For the love of Valentines Day!

February 19, 2013  •  Leave a Comment

I apologize for the quality of the photo on this one, but its more about the sentiment than the craftsmanship. Anyhow, in the spirit of Valentines Day, I decided to surprise my beautiful wife and daughter with a little surprise to start their day. We got a small dusting of snow the night before and as my wife was busy cutting out and decorating hearts to hide for our daughter the next day, I used the child sized snow shovel to "carve" this message into the snow. This picture is taken from our bedroom window on the second floor as they were leaving for school. We asked her if we got enough snow for a delay and when she looked out the window she got a big grin before pulling them shut and said "there's something out here" it was too cute! Love ya ladies!

Valentines day, budget artist, bill Crowell, lock havenSurprise!


Scratching the creative itch...

February 27, 2012  •  Leave a Comment

During these long, dreary winter months I find that it is often difficult to get inspired to get out and take photos. Although this winter has been kinder than those past, everything still looks the same. I actually prefer those hectic snow covered days (once in a while) to these drab ones as they make for much more compelling photographs.

But I digress, I have recently been introduced to the website Pinterest by my lovely wife Michelle. Her mistake. Although much of the website could be considered geared towards women (fashion, hair & nail styles etc.) I have found a home in the DIY section of the website. For those f you unfamiliar with Pinterest, it is basically your virtual corkboard. If you see something interesting while surfing the internet, you can "pin it" to one of you customizeable boards. Your friends and "followers" can then see your boards and pins when they log in.

One of the projects I have taken an interest in s the "pallet art". This is when people take old shipping pallets and re-purpose them into new items. I was recently inspired to get some and try my hand at making us a new tv stand (since our old one was a shabby old printer stand! lol!)

First off, I need to acquire some pallets. This is easier said than done in a small town in Central Pennsylvania. Although I was able to gather up some. Next came the longest part (and at times most frustrating) tearing apart the pallets while trying not to destroy the boards. This was a pain in the...butt. I tried a hammer and crowbar, only to end up splitting most of them in half. Tried hammering like a mad man at the back side in an attempt to knock them out. This only tired me out. Finally I managed to have the best luck by prying the boards off with a 2x4. I did get a nice stack of wood out of them though!

Next I had to frame out the entertainment center. Now I will admit I have NO experience with this sort of thing but that was part of the challenge right? Getting myself to think outside the box. Trying something new. This pat was also kinda frustrating for me. I had a vision in my head but figuring out a way to accomplish it had me a little stressed (And it isn't even that complex of a project!)

Alas, I made some alterations to my "blueprint" and was able to get it put together. I like the "Rustic Contemporary" style of it. It's not the nice finished and sealed wood of  a new piece but that's what we like about it. And the best part (well one of them) is it cost us $0. That's right, FREE! Also we were able to reuse some old pallets that were taking up space behind stores on the main drag through town and help get rid of some eye sore garbage. You know what they say..."One man's trash is another man's treasure!" I also love the shipping prints on some of the wood!


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