It has been almost a year since we moved up to Connecticut, and our house is starting to feel like home. The only major downside is how far away we are from close friends and family. Stephen was gone this weekend, and it made me realize how much I depend on him now to have something to do. We do everything together. It’s nice to always have a buddy, until that buddy is gone for a while. Then you realize how much you live in a bubble and don’t have close friends nearby to just call up and ask them to come over to bake cookies, drink wine, and rent a movie.
So I’m trying to fix that.
Stephen and I are hosting a monthly outdoor movie night. I thought it was a cute way to invite people over for an excuse to hang out. Because when you are friendly with a bunch of people, but aren’t super close with them, you kinda need an excuse to hang out (or at least I feel that way). I bought a projector and movie screen, and the first movie night is this upcoming Thursday.
In prep for movie night, I wanted to build something to use as a food and drinks table on our deck. I found Ana White’s Simple Potting Bench plans online and decided to go for it. It seemed like something so easy that even I could make it without husband supervision. I went to Home Depot on Friday, and within 3 hours, my station was built! I thought I’d share with you a few things I learned along the way.
- Get your wood cut before you drive home. Most home improvement stores offer free wood cutting. I’ve always been too afraid to ask, but the way I build my bench, I HAD to get the pieces cut so they could fit in my car. I credit this to the main reason why the project went so quickly. It just took an extra few minutes to find the cutting guy, but he helped me out with a huge smile on his face, and it saved me 22 cuts at home! Next time you are there, muster up the courage and ask. It’s free and makes things a thousand times easier.
- Plan every last detail and buy a little more. I swore I did a great job measuring out the various sizes I needed to build the bench (I was making it much longer than Ana’s plans so I had to adjust). However, somehow I messed up a little bit. Luckily, I bought one extra 2×4 just in case, and it came in handy. Instead of having to go back to the store, adding more time, I just used the spare piece that cost an extra $5. Money well spent.
- Set your expectations wisely. Although the project went much smoother than I anticipated, I was still sweating like crazy and cursing at every piece that wasn’t 100% square. You should probably go into any building project with the mindset that it’s not going to go exactly as planned. Then you will be pleasantly surprised when you reach the final product!
I will let you know how the movie night goes this week! I’ll try to take some pictures without creeping out my new friends too much.
Have a wonderful week!