Monday, November 18, 2013

Curbside Treasures : Boys Desk

A little more than a month ago my mom called me to let me know she had found a small desk on the side of the road, and snagged it for me.  She said it was in pretty rough shape, but she could see potential in it (if you have ever wondered where I get my love of salvaged objects you know!).

The first time I saw the desk it was sitting in her backyard, in a torrential downpour, and I'll be honest - I didn't immediately have high hopes.  It made it's way to my house, and after sitting in my garage to dry out for a few weeks, I decided to give it a go.
 One of the legs had somehow been torn off, but since the leg was right there with it, that was an easy enough fix.  The top looked like maybe this had been someone's craft station at one point.
Lots of different paint spots, along with some graffiti and a few scratches.  I wanted to at least try to save the top of the desk, because I figured if I painted it, it would only be a matter of time before it got all chipped up from the boys "working" there.  So I got out my little sander and away we went!
And I sanded, and sanded....and sanded.  I actually had such a tough time sanding this that I partially dislocated my shoulder - if anyone can explain how the heck I did that, go for it! BUT ANYWAY - eventually I got it down to the bare wood, and then I went over it with a very fine grit to give it a nice smooth surface.

I didn't want to spend anything on this, so I actually just used the same stain I used on our dining room table to give it a few coats of stain.   At that point I was pretty sure it was a goner because for whatever reason, the stain was taking completely different on one half of the desk.
I'm still not sure why it took the stain like that, but after I did an extra coat on the lighter boards, the difference was subtle enough that I kept on going.  I let the stain dry for a full 24 hours, during which time I painted the rest of the desk with a sample jar of Valspar "perfect storm".  

Once the stain was dry I did a few coats of satin finish polyurethane, and more than anything this helped the top look SO much better.
There is still a light difference in the tone of the wood, but I still like it! Once it dried I moved it into the playroom, and quickly realized that the boys couldn't quite open the drawers. I think because it was a recessed pull, and they do have small hands, it was just really tough for them.  So I added a super simple (free) fix by drilling holes into the drawers and making rope handles.
Then it was a simple matter of sliding in a chair and getting out some crayons...
All in all, I paid under $3 for the paint sample, which is not a bad price for a child's desk!

We still need to buy some nice plush rugs for the playroom, so please ignore the carpet glue on the cement.  Its a work in progress, you know?!

So what do you think?  Worth the $3 I paid to make over this little curbside treasure?

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Four - Six Days LATE

The other night I was laying in bed thinking about how I never really write here all that often anymore..and then it hit me in the face that I never posted a thing about Jack's birthday! I'm not winning any Mom of the Year awards over here, but man! That totally bummed me out.  So here we go - six days late....

Happy Fourth Birthday Jack!
It seems like four is officially a big kid, which is throwing me for a loop.  I go to school now.  That's crazy to me - but I am so excited to see you grow up.  You are becoming such a sweet kid, and for as much as you scare me with all of your impulsive crazy big boy things, I am enjoying seeing your personality really emerge.

I am so happy to have been there for these four years Jack Jack, I can't wait to see what the next one is like!

Happy really late birthday big guy.  Who knows...maybe by next Easter I will have even posted about your birthday party!

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