If You Build It She Will Sit – #SoCS

We’re back at the bar trying to wrap, or is that warp, a conversation around Linda G. Hill’s Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt:

“Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is ‘couch’ Use it as a noun or a verb. Have fun!”

Let’s see if we can have some fun.


If we were having a beer, you’d be wondering about my progress.

“So, how many days did you work this week, Dan?”

“Two and a half.”

“Two and a half? What, you couldn’t take three full days?”

“No, they closed the office at noon on Friday, so I was only charged with half a vacation day. I need to use them all, so I bailed early on Wednesday.”

“Is that when you took your car in for service?”

“No, I dropped it off in the morning. A friend gave me a ride to the dealer at lunch.”

“Oil change?”

“I was having a trailer-hitch installed.”

“So you can get the lumber to build those steps?”

“I had that delivered.”

“I need a drink.”

“I was wondering when someone was going to say that.”

“Hi Cheryl.”

“Hello David. What are you drinking today?”

“After listening to Dan, I think I’m going to need some John Howell’s Bourbon, please.”

“Dan, a Corona for you?”

“Yes, please.”

“I don’t get it, Dan.”

“What don’t you get, David?”

“You own a trailer. You got your car set up to pull the trailer and then you pay to have the stuff delivered.”

“It was a lot of lumber and longer than my trailer.”

“You know, you might be getting the hang of this.”

“Hang of what?”

“Life, as in not doing everything yourself, as you are often wont to do.”

“I did install the trailer-hitch on my previous three cars.”

“But wasn’t it better sitting on the couch in the lounge while a trained, capable mechanic did it?”

“I resent that, I’m capable… but it was better.”

“And it was probably better sitting on the couch with Maddie while someone else picked out the lumber, loaded it on their truck and drove it to you. How much stuff did you order?”

“A couple dozen twelve-foot pressure-treated two-by-eights.”

” A couple dozen? Are you building steps for Rapunzel?”

“Ha! No, but there are four sets, and one set is quite large.”

“What do you mean, large? How many stairs?”

“Three.”

“That’s not large.”

“I’m sorry, did you want a double?”

“No, Cheryl, not you. The large was for Dan.”

“Oh. OK. Well, here’s your bourbon, your ice, your snifter of seltzer and your cherries. You certainly are complicated, David.”

“I prefer ‘has distinctive tastes’ instead of complicated.”

“Whatever drowns your cherries. Dan, here’s your beer. Don’t forget to answer David.”

“Thanks Cheryl. What did you ask, David?”

“Why do you consider three steps to be a large project?”

“It’s more like three mini-decks. The base is six feet by twelve feet.”

“The base?”

“Yes. Sitting on that is a seven-foot by four-foot step, and on top of that is one that’s five-feet by two-feet.”

“Why are you building it so big? Let me guess, it’s for the dog.”

“Yes and no. We use these steps all the time. The large landings are a lot safer, especially when your attached to a dog.”

“I’m pretty good at maths, five, seven, twelve, it sounds like you have about five feet of space at one end. Is that for Maddie’s cot?”

“Yes, but again, that’s only half the reason. The corner between the porch and that last landing is hard to mow and harder to remove snow from.”

“Wait, are you telling me you already have mini-decks?”

“We do, but they are rotted and too small.”

“How old are they?”

“About twenty-five years.”

“Original to the porch?”

“No, the original steps were three simple steps. Easy-peasy, once we figured out where to put them.”

“I’m no expert, but they normally go near the door.”

“I am an expert, and those glasses are empty. You boys want another round?”

“Yes, we do, Cheryl. I’ve been teaching Dan about locating the steps he’s building.”

“Well then he’s going to need another beer. I’ll be right back.”

“I appreciate the instructions, David, but Mitzi taught me where the stairs go.”

“Mitzi?”

“Mitzi was our first Irish Setter.”

“And she did carpentry?

“Architecture. She wasn’t happy with the initial design.”

“You let her review the drawings?”

“No. The original porch had openings for floor-to-ceiling windows. I put the stairs by the door, but she jumped out one of the windows.”

“Did you try training her?”

“She wasn’t having any of it. She jumped in and out of the window until I switched the door with that window.”

“Now I really need a drink.”

“Well, you are in luck. Here’s another splash of bourbon for you David, and Dan, here’s a Corona who has found her lime.”

“Thanks Cheryl.”

“Yes, thanks Cheryl and thanks for refreshing the cherries.”

“You’re welcome David.”

“Cheers, Dan. Here’s hoping Maddie approves of the stairs.”

“Thanks David.”


Today’s gallery has some pictures that might help explain this project.

76 thoughts on “If You Build It She Will Sit – #SoCS

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    1. Thanks Judy. These stairs fall into the “third time is a charm” category. We liked the stacked-decks better than the stairs, but the awkward little corner space is a pain to mow and clear. Plus, we do like to sit there in the winter, as the sun streams onto that space.

      Maddie sat twice yesterday, has been walked and The Editor is heading out with her to sit in a few minutes, We don’t start working until 9:00 (noise) so this is Maddie time.

      I hope you have a great weekend!

      Liked by 2 people

    1. When he arrived, he said: “I was beginning to wonder if you had forgotten about me.” He’s been here every year for several years, GP. Thanks for the comment, I hope you’re prepared for Dorian (And I hope Dorian misses you).

      Liked by 1 person

  1. The photos sure did help a lot–I was having trouble conceptualizing what you were building, Dan. It’s a pretty big project, it seems, but at least you are not having to wrestle with ladders and roofs this time.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks Mike. I was having a hard time explaining it, so I waited until I had pictures to share. Sometimes, they are worth a lot of words. It’s funny, I don’t mind being off the ladders, but at this point, working on the ground is no fun, either. I swear I used to be able to bend ;-)

      Like

    1. Ha – I like that. He thought is was nuts, so you hired it out. The “test” 2×8 propped up in the yard was to give the Mrs. one last chance to say “no, that’s too big.” We both agreed that the bottom landing needed to be bigger. We’re also going to ring it with a course of small pavers so it will be easier to cut the grass. We learn as we go. Thanks!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I really like these steps. Functional and pleasing to the eye. At least you won’t be spending hours balancing on a ladder. Ahhh, on the other hand, you’ll be spending hours bending over and kneeling! Can’t wait to see this finished.

    Like kids going back to school, MiMi seems to be trying to get back to her regular schedule, which includes more sleep in her cradle! Lol.

    Did you try bribing the driver to let you take a spin in that “cool” machine!? 😂😂

    You’re almost to the finish line with this project Dan. It must feel good.

    Boy! You sure know how to put LABOR in Happy Labor Day!!
    🐾Ginger 🐾

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks Ginger. I think my wife would have paid him more not to let me swing that load around next to her car and our house, but it sure looked like fun.

      As I told Mike, I thought I could bend better than I do. And kneeling, that will not be fun, but it’s the only way to get that decking secured.

      MiMi seems to be reminding us that she will be wanting a fire in the wood stove soon, although, at this point, I can’t imagine lighting a fire.

      I hope you have a great weekend. I’m trying to set at least one day aside to relax, but I always do seem to put the labor in Labor Day.

      Like

    1. Thanks Joanne. I think I have enough in the way of projects to keep me busy for a good long time. It will be good to have this one finished. I had hoped to get to this last year, but we ran out of autumn.

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    1. Thanks Annie. I finished the structure for one other set today. I have two sets left to frame, but they are both single platform landings. The decking won’t go down until the end of the September, but I’ll have pictures when it’s done.

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  3. Hope you show us the finished product. We need some ideas for our back porch which we don’t use much due to poor design. Would be nice it extend it some. That look on Mimi’s face is priceless.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Ha! Dan, you cracked me up with “steps for Rapunzel?” A couple of decades ago I had very Rapunzel-like hair, more than long enough to sit on.
    That big rig is extra cool.
    The mini decks are terrific. You’ve really got the process thought out well. It was fascinating to see the pictures of it. Save part of the holiday weekend for relaxing. Cheers!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks Teagan. I was happy to see that rig. I knew it meant he would be able to get those very heavy boards all the way back where I need them. This is the third time for these steps, so we should have the kinks worked out of the design.

      I worked about 4 hours today. I’ll be taking tomorrow off, and the weather might prevent any outside work on Monday.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Janis. Yes, we will be topping these with Trex, which is what we used on the front porch, steps and ramp. Maddie will get Trex on her deck as well. I worked about four hours today. We’ll have some fun tomorrow and the weather might keep me inside on Monday.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. They weren’t too bad, but the lack of a handrail grew to be a concern, and it was difficult to clear the snow off that top step. There wasn’t enough room to stand on it when you opened the door. That’s what happens when you build things in the summer.

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  5. Whatever drowns your cherries.” ~Cheryl. LOL! I laughed out loud when I read that.

    The steps look like they’re coming along, and with plenty of space for Maddie’s cot and a chair or two as well for you and the Editor?

    The little forklift accompanying the truck is cool! We had one deliver our cabinets for the laundry room. It was really neat to watch him unload it and then load it again. I don’t appreciate the rubber marks all over my driveway, but they’re coming off…slowly.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks Deborah. I was so happy to see that forklift. The other delivery method is a truck where the tip it and dump the boards in the driveway. That means I have to carry them much farther.

      We’ve been sitting in that space, especially in the cooler months, so it made sense to extend the bottom deck. It should be easier to cut the grass and clear the snow. Dead-end corners are difficult with the snow blower.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I’m continually amazed at your ability to do your own carpentry projects. Perhaps I should start calling you “Norm?” I didn’t quite get what you were talking about in your post (lack of breakfast), but the photos certainly helped in understanding your plans. Maddie will be happy and you won’t have to sit in the grass. All is well, except that damn light you always shine in Mimi’s face. How irritating! :-p

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thanks Mary. I think this will work well. It’s like when places pave the bare paths instead of hoping people will use sidewalks. This is where we find ourselves sitting in the cooler months, so it might as wll be comfy.

      I enjoy this work much more than the stuff I do for a living. It’s so clear to see the progress as I go.

      MiMi and I need to come to an understanding. Perhaps if she rolled out of bed before 5:00pm, the light wouldn’t be a problem.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks John. I thought my buddy was going to have wine today, but he had other ideas. We’ve been down this road twice already, I think we know what works and what doesn’t. Give me enough chances and I’ll get it right ;-)

      Liked by 1 person

  7. So much about this post that I love! “Whatever drowns your cherries.”–is that not the most perfect bar phrase?! MiMi–just remember, this never gets old: extend palm ‘Talk to the hand.’ The steps are looking great. As soon as we get that tree removed from our backyard my husband is going to rebuild the steps going up into our yard. Not near as grand as yours, but plenty wide. It tickled me that you measured Maddie’s cot. You are the best dog dad, Dan.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks Lois. Please don’t give MiMi any tips, she’s already pretty good at letting me know just how unhappy she is. Again, it was 5:00 PM! My wife suggested measuring the cot, although the steps were already done. She said “someone’s going to ask.” You guys seem to care about Miss Maddie’s well being.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Pretty impressive deck, Dan, and I’m even more impressed that you’re doing it yourself. I have absolutely no patience for home improvement projects. Anytime I want something done, I have to call someone. For that matter, Mary made me promise when we moved in that there would be no painting and no power tools…

    Liked by 2 people

    1. “No painting” ?I could live with that, John. No power tools, that would be a hard sell. Getting someone to build these kinds of projects is hard. This is a small job for a contractor. Also, there’s the danger that they’ll start on Monday and finish next Tuesday. In the meantime, you’re using a different door. Thanks for the comment.

      Like

    1. David, a.k.a. My bar buddy is a composite character. One of the people he is based on is a friend in England named David. I put that in for him. He is very good at maths, but we have argued about that ‘s’ in the past.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. The project is looking so grand – for Queen Maddie! I think you’re brilliant to use the delivery service – that’s a lot of wood to load and unload, let alone use to build those stairs! Cheers to you and each moment you’re getting to completion of the project!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Shelley. Knowing that I can easily and inexpensively have material delivered actually impacted the decision on the car I bought. I no longer need something I can use like a truck. Moving those boards 10’ into the garage was far enough.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Your wisdom continues to amaze me! LOL – yeah, moving lumber is a pain in the back. Your project is coming along nicely, way to save your back for the actual work instead of hauling it from the store to your location.

        Liked by 1 person

  10. Haha! But. We. Sat. Haha!
    Yeah, I thought that mat might be used. I’m glad you’re getting steps assembled. Jealous, but glad :)
    This post brings me back to how I forgot to answer the polygon question earlier. Was it a trapezoid? Maybe you should hide the answers upside down on the bottom of your blog ;)
    That’s also quite funny about Mitzi. Peculiar funny.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, trapezoid. I’ll have to see about adding the answer boxes. Maddie loves to sit. She points out that, even though the sun is baking the yard, her deck is in the shade. She points out that the deck is dry when it’s raining. She’s disturbingly smart about that stuff, but she forgets that we’re actually out in the rain because she has to pee.

      Mitzi was having nothing to do with the door where I wanted it. When she jumped out the window opening, I thought she just didn’t see the stairs. When she jumped back in through the window, it started to become clear.

      Liked by 1 person

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