Weekend Projects

This weekend I decided to tackle a couple of projects that I’ve been meaning to get around to for a while. I have a bad habit of coming up with a new idea for a project, starting it (just enough to make a mess), then leaving it half-done for a while before I actually find time to finish it.

Case in point: I thought it would be fun to make a new light fixture for our living room, which had one with extremely hard-to-replace lightbulbs in it. A couple had burned out, and I couldn’t figure out how to remove them. So I removed the whole kit and caboodle, with sincere intentions to replace it with something I would make out of blue Ball jars. Cool idea, I thought.

Then I promptly forgot about the project for a couple busy weeks. To be fair, I had a sister get married in that time, so I had a good reason to be distracted. But the living room was a little dim for a while.

Last weekend I finally got around to finishing the glass jar light fixture. A little purple spray paint, a couple light bulb sockets, two glass jars, some white wire, and a crash course in electrical wiring (it involved me looking at the wires very carefully when I took the original light down, then trying to commit that image to memory for when I put the new one back up) later, and I had myself one of these:

I think it turned out nicely. It’s a little bright to look straight at it, but unless you’re very tall (which neither Elise nor I am), it’s not an issue.

Another project gathering dust on a shelf in my brain (I have a very dusty brain) was a compost bin for our back yard. I hated spending money on garden soil this year, so my plan is to manufacture all at least most of my soil for my garden next year. To do that, I need a compost bin. I could have purchased one, but why purchase something that I could make? Only people with no gumption do that.

Just kidding, about the gumption thing. Not kidding about the fact that I didn’t want to buy a compost bin–primarily because I don’t have any extra money lying around earmarked for a compost bins.

I saw this one on Root Simple, which I thought was cool, especially because it looked easy enough to build. I had decided to compost a while back, but just kind of left the plan in the theoretical phase for a long time, with one exception. I had a lot of yard waste, horse manure, etc. in garbage cans behind the garage.

You know what happened then? They filled up with rain water. Which became stagnant. Which bred mosquitoes, and smelled musty. It was not nice.

I finally got down to business and decided to make a bin for all that crap yesterday. I looked around my garage and came up with enough scrap wood to cobble together this masterpiece:

It’s not quite finished… I need 4 6′ 1×4’s to finish making the removable front panel. Anyone have some 1×4’s they want to get rid of?

I dumped all the rotting yard waste in there last night, and it was sure rank. Also, I made about a billion mosquito children homeless, which I don’t feel even a little bad about. I hold mosquitoes in utter contempt, even more so than rabbits.

I really hope that the generally poopy smell that was emanating from this bin will fade over time. I know compost doesn’t smell like roses, but I didn’t think it would be as bad as it was last night.

Chester did not like the smell, either.

It will be worth it next year when we have a huge pile of delicious compost for our plants! Delicious to the plants, that is.

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