Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Maybe We Missed Our Calling... carpenters.

Or not. But we did build a loft bed and we had a really great time doing it.

I got it in my head some time ago that I wanted bunk beds for the kids. We started sleeping them all in one room for the sake of having all the children on one level of the house (because I have cooked up all manner of scenarios in my head in which we aren't able to get to everyone). I, of course, got online and started poking around to see what was out there bunk bed wise for our crew.

This is what I fell in love with. The beds, not the price tag. I loved that it could be a bunk bed now, and then a bed for Thomas and a bed for a guest room in the future. I just couldn't justify spending that kind of money on something that I was going to put in a room with a passel of preschoolers.

In the end, I found a set of instructions online and figured, well, we're not doing anything this weekend, so why not? Joshua and I discussed at length (almost four whole minutes) the pros and cons of this idea. We downloaded the instructions, looked at them, and decided we were up for the challenge.

The next day, the boys went to get the raw materials. And the measuring and line drawing and sawing and sanding and drilling and painting commenced.

And perhaps a bit of goofiness, just to break up the monotony of, um, not goofiness.

And cuteness. Because we can't function without it.

At the end of the day, we had done a lot of measuring and line drawing and cutting and sanding. Oh, and I had learned to use a Radial Arm Saw and an Orbital Sander!!

There, there. Don't cry. It's okay. You can learn to use these tools, too. It just takes time.

And a good looking instructor doesn't hinder the process, either.

Then the priming had to happen. Methinks it is much more fun to play with saws and sanders than it is to paint. But one does what one must, I suppose.

After the primer was dry, everyone jumped in to help piece the ladder ends together. Between rain showers, that is.

Next was a bunch of quality time with paint and paintbrushes that we didn't bother to document. If you've seen one can of white paint, you've seen them all.

Why white paint, you ask? It was a decision born of indecision. Thomas' bedding is in primary colors. The girls quilt is in bright pastels. Yellow is the only color they have in common. I couldn't fathom yellow doing anybody any favors in this particular set up. After lot's of hemming and hawing, I chose white. It's easy enough to paint over if ever I make a better decision.

Finally, finally, finally, we moved all the completed pieces into the kids' room. Don't let Thomas' shirt fool you...this did not all happen in one day. In fact, it took so long that this shirt, a favorite of his, managed to make it through the wash and back into his drawer again. You know, just in case you notice little things like that. It was the first thing that jumped out at me, but I know not everyone is peculiar in the same ways I am.

I heard that laughter. Stop it. Stop it now, I say.

It took us ten days from the day we bought the lumber to the day we brought all these pieces of bed into the bedroom. Factor in that Joshua spent four of those days at work, and the four children that think they need to eat meals at regular intervals, and really, I think we did it in about four, maybe five, days.

Thomas took great pleasure in the next few steps. The kid was beside himself with thoughts of sleeping six feet in the air. Plus, he got to really get in on the action here and worked with a ratchet.

And suddenly, we were done.

The kids oohed and ahhed and were thoroughly impressed over their new sleeping digs. And frankly, so were Joshua and I!

The entire downstairs smells of a lumber mill, a smell that is not at all irksome to me. It brings back memories from summers in my childhood when we lived very near a furniture plant. The kids' sleeping room is down right cozy, a drastic overhaul from what it had been. (Dang, I wish I had remembered to take the Before shot to pair up with this After shot) And while the bed is far from beautiful, it completely serves it's purpose and we have the satisfaction that comes when you work together as a family to do something. And succeed!

Between that wonderful satisfaction and this adorable face, I am thinking that bed is pretty near to perfect.


LRAQUILA said...

I LOVE this!!! What a great idea...and a wonderful lesson for the children of teamwork, diligence and lots of other things my brain cannot think of at 6:45 a.m. :)

The Bouldins said...

What clever peoples you are! I love the idea and the finished product looks great!!!

The Bouldins said...

And if you need anyone to come teach Thomas how to jump off the top bed onto the bottom one, let me know. I could probably help with that :)

Amy said...

It looks great! What a fun project to share together as a family. Looks like everyone had a special part to play. Fun!

Missi said...

Oh my, I hope you are proud of yourselves!!!! What a GREAT looking sleeping space!! Kudos!

Lora Lynn @ Vitafamiliae said...

very fine work. love the action shot of you with power tools.

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