Thursday, August 12, 2010

Nothin' Special--August 12, 2010

Woke up at 8:30.  Wasn't too ready to get out of bed.  Stayed in bed until 8:50.  Showered, then headed over to Dad's work to drop something off, then headed to Boogs' house to wait for Mom and Jobu.  We all headed up the farm from there.

Ended up having a good time up there.  Grandma was pretty funny today.  I had called her earlier (from my bathroom, nonetheless!) and told her that we would be having a larger group today.  Well, apparently she thought that she heard a woman's voice in the background.  So I had some explaining to do when I was up there!  A couple of times even!  I really sincerely don't think that she believes me!  Mom had a good chuckle out of that.

Came back home around 1:00-ish and ended up stopping at the ReStore where I bought a ceiling fan.  We'll see if this one works better!

And the rest of the day was pretty low-key.  Had a Coke with a friend and spent the rest of the night was too hot again, and I just wasn't too motivated to work outside.

Talked to Whit for a bit tonight...we're both eager for tomorrow.

Ended up in bed early at 10:35.  Pretty happy about that.

One Little Square-Inch At a Time--August 11, 2010

Woke up at 8:00 A.M.  Grabbed a bowl of cereal, then headed outside.  Didn't even get ready for anything else!  I mowed the front yard...which had areas of 8-inch tall grass!  It needed it badly.  I then became ambitious and pulled out the power washer and started on my deck.

Frankly, I was nothing short of shocked to see just how well it made my wood go from old and brown to fairly new-looking!!!  It was seriously making it look sharp!  I spent a couple of hours on it, but I really wasn't getting anywhere.  I was probably only 1/4 of the way done.  Knowing that I may have an 8-hour job in front of me, I opted to NOT pursue that any further!!!  I took a break, came in, showered, and brushed my teeth.  It was about 10:45.

It was warming up quickly, but I went ahead and tried out one of the gallons of stain from my purchase a week or so ago.  Hmm.  It wasn't the brown I had anticipated.  It was more clear!  I tried it on an old piece of wood and a power-washed piece.  The difference was night and day.  I knew right then and there that I would have to complete what I started.  I had numerous hours of power-washing ahead of me.  Ruh roh.

I headed to McDonald's for lunch...a couple of hamburgers and a sweet tea with a nice refill!  Then I came back and continued the job.  Another couple of hours.  I'll be honest, the deck WAS starting to look nice!  It's really making the wood look like new!  But I have to literally cover EVERY square-inch with that wand, and that is just no easy task!  I pressed on.

I took a break in the mid-afternoon...when it was 108 degrees.  I took too long of a break, though, and really didn't want to go back out!  But I forced myself to do it.  And I added another couple of hours in the early evening.  Mom and Dad came over, and I pulled the ol' Tom Sawyer move on them...each of them did a few boards.  But I was eager to call it a day...I still have a few hours left to do before I can stain it.

Talked with Mom and Dad for a bit...enjoyed a nice McDonald's frap around 8:30.  They headed home, and I stayed inside the rest of the night.  Talked to Whit for a short bit...she was out line-dancin' with her girls.

Ended up going to bed around midnight.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

A Row-Crop Cultivator--August 10, 2010

Woke up at 8:30 A.M.  Grabbed some breakfast, took a shower, then headed outside to clean up my mess!  I hauled a load of scrap wood over to my sister's house around 9:30 and started burning it.  I came back and loaded up the left-over lumber and some cabinets that Mom and Dad had picked up for me.  I returned the wood to Menard's (with a bunch of other stuff), grabbed a hamburger and a sweet tea at McDonald's, then took the cabinets to the Habitat for Humanity ReStore.  I dropped off a couple of TV's there, too.  Before I left, I saw where they priced the cabinet at $30.00 and one of the TV's at $5.00.  I also noticed Mom and Dad's old vanity and sink still there!  ha!  It hadn't sold yet.  I was humored.

I was hoping to pick up a ceiling fan while there, but all of them were the 42" blade-style, and frankly, the one that I currently have installed just doesn't do much.  So after MUCH searching and debate (and a couple of phone calls with Dad), I opted to pass.  I left empty-handed.  I came back home and cleaned up the yard some more.  I was going in and out of being outside, though, as it was a sultry 112 degrees.  yikes.  I organized the shed, and I'm WAY thrilled with it.  I tell ya, a good night's sleep just does something for ya.  I'll put yesterday behind me!  I put everything along the outer walls, and it really gives me some space in there.  I hung up my weed trimmer on some hooks I had had laying around for the past few years, and I love it!  The shed is really nice!

I hauled a load of garbage over to Dad's work and picked up a screw-sizing tool while there with him.  Basically, I'm trying to find screws to fit the second ceiling fan.  It didn't come with any to mount the blades.  And a set I had purchased at Menard's didn't work.  So I came back home from his work, loaded up the branches I had cut down for my shed, and headed back over to Casey and Erica's where I burned them.  Or started to.  When I pulled up, I noticed a fire truck at their neighbor's house.  I inquired about it to Boogs, but she had been sleeping and knew nothing of it.

So I called Jobu.  I guess their neighbor had been burning something illegal.  Whatever that means.  So the firemen were sent to have him put out the fire.  Fair enough.  I left the small fire of branches and started for home.  But as I was backing out of their driveway, I almost pulled out in front of a cop car!  I think I had part of my back end sticking out in the road!  There are never cars here!  Hmm.  He pulled up to the neighbor's house.  Interesting.  Must be comin' to make sure it's out.  He got out and was yielding his Billy Club!  WHAT?!

As I headed for home, I passed another police car turning in to their road.  Hmm.  I texted Boogs and let her know.  She said there were now three cars!!!  So I called her and told her that she may get in trouble for having a fire in her back yard.  "What, why"?  ha!  Perfect!  She was so innocent.  I told her to keep that exact response and she'd be fine.  But I told her to expect the police to come over since the neighbor saw me burning something, too.  I'm sure if he was getting in trouble for burning something, then he would certainly say, "Well, what about them?!" as he pointed to our pile of branches.  Erica even went and checked, and sure enough, the pile was smoking.  !!!

I hung up with her and then called Jobu again.  I asked why in the world we would have three police cars outside the house!  And he said that there was a warrant out for the guy's arrest!  Whoa!  How about that for a change of events?!  I guess they ran the guy's name after the fire truck left, and sure enough, he was wanted for something.  And then he gave me a code that ran on his screen, and sure enough, they were hauling him off to jail.  The suspect was in custody!  I just had to tell Boogs!  So I called her back and let her know, thinking she would be nervous about living next to someone like that!  She said, and I quote, "That is hilarious."  Oh boy.  I was a bit off.

But that was our fun story for the day.

I went back and grabbed another load of wood, then headed back over.  From there I went in to True Value to pick up some screws.  I ended up getting the wrong size.  The screw chart lied to me!!!  Well, it DID feel a little loose in there.  That would certainly be why.

Somewhere in the afternoon, I ended up hauling my four-wheeler back over to my parent's house (sheds are never big enough).  I also returned the screws and picked up new ones.  These fit.  I installed them on the fan, and I was pleasantly surprised to see that this fan ACTUALLY moves air!  Quite nicely, actually.  It feels great.  Unlike the other one.

All in all, it was a very productive day.  I returned the parts I didn't need, I got rid of stuff in my driveway, I cleaned up the garage some more, I organized the shed, and I got a ceiling fan to work.  I'll take it.  My aunt came by to drop something off in the evening, and we ended up making a McDonald's run together.  I got my SECOND dose of sweet tea!  yikes.

Talked to Whit again tonight, then listened to the thunder as I headed for bed at 11:45.  No rain, though.  Just thunder.  We need it so bad.

I'm hopin' to get the Man Cave all cleaned up and usable tomorrow and put the door pieces on my shed.  Then that project will be 100% complete!  If I'm feeling ambitious enough, I plan on power-washing my deck, too.  I'm hoping to have that stained by Thursday.  We'll see!

I like days like these.

Oh, one more thing!!!  I called about a farm job today.  They were looking for a full-time guy to drive tractors.  Why not?!  The conversation went like this...

"Hi, I'm calling about the job in the paper.  Do you still have that open"?

"Yes, I do."

"Good, well, are you the person to talk to"?

"I am.  Where are you from"?


"Ok, well, you need to know that the job is in Hartsburg.  Hartsburg is located..."

"My dad is from Hartsburg!"

"Your dad?  Who is that"?

I told him the name, and then he went and told me that he knows my dad and that he had four years of Ag class underneath my grandpa!  We were hitting it off!  Then...

"Have you ever adnfa;df'dajfad'fdfa'"?

"I'm sorry, what"?  I had NO idea what he had just said.

"Have you ever row-crop cultivated"?

"Oh, no, but I've planted and harvested and hauled grain to the bins."

"Nope, I need someone with more experience.  This guy needs a row-crop cultivator.  Thanks.  Bye."


"Ok, bye."

SERIOUSLY!  I was borderline offended!  As soon as he found out that I had never row-crop cultivated, he had NO interest in me AT ALL!!!  Didn't matter that I could learn in a day...didn't matter that I could fly airplanes over mountains...didn't matter that he knew my family...he needed a row-crop cultivator.  And that was it.

Well, there ya go.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

One Frustrating Day--August 9, 2010

Woke up at 8:00 A.M.  I wasn't feelin' that, so I lay in bed for another 20 minutes or so.  Finally got up, grabbed some breakfast, took a shower, then headed out the door to work on the shed.  I kind of stared blankly at it for awhile, not really sure which part I should tackle.  I finally said to myself, "Do something."  I was certainly in a state of not doing anything as I thought about what to do!

So I started measuring the door trim pieces.  I cut them, then painted them.  I also mowed a little bit more of my yard and threw the glass clippings on the garden.  I gave the door trim pieces another coat of paint and then headed out to Menard's to check out some corner trim pieces.  After much debate, I went ahead and bought four galvanized steel 90-degree flashing pieces.  The plan was to paint them, cut them, and then insert them underneath the drip-edge.  And they were already 90-degrees, so I wouldn't have to worry about cutting wood.

I drove back home, nailed up the door trim pieces, installed the hasp I had bought last night, and then started painting the flashing pieces.  They were going to need a couple of coats of paint for sure.  I grabbed a bite to eat inside (I'm living off of microwaveable meals anymore), then came back out and painted the corner trim some more.  It was blazing hot outside, though.  It was around 108 degrees, and I was feeling every one.

I nailed up one of the corner trim pieces, but it just wasn't looking right.  The metal was too flimsy, and it didn't make a good seal with the wood.  I called Dad to see if it would be doable still, and he recommended I glue the pieces on?!  Sigh.  I hadn't planned on spending more money!  Out of frustration, I just quit for awhile.  I went inside and lay on the couch, actually falling asleep for about 15 minutes.  The shed was just really irking me today.  Here I was supposed to be finished with it, and I am encountering problems simply because I tried to "cut some corners."  Although THAT is actually the problem.  Because I didn't CUT THE CORNERS, I tried to get an easy way of doing trim.  It proved to be foolish.

Why would contractors for years and years and years do it with the wood trim?  Why would they not use what I had just purchased?  I was about to find out.  I went out to Wal-Mart, bought some heavy-duty adhesive and tried to get the pieces to stick to the wood.  That wasn't happening.  So I had to end up nailing them up with tiny nails...a process within itself.  And then I found the problem.  I had to make a wooden trim piece that would cover up the crack between the two siding pieces.  Well, since I chose to use a VERY thin piece of steel for the corner trim, I now had nothing to butt up against with this horizontal trim.  In essence, the trim was just going to be hanging there in the middle of the wall on its own, every side exposed.

I was so frustrated.  I never saw it coming.  By trying to save just 8 cuts, I now ran into a bigger problem.  Flashing that didn't fit right and a  trim piece that looks a bit awkward on its own.  But by this time, I just had the mentality, "Finish it."  So I went at the shed...hard.  I just wanted to get this thing done.  I put all four corner pieces on, then cut, painted, and installed, the horizontal trim (awkwardly falling off the ladder at one point while trying to hold the piece up by myself and nail it...I hit the ladder, some parts on the ground, and the ground pretty hard.  I ended up completely on my stomach, face to the ground).  But I was in essence done.

Frankly, I was still a bit frustrated.  The shed honestly looks fine, and I KNOW that.  But I also know that it wasn't done correctly, and I know how I operate...that is going to be on my mind virtually every time I see it!  It's a frustrating mentality, but I just know me!  But I'll just have to accept's not going anywhere.  Admittedly, I'm a bit nervous about the water aspect, too.  Water can certainly get in behind the corner trim pieces...exactly what I didn't want to happen.  I really don't think it's going to affect anything in the short-term, but I'm afraid my 20-year shed might be more like a 10 or 15-year one now.  Who knows.  Shoot, I may have water coming in at more places that I care to admit!  We'll have to wait and see.

I cleaned up the back yard and started putting more stuff in the shed from the garage.  I'm just ready for this whole project to be behind me!  And I'm eager to use the Man Cave, too.

All in all, I'm probably 98% done with the shed.  I need to put reinforcement pieces behind the door, and that will be it.  I'll be done.  I'll just have to wait and see how it handles rain.  I'm not too optimistic that it's going to be sealed completely.  Namely with the door.  But, it is what it is.


Anyway.  I have a shed.  A decent one.  A strong one.  Though not a perfect one.  I've learned a lot, and it's somewhat rewarding.  Though I'll admit that today took a lot of reward and pride out of me!  It became a burden, an expense, and a frustration.  Maybe there is something to be learned in there, who knows.

Oh well.

Threw a pizza in for supper and stayed inside.  Tried to get caught up on receipts for the past month.  I've been TERRIBLE with record-keeping this past month.  And I hate that.  But it looks like I'm spending money left and right...not good.  July was a terrible month for me in terms of expenses.  And with this shed, August just isn't going to be any better.  I'm ready to have a month of nothing but water, electricity, internet, and gas.  These projects are killing me.

Talked to Whitney for about 20 minutes around 11:00-ish.  Hung up, wrote this, and headed to bed at 11:40.  Going to try to get the Man Cave "open" for business tomorrow.  We'll see.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Still Not Done!!!--August 8, 2010

Woke up at 8:35 A.M.  I was in a DEEEEEEEEP sleep.  When that alarm went off, WOW.  I tried to pull myself together, but it wasn't pretty!  I was up too late last night!  Silly girl.  :)  Grabbed some breakfast, took a shower, then headed for church.  Had a decent service.  But I was pretty tired.  I downed a cup and a 1/3 of coffee...just trying to function.  yikes.

Headed to Mom and Dad's house afterwards for lunch.  Grabbed a hamburger, two hot dogs, some awesome baked beans, and some milk.  I helped Dad get his mini-tiller running again, and then I was off.  I needed a nap in the worst way possible.  So around 1:50 I went down for a nap.  I set my alarm for 3:30.

And I was out.  3:30 quickly rolled around, and I wasn't sure I was any better!  But I forced myself out of bed.  I certainly wasn't very motivated to work, though.  I was just in a funk!  But I headed outside and then went to Wal-Mart to buy some paint.  I needed to get this shed done!  I called Erica and Casey and Dad and tried to get them all to come over!  ha!  I am just so ready to be done.  They all agree to help out, so that was nice.  Casey and Erica painted, and Dad installed the second ceiling fan in my garage.  It didn't have any screws for the blades, though!  Grr!

But we were able to get the entire shed completely painted.  It looks pretty good.  I still need to put the trim on and finish putting some supports on the doors, but I'm finally at 95% completion.  It's the final touches that take a long time!  And you don't see much progress each day!  But it's nearing completion.  And I am certainly ready for that.  But it looks good, and I'm proud of it.  I think it's going to look great once I put the white trim on.  It should really pull out the color.


Cleaned up, then headed out to Steak 'n Shake with Casey, Erica, and Baby.  Stayed there until 9:20, downing three mugs of root beer.  I was so thirsty!  And quite exhausted just from painting!  Stopped at Wal-Mart on the way home to see if they had any ceiling fan screws, but they didn't.  Will have to run out to Menard's.  Talked to Whitney again tonight.  And talked to Crazy Zach!  It looks like he'll be my roommate here in the next couple of weeks.  That'll be nice.  Ended up staying up until 11:40.

I am eager for an early bed time, though.  I am still pretty tired.  Got the alarm set for 8:00.  I could sure use a full 8 hours of sleep.  I am hoping to cut the trim pieces and paint them tomorrow.  I'm also plannin' on getting the support pieces up for the door.  I'll install a latch and then be done!  And it's going to sit there for the next 20 years!!!  I already have it mostly full, too!  I'm not goin' to lie, a shed is pretty nice to have.  I'll have to add up the receipts and see exactly what I have in it.  I think I'm still around that $800 number.  The nice part is I'll finally be able to use my Man Cave, too!  It's a win-win.

Off to a very welcoming pillow...

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Almost Done!!!--August 7, 2010

Woke up before my alarm went off.  But I stayed in bed until it actually did at 8:15.  Grabbed some breakfast, took a shower, then headed outside to start work on the shed.  I really needed some trim pieces, so I loaded up the three unused bundles of shingles and headed for Menards.  I returned the shingles, then purchased 18 8-foot 1x4's.  About $28.  Not too terrible.  I also bought some hinges and a closing clasp for when the door is shut.  A total of around $50 altogether.

I came back home and realized once I got back that I had forgot to buy nails!  Agh!!!  I asked Jobu to come over and help me, and he said he would, so I wanted to hurry out and get nails first.  So I headed for the hardware store, but I met Mom on the way out!  So I came back to the house to talk to her, and she was eager to start painting!  Well, I didn't have the paint bought yet, so she decided to go to Wal-Mart while I headed to True Value.  I bought nails, then came back to put on the doors with Jobu.

It was already 10:30.  And I hadn't really done anything yet!!!  Jobu and I tried to figure out how to do the door, but we quickly realized that I needed smaller hinges.  GRR!!!  I headed to Wal-Mart real quick to pick some up, but they didn't have what I needed.  So I made a quick trip BACK to True Value.  They were very expensive there, but I needed 'em while I had the help.  I came back to install them, but we just couldn't make the attachment of the doors make sense in our mind.  If we put them on the inside, the hinges would move.  On the outside didn't seem to be making much sense, either.  And Jobu had to work.  So he left, and I had no doors hung.  GRR!!!

I helped Mom paint after he left.  She only bought one gallon, and that was only good for 1 1/2 sides.  So we only got about 1/3 of the way done with that.  But she was eager to help with the doors, so we went at 'em again.  And THIS time we were able to figure it out!  So Mom and I installed the doors!  I was so excited!  It's not a shed that closes!!!  So I quickly starting stuff back there!  But I was under a time crunch.  It was already after 3 o'clock, and I had a hot date tonight (true story!), so I had to stop the moving of items.  We picked up our gear, and she headed off, while I headed in to town to get a haircut.  I kid you not, it ended up costing me $22.  I about crapped my pants.  They were $15 last year.  What is this?!  I am going to have to use Jobu's barber...they are only $8.  But he had closed at noon.

Well, I came back and showered and then headed out for my date.  It was pretty far away (an hour and a half), but she was just about as cute as could be!  We headed out for a dinner on the river and just talked.  Then we went for a walk in a park and talked some more!  Definitely a blast.  Talked about dreams, desires, family, everything that crossed our minds.  She is so stinkin' attractive!  We ended up heading back to her grandparents' house and sat out on the swing and talked some more!

FINALLY at 12:15, I made my push for home.  I was hoping I would make it!  The first 25 miles were fine, but the next 45 were ROUGH.  I was doing everything to stay awake.  I turned on the radio in the truck for the first time since owning it.  I rolled down the windows.  I sung out loud.  I moved my hands.  But I was struggling.  I ended up stopping at a gas station about 35 miles away from home.  I just needed something.  I moved around and grabbed a Pepsi.  Then I hopped back in.  My truck was making a ticking sound, though, that I noticed when I pulled into the gas station.  Lifters?  I don't know.  But I don't like it!

I made the last 35 miles halfway decent.  But still very tired.  I rolled in at 1:56 A.M.  VERY tired.  So I headed for bed.  Was in bed at 2:20.  Alarm is set for 8:35.

I like cute girls!

Friday, August 6, 2010

A Celebration of Life--August 6, 2010

Woke up to the noise of my roommate moving out.  I never did fall back asleep.  I imagine that was around 6:30.  My alarm finally went off at 7:05.  I just lay there.  What to do?!  I seriously went back and forth, back and forth.  Finally, at 7:14, I jumped out of bed and said I'm goin'.  I took a quick shower, grabbed a quick breakfast, and waited for my sister to show up.

Boogs, Casey, Angela, and I all headed there in the same car.  It was a pretty enjoyable ride up there, though admittedly I was struggling.  I was soooooooooooo tired.  I didn't wake up refreshed at all.  I grabbed a tall 24-oz of coffee from a gas station, but it didn't seem to be working.  We talked about a lot of stuff on the way up there.  Tithing, windmills, songs.  The trip went pretty quickly.

We made a quick stop at McDonald's, then dropped in for the visitation at 11:00.  We zipped through the short line, then checked out the body.  I'm always mesmerized by the body.  It's so...lifeless.  I know it's crazy to say, but a man can learn a ton by just staring at a dead body.  So much of life starts coming together.  I looked for a good bit but didn't want to make it awkward.  We then sat down.  Agh, we had 2 hours to kill!!!

The time went by pretty slowly.  I would just stare at the various people and how they responded to going through the line.  The college girls definitely took it hardest.  No way around it.  They knew how to cry.  Weep.  Oddly enough, and this is the honest truth, one of the reasons why I came today was just to watch how people handle death.  I've been to several funerals, but I'm just mesmerized by them.  And especially when it's someone that I know.  Not that I enjoy them, but again, you just learn so much about life, humans, people, yourself, by going to a funeral.

Around noon, the church started getting full.  And I started getting ornery.  I had a very light demeanor, and it seemed to be ok.  As the church filled up, more and more people talked, and it was more of a get-together than a funeral, it seemed.  As 12:30 came around, the church was almost full.  But the line still stretched outdoors.  Once 12:45 came around, they closed down the visitation line and just had people file in.  There wasn't enough room.  They had people in the middle aisle, every pew packed and tight, and the outside aisles filled up.  There was standing room only, and even then, they had people all the way back down the outer hallway all the way to outside.  I would guess a few hundred people showed up.

The service itself was actually unlike anything I coudl have expected.  They didn't call it a funeral, but rather, "A Celebration of Life."  And that's exactly what they did.  They praised Kerstin's personality, walk with the LORD, and kindness.  I kid you not, at one point, we had a standing ovation for her life.  At a funeral!  We were all standing and cheering this young woman's life!  It was mildly awkward, yet at the same time, it was just right.  The more the people talked, the more one realized that it really was an honor to have known this woman.  She had a zest for life, a passion for people.  Frankly, it was HARD to mourn!  I think that was probably a downfall (we DO need to mourn!), but in the same breath, you just couldn't help but get excited about knowing this woman!  WE had the privilege of knowing her.  She was a blessing to us.  And she did her duty.  23 years of obedience to her Master.

I kid you not, it was just unlike anything I've ever been a part of.  They mentioned that there should be weeping and tears, but they just negated all of that with the praise of her life.  Of her love.  I seriously felt like everyone there were the ones who benefitted by knowing her.  She obviously touched each one in a particular way.  It was just hard to be sad!!!  Almost impossible!!! 

It was definitely a day of hope.

We left around 3:00, made a quick stop at Walgreens for snacks, and made the long 3-hour drive back home.  I was now officially worthless.  My lack of sleep the last two nights just caught up with me.  I was nearly falling asleep there in the car.  The rest were kind of quiet, too, and it was just a totally different feel on the way home!  We were all so tired!

Finally got back home about 6:10.  I immediately headed out back to assess my door situtation.  I changed clothes and was working on my shed within a few minutes of being dropped off.  I ended up making the cuts for the door.  But I was pretty exhausted.  And I didn't have the necessary trim pieces I needed.  So I went ahead and loaded everything back in the garage.  At least the doors are cut now.  Just a matter of "building" them up and attaching them.  But I was in no position to do it tonight.

I went ahead and weeded my tomatoes, watered them, then mowed my back yard.  Several of the tomato plants have just taken off this past week.  They are looking good!  Some of them.  Others?  Not so much.  But I'm excited!  I was dragging as I mowed, though.  I was just beat.  I think I could've fallen asleep while walking.

Ended up finishing up the back yard, then coming inside.  Stayed inside the rest of the evening.  I gave the girl from last night a call.  And we're plannin' on gettin' together tomorrow sometime.  She told me about her pretty neat job working in finances.  And how she has worked with dairy cows, pigs, and horses.  If that isn't the most attractive thing out there, I just don't know what is.  Pretty eager to meet her.

Went to bed absolutely and totally exhausted at 11:00.  Plannin' on wakin' up at 8:00 and having the shed done by noon.  At least with the wood work.  Then I can fill it up and paint it either tomorrow afternoon or Sunday.  So ready to be done with it!

A Farm Girl!!!--August 5, 2010

Woke up at 9:10 A.M.  Took a shower and waited on my sister to pick me up.  We were heading to Grandma and Grandpa's house to visit and have lunch.  She arrived around 9:30, and we were off.  We had my grandparents, my sis, Baby, my uncle, and my cousin's wife.  A fun crew.

I helped Grandpa take care of some chores around the house.  Simple stuff really but stuff that needs to be done nonetheless.  I carried down tomato juice to the basement and helped him get a profile on Facebook!  Agh, it's true!  My 85-year-old grandpa is now on Facebook!  More power to him, but I think it's going to be sensory overload with all of the ads and clickable items.  We'll see.  Remember when Facebook was pretty neat?  Yeah, that was about 5 years ago.

We ate a wonderful meal.  Fried chicken, mashed potatoes, corn, fresh tomatoes from the garden, cottage cheese.  And, of course, Grandma's apple pie.  After we ate, Grandpa had me re-arrange his tractors in his machine shed.  So I hopped in the John Deere 4450 and moved it out, then took the shredder off of the 3020 and put it out.  I then put the 4450 back in and then the 3020 in front of it.  After several years of wanting to do it, Grandpa is finally having his ol' 1966 John Deere 3020 painted!  I don't think it's a complete restoration, but I'm excited to see how it looks when it comes back.  I have so many fond memories on that tractor.  Some of my best memories from growing up.

Erica and I ended up leavin around 1:15.  I made the comment to her that I want a farm so bad!  I just can't shake it!  I also said you never know when the last visit is going to be.  It's a reality that I just don't like to think about!  We headed back to Springfield, taking a short detour once we were back to check out a house for a possible rental property.  Erica and I talked finances on the way home.  Pretty fun.  There is sooooooooooooooooooo much to be said about paying off your first house quickly.  Or staying in it longer.  It sets you up so well for your next (and final?) house.  It's fun to teach.

Once back, I hopped on the internet to check out another house I had looked at last year, but I was having problems with my laptop screen.  It would go in and out with the A/C adapter.  I checked out the adapter, and it was frayed at the tip.  So I made several phone calls around town trying to find a replacement.  $50-$99.  ha!  No thanks.  I found them online for $10.  So I bought one.  And I kid you not, RIGHT after I bought one, I stood up to walk away from my laptop, and my foot got caught in the cord.  It pulled pretty aggressively, and I turned around only to see my cord COMPLETELY pulled away from the connector piece.  Well, crap.  Without that, I only had my battery power (1.5 hours?) for the next several days.  I needed to make a utility payment, and, of course, I would love to use it to journal each night, check stocks, e-mail, etc.

I was in dire straits.

Dad came over to pick up some tools around 4:40, but I was trying to figure out a way to make my bill payment before 5:00.  I was finally able to do it.  But I still had a broken power cord!  And my new one is being shipped from California!  GRR!!!  It can't get here soon enough.

Jobu had asked me last night if I wanted to go shooting tonight, and sure enough, around 5:30, he called me.  I had REALLY wanted to get my shed doors done tonight, but I knew this would be a good opportunity to hang out, too.  So I took him up on the offer, knowing that it would only last an hour or so.  Kristin had brought her AR-15 assault rifle, and oh my, what a gun that is!!!  You can feel the shock wave off of the gun.  It's ridiculous.  It boggles my mind how such power can come from such a small piece of metal.  It was pretty fun!!!  I had a decent shot (not RIGHT on target), but I think with a couple more tries, I could nail it pretty solid.  Of course, it DID help that we were using a laser sight.

I ended up coming home with the intentions of working on my shed, but I got back around 6:30.  By the time I picked up my wood and hinges and returned, it would be 7:30.  Tha would only give me an hour to work on the shed.  Definitely not enough time.  So after much contemplation, I took Kristin up on her offer to eat spaghetti at her house.  I invited over Casey and Erica, too, and so we all spent the evening there.

I took over my A/C adapter and spent about 30 minutes trying to solder pieces back together.  I didn't have much wire to work with on the connector, and the solder didn't want to stay, but I think I finally got a piece that held strong enough.

I ate two plates of spaghetti and had some chocolate mousse cake, too!  Fattening!'

The TV was on most of the time, but I didn't like that, so I suggested we all go for a walk.  They took me up on it.  So we walked around the neighborhood.  Pretty fun, though I was tired at the end!  It's nice having a neighborhood to walk in...there were so many other people out doing it, too.  And the night was just simply gorgeous.  Pretty fun.

I ended up going home around 9:45.  I tried out my adapter, and it looks like it is going to work.  At least for a few days until I get my new one!  It's definitely a temporary fix.  I talked a bit with my roommate Sean who is leaving tomorrow.  We had a pretty good mutual set-up.  He had a nice place to live, I had a nice income coming in.  It was good.

Ended up talking to a girl I am quite interested in!  She's a country girl through and through.  She loves horses and is definitely a girl I'm eager to learn more about!  And stinkin' gorgeous.  Talked to her until about 1:00 A.M.  Finally went to bed at 1:10 A.M.  I'm not sure if I'm going to the funeral tomorrow.  I learned that it's in Moline, not Macomb, so I lost about 3 more hours of my day.  GRR!!!  I REALLY want to finish this shed!  What to do, what to do.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Some Satisfaction!--August 4, 2010

Woke up at 7:20 A.M.  Wasn't movin' too quickly.  Grabbed a bowl of cereal, took a shower, then filled up a water jug and headed out the door.  I headed to the ranch where my brother and I started digging a hole for a fence post.  I grabbed a little over a cup of coffee and waited on the group to come out there.

They arrived around 9:00, and I was sent to lead a group of 5 in the building of a manure compost wall.  Basically, the owner wants to hide the poop from the rest of the ranch.  You can see four large piles when you pull up.  Our job was to make it so you only see a wall!  This was a teenage work crew that came out, and I was pleasantly surprised to find that they were ready and willing to work!  I kind of acted as a foreman/encourager, but I had the students do most of the work.  They set a couple of posts in the ground, lined up to even with the first one (took some work), put quick-rete in the holes, then filled 'em in.


We then had them take 16-foot boards and nail them into the railroad ties.  We had to take a couple of water breaks, but they were always ready and eager to get back to work.  It was around 90 degrees outside without the head index.  It was quickly approaching 105-110 with the humidity.  But we kept working!  They nailed up all of the 16-foot boards, and we had time to stain them!  So we did that, too!  One of the guys cut off the tops of the railroad ties with a chainsaw, and before I knew it, before noon, we had a brand-new fence that blocked off the manure compost pile!  What a joy it was to work with eager workers!!!  I'll take them back any day.


My brother was working with a group of girls in the barn, and they were able to complete a hay feeder.  So now the ranch has three.  That's pretty good!  We took some pics with the group, then sent them on their way!  They were off to work downtown with an inner-city ministry.  Pretty neat crew.  I ate a fairly quick lunch with the owner and my brother, but then I had to leave for a business meeting.

So from 1:00-2:00 I was tied up with that.  I didn't really do a whole lot, but it's a good group to be a part of.  They asked me if I was going back next season, and I told them I was.  I basically have no other option!  So I guess today was the "official in my head" day that marked my return to the company.  For better, for worse!  I'll make the most of it.

I took the afternoon pretty easy.  I ended up heading over to Boogs' house around 2:00-ish.  A man wanted to buy some shelves that I had had in the garage sale.  I am now $8 richer!  I stayed and talked with Boogs and played with Micaiah until 2:45.  I headed back home and took it fairly easy.  But I just wanted to work on my shed!  So I did just that.

I started working on it around 4:00, I think.  I went out and extended my door siding pieces.  I want to have enough room on top to place some trim, so I had to shorten my door by a 2x4 edge.  Pretty simple.  Then I got really ambitious and hopped up on the roof!  It was pretty hot but not too bad.  I tackled the ridge.  Frankly, it wasn't that bad.  I am pretty good at roofing!  My roof from last night turned out pretty good, if I do say so myself!  Outside of the LAST piece I put in which was a bit off!  I literally couldn't see where I was nailing!  It was too dark at that point.  Oh well.

As I was working, I heard thunder in the distance.  Hmm.  But it kept getting closer!  Sure, here is me working ON a roof with a thunderstorm coming!  It was a good incentive to get it done.  And I did just that.  I got the ridge shingles on and the ridge vent.  It looks good!  I was thrilled.  And just in time, too!  Just 10 minutes after I finished the roof, it started raining!  What timing!  A VERY-welcomed cold front passed over head with some sweet-looking clouds.  But it went from 95 to 78 in the snap of a finger.  The winds kicked up really strong for a bit, and it actually felt cold!  I was thrilled!  It was so much easier to work outside after that.


I cleaned up my entire yard, watered my tomato plants, and brought my four-wheeler around to the back only to realize that my shed is just small!  ha!  As my dad says, "You never build them big enough."  The shed will certainly work (I don't use the four-wheeler much), but that four-wheeler is a tight fit!  Oh well!  I didn't want anything bigger in my backyard!  I'll make it work.


I headed out to Sonic at 7:15 to meet a friend, and we ended up staying there until 9:00.  I talked with my two roommates (and one's girlfriend) for a bit, then stayed up just messing around on the computer.  Ended up going to bed at 1:00 A.M.

A very productive day, for sure.  I am thrilled.  I am going to try to make my doors tomorrow so that I can paint the shed on Saturday.  I'll be away most of the day Friday for a funeral...

I'm ready to see the finished product!  I'm excited!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Dangerously Hot--August 3, 2010


(The picture is from yesterday's work!  This is how we started this morning!).

Woke up at 7:40 A.M.  I did NOT feel very good.  I grabbed a bowl of cereal (with milk!) and took a shower.  Dad was here around 7:45, but I needed to wake up some more.  So I took a shower to try to help!  But I was just at 60%.  I pushed through.

We started working on the shed right away.  We started putting the gable siding pieces on.  I forgot to mention that we didn't put these angled pieces on yesterday.  We just ran out of time!  This actually turned out to be more work that I had expected!  The first (of four) went on so smoothly.  But then after that I/we seriously spent about 45 minutes on the next cut!  Basically, because of the lips on my wooden siding, it just wasn't working out perfectly.  But we finally figured out what we needed to do, and we put 'em up.  My roommate Dug came out to help, so that was nice.  And Jobu came out around 10:30, so that was nice, too.

But it was HOT.  I should have known when I walked around the corner of my house just a little after 8:00 o'clock and could literally SEE the moisture in the air.  It was just hovering almost like fog.  But it was actually pleasant at that time.  But that didn't last very long.  By the time 11 o'clock rolled around, it was just dangerously hot.  I was sweating profusely, and I usually don't sweat like that.  I usually have a little head sweat, a little sweat on the chest, but this was literally a full-body seeping of water.  I was wet.  And I started feeling a little rough.

I had a good few hours, but all of a sudden, something just hit me.  We came inside to take a break around noon, but I just couldn't sit up.  I had a terrible head-ache, and I couldn't shake it.  I lay on my floor, covered in sawdust, and just tried to get rid of that head-ache.  I felt terrible.  I seriously just felt terrible all around, stomach included.

I felt so bad that I even passed up on lunch.  That is unheard of!  But I needed to sleep this thing off.  I was seriously going to be out of commission if it continued.  Dad and Jobu left to go get something to eat, and I tried to sleep right there on the living room floor.  The problem is I wasn't tired.  But I ended up in the crazy la-la land...not really dreaming but not really awake, either.

I came out of it about an hour later or so.  And I kid you not (this is kind of gross), but the room just smelled terrible.  I mean disgusting.  I grabbed a bite to eat of a sub they had left for me, but I couldn't even get through it.  I made a trip to the bathroom, and I sat there for about 15 minutes.  Something was killing me!  But in all honesty, after the purging, I felt so much better!!!  I came out and finished my sandwich, then went outside to see what I could do by myself on the shed!  Not much!  I cut and put up a little siding piece, but that was about it.

Plus it was now dangerously hot.  I mean, you can die in this type of heat!  It was 99 degrees with a heat index of 116.  It was nothing short of oppressive.  Dad and Jobu had gone out to the ranch to put in some posts, but I later found out that they couldn't really do much, either.  It was just too unbearable.  So I sat around inside for a bit, just waiting for some type of relief to come.

But the forecast wasn't much better.  They were calling for it to still be 90 degrees at 8:00 P.M.  Yikes.

I ended up adding up my receipts today, not necessarily out of desire, but out of a commitment to myself to be good with money.  I was so nervous to see the final total.  And it's WAY more than I had budgeted.  Or expected.  As of now, I am at $797.13.  NOT where I wanted to be at all.  That is $300 more than I had planned on!  And I still need more parts!  But I'll be able to take several items back, too.  My guess is that that figure is going to be pretty close to accurate, though, by the time I get what I need and take back the returns.  $800.  Is it worth it?!  (As a side note, though, it's still cheaper than the $1530 I was quoted at last week...).  I just wasn't as accurate as expected in my planning.

The sun baked the earth all afternoon.  But around 5 o'clock, Dad and I decided that we could go ahead and put on the roof.  It wasn't going to get any better, and I needed to get it done.  So he came back by from home.  He had taken off the day to help me.  It's unbelievable how I get the 116-degree days to work.  Why not one of those 85-degree days from a week or two ago?!  This was seriously crazy.  It's now August, but this has been one of the hottest summers I can ever remember.  July was just brutal this year.

He came over, and we lined up the tar paper that we had put up last night.  Then we put on the drip edge.  And we finally started our first row of shingles at 6:10.  But it was so hot.  It was actually fine to stand in the shade.  But once you did ANY amount of movement, it was over.  My shirt literally became drenched.  I could see water glistening on the outside of it.  It was completely and totally soaked.  Again, it was like a sweat that I just don't remember.  It was nasty stuff.

We worked on one side, and it was coming along fairly nicely with the air gun we had borrowed.  But we needed to take a break around 7:30.  It was just becoming too much for us.  We took a quick break, made a quick little trip over to Casey and Erica's to sell something for them (the people in the driveway ended up leaving as we were going over...ha!), then came back and went at it again.  I finished one side, then started the other.  I could tell Dad was really feeling it.  But I understand that!  It was a lot for me!!!  And he has 28 years on me!  But we pushed through.

Mom brought us homemade ice cream around 8:00.  That was a welcome relief.  I scarfed it down, then continued.  I REALLY wanted to get this roof done tonight.  I hate leaving projects open-ended.  But we were fighting heat exhaustion AND darkness.  But we pushed through.  Finally, at 8:42, I put up my last shingle row.  It was almost competely dark by then, and it was getting very hard to see.  We had done it AGAIN.  Two nights in a row.  We cleaned up the yard and called it a night.

Wow.  But the shed is looking good now.  It was again too late to take a picture, but it's looking sharp.  There is still much work to do, but it's actually got most of the body work done.  I need to put the ridge shingles and vent on next.  Then make the doors, fill the siding with nails, put up the trim, and then paint it!  And then I am literally DONE with the booger.  It should last a solid 15-20 years (that's only $40/year, right?!).

What a learning experience it has been!  Right now it's kind of a thorn in my side!  It's a long, sometimes frustrating and complicated process of building!  I have learned a bit, and it's been fun to pull the Man Card out, but it is complete and total work.  A good lesson in that, too!

But I am definitely EAGER to put it to use.  Enough of this empty shed stuff!

And today wasn't without its own frustrations.  We had the hardest time figuring out the gable end pieces after that first cut.  It was later found out to be a matter of that lip part on the siding.  But it took some thinking.  We also had a problem with my shingles being used to hold down the tar paper.  Basically, the 116-degree heat bonded them to the paper.  When I tried to move them, the tar paper ripped up with it.  I also had an issue with the trim.  I definitely need trim for my corners, but I also need it between my bottom siding and my top siding on the gabled ends.  The problem is a matter of covering the seam.  If I cover the seam, then I can't have the trim go all the way around the shed, as there would be lining-up issues.  Hard to explain, but it's certainly a problem.  I also have a problem of putting up the trim below the drip-edge.  Basically, you are supposed to put the drip-edge over the trim, but I didn't have it, AND that would force me to literally put trim around the ENTIRE shed.  I don't need to do that, but as it stands now, the drip edge will take water and place it on top of the future trim piece.  Not supposed to be like that!

Of course, we also had the heat and my very poor body today.  I seriously can't give enough credit to the heat.  It is just downright unbearable.  We were literally forced out of working today.  A body just can't handle that.  The National Weather Service even put out a Heat WARNING saying to stay inside, limit exposure to outside, and definitely not work outside.  It was that bad. the same breath, we worked when we could, we pushed through frustrations, exhaustion, and the lack of desire.  And we have a shed that is actually starting to look pretty decent.  I'm eager to see the finished product.

What a day.

I don't think I'll have much time to work on it tomorrow, as I'm helping out at the ranch tomorrow.  And I have a business meeting in the afternoon (grr!), so we'll see what happens.  Plust it's supposed to be between 110 and 115 degrees again tomorrow with the heat index.  More of the same.

I guess we'll see!  I'm just ready to put some doors on there!  And I'm ready to fill it up!  Can't wait!

Went to bed pretty exhausted at 11:40 P.M.

Alarm is set for 7:15 A.M.

Sweat Labor--August 2, 2010


Woke up to my alarm at 8:00 A.M.  But that just didn't happen.  Ended up falling back asleep and waking up at a little after 9:00.  I felt much better, but I had missed an hour of work on the shed!  I grabbed my check from the sale of some stocks and headed over to the credit union.  I saw Dad while there, and I was trying to figure out the best way to install my rafters.  The toe-nail method just wasn't too sturdy in my book.  I eventually decided that I wanted to do it properly, so I headed to Menards to buy some brackets.

I made a quick stop at the gas station first to buy two gallons of milk, then headed out to Menards.  I picked up a plastic ridge vent while there and 16 of the hurricane ties.  Only 34 cents apiece.  That will work.  But it's another $17 into this shed!!!  Grr!

I came back home and started going at the rafters.  Frankly, the work was pretty easy.  I didn't get started until after around 11:00 o'clock, but that has been the norm as of late.  I got all of the rafters installed, then started working on cutting the siding.  Basically, that was hard work in and of itself.  The 4x8 pieces are just hard to handle and very heavy.  So I would cut off about a foot or so on the end, lean the board against myself, then walk it to the back.  It was work!  The frustrating part is that I couldn't really do much beyond that.  I simply needed someone else to help me.  But Casey was at work, Jobu had to work, and Crazy is out of state.  GRR!

Dad came over on his lunch hour and helped me to hang up a couple.  He said he would be back around 2:30 to make some town runs if I needed anything.  So I made it a goal to have all of the siding pieces cut by then.  I was able to do that.  He came at 2:30, and we headed to run some errands.  I returned a brake hose from a few weeks ago to Auto Zone, made a utility payment at a bank, then picked up MORE pieces at Menard's.  For whatever reason, I had miscalculated the siding pieces.  I had purchased 7, but I needed an additional 4.  Sigh.  These are one of the most expensive pieces, too!!!  I also picked up 7 bundles of shingles, plywood for the roof, and drip edge for the roof.  I spent an ADDITIONAL $255.70.  I couldn't believe it!!!  I had REALLY miscalculated this project.  I thought I would be in and out for $400-$450.  I not only spent that the first day, but I have surpassed that by more than I care to admit.  I'm afraid to even add it up.  It's not going to be pretty.  It gets closer and closer to the price of buying a shed every day.

We brought everything back to my house, and it was already 4:00 o'clock by that point.  I had high hopes of getting the siding and roof on tonight, but I needed help.  Dad came back by around 4:40, and we started hanging up the siding. And what work that was!!!  My shed is not perfectly square, and that just makes for some adventures in carpentry right there.  It wasn't too fun!  We had to push on the shed from numerous angles to shift the walls, shift the rafters, and on and on.  It was work!!!

We ended up spending the entire evening working on this thing.  It seemed like a slow process.  Mom came by with some sandwiches and MUCH needed sweet tea.  It was pretty warm outside.  I was just dripping sweat.  Dad and I continued with the work, though, up until we couldn't see any more.  We were able to get all of the siding walls on AND the plywood on the roof.  There is a 30% chance of rain tonight and a 40% chance of rain tomorrow, so we quickly threw the tar paper up on the roof, too, tacking it down with a couple of nails, bundles of shingles, and some concrete edging.

Finally, around 9 o'clock, past the time where I could see the nails I was swinging at, we called it a night.  It was dark.  I hate having to work that long!!!  And I hate even more having my dad be out there doing the work, but I just need the help.  It's much appreciated!

But this project is just taking so much longer than expected!!!  I'm on Day 4 already!

I'm over budget AND overdue!  Not a good combination.  I couldn't even take a picture of the end of our day, as it was just too dark outside.  But it's coming together, and it's starting to look like a legitimate shed!!!

My new roommate finally moved back in tonight, and he asked me if I wanted to go out with him and his friend.  I figured it would be a good time to get to know him, so I took him up on the offer.  I reaaaaaaaaaaaally toyed with not going, as I was tired and could benefit from the sleep.  But we  headed out anyway.  We just went down the road to Mowie's and had some lively conversation!  These are going to be some fun guys to have over!

Ended up coming back around midnight, I think.  But I didn't get to bed until 1:30 A.M.  Alarm is set for 7:40.  Ugh.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Goin' Nowhere Fast!!!--August 1, 2010



Woke up at 8:35 A.M.  Ate a dry bowl of cereal (out of milk) and had a bottle of sweet tea.  It was actually difficult getting that bowl of cereal down!!!  It was soooooo dry!  Hard to chew and swallow!  Took a shower, then headed to church.

Ended up in my favorite Sunday School class only to find out my favorite teacher wasn't there.  What is worse, the fill-in guy was the same teacher that I had from another class two weeks ago!  The one where I was bored out of my mind!  I saw that he had about 50% of the same content, too!  GRR.  But I liked this class better (the people), so I opted to stay.  Ended up being all right.  It's all about the crowd sometimes.

Went to big church but still really don't have any connections there.  Walked out the doors at the end and left.  No one to talk to!  Not a big fan.

Headed out to Mom and Dad's house for lunch.  The crew was all there...outside of Crazy who is on vacation.  Stayed there until 1:35, then headed to Casey's house to help him deliver a TV stand he had sold on craigslist (that didn't sell in the garage sale).  Was in a fairly rough part of town, but the transaction was fine.  No worries.  Until I was leaving.  I was stopped at a stop sign when I was pushed forward all of a sudden!  A car had just hit me from the back!!!

It wasn't that hard, but sure enough, I had been hit.  Oddly enough, the guy that hit me really didn't seem to know he hit me.  Or that I was there for that matter!!!  I turned around, and he acted all surprised to even see my truck there!  I got out and checked for damage, but we actually both seemed to be fine.  "Is my car alright"?  The guy didn't even get out of his car.  "Yeah, it looks fine.  I'm happy if you're happy."  "Yeah, alright."  So I drove off, then he took off behind me.

So crazy.  Casey said I handled that the best in that situation.  ha!  Screw that!  I would have asked for his insurance info if I had some serious damage!!!  I wasn't leaving because of where I was!  I was leaving because there was no damage.  Oh well.

We headed to my house where we worked on the shed.  Didn't get started until about 2:45.  Why do we start so late every day?!  We put all four walls up, nailed 'em down, and squared 'em up.  It actually looks pretty good.  He had to leave for a softball game at 4:30, so I was left to figure out the roof rafters on my own.  After some thinking and watching YouTube, I had at it.  And I did that for HOURS.  I seriously just stood there and cut and cut and cut some more.  So many angles, so many pieces.  I have eight rafters, so I had 16 boards to cut, and I had 16 other pieces to cut to give it strength at the top.  It was sooooooo much cutting!

I finally took the eight rafters to the back around 7:00.  I put two on, but I was pretty tired by that point.  Plus I wasn't fully confident that I was doing it all correctly.  I am basically nailing down angled nails to hold the rafters in place.  It just doesn't seem right.  How could a couple of toe nails hold an entire roof?  I just wasn't buying it.  I'll wait until tomorrow.

It's kind of hard doing the work by yourself, too!  Even with cutting the rafters, just having another set of hands would have been so nice!  Oh well!  Such was my day!

Ended up coming back inside around 8:00 o'clock.  I definitely didn't get as far as I had planned, but it's coming along.  It looks more like a shed than it did this morning anyway.

Hoping to get the roof rafters on tomorrow, as well as the siding and roof board.  Oh, how I dream big!

Went to bed at 12:15 A.M.  Alarm is set for 8:00.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Work, Work, Work!!!--July 31, 2010

Woke up at 9:30.  VERY tired.  I hate when that happens.  I was seriously struggling.  Just lay in bed awake for about 20 minutes.  Trying to find some way of not feeling how I did.  Finally got up, ate breakfast, took a shower, then loaded up some wood that I needed to return to Menard's.

I headed over to my sister's house to see how the garage sale was coming along.  Got there around 10:30.  They had made a whopping $2.50 this morning.  Oddly enough, it never got better!  They made around $268 yesterday.  And $2.50 today.  Crazy!  Doesn't anyone shop on Saturdays anymore!

While there, I was kind of lured into helping dig out a fence post.  We dug and dug and dug.  And dug some more.  And this thing wouldn't budge.  We probably spent 45 minutes working on it.  Three of us!  And it just wouldn't go.  Casey has SEVERAL posts to take out.  It was becoming a personal mission for me to get that out, but we were seriously struggling.  We ended up quitting.  GRR!!!

Dad and I left from there to take left-over items to the Habitat for Humanity ReStore shop.  We dropped off the huge countertop and sink I picked up last week (that I shouldn't have), Mom and Dad's old vanity and sink, and the sink that came with my countertop from last week's garage sale (two weeks ago???).  While there, I checked out other items.  And I ended up finding the deal of the century.  Gallons of stain for $1.  I learned later they had been dropped off by Lowe's just a day or two earlier.  I ended up buying 30 GALLONS!!!  Basically, I picked up $600 worth of stain for $30.  I would've bought more, but I allowed another guy to pick up 10 of the gallons.  He had come over and found my loot as I was pulling them out of the box.  I figured that was fair.  Now I can stain my deck and fence!  For cheap!!!

I also picked up a small cabinet and countertop.  Looks nice!

From there we headed to McDonald's.  I was feeling so weak!!!  I needed food.  Two cheeseburgers and a sweet tea.  So hard to beat.  From there we went to Menard's and returned the wood I had purchased yesterday.  I then bought the new wood that I needed.  That ended up taking much longer than expected.  I had planned on hammering my first nail at 1:00 o'clock in the afternoon.  We didn't get back until after 3:00!!!  We were probably at Menard's for an hour or so.

Saw the highway backed up for miles on the way back.  Later learned that a woman was critically injured while changing her tire on the interstate.  I kid you not.  It blew up in her face and left a deep cut from forehead to chin.  Pretty nasty.  She was literally life-flighted out of there with the helicopter.  You just never know when you're goin'.  Kerstin yesterday.  And a woman's life dramatically changed (or lost) while changing a tire.  Life is crazy.

Ended up coming back home and going to work on the shed walls.  I had Dad and Casey's help, so that was nice.  The walls went together pretty easily.  Not too hard.  We had to think a bit with my door (I'm putting it on the 12-foot side), but I think we will be fine.  Mom, Boogs, and Baby came over with supper, so we had a nice break for some taco salad.  But I went right back to work!  After the walls were done, I wanted to move everything to the backyard.  So Casey and I started leveling the ground.  I kid you not, that was probably the hardest part of the job!  I picked a fairly poor surface (in terms of level-ness) for my shed, but it's where it will look the best!  We worked and worked and worked on that!  Dirt is just so hard to move!  Mom and Dad came back by (they had to return the tables from the garage sale), and we continued the process of leveling.  A pain in the butt!  But we finally got it pretty decent.  It's not a perfect science, as I have fairly warped 4x4's that will be acting as the base.  Oh well.  I was happy with it and think it will work fine

Then we had the very difficult task of getting a several-hundred pound floor from my driveway to my backyard.  It took a little ingenuity and a lot of help.  Mom, Dad, Casey, Dad, and I all put some serious effort into moving that thing.  We cut up a long PVC pipe into 3-foot sections and literally rolled the huge floor along my yard.  It was work!  It was so hard keeping that huge thing balanced, and Mom was rushing back and forth taking the rear pipe and putting it in the front.  At any time, if that floor went sideways, the person on the side would have no way of holding it up.  It was unbelievably heavy.  I couldn't believe it!

But after much effort and sweat, we finally got the floor back to the 4x4's in my yard.  We had to move one of the 4x4's (more grading!), but it wasn't too bad.  We FINALLY had the floor in place.  I think it was around 7:30 by the time we had gotten that far.  Crazy.  But it's a step in the right direction.

I certainly don't have the walls up and the roof in place like I had wanted to do today, but we're getting there.  After cleaning up the tools, I went out back and walked on the floor.  It's very sturdy and flat!!!  I'm going to call it level, too!  I'm excited to get this thing done!  It's going to be so handy!

Spent the rest of the night inside.  Eager to get the walls up tomorrow.  Spent some time researching how to do rafters this evening.  It's all about learning as you go!  Will tackle the roof tomorrow, too.  Basically, it's putting the walls up, making rafters, installing them, then putting the siding and plywood on the roof.  The doors and shingles are the finishing touches, but we're only a couple of days from a nice-looking shed that should last for years!!!

It's so nice having fruits from labor.  Nothing like getting the satisfaction out of DOING something.

Oh, and around 10 o'clock, I ate two tiny little tomatoes that I had picked earlier from my garden!  They weren't much, but they tasted like tomatoes!  We'll see how many more I get.

Went to bed at 12:45 A.M.