Tag Archives: Ana White


Yesterday was a bit of a bust but we rallied today. We finished up yesterdays bird houses this morning by painting them. I decided not to sand or scrape off the glue mostly because the kids were anxious to paint and somewhat because I really didn’t want to deal with it. I just hope we don’t have a sea of dead birds in the backyard because they were pecking at the puffy glue. Gross. I should have sanded…. Surprise surprise. Elise chose pink and pink as her paint colors. Patrick went for the two toned light and dark green effect even though he is a little concerned that the tree house will be camouflaged in the leaves of a tree.  He stuck to his design choice and went for it. Michael went with red for one side, yellow for the other and then mixed the two color together for an orange middle. Overall Michael was more interested in what color he could get the rinsing water than he was house painting. Above you can see step one of Elise’s pink washed paint technique: submerge paint brush into water. Then you put it dripping wet into the paint tray and smear it around. Paint house methodically making sure all brown is gone and only pink remains. Patrick was probably the most patient, surprisingly enough. He complained about it taking forever but he kept at it until it was finished to his standards. This is a total 180 from where he was a few months ago and I hope this is a small glimpse of what is to come. The blue is an “M” on the back of Michael’s house. Spatial planning isn’t his strong-suit. This was a fun and quick project. It didn’t make near the mess I thought it would. The old vinyl table cloth we use as a drop cloth helped contain the mess not only by keeping the paint off the garage floor but by creating a visible work zone.

Tim quick drilled the holes when he got home. The photos didn’t turn out well because it is 86 degrees and we are anticipating a big thunderstorm. The second I stepped into the garage the humidity fogged over my lens.



Tomorrow we figure out where we will put them.


Our pathetically stocked fridge and pantry put SAHM CAMP on hold for the morning. We spent what felt like forever filling up our cart at Target. Side note: Once school starts I will never go shopping at Target with the kids again. Starbucks should offer shots of Bailey’s to every parent that walks into Target with a long list and children in tow.

We came home, had lunch, and then it was time for camp to start because I made a pledge to try to do this all week and I couldn’t give up on the second day…

While the kids watched a movie for quiet play time I went to the garage and prepared this afternoon’s activity. It took me about an hour to get  everything ready. I had to find the glue, cut the wood and print off directions from Ana White’s $2 Bird House plans so the kids could see what we were doing and be engaged in the process.


I told them how many of each piece of wood they would need and they collected their pieces.

The plans called for the kids to glue the pieces in place and then the adults go back and put a few nails in when the glue was dry.

Everything was going great until we started gluing. Yeah. The second step is where it all went down- hill quickly. The glue I had, was not the right kind of glue for the project. I don’t know what I was thinking (or wasn’t thinking) when I bought this stuff but I somehow bought the wrong Gorilla Glue. It was a mess and the drying time is way longer than my kids’ patience for holding a piece of wood to another piece of wood.

Not only did it take forever to dry but when it did dry it expanded, puffed up and turned white.

There are not a lot of photos of the process because it was so messy and I had to work quick to keep the kids’ attention. I ran inside and was able to find an almost empty tube of Super Glue and that worked great until it ran out.

Here are the houses after I hit a few nails in as they sit drying and waiting for the “Bird Door” to be drilled.

I was going to have the kids paint the houses today but now I think I am going to need to let the Gorrilla glue dry all the way and then try to sand or scrape the excess off.

Today’s SAHM CAMP was the equivalent to the rainy day at camp where everything you packed gets soaked and you don’t like the food they serve at lunch.

Ana’s Plans were great. The glue sucked.

I would do this project again in a heart beat AFTER buying the correct glue.

Tomorrow we will paint the house and that will be fun. Tomorrow will be a good day at SAHM CAMP.


Ana White knows my name!

Well maybe she doesn’t know my name per say but she knows I am a fan and that we build projects from her plans. I really should have an ongoing list of all the projects we have built from her site. I know we are easily in the double digits now. I am basking in my 15 seconds of modern-day social media fame. Don’t believe me that I am kinda famous (at least until Ana posts another brag post and my photo is no longer the top story)

Check out this screen shot I took tonight at 9:30pm.

After a day with a sick Michael, Elise not making it to the potty in time on multiple occasions and Patrick throwing the mother of all tantrums at swim lessons I needed something to smile about. #winning

Want to build something cool? Check out Ana-White.com

DIY L-Shaped Bunk Beds Part II

Part I

And here are the phone pics I snapped haphazardly in between coats of paint and finishing up the construction with Tim.

We tried to buy as little as possible to keep the cost down (I really want to put up new curtains 😉 ) so we reused the shelves from the old bunk beds for shelves in the new book-case. The previous bunks were held together with a bunch of dowels and a few bolts. The lumber was still good so we were able to upcycle the shelves into the bookcase. Since it was going to be painted it would turn out fine. All we had to buy were to 6 foot 1×12 pine boards.

The size of the upcycled shelves dictated the design. I think it turn out pretty cool to have the different length of shelves.

The bookshelf looked kinda cool in the above two toned state but the shelves were so banged and scratched up that in person they looked more like a recycled hot mess than upcycled custom bookshelf. So I pulled out the primer and went against my norm and chose blue paint we had left over from another project. The paint finish was Satin so it will stand up to abuse once the final coat is on and it has enough time to “cure.”

after two coats.

The bookcase is multi-purpose. Yes it will hold books and whatever else the boys over crowd the shelves with, but it also is the main support for the shelf that will cover the area in the corner that is open between the two lofts.

Tim used his mad math skills to adapt  Ana White’s ladder plans to make this ladder. He secured it in place with some heavy-duty bolts.

After the ladder was in place we put up the 1×4 braces for the rails and attached the top rail. We decided to wait on the bottom rail to see what the best height would be with the mattress on top of the lofts.

I was uncharacteristically meticulous about the placing of the screws. Because the screws were going to be seen I wanted them to be at consistent heights to look more polished. Their beds will never be made and clothes will be all over the floor but, damn it, the screws will be evenly spaced and look good. Below is not a phone pic. I took this with my good camera after the room was put back together. I love my camera too much to put it in harm’s way in a 12×10 construction area.

We were able to reuse most of the slats from the bunk beds. Tim redrilled pilot holes and screwed them into place. Now the slats are sitting on a 2×2 that has been wood glued and screwed into 2×6 rails instead of the previous bunk beds that the slats were attached to a 1×1 that was glued and nailed into a 1×6. You see how we up’d the sturdy factor. These things are solid.

Then came the mattresses so we could put in the final rails. Again with screws placement perfectly measured.

Once the final rails were in and we cleaned up our construction supplies, the lofts were ready  for the boys to sleep on their new beds for the first time. Just in time too, because while I was running the vacuum and putting the mattresses back in place Tim was pj-ing the kids and singing Twinkle Twinkle while they brushed their teeth.

They loved it. To say that Elise was upset when she was told to go to her room for bed time is an understatement.

The boys have plenty of head room both under and on top of the lofts.

The reading couch fits perfectly into place.

I am kicking myself for not having my good camera for the “reveal” to the kids but since the project is far from complete I can solace in the fact that I will have another chance once everything is stained, final coats of paint are on, and I put a few personal touches into their space.

Sneak Peek at the bunks stained with the DIY curtains up:

Don’t tell Michael and Patrick but Elise was the first one who got to play in the “loft fort”