The Hubs picked up a fancy new smoker a few months back and has been using it pretty regularly, so he decided to incorporate it into his existing egg table. He had originally sealed the whole table with Thompsons water seal but that didn’t seem to be holding up too well to Alaska’s winters so he knew he was going to have to sand it down and refinish it this season anyway.
He built a new section to wrap around the smoker that matched the style of the original table and attached it with his Kreg tool. I was working on other projects while he was doing this stage so I didn’t get any pictures of it but you can figure out the setup from the finished images in this post. He cut a small hole in the side to access the wood chip drawer on the smoker.
We decided to go with outdoor deck paint for the refinish and chose a dark grey that should hide dirt and any minor damage it might get outside. The Hubs said it went on like tar so it should provide a pretty good barrier to the elements.
The new extended size is a perfect fit for the smaller rug we had from last season and makes stepping out from the house to grill a bit comfier. The new expanded top gives him plenty of room to prep things before they go into either the grill or the smoker and is the perfect spot for my big cast iron lantern and piggy planter.
Once it was all painted, he added the bottle opener we picked up forever ago to the side, which is conveniently located right next to our new dining set. And with the herbs growing nearby he can pluck some to add to his culinary masterpieces.
I’ve also found that it works well as an impromptu potting bench when I’m prepping pots for the deck. Good thing he’s ok with sharing every now and then! 🙂
It’s been a while since my last post because we’ve been pretty darn busy around here the past several weeks. So here’s a quick run-down of what’s been going on.
At the beginning of the year I moved into a new position at work, which requires learning several new software platforms and skills. It took a while for my old position to be filled so for a while I was basically doing both jobs. The gal who filled my previous position has been with the company for a few years and worked in our department, but she too had a lot of learning to do in her new role. When she needed to be out for a bit due to emergency surgery over the spring, I had to help out by stepping back into that role while also continuing to do my new job. It was a bit chaotic and didn’t leave much time or energy for other things. Luckily it was only for a few weeks and now she’s recovered and back without restriction so we can both settle into our usual duties.
We took a quick trip to visit my Mother-In-Law in Portland, where we did some shopping for the house, attended a beekeeping class (something we’re planning to try next year) and I organized a styled photo shoot. The Hubs and I also took care of a couple small projects around Mom’s house while we were there. Since we still had snow on the ground when we left and returned to a snow storm – it was a nice break to enjoy some spring weather and blooms!
When we returned from our trip we added to our chicken flock with two batches of baby chicks! These little fluff balls have been living in the garage in a large brooder we made from a stock tank planter I had. In addition to multiple feedings a day we worked hard to make sure they were handled often as well so they will be friendly when they are adults. To make room for them outside, the Hubs made a massive addition to the coop, doubling their indoor space and tripling the number of nest boxes. We’re still putting the finishing touches on that project but I’ll share it soon.
I spent many hours getting the green house cleared out and prepped for the season after our trip. I attended the annual VIP plant sale at my favorite nursery toward the end of April, but the blooms had to hide out in the green house for a few more weeks before it was safe for them to be outside. While I waited on the weather, the edible crops were all started in the green house and the Hubs revamped the hydroponic system for the tomatoes with bigger tubing so it’s more efficient. Now everything is growing and we’re already enjoying some of the bounty from our lettuce, spinach and dill plants!
We did several projects around the yard as we prepared for the summer season. I revamped a serving cart for the deck, upcycled an old milk can into a planter and created planters out of old conveyor belt scoops for the new chicken coop expansion. The Hubs extended his egg table with a spot to store his new smoker and built me potato crates which will double our crop this year. We sold the old patio furniture to make way for a new dining table and a set of loungers for the deck we installed last summer. We also started installing a gazebo style covering over the hot tub on that deck. We hope to have that completed soon – but need to arrange some extra helpers to get the roof on. Out front, I styled the vintage cart on the front porch for spring and then for summer with patriotic colors.
Inside, I changed up a few things, including curtains in all the bedrooms, the rugs in our master bath, swapping Brinley’s kennel for a new entry bench. Last weekend we took advantage of the neighborhood traffic for a neighbor’s estate sale and had a yard sale to clear out some extra clutter that accumulated around the house over the winter. We were mildly successful in that goal, but there’s still lots to purge, which is why I only picked up a few small décor items when I attended the spring Alaska Chicks Vintage Market.
Whew – seeing it all written out makes me realize just how much we crammed into a few weeks! As my Mother-in-Law says “No grass grows under our feet!” And now that summer is in full swing we’ve got a whole new round of projects and activities planned. Stay tuned over the next few weeks to see the projects I mentioned plus others that are still in the works! Hopefully I’ll be able to keep you updated more regularly now. In the meantime I’ll leave you with more pictures of those silly chicks, who just moved out to the big yard. 🙂
I decided to splurge a bit and get the hubs something special for Christmas so I had a handyman build a table to fit his big green egg BBQ based on the design he’d drawn up several months ago. Although he planned to build it this summer when we start working on the yard again I knew he’d never get to it with all the other projects we I have planned. Hopefully it also serves as an inspiration for all those projects!
It ended up being a bit more expensive than I originally expected, but it will get lots of use and since I told him it’s a Christmas/Birthday/Anniversary gift he isn’t expecting anything else until next Christmas! LOL
I asked the handyman to leave the wood unfinished so the hubs can decide if he wants to paint or stain it, which lets him still have a hand in “making” it. He’ll also add some large casters to the legs, just like he did for my craft cabinet, so the almost 200 lb. egg can be moved around the deck easily. In addition to using a patio paver from our current stash as a thermal base for the egg to sit on, he can put one on the top as a trivet for any hot plates. And maybe down the road he’ll add some fold down extensions on the sides for extra workspace.
But the best part is that there’s now plenty of out of sight storage for all the accessories that have accumulated since we got the egg, including room for the not-so-lovely deep fryer burner and propane bottle! I’m secretly doing a happy dance over that fact. 🙂
I’ll share more photos of it once everything is finished, organized and in place, but it might be a while due to our longer than average winters in Alaska.