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I always find it interesting how many couples cannot handle DIY projects or home improvements. Painting should not equal divorce threats. Pulling out an assortment of handy dandy tools is not also an invitation to pull out the sharp words. But what do I know? Heath and I love home improvement. We always have. It’s a lot more fun when we own a home. The improvements are much more permanent that way.

We did leave the gazebo and platform we built at our last house. It wasn’t worth the time, money, or effort to tear it down. The landlord paid us our full security deposit so I really could not care less what anyone thinks of that gazebo. I liked it. I think it improved the value of the home but it is now no longer my problem.

Before we left we gave away a ton of stuff. People thought we were crazy! “You really want to give away bookshelves? These are so nice!” I reassured everyone that we did want to give away our stuff, including the bookshelves. We had plans for built ins. It saved us space on the moving truck. Now that we have our new bookshelves, we realize the old bookshelves were insufficient for our needs.

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This was the first project. Floor to ceiling built in bookshelves. Is it wrong to covet your own stuff? I LOVE this bookshelf. We have games in the bottom cabinets. The project isn’t finished yet. I still need to paint but I just couldn’t wait to pull out the books. Plus, I wanted to get rid of some more moving boxes. Hopefully over Christmas break, when Heath has a few days off, he can sand and I will paint. That’s our secret! He hates painting and I don’t mind. Compromise achieved.

office-shelf

Speaking of compromise, this bookshelf took some creative thought. Originally we wanted built ins again for the office. We went so far as to buy more kitchen cabinets to match the ones we built the desk out of. I was going to paint the bookshelf to match the desk too. We decided to hang the cabinets in the garage for more storage there.

Heath kept changing his mind about how he wanted to make a bookshelf in the office. As a result, he started looking online to just buy a pre-made shelving system. Only it’s hello expensive for low quality materials. It wouldn’t be big enough to house the millions of books we own. The shelves would definitely not be deep enough for the scrapbooks so those would be homeless again.

What to do? What to do? Heath had this brilliant idea for an open shelf. He tried to explain it but I am not a good visualizer so I told him to do whatever he wanted. I would support him. So he bought a few things from Lowe’s. By the way, it was significantly cheaper than buying a bookshelf online. Parker helped him put the track on the walls and voila! Bookshelves! We got rid of 14 more moving boxes. Well not really since apparently weather is an excuse not to pick up garbage. Please don’t let it snow on Friday! We need our garbage picked up at least. We have to wait until the 23rd for recycling to be picked up. That’s not ridiculous at all. It makes perfect sense to expect people to save the planet by not picking up recycling as often as the garbage is picked up!

These open bookshelves are perfect. It allows light to come in. We were concerned that a traditional bookshelf would be big and dark. We were able to have a variety of shelf depths to accommodate my scrapbooks. I loved that feature enough that the only scrapbooks on the “floor shelf” are standard 3-ring binders I scrapbooked 8 1/2 x 11 sized pages. The 12 x 12 books have spent enough time stacked on the floor. I also like the autographed football on the top shelf. So cool!

I love having access to the church books. Unfortunately we won’t be asked to speak again in church for a while. Our turn won’t come around again right away. I don’t need the books quite as much for substitute teaching. At least the next time I’m only given two days notice for these big assignments, I will know where to turn for inspiration.

Heath still has plans for making built in cabinets in the bonus room with shelves on either side that go up to the ceiling for movie storage. The cabinets will hold electronic equipment and he will make them float above the floor. The pets will be displayed underneath. I love it! Our house is coming together.

It’s been fun working on these projects. The process is slow. It’s like Heath has to work or something! But it has been really fun to make things again. We like dreaming together and then making those dreams come true … with the help of his parents and their tools.

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