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Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Strange Question for the State Park

We went to the Fountain of Youth last weekend. You know, the place Ponce de Leon was searching for so he could stay young forever? I'm sure you remember it from history class. The Fountain doesn't actually work, but there is a nice spring that's 68 degrees year-round (very chilly) and some hiking there.

After dipping our toes in the water I convinced the family that a long, hot, sweaty hike was just the thing. After a hike the water would be perfect! So off we went, in flip-flops and beach cover ups traipsing along the well-maintained trail when we stumbled on a pile of wood.

Not just any old wood either. This wasn't drift wood, or the last hallowed remains of Ponce's campfire. This was a broken bridge lying in a pile and looking for all the world like a bunch of table tops missing their legs.

Have I mentioned I don't have a dining table right now? I don't. The glass top didn't survive the move in June so I have a card table with a very pretty tablecloth. And I know I've mentioned lusting after this Farmhouse Table designed by Ana White. Jokingly I told my husband we should combine the two. After all, what does a state park need wood for, right? I mean... besides the bridge.

Sadly, there was no one at the ranger station and I went home dejected, convinced my dreams of reclaimed wood furniture were all washed up. Monday, I ignored my dreams. Tuesday, my mother gave me a nudge. "Furniture is more important than deadlines!" she roared.

I might not be the brightest crayon in the box, but I can take a hint. I called up the state park and left what is probably the oddest message for the year. "Hi, this is Liana Brooks. I went hiking at your park on Saturday and saw the wood from the old bridge. Do you need it for something or can I have it?"

Really, that was the message. Cold-calling to beg for wood.

I figured the chances of someone calling back were slim. Even if they did bother to return the call the chances that they would let wood just mosey on out of the park were slim. The idea was to get free building material, not pay for anything.

Guess who got lucky? That's right. The park ranger called me back and told me I could have the wood if I signed into the register as a state park volunteer. I could even accumulate service hours for hauling the wood away! What I would do with these service hours remains unspecified.

Saturday I'm sending hubby out with all the seats in the car taken out, and possibly a trailer on the back of the van, to pick up as much wood as he can stuff into that vehicle. I have plans for a kitchen table, benches, book selves, storage... the list is long and almost all the plans are coming from Ana's website (Thank you, Ana!).

This is part of our last major building project. DH and I made a puzzle bookcase. When one side didn't turn out the way we wanted, we painted it purple and gave it to Eldest. The finished puzzle bookcase is stained a deep mahogany to match our bedroom set and is filled to overflowing with sci-fi and fantasy novels. And you wondered why bookshelf was on the list. :o)

P.S. The Birthday Wish Sock contest is open until Monday night to give everyone who said they wanted to enter a chance to do so. If you haven't already, stop by and wish me happy birthday!


  1. Oh, I love that purple bookcase. Eldest was lucky with that one.

  2. Eldest's room is all shades of purple. :o) One day I intend to build the other half of the shelf for her.

  3. That (and the finished one) are awesome bookshelves! So what did you think of PDL? Haven't been to those springs in forever but I do remember how cold they are!

  4. Very pretty, but very chilly. I think it's perfect for the days that hit 100+. Other than that, I'll stick to hiking. We did walk up the river from the spring to where it meets the larger river and talked to the kids about water difference, thermoclines, and tannins. Very educational. :o)

  5. Great bookshelves! I made some planters from reclaimed wood, but that's as close as I get to handy. And it's possible they're crooked. ;)

    Also, happy birthday! I would wish it to you on the other post, but I'm afraid I might win some of those socks... :P

  6. Totally posted here last night, but it seems the computer ate my response!!

    Anyway, WOW! That is SO AWESOME about the timber. Boyo is immensely jealous, and suspects the timber would be worth rather a lot, so HU-ZZAH. Can't wait to see what you make out of it :o)


  7. Great fun : )

    I love wood projects. They turn furniture into part of the family.