The ranch is a quiet place here on Christmas Eve, and for a number of days to come–all the ranch hands are off until the New Year, and the few other full-time residents are busy with family. We are surrounded by the unpaid denizens of the ranch, although most do, at least, have room and board. In other words, the animals.
If there were ever to be a wild nativity scene, it would be here… with barns and stables a-plenty, and wild animals that include deer, javelinas, turkey, and aoudad, as well as predators like bear and mountain lion (supposedly, haven’t seen ’em, not sure I want to!). I’m pretty sure the half-dozen longhorns and the horses corralled nearby aren’t exactly tame, either.
The desert’s beauty is desolate, but truly amazing… and come summer, it will be hot past any reasonable reckoning. This is the area where we met, and lived here for two years before we left to go to green, lush, Oregon, so I know whereof I speak on the subject of how hot it can get. 😀
But, I’m leaving that to the future for now, and enjoying it while I can. And, for me, the way to deal with all this is, apparently, nesting. Yeah, for any of you that know me, it’s kind of out of my norm… but I’m really enjoying the ability to bake, to create in other ways.
What other ways, you ask? Well, the one thing the recently remodeled residence we just moved into did not have was tons of storage. And, we packed more into the House McNugget than we thought we did – five large totes full of stuff, among other things like a full business wardrobe for me, most of which I’ve never worn.
This left us in need of a space to put a bunch of stuff that doesn’t need to be used every day. And a spare bedroom closet that simply needed an organizer to be able to put a ton of stuff in it. Our budget wasn’t going to run to a decent one, and I hate the wire ones (sorry if you love them, but uh-uh, no, not happening). So, I sat down to design one.
Many years back, and in a land far, far away, I figured out how to use Excel as electronic graph paper. I’m not the first to figure it out by any means… and if you’re interested, here’s one explanation. I try not to get too uptight about it–basically, I just re-size the spreadsheet cells so they are approximately the same width and height, then use borders and shading to build out what I’m designing. At left is my final design for the closet organizer.
And in case you’re wondering, yes, there is, buried in the depths of the cell formatting menu, a 45-degree border that allows you to add that third dimension to your drawing.
I designed the thing early Saturday morning, and we went into town to have breakfast with a friend and buy the lumber for this and the other project I show below.
My husband took a look at the design and made some suggestions, such as leaving off the bottom shelf. His ideas helped speed the process, save wood, and made it possible to create the whole thing with the miter saw, instead of a lot of work with the circular saw trying to cut straight lines. At right is the end result–we’re pretty pleased with it, and it got rid of enough of the clutter that I can walk in the house without my head exploding–bonus!
The other project is a hall tree. Once I finished explaining what I was talking about, Corey was all for it. The room where we enter the house is about 30 feet long, with my desk at the far end from the entry door. For the moment, all our boots and shoes are residing near the door because we take our shoes off as soon as we come in the house. We needed to accommodate that as well as the hats and jackets necessary at this time of year, and evenings in the desert all year. Also need to provide some place to sit down to take boots or shoes off or put them on, and we’ve got about a third of the room to play with, which means we can get fairly massive. So, below is my design for a hall tree. I’ll take a picture when it’s done to compare to the design. I know that it will change as it’s being built, they always do…
We’ll probably work on it this weekend, since Corey’s working on Thursday/Friday… hopefully it will go together quickly and with little fuss. And that’s kind of how our Christmas is planned to be as well. Quick, little fuss, quiet.
Happy Christmas, peeples, hope it’s a warm and lovely holiday for you all.