Garden bench for Mom

youreitDecember 1, 2006

Welp, Mom wants a garden bench for Christmas. I said, "But you never sit down!" She said, "You and I can sit out there and enjoy the plants..." Yeah, sure, Ma. I'll be sitting while you're darting around. :D

I can't believe the cost of them after searching online, though!

I'd like it to be backless, sturdy (in other words, not bistro-like or "delicate")...and different. DH is willing to build one, so if anyone has plans or links to plans, that would be great! I might be able to manage any ornamental add-ons (paint...or something) to make it different, if there aren't many original plans out there. Oh, and DH is thinking cedar or redwood. Good?

Advice very much welcome! :)

Brenda

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semper_fi(Z7 GA)

COOL! Now there's an inteRESTING subject! :-)

Aren't the prices of flimsy Chinese made Crap (yes, with a capital 'C') astonishing??? They are bad enough around here, I can only imagine what they'd be like in Kahliforina.... probably have to take out a second mortgage!

I spent a total of $225 for all the materials (lumber, stainless steel hardware, etc.) to build our bench. That's about the same price as most of the plain junk one could buy @ the big box stores. Like you, I wanted something "different" unlike those in every other yard out there.

Anyway, I did TONS of research on bench designs a few months ago just to get an idea of what I did and did not like. I just went through my 'puter folder and most of the ones I had saved had a backing but there were a few that were backless... here they are:

I think I like the rustic look of the last one the best but that is just a personal choice.

IMHO, plans are overrated! Your DH can easily make any of those benches with some careful planning. I'll be glad to help in that department if needed.

For me, I think redwood looks MUCH better in a forrest than under my butt! LOL! Besides, the local mills here don't even offer it. Cypress, on the other hand, is readily available and very inexpensive around my neck of the woods but I'm guessing that it would be difficult and expensive to obtain around yours. So the type of wood you choose will depend on your location, budget, and preferences.

Some other outdoor wood: Western Red Cedar, Teak, Iroko, Padauk, Mahogany, Jatoba, Ipe, Spanish Cedar among some others. I avoid pressure treated lumber like the plague (another personal preference). All outdoor lumber have their own advantage/disadvantages. Ipe, for example, is the densest wood on the planet. It has the same fire rating as CONCRETE!!!!! Once you build it, it will be there forever, and ever, and ever (REDRUM). But it is also a pain to work with because it dulls blades quickly, everything must be predrilled, and it doesn't take stain very well because of its incredible density. Great stuff though!

Keep us posted on this project.

    Bookmark   December 1, 2006 at 9:47PM
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youreit

I knew you'd come through for us, Mark!!!

That's no joke about the cost of C.C.! For instance, if I were to buy that 3rd one online, I'd say it would cost at least $500, but prolly much more. But it doesn't look like C.C. :D

I'm thinking my mom would love the 3rd one, because she's into those Asian-themed things. However, the one that would honestly fit into her landscape would be the last one, and that's my favorite, too! It looks like an expert (and his tools) might need to be on hand to build it, though. :D

The reason for the backless bench is because her inside yard isn't huge, and I'd want her to be able to position it in the open, and not necessarily against the fence.

I just Googled "rustic backless benches", and this site came up. I was immediately drawn to the Charleston Curved Rustic Outdoor Bench. Wow! And Asian-looking, too! Maybe something a little less technical?

What do you think?

(Thanks, again, for your help with this!)

Brenda

    Bookmark   December 2, 2006 at 10:31AM
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semper_fi(Z7 GA)

Actually, believe it or not, the backless rustic benches like the curved Charleston you pointed out or the last picture I had posted are much EASIER to build. Basically, you MIGHT have to make a few small changes to get the legs perfectly flat or work the seat to curve exactly the way you want and then connect 3-5 pieces of wood using a few solid joints. The hardest part might be to find good lumber yards that carry the natural looking hardwoods for your project. If your DH is a wood fanatic like me, that might give him an excuse to scour more sawmills to find the perfect pieces. The good part with the rustic furniture is that every project is unique because the pieces you use will be different from one tree to the next.

On the other hand, if you do decide to go with something like that 3rd picture, and really feel like plans would make the project easier and/or quicker, you can find an almost identical bench plan here. But don't fork out the $6 though. I have pretty much every WOOD magazine ever published including that one (I think!). Let me know and I'll gladly scan and email you the plans... for only $5.90!!! (just kidding!) :-)

    Bookmark   December 3, 2006 at 11:17AM
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youreit

After all of my research (wow, 2 whole days' worth! LOL), I can see how the Charleston would be so much easier to build than the others. Our problem has been finding the right wood - not milled into fence planks, yet not so raw that we'd have to make like Norm Abram. :D

I'm pretty stuck on that rustic look, but DH jumped on the chance to build this, my not-even-close 2nd choice. It looks a bit like your 3rd pic, but not as formal, I think. I had a problem with the skirt, because it looks like...well, a skirt. So, I thought maybe I could have him attach plant pots on the inside corner of each leg, and I could put some sort of vining/blooming plant in each to twine around and cover the skirt.

Then, we tried finding 1 X 4 cedar yesterday. That was hilarious. DH insists he can find it, but...that ol' Charleston keeps calling to me. :D We may check out some lumber mills, but it'll have to be soon...in time for Christmas!

Thanks for the offer to scan some plans, Mark! We may end up going that route, anyway, knowing us. LOL And when it comes time to actually build, I'll appreciate any input you might have that will help us out.

Brenda

    Bookmark   December 3, 2006 at 1:01PM
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youreit

Ok, I forgot to look at your link before I posted, and lookie there! LOL

I definitely like the looks of the base/support than I do in the one I posted. If you have the plans for that, that would be great! Also, (I hope I explain this correctly) I rather like the looks of the top of the legs in .pdf file I posted over the ones in your link (and pic #3). The way they stick up slightly....is there some way to make them not do that? LOL

Thanks so much, Mark!

Brenda

    Bookmark   December 3, 2006 at 1:10PM
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semper_fi(Z7 GA)

"After all of my research (wow, 2 whole days' worth! LOL)..."

Trust me, that's not a bad thing. One can spend MONTHS researching this stuff and still wonder if there was a way one could've improved on design and/or construction. Don't ask me how I know this that!

The only real difference between those 2 plans are the way the horizontal cross beams ("skirts") are joined together. Your link has the super easy but perhaps less aesthetically pleasing lap joints. The link I posted probably uses the more technical (though not difficult) mortise and tenon joints which gives it a more finished look. Alternately, if Mr. Youreit doesn't feel comfortable making those joints, you could probably use hidden metal 'L' brackets to secure the horizontal cross beams to the legs. Does that make sense??? To make the top of the legs not stick out higher than the seating platform itself, you'd just modify the plans so the legs are slightly shorter and do not extrude.

Also, leave it to me to throw another monkey wrench in your plans (didn't someone call me monkey boy on this forum a while back?!). You mentioned building a planter next to the bench. You could streamline the process and build a bench planter combo instead of having 3 individual pieces next to each other.

Let me know which way you want to go and I'll try to find the plans in the magazines and send them your way so Santa can start making sawdust pronto! :-)

    Bookmark   December 6, 2006 at 9:24PM
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youreit

Wow! You should be a salesman, Fi guy. :D I hadn't put a bench planter on my short list, but now that I've seen the one in the link....

Would it be easier (for DH) if we had the planter part squared off? Because I wouldn't mind doing that, instead of the rounded ends. DH's at work now, but IF it's not too much trouble, I would love to have both plans (the bench planter combo, curved or squared, as well as the mortise & tenon joints one). The horizontal cross beams on that one bench just aren't doing it for me. LOL He also mentioned that if a really good pic is involved, he'd be able to manage without plans.

I know you're busy as hail, so I'll give him a call later and see exactly which one he wouldn't mind building, then I'll post the results. Hopefully, my mom will have a lovely planter/bench by Christmas! :)

Thanks for all of your help with this, Mark!!!!

Brenda

    Bookmark   December 7, 2006 at 10:33AM
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youreit

*sigh*

Ok, "we've" decided on the simplified version with the "skirt". LOL Instead of the ever-elusive cedar (which I preferred), we're going with redwood. We'll be stopping by Home Depot today, so we can get started on it this weekend.

To hide the skirt, I'm going to try to find some silvervein creeper(s) to plant under the bench and wrap all the way around it...eventually.

I think Ma will be happy, regardless! :)

Thanks for letting me take up so much of your time, Mark. LOL

Brenda

    Bookmark   December 8, 2006 at 12:59PM
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semper_fi(Z7 GA)

Sorry... I just read this. Steelers game last night, dontchaknow?! :-)

WOW! Your Home Depot carries Redwood??? As I had mentioned earlier, even the high-end lumber yards around here do not have it.

BTW, the rounded planter is not any harder to make than the square. You'd just use different tools to achieve the look. Since Mr. Youreit obviously knows how to build from a good picture, I think he could've handled the rounded look
just fine.

I still would be happy to send the plans if you still want them.... maybe as an upgrade for Mother's Day or something. Let me know.

    Bookmark   December 8, 2006 at 10:47PM
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youreit

It's totally ok that you didn't post sooner, Fi guy. I can see that DH is very happy to be building something which doesn't require too much excitement. LOL

Funny about the redwood. We couldn't find anything BUT redwood in the right width (1") for the seat slats. No one even bothered to stock 1 X 4 (or 1 X 8...or 16, etc.) cedar. I would have preferred a lighter colored wood, but at least this will last her a long time. And we picked out some slats with really nice graining, too.

I'll definitely keep you updated on any upgrades! Yet another good idea from the New Southern Workshop. :D

Brenda

    Bookmark   December 9, 2006 at 11:57AM
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jeanner(SW Ohio - Z6)

Please post pictures when you're done! What a great gift for your Mom, she's gonna love it!

Every year at Christmas (as I am rushing to finish a quilt) I say I am NOT going to make any more quilts as Christmas gifts. So this year I started a quilt for my MIL at the end of August - by Thanksgiving I knew I would never get it done so instead I decided to make a small wall quilt for a friend. I thought I had plenty of time, it's only 2 blocks for god's sake! But our Christmas lunch got moved up by a week and now I am scrambling to have it done by Tuesday. So, as usual, my decortaions are on hold and my sewing room is a disaster. But the look on their faces is worth every minute.

    Bookmark   December 10, 2006 at 6:20PM
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sleeplessinftwayne(z4-5 IND)

You guys are driving me crazy!!!!

    Bookmark   December 10, 2006 at 11:11PM
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youreit

Oh, did you notice that I have a difficult time making up my mind, Sandy? LOL I feel bad for Fi guy. The way I throw ideas around is dizzying. :D

I'm going to try to remember to get pics of it in her yard at Christmas time, Jean. I think she'll love it. DH banged the whole thing together Saturday morning, bless his heart. :)

That's always my problem, too, trying to make stuff at the last minute. Then I get frustrated and just buy it. Not EVEN as rewarding. I just need to start getting my act together before Thanksgiving. LOL

Brenda

    Bookmark   December 11, 2006 at 9:55AM
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semper_fi(Z7 GA)

"You guys are driving me crazy!!!!"

LOL! Dang, you're starting to sound like my better-half!!! :-)

Hey Sandy, speaking of benches, did you get to the redo the one that got broke?

    Bookmark   December 12, 2006 at 11:52PM
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sleeplessinftwayne(z4-5 IND)

Hey, Mark. I was hurting so much I couldn't do it so the DH of one of the group volunteered. Of course he will be doing it his way so I am trying to keep my mouth shut. I keep telling myself that there are many paths to the same ending. I really wish I could learn how to be a contractor.
Brenda, this is the first year I was not able to make gifts. It is very frustrating. Last year I had already started them when I got hurt. This year the carpal tunnel keeps getting in the way. The new meds are helping but I can't finish anything in the time available. I do enjoy giving my homemade gifts and the family has always been happy with them. My ornaments have been used for 20 some years and small paintings and macrame wall hangings are still in prominent locations. I was surprised to see the decoupage I did 35 years ago is still hanging. My sisters are fairly sophisticated in their taste so I guess I have done good. The chunky turquoise necklaces are being worn in public and I have been told they get a lot of attention. I was going to do coral this year and actually bought a lot but I can't do the stringing. Maybe next year. :( Sandy

    Bookmark   December 13, 2006 at 3:16PM
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jeanner(SW Ohio - Z6)

Sandy, sorry to hear you're hurting. You've been through alot this year, I hope next year is much better for you.

I finished up Monday night at 2:00 am. So at least this year I won't be trying to finish one on Christmas Eve!

I remember as kids we were always making gifts and invariably they ended up being wrapped with glue still drying or in some incomplete phase. I think I still owe my sister raggedy ann and andy dolls.

    Bookmark   December 13, 2006 at 10:57PM
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youreit

Sandy, I think it's awesome that you're even trying to make stuff. I know carpal tunnel is brutal and painful. It sounds like your family is still enjoying your years of creativity, though! :)

That's one thing I wish I were, more creative. I love to come up with ideas, but when it comes to actually sitting down to follow through, I invariably get too impatient to finish. In other words, I know what I want, but I'd rather have DH do the actual work. LOL

Brenda

    Bookmark   December 14, 2006 at 10:55AM
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sleeplessinftwayne(z4-5 IND)

Jeanner, I don't believe for a minute that you won't be frantic on the 24th trying to finish up some marvelous new project you just thought of two days ago. Ho ho ho!!! I will be lucky to get the packages sent out on time.
I just wish I was more like Mark. He plans out his project and gets all the prep work done before he tackles the main job. He can tell you just how, what, why and when. Half the work is done before he picks up a hammer and saw. Oh, to be competent in big things as well as the small.
Brenda, you have no idea how much I envy you that your DH is not only willing, but able. I am awe struck. He deserves something special. I am sure you can figure out something. The last time my DH helped me on a project he wound up hyperventilating when I pulled back the safety guard on the rotary saw to get in a tight spot. It is a good thing he has other talents. Sandy

    Bookmark   December 14, 2006 at 3:50PM
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semper_fi(Z7 GA)

Holy Kamole Sandy! I think the pain pills are making you delirious!!! :-)))

Some planning = good.
Lots of planning = OK.
Over planning = A curse!

That might explain why it took me 26 months to build a pond!!!

And remember, life is a marathan NOT a sprint. As Jeanner said, I have no doubt that next year *WILL* be better for you. No worries! :-)

    Bookmark   December 14, 2006 at 11:51PM
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jeanner(SW Ohio - Z6)

Well, Brenda, did you sit with your mom on her new garden bench????

    Bookmark   December 28, 2006 at 8:39PM
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youreit

Heheh...well, my mom sat on it, right before the rains hit. We broke out the camera...and the batteries gave out. New set of batteries...gave out. So, the camera can't keep a charge. We're working on that.

Then, she decided she wanted a clear coating of protectant on it so it would keep its original color (rather than turning grayish). So DH put some of that on it the day after Christmas, and as of yesterday, when I spoke to her on the phone, it was still tacky (probably due to the wet weather we've been having).

I WILL get a pic of it the next time I go up...come hell or high water. :D

Thanks for asking, Jean!

Brenda

    Bookmark   December 29, 2006 at 1:40PM
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sleeplessinftwayne(z4-5 IND)

Mark, you are sweet. Thank you, Sandy

    Bookmark   December 29, 2006 at 3:42PM
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semper_fi(Z7 GA)

"Heheh...well, my mom sat on it, right before the rains hit. We broke...................."

Holy Kamole! You almost gave me a heart attack Brandy! My one remaining brain cell was filling in the blanks faster than I was reading the above sentence. :-)

Looking forward to seeing Mr. & Mrs. Youreit's crafty work.

Sandy, it is logically, physically, and technically impossible for ANY past/present jarhead to be that "S" word.

    Bookmark   December 31, 2006 at 10:47AM
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grandmapoo(z8 S.Texas)

I love benches. I'm always looking at benches! Mark, the pics of the benches are great! I love the last bench!!!
My garden needs a bench. It wants a bench.
Did I say I love benches???

Brenda please let us see the results!!! Maybe by then the multiple cups of coffee will be out of my system. ;)
Good luck with the project!

    Bookmark   January 5, 2007 at 1:08PM
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semper_fi(Z7 GA)

So PooPooPoo.... I don't get it... do you love benches or don't you?!?!

I tell you what... as a small thank you from all of us here for your son's many selfless sacrifices over the last few years, I'm gonna build you something similar to that last bench in the next few months. Now I can assure you that it won't look nowhere near as nice or finished as the one depicted in that picture since I've never built anything that rustic before... but hopefully it can do the job and serve as a bench where you can sit in your garden and enjoy some much needed DECAF coffee! :-)

    Bookmark   January 6, 2007 at 12:09AM
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youreit

Fi guy, what a nice thing to do!! I love that idea!

Poo, don't listen to him. We've all seen your craftsmanship, Mister Fi. I can't WAIT to see it in your garden, Poo! With a cuppa steaming joe sitting on it, too. :D

Ok, I'll be going up to my folks' soon...I hope. And I also hope our camera will get over it's difficult, teenage phase of running through batteries like there's no tomorrow. As soon as all of the planets are properly aligned in the universe, ladies and gents, I WILL deliver...the bench pic. Thank you. :)

Brenda

    Bookmark   January 6, 2007 at 9:12AM
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grandmapoo(z8 S.Texas)

Mark, what a generous offer! That is just the sweetest thing! But, come one, I can't let you do that. It's just way too expensive and too much trouble.

When I told my son and husband what you said, they just have me the ole "deer in the headlight" look and said, "Wow". Of course, I told them I was not going to let you do it.

Anyway, your offer is just as appreciated as if it were done. What a kind southern gentleman, you are! :)

    Bookmark   January 22, 2007 at 10:48AM
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semper_fi(Z7 GA)

Poo, Poo, Poo! It is the very least WE could do as a miniscule thank you for all the sacrifices your son and in turn you and your family have made for US. Just for the record, this was originally C3D & Sir Nappy's idea and personally I thought it was GREAT. And trust me, it's neither expensive nor any trouble. It's FUN woodworking for crying out loud!!! Besides, the proverbial ball is already rolling... so one of these years you will have your garden bench (did I mention I'm slow?!). :-)

    Bookmark   January 22, 2007 at 10:44PM
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grandmapoo(z8 S.Texas)

Well, that's just the most touching and generous gester of my life, especially from people who have never met us.

If you are truly up to this, then ok. I guess, if the old perverbial ball is already rolling, I'm no one to stand in it's way. I certainly don't want to end up getting knocked over and a hip broken or any such "old lady" happenings!

P.S. Prayers requested from those who can and will, otherwise, wish us luck...My son is having a job interview next Tuesday for a crime analyst position with the Sheriff's dept. He's taking classes in criminal justice/crime analogy and he's excited about the prospect of using his military training to continue to serve the public.

Thanks again you wonderful people. :)

Brenda, it will be interesting to see who gets a garden bench first! ;P

    Bookmark   January 23, 2007 at 10:33AM
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semper_fi(Z7 GA)

WOW! That's a very tough field demanding incredible patience, dedication, and fortitude. His prior background will serve him well. He'll do fine but I will send prayers his way nonetheless. Can't hurt!

And Poo3... it is always wise NOT to get in the way of any XY chromosomer on a mission. My better-half learned this important lesson of life a long time ago. YEP! She now knows when to hold em, knows when to fold em, knows when to walk away, knows when...

CRAP! HERE SHE COMES! GOTTA RUN...

    Bookmark   January 23, 2007 at 10:50PM
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youreit

LOL @ whipped gi! ;D

The prayers are flying around here for your wonderful son, 'Poo! Crime analyst sounds so exciting!

Brenda

    Bookmark   January 24, 2007 at 8:49AM
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grandmapoo(z8 S.Texas)

LOL Mark. I can just see your better half turn sharply toward your direction, with hands on hips, give you one of "her" looks, and without a single word, get you to do EXACTLY what she wants! Pfft, XY chromosomer! Just kidding, of course! ;o

Thank you Brenda and Mark for the prayers and vote of confidence. I will keep you posted. :)

    Bookmark   January 24, 2007 at 10:16AM
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chickadeedeedee(z 6-7 ish Ohio)

Hi Poo³.

I just caught up with this thread because I kept drooling on the keyboard while looking at the posted pictures. LOL! What a mess!!! Awwww Semper, you are so sweet to make a bench for our friend! (We can take no credit.)

Sincerest prayers for your wonderful son and best wishes for success at his chosen career as a crime analyst. I'm sure he'll do great! :-)

Kindest regards to you and yours,

C3D and Mike

    Bookmark   January 25, 2007 at 10:30PM
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grandmapoo(z8 S.Texas)

Thank you Chicka Sweet Sweet Sweet lady and Mike!

You know, I can't express how much you all mean to this family. The transition of a family of 5 out of the military is very hard. Nothing really to establish a home due to all the moving and travelling, no job, no income. The stress level runs high at times. It's so wonderful to know that there are still people out there that truly care and understand this. It's not all bad though, my son and his family have received help and guidance from several helpful sources, the military included.

Your prayers and well wishes have become a great part in the positive things that we hold on to as a family determined to make it. :)

    Bookmark   January 26, 2007 at 10:40AM
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grandmapoo(z8 S.Texas)

All,
Hello, I am Poo's son; the recent soldier. My mom let me read this thread and I see what nice people you all are. Generosity and caring are dying elements of our society; I appreciate these things from all of you. I hope that you each find peace in the winter season; prayer and love can keep us warm through the hardest of times. As for me and my family; take care in knowing that we are well cared for by our families and friends. Soon this will all be passed us and we can get back on our feet, with any luck and some prayer. So, again, thank you for the kindness.
Poos' Boy

    Bookmark   January 26, 2007 at 11:02AM
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chickadeedeedee(z 6-7 ish Ohio)

Oh, Poo's Boy,

Please take this in the nicest way........ You are THANKING US?!?!?!?!?

There are NO words in ANY language that can express our gratitude to you and your family for the sacrifices you have made for us! That also extends to all the USA Military.

May all of God's Graces bless you and yours!

In SINCERE gratitude,

C3D and Mike

Whatever the fight. Whatever the struggle. We firmly support our military! x 13 and more! :-)

    Bookmark   January 26, 2007 at 5:58PM
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semper_fi(Z7 GA)

Cool! It isn't every day that us little people get the opportunity to rub elbows with greatness!

On a less serious note Poo's Boy, you didn't go by that name in your unit, right?! It DOES have a great ring to it... not sure if the guys in the barracks would agree though! :-)

Semper Fi,
-Mark

    Bookmark   January 26, 2007 at 10:02PM
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semper_fi(Z7 GA)

BTW, we can NEVER thank you enough for all your sacrifices and hard work.

    Bookmark   January 26, 2007 at 10:06PM
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sleeplessinftwayne(z4-5 IND)

I ditto Chickie and Semper. I could never figure out if the rules and regulations on moving from the military helped or made things worse. My sister and her DH were career military many, many moons ago. Moves were sometimes abrupt and long distance. Once my sister came home from her teaching job to find her household being dismantled by a group of soldiers who had been told they needed to move yesterday. When they finally got to a place to unpack, she found the undersink trashcan in a box of recipe books with the garbage still in it. She tossed the whole box and said it was pretty minor since they had been told to pack EVERYTHING. Once they lost a car- overboard. She didn't hear from her hubby for 3 months. Truly I worry about the families being forced to deal with lost income, lost jobs, lost homes, damaged relationships, etc. with the prolonged deployments. None of this was ever thought to be part of the deal. I am so glad you are home with family and friends. I wish the other troops were home as well. Sandy

    Bookmark   January 27, 2007 at 2:20AM
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youreit

I FINALLY got a pic of Mom's bench! She just put the thing out in the yard (DH put a coat of sealer on it at Christmas), because (get this) she was worried about it being in the elements! LOL She worries about the silliest things! I told her that the bench is meant to be USED.

Now, I'm trying to talk her into putting a small water feature near it. :)

Brenda

    Bookmark   February 21, 2007 at 9:55AM
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semper_fi(Z7 GA)

OUTSTANDING!

Is that really redwood??? I didn't realize there was such a variation in color in those. I've never worked with it, so I dunno. The tone and the grain is VERY similar to western red cedar which I know well.

    Bookmark   February 21, 2007 at 11:44PM
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youreit

I had to ask DH (memory isn't what it used to be), but it sure enough is redwood, Fi guy! It was by far the most accessible. Even though I'd originally wanted to stick with the cedar, I'm very happy with how this turned out. :)

My turn to get one now! LOL

Brenda

    Bookmark   February 22, 2007 at 9:48AM
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semper_fi(Z7 GA)

"memory isn't what it used to be"

Boy, do I know what you mean!

    Bookmark   February 22, 2007 at 8:46PM
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jeanner(SW Ohio - Z6)

Ohhh, very nice! I love the curved seat, looks very comfy. Definitely needs a water feature (or a bird bath :^)!

    Bookmark   February 22, 2007 at 9:24PM
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youreit

The curved seat is VERY comfy! Malone the pug and I sat on it more than Mom did. Then she freaked about his muddy paws leaving marks. All was fine when I pointed out how slimming the bench was to Malone's waistline. I highly recommend it as a must-have pug accessory!

(Tried to get a pic of that, but he was my shadow...and "stay" doesn't translate well for him.)

Brenda

    Bookmark   February 23, 2007 at 8:33AM
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drevalvo

Just ran across this post looking for inexpensive ideas for a garden path, and now I HAVE TO HAVE that last "rustic" bench that Mark posted. Where in the world, (preferably Missouri) would one find wood for a project like this?

    Bookmark   May 4, 2007 at 10:55AM
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youreit

From the info on Mark's pic, it looks to be alligator juniper (Juniperus deppeana), which is native to the southwest and Mexico. (Wait until you see the bark on that above link!) It figures, doesn't it? That was my favorite out of them all, too.

There are seeds available online, though, if you'd like to try your hand at growing your own. They're hardy to zone 5, as well. :)

Brenda

    Bookmark   May 4, 2007 at 7:33PM
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semper_fi(Z7 GA)

"Where in the world, (preferably Missouri) would one find wood for a project like this? "

Some good local lumber yards will sell you precut slabs of wood or some might even be able to rough cut to the dimensions that you request. If you aren't sure where to find these gems, contact a local high-end cabinet maker and ask them where he/she gets his lumber material. A lot of the better lumber yards cater to woodworkers and cabinet makers.

The slab of wood will have a very natural (i.e. rustic) unfinished look to it but it will also come at a cost because the wood may still be somewhat "green" and may require additional prep time and a lot more work. So it's important that you try to find a wood suitable for outdoor use (eg. western red cedar, redwood, cypress, ipe, mahogany, teak, Spanish cedar, white oak, paduak, afrormosia, etc.) that has had enough time to dry and has a low moisture content.

Let us know how it goes.

    Bookmark   May 5, 2007 at 10:16AM
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youreit

Posted by Me z9b CA Sunset z8-9 (My Page) on Wed, Feb 21, 07 at 9:55

"Now, I'm trying to talk her into putting a small water feature near it. :)"

Well, she's going to get one this Christmas whether she wants it or not! :D

We had a small pump laying around that was I going to use for a spitter in my pond. Last year, my dad gave me one of those (similar to the one in the pic, only terra cotta colored and not rusted...:D). We found a "Feather-Lite" half whiskey barrel planter (all dark wood colored, not weathered like this one) at OSH for 20 bucks, and voila! Mom gets a water feature this year next to her nifty bench!

And if she doesn't fully appreciate it, I will gladly take it back. LOL

Brenda

    Bookmark   December 9, 2007 at 7:54AM
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comettose(7)

Oh Mom is going to LOVE IT I'm sure! How nice for the two of you to be able to sit on the bench and kibitz while relaxing to the sound of running water! I forsee many hours of enjoyment and good times spent with your Mom.

    Bookmark   December 9, 2007 at 11:25AM
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jeanner(SW Ohio - Z6)

Great idea Brenda! I bet the birds will like it too.

I have two of those hand pumps, one is in my bathroom - it's part of the "gardening decor". The other is for my back deck, it's part of the "bathroom decor" - yes a bit tacky but I DO live in Ohio!. On the deck I was going to use the pump above the washstand and recirculate the water. I also have a baby tub which servers as a great planter. I haven't yet found the right toilet though :^)

    Bookmark   December 9, 2007 at 10:05PM
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maryo_nh(z5 SouthernNH)

jeanner, you're too funny. How about an outhouse-bench-type thingie? With a few pieces of weathered wood one might put such a thing together almost authentic looking.

Brenda, that's going to be such an oasis! Aaaahhhhhhhh. Relaxing.
*note to self: must remember for when we retire*

:) Mary

    Bookmark   December 10, 2007 at 8:01AM
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youreit

Thanks, CT! I have to admit, the ONLY reason I'm going through with this is because, after months of dropping hints to Mom, she mentioned it ONE time. When I got excited about it, she said, "But I'm just not sure yet, so don't get all worked up." LOL She's such a brat...and a Virgo. :D

Another concern is....well, you know how, the older you get...and you hear running water? How it makes you want to head to the bathroom? She's that way. LOL!! I'll just try not to make her laugh when she's out in her bench area, so as not to add to the problem. :D

Jean, your decorating sounds fabulous to me! Would love to see pics of those hand pumps! Rustic is my favorite style. :D

Brenda

    Bookmark   December 10, 2007 at 8:17AM
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jeanner(SW Ohio - Z6)

Great suggestion Mary! And a corncob on a rope hanging from the railings would be just the right touch! What I REALLY want is an outside shower, one that is functional with hot water.

I don't have pictures of the pumps or the wash basin but I will try to get some this weekend. Here's the tub, I originally wanted to make it a water feature but it leaks.

Here it is as a planter, you really can't see it once the plants take over but thats okay because it hides the ugly deck.

    Bookmark   December 10, 2007 at 10:40PM
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youreit

That's gorgeous, Jean! I love it as a planter! Is that Nemesia 'Blue Bird' trailing all through it? One of the favorite plants in my garden! :)

I'm rather worried now. The half-barrel thing might have a leak, and we realized after buying it that it's supposed to be used as a planter! Doh! I hope we can figure something out before Christmas, and keep it simple....and inexpensive. :(

Brenda

    Bookmark   December 11, 2007 at 9:16AM
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comettose(7)

Jean - your deck is beautiful. The birds must love it!

    Bookmark   December 11, 2007 at 10:26PM
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jeanner(SW Ohio - Z6)

Uhh, I think you might be right about the Nemesia 'Blue Bird' but I am really bad at plant names - there was also a yellow one in there somewhere but I think it got crowded out. Gee, I wonder why - I need to take lessons from comettose, her planters are much neater. And thanks CT - unfortunately not much in there for the hummers but I had three hanging baskets of lantana which they really liked.

Brenda, I think they sell liners for the barrels to be used as water features or maybe you can line with a scrap of pond liner????

    Bookmark   December 12, 2007 at 10:35PM
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youreit

Yes, I'm going to just get one of those half-barrel inserts and be done with it. DH has been wielding the silicon tube, threatening to "seal the bejeezus" out of the barrel, and he must be stopped. :D My original plan was to just get a bucket (preferably black), bury it, put in the pump, and load it with rocks, so she'd have a small, disappearing fountain. However, DH became enraptured with the barrel when he saw it at OSH. Ack! LOL

I've heard that the other forms of Nemesia caerulea are a lot less hardy and reliable than the 'Blue Bird'. I've had mine for at least 3 years, and it only gets better as it goes.

I LOVE plump plantings! Neat is highly over-rated. LOL

Brenda

    Bookmark   December 15, 2007 at 7:28AM
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youreit

Well, we didn't go with an insert, since a) I couldn't find one in Dec. in CA, and b) I think this planter is much smaller than a true half whiskey barrel. DH rigged up a liner patch along the whole bottom, and it's been holding water since Dec. 26th. Yippee! LOL

When we got there, I had to bribe Mom to sit still inside the house while we set up the surprise gift. Mom doesn't sit still, so I threatened her with Duct Tape. :D As soon as we were done, I set her loose, and she quickly scampered outside to find her "treasure". Thank god, she loved it. :)

Dad, ever energy conscious, unplugged it the first night after everyone else went to bed. Mom basically told him, "Homey don't play that!" Mom reports that he doesn't mess with it now. LOL

It's not what I had planned (wanted it pondless & in-ground...or with the hand pump behind the barrel, not on it...etc.), but it worked out well. It's set up so that when they go onto the back patio to light a fire in the pit (off to the left in the pic), they can hear the fountain across the fence in the front. My brother also got Mom some neat little bamboo shade lights to hang in the Pyracantha above the bench! It looks very pretty at night.

Ok, I'm done with my novella. :D

Brenda

    Bookmark   January 3, 2008 at 9:52AM
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maryo_nh(z5 SouthernNH)

Brenda, that looks so lovely! You and Mom should indeed sit there of an evening enjoying the sounds in the fading light... so romantic. And I notice GREEN in that picture! I so miss that color...

Btw, are you in the path of that storm that's brewing?

:) Mary

    Bookmark   January 3, 2008 at 7:31PM
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jeanner(SW Ohio - Z6)

Such a lovely corner! You've built her a little oasis - all it needs now is a bird feeder :^)

Whats the plant in the corner??

    Bookmark   January 4, 2008 at 11:25PM
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youreit

Thanks, ladies! Oh, Jean, don't think I haven't considered the bird feeder! LOL I think Mom is worried about that, because she sees how I've become a slave to my birds (not that I'm complaining!!!). What she doesn't quite understand is just how rewarding it can be, even if they tend to be little piggies. :D

In front of the Pyracantha (the top is out of frame) is a potted Aucuba japonica 'Variegata', a.k.a. gold dust plant. She's still waiting for the possible return of the Dicentra, or bleeding heart, in the gray pot. I'm thinking it will emerge any time now, just so it can check out the fountain. :D

Oh, when my folks were without power, Mom asked Dad if he unplugged her fountain again. Doh! LOL

Brenda

    Bookmark   January 8, 2008 at 8:31AM
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LEDinStone

Hello,
i want show this ;)

Here is a link that might be useful: bollard

This post was edited by LEDinStone on Mon, Sep 22, 14 at 9:14

    Bookmark   September 22, 2014 at 9:12AM
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LEDinStone

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v289/semper_fi/untitled-1.jpg

Here is a link that might be useful:

    Bookmark   September 22, 2014 at 9:26AM
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LEDinStone

good ;]]

    Bookmark   September 22, 2014 at 9:34AM
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LEDinStone

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v289/semper_fi/rosevears_houghton.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v289/semper_fi/602_contemporarydovetailbench1.jpg

    Bookmark   September 22, 2014 at 9:44AM
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LEDinStone

ghrÃÂát http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v289/semper_fi/602_contemporarydovetailbench1.jpg

Here is a link that might be useful:

    Bookmark   September 22, 2014 at 10:23AM
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