For Christmas I want more power tools!

Christmas time on the farm has been relatively peaceful so far….our tree is still standing, despite Chunk’s numerous attempts to get a better look at the star. Ceri loves crawling underneath it, but she has yet to knock it over. I’m sure she’ll wait to do that until it’s decorated. There’s only been one real Christmas casualty – Fiona was able to knock the wreath down when I was mucking out her stall. She repaid my favor of giving her a sparkling clean bedroom by eating the bow.

Harvey has a new brand new bachelor pad; although I still let him and Claire run around together during the occasional play date. It took Gene about two weeks to get around to building it, mostly due to the seasonal conditions (football is on). Not being known for my patience, I decided I was going to finish it myself. Gene had managed to frame out the bachelor pad, but had yet to get around to roofing it or attaching the door. I figured that neither roofs nor doors seemed terribly difficult, especially since I routinely watch HG TV. I started my construction adventure by putting on my Carhartt overalls, since that’s what they wear on those home improvement shows. (Notice the lack of a picture showing me in overalls…I do not rock the overalls). Then I went out into the garage to inventory Gene’s vast selection of power tools. I started by making two piles – one consisted of tools I could determine which end was up, and the other of tools I couldn’t figure out how to hold properly.

I narrowed down the first pile by asking myself if I knew what a real construction person (constructionist?) would do with it. That left me with two tools. Actually three, but one was just a smaller version of the other. I don’t know what they’re called, but I quickly gave up on the large one with the circle shaped blade when I couldn’t figure out how to move the plastic safety shield. I brought the other one, a single saw blade with a motor, over to my 8′ x 10′ piece of plywood, which I had determined after much measuring and planning needed to be cut in half. I propped it up against the wall, then braced it with my boot and put the saw down on top of it. Which didn’t work at all, because the teeth on the blade were pointed up, and my wood was beneath it. I then put the plywood down on top of some fence posts, and gave the smaller circle saw tool a go at it, since on that one the stupid plastic thing moved when you shoved it against the wood. It worked great for the first 2 centimeters… then it hit the driveway and stopped. I tried again, this time holding the saw up a few inches to give it more clearance. That worked too, until it got too heavy and hit the driveway again. The tool, realizing where this was headed, decided to stop working entirely. I went in and woke Gene up, trying to explain what was happening. He had just gone to bed a few hours ago, so he groggily told me that I was doing fine and just needed a bigger saw. Unfortunately (or fortunately) the bigger saw was the one I couldn’t figure out how to move the safety shield, so I went back to the other saw thing, which I have since learned is a jigsaw. I am quite proud to say that after much noise, much swearing, and many, many minutes, I was able to cut the plywood in half. Then I had to stop because the bit for the screw gun fell out, and I couldn’t get it to stick back in. Finally Gene came out and said I’d cut the plywood too short and now we couldn’t use it at all. On the plus side, he finished Harvey’s bachelor pad, and I have new respect for his carpentry skills.

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