reminds me, the vanity base was a project all in its own right. That being said, I am more than happy with how the vanity turned out.  With the caulking done on the trim, I was able to get it painted. And then, it was time for the actual wall color. Since it was covering such a deep color (dark purple), the wall paint (a bluish grey) took two coats. After a tiny bit of touch-up on the trim, my job here was done. Once I left, the new pulls were put on the vanity, the medicine cabinet was put back up, the fixtures in the shower were updated, and the shower itself got a new curtain rod. Of course, the post makes this update seem like a walk in the park. Though every step wasn’t terribly enjoyable, you just can’t beat the incredible before-and-after pictures.

Bathroom update, done and done.

Where to Drill or Not to Drill?


Since I’ve been on quite a roll with these little wood cookie ornaments, I figured I might as well keep the momentum moving forward. That being said, I’ve reached yet another roadblock. After making good use of the pre-fabricated wood cookies I had on hand, I figured I’d see if any of the more “rough” wood cookies I’ve got on hand would work for this particular project. Just my luck, I discovered a pretty good stash of little, ornament-size wood cookies we cut back in 2015. These particular ones are thicker than the other finished products, but have the same diameter. I’ve been busy sanding ’em all. And, let me tell you, Bradford Pear is a pretty tough wood, but it sure does look neat on the inside.

Anywho, now I’m faced with the question of drilling a little hole at the top and inserting a screw eye hook OR drilling a more traditional hole through the wood cookie.                           What to do?  Go figure, yet another holding pattern.

OR-nament Project


A while back, I scored some neat wood cookie ornaments during the after-Christmas sales. Unless I’m mistaken, I got each pack for 49 cents each…and each pack contained 6 ornaments. I had some grand plans of sanding the deer stamp off and using them for some crafty purpose. Alas, even with a power sander, I just couldn’t get rid of the stamp on the one side. So, as it is with (far too) many projects…the wood cookies sat. Every now and then, I would glance their way…and wonder what I could do with ’em.

Flash forward to just a few days ago. While I was working on putting together some lovely daffodil bouquets for Valentine’s day, I thought the vases could use a little something more. But what? After recently mowing the lawn, I had recently passed by the long-forgotten ornaments awaiting my attention out in the garage. And, conveniently I had gotten a magazine in the mail that had a bunch of “perfect” hearts on one page. Putting two-and-two together, I figured I’d take my hand at a little painting. I cut out the heart that worked best with the space, traced it, painted it, and outlined it. Holy smokes, it actually looked good. The first one provided the perfect accent to the bouquet.

Building upon that success, I figured I’d try some different heart colors. And, since I could paint (well, fill in an outline of) a heart…why not try something more challenging? I’ve seen a particular image of state-pride on window clings, stickers, t-shirts, etc. and figured I’d put my own spin on it. So, I printed out some outlines of Oregon and did the same sort of process as I used with the simple hearts. Yes, there are quite a few steps involved, ’cause we’re talking layer after layer of creativity. But, I must say, I am more than pleased with the end result.  And, I finally put those dog-gone wood cookies to use as OR-naments.  Go figure, just a day shy of Valentine’s day and Oregon’s 159th birthday.  Thematic?  Perhaps.

A Bright Idea


A few weeks ago, I found a little white lamp with a wobbly top.  With my hopeful outlook, I figured fixing that little wobble would be a piece of cake.  After fiddling around with it a bit on my own, I turned to the internet for some inspiration and possibly some direction.  The repair sounded simple enough, but would require taking the lamp a bit more apart than it already was.  Not wanted to make a decision on the fate of this poor little FREE lamp, I figured I’d sleep on it (for a month or so).  Now, something I’ve yet to mention is that the very moment I acquired the lamp, my friend inquired, “Are you going to paint it?”.  At that point, I had absolutely zero intention in making this an even bigger project that it already seemed.  So, of course, my answer was, “no”.  Fast forward to today, after much hemming and hawing, I’ve come to the conclusion, that this lamp will be much more of a statement piece if it has some color to it.  Currently, I’m thinking orange.  I stopped by the local lighting store…which just happens to have a sign in a window advertising, “lamp repair”.  During my errands this afternoon, I brought my lamp along, in anticipation for a stop at the lighting store.  The person working at the counter was incredibly helpful and tried to tighten the loose part right then and there.  To no avail, as the nut inside the lamp was just spinning and spinning.  I inquired as to how much it would cost to complete this (seemingly simple) repair.  $30.00 was quoted in response to my question.  Well, for my lamp to go from FREE to $30.00 in one foul swoop was a bit too much for me to handle.  Needless to say, I passed on that option.  However, the stop at the lighting store was not a waste of time.  I was able to gather information on what tool would be needed to tighten the nut AND that the felt (on the bottom) would ultimately need to be removed and replaced.  Genius, I know.  With this knowledge now occupying space in my mind, I set right to work removing the felt AND loosening the nut.  That’s right, you read correctly, I (with assistance) loosened the nut…hence the reason why the whole top is flopping around.  You may be asking yourself, “Why on earth?”.  Well, the way I see it, it’ll be a whole lot easier for me to paint in disjointed pieces.  At least, that’s what I’m thinking.  That being said, things have a way of becoming more challenging before they become easier.

I suppose we’ll see.

Juniperus occidentalis var. occidentalis


A few weeks ago, I was hiking and came across some awesome Western DSCN6537Juniper (Juniperus occidentalis var. occidentalis) branches.  The branches were just waiting to be cut into manageable pieces and given the opportunity to truly shine. In total, I brought home 5 pieces of beautiful wood. This evening, DSCN6539I finally had an opportunity to see how it looked after some time with the chop saw. I was able to cut quite a few wood cookies from those 5 segments. And, I’m not sure if it is actually possible for it to look even more incredible now that it has been cut into wood cookies…but it does. In addition to each piece looking so unique, this wood also smells great. Unfortunately, I can’t quite share that scent through the internet at this time…but, trust me, it is quite delightful.

Now, I’m only hoping they’ll all dry with non of the wood checking (ie. cracking, splitting, etc.). Ahhh…just think of the possibilities!  I’m thinking I see some of these as coaster, some as name tags, and some as pocket tokens.

Wood Cookie Cutting Time


DSCN5326A couple weeks ago, I noticed some neighbors had put some tree limbs out by the street to be hauled away by the city.  I got thinking that some of them might make some neat wood cookies.  Plus, the branches were from a type of tree (Bradford Pear) that I haven’t seen on the west coast.  So, with assistance, we were able to drag a couple of them home.  And there they sat.

Fast forward to last night.  We pulled out the chop saw and got to work cutting cookies (and creating tons of sawdust).2015-12-31 22.41.29  Yes, I know the wood was still green…but, it’ll be a whole lot easier packing cookies, as compared with packing branches.  So, with plenty of help, we cut a bunch of wood cookies (of all sizes).  I’ve grouped them into small, medium, and large.  Now, I’ve just got to find space to pack ’em all in my luggage.

Just think…of all of the name tags, ornaments, and wreaths these wood cookies can be used to make.  The possibilities are nearly endless.