How to Build this Cute Garden ShedAre you Going to Haven? Let’s Meet!

Hey y’all! I’m going to Haven again this year, and I hope we get to meet each other! If you’re just coming over from Debbie’s at Refresh Restyle, welcome! If you stumbled here by accident you may be wondering. “What’s Haven?”

HAVEN is a DIY & Decorating professional blogging conference which takes place July 12th – 14th in Charleston, SC. Each year, approximately 350 Home and DIY bloggers get together for three days to learn, network, meet sponsors and have a great time. I’ve met and developed friendships with so many bloggers at Haven.  Frankly, I look forward to Haven every year because it is the one time a year I get to hang with old friends and make new ones. And I get to chat with others who understand that blogging isn’t a full-time job, it’s your life!

This year I’m honored to be a mentor at Haven. The mentor program is one of the best additions to the conference because it allows you to meet with a long time Haven attendee and get to know several other bloggers in your mentor group.

Who are you?

In short, I’m Pretty Handy Girl, your friendly DIY instructor and occasional goof ball.

But, I’m also a licensed general contractor, an illustrator, and a chronic upcycler. I know what you’re thinking, and it’s true — I’ve been known to save a few things from dumpsters:

I live in Raleigh, NC in a house I loved for 7 years before we were given the opportunity to buy it.

How to Strip Paint Off a Door | Pretty Handy Girl

You are more than welcome to come into my home and see the progress I’ve made. My current favorite project has to be our pantry transformation.

Pantry with Coffee Bar and Hidden Wine Storage | Pretty Handy Girl

I completely rebuilt the 6′ wide, standard bi-fold door pantry into my dream pantry. You have to see what is hiding behind all those doors!

But, enough about me and my home. I want to give you a little advice.

What is your best advice for a new Haven Maven attendee?

Let me tell it to you straight. When you first get to Haven, you may feel those old high school insecurities rising up. It can look very cliquey when you notice lots of groups chatting and laughing. Try to remember that many attendees have known each other for almost a decade and they only get to see each other once a year (if that.) Stop, look around, see if you can find someone who is also standing alone, (or a small group of two or three.) Go on over and say “Hi”. Ask where they are from and what’s their blog name. Taking that first step can be difficult, but the rest is usually easy.

You may feel awkward and feel like you don’t fit in. But, let me tell you, this conference is where you do fit in!

Where else can you say you are a blogger and know you won’t hear someone reply, “Oh that’s nice, I wish I could have a blog too. But I have to work at a real job.” And where else can you surround yourself with people who know that you may still be in your PJs by 1 pm, but damn it if you didn’t work your ass off on a killer blog post!

What should I wear?

Most attendees wear business casual outfits, but you can also rock the jeans and t-shirt if you feel more comfortable in them. I will probably get dressed up…

…but just know that on a day-to-day basis I usually look like this:

or this…

pretty handy girl sledgehammer exposed bead board

Any Advice for New Bloggers?

When asked for advise to give to new bloggers, I recommend to start your blog as if you are going to be a hugely successful blog one day. Broken down, that means be professional in how you present your brand. From day one, have a nicely designed business card and website. Never work for free. If you are writing a sponsored post, make sure you are being compensated. You may want to read the 3 things I’ll never do for a sponsored post!

Don’t label yourself as small or little. EVERY…SINGLE…BLOGGER…STARTED AT ZERO PAGEVIEWS! Say that out loud! Here are the analytics from my first year. See that? June 2010 = ZERO!

You will start at zero too, but think big and you’ll be big! Just give it time.

Will you be at Haven?

Please come to Haven this year! I want to meet you…and because the Haven Conference rocks!

Want to learn more about the other Haven Mentors? Head over to Diane with In My Own Style next. Or visit all the mentors below.

Haven Mentors

Monday: Rhoda of Southern Hospitality | Charlotte of At Charlotte’s House | Sheila of Maison de Cinq | Liz of Liz Marie Blog | Aniko of A Place of my Taste

Tuesday: Chris of Just a Girl | Haneen of Haneen’s Haven | Ashley of The Handmade Home

Wednesday: Traci of Beneath my Heart | French Country Cottage | Erin of Erin Spain

Thursday: Laura at Duke Manor Farm | Sarah at Thrifty Decor Chick | Stacey at Not Just a Housewife | Debbie at Refresh Restyle

Friday: Brittany at Pretty Handy Girl | Diane of In My Own Style | Beth at Home Stories A to Z | Lauren at Bless’er House | Katie at Bower Power

makita-girls-2015-WhatIt’s 2018, and I’m Still Wondering Where are the Real Makita Girls?

Back when I first published this post, I never thought I’d be resurrecting it from the archives. Then Simone Giertz shared this tweet and my anger and frustration at Makita boiled over again. The video Simone was referencing has been taken down by Makita, but here’s another upload of the Makita Girls behind the scenes video:

It’s been three years Makita, why are you still using the same tired marketing campaign? Your transparent attempts at finding spokeswomen who actually use power tools is laughable. My 14 year old son even pointed out that Miss Makita can’t actually build shelves with a sander. Sure, she can finish them with a sander, but any avid power tool user would not choose a sander as their favorite power tool (give me a recip saw or a sliding compound miter saw any day over a sander!)

In the three years that have passed since I was angered by Makita’s Miss and Senorita Makita campaign, I added four expensive power tools to my toolbox. And you know what? I consciously steered clear of the Makita brand because I don’t want to support a brand that objectifies women and doesn’t recognize that there are many of us that use power tools for more than “building shelves.”

Get it together Makita! It’s 2018, time to retire the women in bikinis and find a woman who gets her nails at the hardware store (not the salon.) There are so many women who can guide potential buyers to purchase tools based on their expert opinions. Let’s see this campaign retired or start searching for all the women makers, contractors and builders out there. Am I right?

This is my open letter to Makita in 2015:

Oh Makita, why did you have to go and do this?!

Makita announced its 2015 Makita Girls and where you can go to meet them. Initially, I reserved my opinion until I learned more about these new spokesmodels. But, after reading their bios, I was angered. Not a single mention of enjoying woodworking, building or carpentry. Where is the DIY love? What will they talk about at these appearances?  I’m disappointed that Makita would choose their spokesmodels for looks and not skills. And, I question their decision to maintain an advertising program that perpetuates the stereotype that only men use their tools.

Don’t they realize that they are alienating a huge growing market of DIY women? Would I have been offended if they selected an attractive woman who had Mad-DIY skills? Definitely not.

If they wanted beautiful women using tools, there is no shortage of kick ass female builders out there. This ever changing world of Do It Yourselfers is filled to the brim with amazing “Real Makita Girls.” Some of these women have the right to hold their Makita tools proudly. They can tell you the difference between a bevel and a miter; a cross cut vs. a rip cut and they know that brushless is a good thing and has nothing to do with long flowing locks of hair! These women choose quality tools that are strong enough to stand up to the current and future projects they are completing.

Am I angry? Yes! Am I going to stop using Makita tools? No, because frankly they make great tools. My Makita 10″ Compound Sliding Miter Saw is my baby:

Makita Girls | Pretty Handy Girl

It’s the first tool I’d truly cry over if it was stolen. This saw has been with me through 100’s of projects, a kitchen remodel and countless fixes. I have never had to adjust the laser or to square up the tool. It is a quality power saw made with aluminum and metal parts, not cheap plastic. But, despite my undying love for my Makita tools, their advertising tactics make me embarrassed to confess my love.

Do you want to help me change the search results right here and now? Let’s show Makita what a Real Makita Girl is. Please visit these accomplished builders and DIYers. Pin their images and title it “Real Makita Girl” or use the hashtag #RealMakitaGirls.

Makita Girls | Pretty Handy Girl
Sara Bendrick – Landscape Designer, Woodworker and DIYNetwork TV Host of I Hate My Yard


Makita Girls | Pretty Handy Girl
Kit – Blogger, Builder and Kick Ass DIYer at DIYDiva.net

Makita Girls | Pretty Handy Girl
Kim – Blogger, Builder and Creative Genius at TheKimSixFix.com

Hey, do you use Makita tools, too? If so, show me your…tools! (Email me pictures of yourself using your Makita tools, to PrettyHandyGirl (at) gmail.com. I’ll add your photo to this post.)  Let’s take over the search term “Makita Girls” and show them what a Real Makita Girl is!

#RealMakitaGirlsMary Hunnicutt another one of many #RealMakitaGirls

Cottage at the Crossroads #RealMakitaGirlsJane from Cottage at the Crossroads

In the meantime, I have to ask:

Makita, when you make awesome tools, why do you have to stoop to such slimy advertising tactics? The 1980’s called, and they want their tight spandex and scantily clad women back. Please remove the blinders and take notice of your growing customer base.  Women are shopping in the tool department. They are your consumers. They are smart and savvy. They want to purchase tools that will last. They want to hear about what makes a Makita tool great and why they should spend a little more to purchase a tool that won’t fall apart in a year or two.

A few weeks after this post was published in 2015: I spoke to Wayne Hart, the communications manager at Makita tools after this post initially published. We had a pleasant conversation and he seemed to understand my concerns about the Miss Makita and Senorita Makita models. I offered to let Mr. Hart make a statement to my readers but never heard back from him. In the meantime, the program has continued in 2016 and 2017, but I noticed that at least two of the models have used some of the tools outside the program. At least that’s some progress, right!? What do you think about tool companies continuing to use models as spokeswomen?

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Disclosure: The opinions expressed in this post are my own. Sara, Kit, and Kim are DIY women I admire. They gave me permission to use their photos, but that doesn’t mean that they endorse what I have written in this post. 

Lucky Dog Lena
Today I’m going to get a little personal. If you are here strictly for the DIY tutorials, you might want to come back another day.

Those of you that have been following my blog for a while (6 years or longer) may remember when we adopted Buddy aka Handy Dog. Buddy was an amazing dog and was truly my best friend. Buddy’s foster mom told me that she thought he was a Walmart greeter in a past life. I don’t know about that, but I do know that he never met a stranger.
BuddyTailWag

In fact, he had the ability to coax even the most anti-dog person into petting him. Sadly, Buddy passed away in early April. He was diagnosed with a tumor on his heart. Luckily we had four wonderful weeks to spoil him before it was time to say goodbye. I thought I could wait longer for another dog, but Buddy left a huge hole in my heart and only another dog could help heal my broken heart. I began looking for a new dog on PetFinder.com (a huge database of pets that need homes.) I searched for English Shepherds that would be a good fit for our family. I had high standards, so finding the perfect dog was proving challenging. He or she had to be mellow, friendly with other dogs, good with children, not too anxious or skittish, 3-5 years of age, around 50 lbs., and didn’t chase cats.

A few dogs caught my eye on the Petfinder search, but ultimately they didn’t quite fit my criteria. Then two weeks ago, this sweet face caught my eye:

Lucky Dog Lena

There wasn’t much information about her except that she was a gentle teddy bear of a dog. I filled out an adoption application with Lucky Dog Animal Rescue to allow me to get more information. Lucky Dog Animal Rescue is based in the Washington, DC metro area. The organization works with several high kill shelters on the east coast including ones in North Carolina, South Carolina and West Virginia. They also work with a shelter in Puerto Rico. Lucky Do only rescues dogs that they have spots for in foster homes. The foster parents bring the animals to adoption events every weekend in the hopes of placing the animals in loving homes. Remarkably, Lucky Dog finds home for approximately 1/4 of their foster animals every week!

Soon I received a phone call from Megan, Lena’s foster mom. We talked on the phone for an hour as she told me a lot of pertinent information about Lena. Lena was heart worm positive but she was undergoing treatment. (Did you know that dogs with heart worm have to be given arsenic?) She weighed 70 lbs, but was definitely underweight. (I could not believe this as she looked smaller in her pictures.) She told me that Lena was surrendered by her owner to a high kill shelter in South Carolina (no reason was recorded as to why she was surrendered.) She went on to tell me that Lena is very mellow and a sweet dog. She got along with the foster mom’s dogs. But, what she said next left me speechless.

Lucky Dog Lena

“Lena likes DIYing”, she said. I asked her to clarify and she explained that while working on some DIY projects she turned on the power sander. Her dogs scattered the moment the sander started up. But, Lena stood her ground and watched as if supervising the project. The same happened when she used a power stapler. Lena sat and watched. I was trying very hard not to let the excitement show in my voice. But, my brain was screaming, “Adopt her now! This is the dog for you.”

Megan explained that Lena hadn’t been tested with children yet and she would be taking her to an adoption event in Arlington, VA over the weekend. I knew I’d be going to Virginia in two weeks, but Megan couldn’t hold a dog per Lucky Dog Animal Rescue’s policy. I had three options. 1) I could jump in the car and go meet Lena that weekend. 2) I could wait for two weeks and hope that she was still available for adoption. 3) I could adopt her sight unseen. Luckily, I came up with a fourth option.

Lucky Dog Lena

My mom answered the phone on the second ring. “Mom, I’m going to ask you a huge favor. If you say yes, you can count this as my birthday present from you this year.” My mom hesitantly agreed to go to Arlington that weekend and meet Lena. I could barely contain myself as I waited for her to call me on Saturday. When she called she began by telling me Lena seemed very aloof and looked sick to her. Megan had warned me that Lena was not feeling great because of the heart worm treatment. My mom also said that there were children who were petting her and she was very calm. She said a man got up close to her face, and again Lena was calm. Finally, my mom said, “She’s a very sweet dog, Brit. But, there is another woman who seems to be very interested in Lena.” I was so anxious to have this dog, I hung up and called Megan right away. Although it was unusual, Lucky Dog Animal Rescue agreed to let me adopt Lena without meeting her. And Megan agreed to dog sit Lena until I could pick her up in 10 days.

As the hours drew closer to the day I’d meet Lena, I began to feel a pit forming in my stomach. I worried whether I’d like Lena and if she would fit into our family. Megan sent me a few photos via text of Lena. Each time I saw her adorable face, I knew I had to have her in my life. She was beautiful and I was in love with her. Is it bizarre to fall in love with a dog you’ve never met?

Lucky Dog Lena

I knocked on Megan’s door and she waved me in while holding back all the dogs. Each one rushed to meet me at the door except Lena. She hugged tight against Megan’s leg.

Lucky Dog Lena

She let me pet her, but her eyes never strayed from her foster Mom. I found myself feeling guilty for wanting to take her away. Megan assured me that she had easily attached to her first foster parent and that she had only been with Megan for two weeks. Everything seemed to live up to what Megan had told me. She really was a big dog at 70 pounds, but her ribs were sticking out. Lena was very sweet and definitely mellow. I promised to return in a few days after my commitment to attend the DeWalt event in Baltimore. Before I left, I gave Megan my pillowcase with a t-shirt in it so Lena could get used to my scent.

As the DeWalt event finished up, I left a few hours early to pick up Lena before rush hour traffic. I arrived at Megan’s and she took about 15 minutes to give me Lena’s medical files and helped me fit her new martingale collar. Then Megan walked Lena to my van and persuaded her to get in. She gave Lena a few send off words and said goodbye to me. As I sat in the driver seat and checked the traffic in Google Maps Lena began to pace in the van. Then she gave one loud bark of protest. I told her not to bark and that was the last peep out of her. It was a long drive back to North Carolina. After a while she laid down and began to relax. Eventually she dozed off for a little while.

Lucky Dog Lena

When we walked into the house my son smiled big. It was clear that he was happy to have a dog again and he appreciated her calm nature. The next morning Lena met my vet who jokingly said she wished Lena would be more still during her exam. We both laughed because she held impossibly still as the vet poked and prodded her. The vet and I debated Lena’s breed makeup. She is definitely a mixed breed. Perhaps she’s a golden retriever and a german shepherd. I think I’ll just call her a golden shepherd. (Could this be a new designer breed? LOL.)

After the vet appointment I gave her a much needed bath and grooming. She definitely looks like a well loved dog now.

Lucky Dog Lena

Lena is a chill dog. She rarely barks, we’ve only heard her bark a few times (and it is always just one bark.) She doesn’t know many commands, but she knows her name and, “Let’s Go!” Unfortunately we also found out that she has some thunderstorm phobia. I bought a Thunder Shirt with the hope that it will help calm her in a storm situation. I’ll know more as the fireworks start to go off for the Fourth of July.

One of the coolest things about Lena is her tail. It is a beautiful tail that curls at the tip. As she walks and wags, her tail curls to the left side.

Lucky Dog Lena

I have to admit, I feel like the lucky one in this relationship. I’m glad to have been able to adopt Lena.

Lucky Dog Lena

I’m anxious to see how her personality unfolds as she becomes more comfortable with us and as she recovers from her heart worm treatment.

Lucky Dog Lena

In the meantime, we’re enjoying having her around.

Lucky Dog Lena

Do you have a rescue dog? Was it love at first sight? And who rescued who? 😉

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5 Tips for Better Looking Periscope Videos | Pretty Handy Girl

Are you using Periscope yet? I know my initial thoughts were, “No way! I am not going to sign up for yet another social media platform. This Handy Girl ain’t got time for that nonsense.” This weekend I was bit by the ‘scope bug. Granted, this happened after an initial dive into the Periscope world where I dropped in to watch some random guy driving to work. Seconds after his face appeared on my screen, he said, “Welcome, Pretty Handy Girl.” I was so freaked out that I dropped my phone and was afraid to pick it back up for fear that he could see me. Gahhhhhh! Creepy!

But, this past weekend I gave Periscope another try after learning a little more about it at Haven. This time I realized that random strangers can’t see me. They get a little notification when you drop into their video feed. I saw that many of my fellow blogger friends were on Periscope. I could drop in and see them in their homes, on vacation, or whenever they wanted to share with me.

I’ve begun creating helpful video tutorials and sneak peeks behind the scenes in Pretty Handy World on Periscope. This is raw footage and you may just happen to see a stray stuffed animal in your face or me perched on top of a ladder at the top of the stairs.  That’s life in our home.

My friend Stacy described Periscope best when she said, “It’s like Vine and SnapChat had a baby.” The videos are short lived and only last 24 hours on Periscope, but I can save them to share with you later. Plus, I will be saving future Periscope videos on Katch.me! I definitely think this is going to be a powerful new platform. It will allow us to be teleported across the world and be able to view what’s going on in real time.

If you are just signing up to use Periscope or haven’t yet. Here are my 5 Tips for Better Looking Periscope Videos:

5 Tips for Better Looking Periscope Videos | Pretty Handy Girl

Tip #1 – Clean Your Lens

Yup, sounds stupidly simple, but before you push that broadcast button you’re going to want to grab a lens cloth and clean both the front and back lens on your phone.

5 Tips for Better Looking Periscope Videos | Pretty Handy Girl

Tip #2 – Turn on the Lights

If you are broadcasting from inside or at night, turn on a few lights. Bounce light off the ceiling or use a directional work lamp (aimed at the ceiling.) Make sure the light source isn’t behind your head. You can also set up near a window and face the window while the camera is on you. Basically, dark videos are grainy and hard to watch. Read to the bottom to see some of the lights I recommend.

5 Tips for Better Looking Periscope Videos | Pretty Handy Girl

Tip #3 – Back It Up

If you are sharing your home, back up…way back! Close ups of the counter tops and backsplash in your kitchen are nice for a minute, but not as appealing to view as an entire room view. Also, videos of your face super close will distort your face. Invest in a selfie stick or tripod to get that camera away from you. Read more

Buddy Handy Dog | English Shepherd Portrait

Hey y’all. Did you miss me on Friday? I missed you! It’s been quite a week, so I hope you don’t mind if I step away from the DIY tutorials today to share a little news from my personal life.

Buddy Handy Dog | English Shepherd Portrait

About two months ago, I received a sweet gift from a good friend. Colleen from Just Paint It created this beautiful custom portrait of Buddy aka Handy Dog for me. At the time, I was ecstatic, but little did I know that in less than a month this would be the only image I had of a smiling Buddy. Keep reading, this story does have a happy ending…I promise.

Buddy Handy Dog | English Shepherd Portrait

Buddy had been dealing with GI issues since the spring and our vet wasn’t sure what was causing them. He had been on a few meds (for an intestinal worm and for swallowing creek water) that we suspected threw his stomach into a tail spin (no pun intended.) As time progressed, he went from bad to worse. I knew he didn’t feel well and I could tell he was in pain. In an effort to keep from giving you TMI “to much information…thank you very much.” He ended up pushing his insides out. My sweet happy boy had slowly deteriorated and he was less and less of the happy dog we used to know. He also began losing weight.

Read more

Merry Christmas Vintage Bird Tree

(Image Source: The Graphic Fairy)

Thank you for yet another wonderful year of blogging. Thank you for visiting my blog from time to time. Thank you for your comments. Thank you for your emails. They truly make my time spent blogging worth every minute!

From me to you, I hope you have a truly beautiful Christmas day, Happy Holiday and a Happy New Year!

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swatches

Over a month ago I was contacted by La-Z-Boy and asked if I’d like to participate in their La-Z-Boy Design Dash. The idea was to visit my local showroom and design a sofa. Then I’d meet my sofa in High Point, NC and design a room around that sofa. The concept sounded like fun. And the idea of getting away for a few days for some R&R sounded great! Little did I know, that there would be very little rest or relaxation involved.

A week later I received instructions to go to the local La-Z-Boy showroom and design my sofa. As I approached the showroom I was hesitant. I remember the vision of my grandfather’s old slouchy recliner. I was suddenly filled with trepidation. How could I “design” a sofa with flabby rolls of corduroy? I grabbed the door and opened it, and what lay inside literally shattered any preconceived notions I had of La-Z-Boy!

I was stopped immediately by what I saw.

colorful-chair   medallion-chair cannonball-arm

I had a breathtaking reaction to this chair:

my-chair-colors-pillows

Everywhere I looked there was more beautiful upholstered furniture. Read more

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My grandmother wouldn’t mind that I painted and then wrote all over her coffee table. She was one of the most giving people you’ve ever met. She truly was the type of person that would give you the shirt off her back if you needed it. I strive to live up to her legacy every day of my life.

She was also a very lucky lady. I mean lucky as in she could spot a four-leafed clover in a field of them. She was constantly finding money on the ground.

gma_in_silver_sweater

When I was living with her my freshman year in college, she made me do a U-turn on a street because she saw a five dollar bill in the middle of the road! She was a hoot and loved to make people laugh with her jokes or just dressing up as a bunny every Easter.

gma_bunny

(That’s my sisters and me in the floral skirt.)

She also won several contests in her life. But, she rarely kept her winnings. One of the things she won was a solid construction coffee table. When I was moving into my first apartment, she gave it to me. We used it for years until my design tastes changed and I bought a new one. Grandma’s coffee table moved into our attic. It sat there for years, buried under bags and suitcases.

When the big tree fell on our house, we did some serious purging in the attic. I should have taken the coffee table to Goodwill or sold it at our yard sale. But, something made me keep it a little longer. Read more

GMC_Acadia_roadtrip

My goodness, it has been a whirlwind week for me. I left on Wednesday to head down to Atlanta, GA with my good friend Holly (of Storywood Designs). We rode in the lap of luxury in a swanky new 2014 GMC Acadia Denali! (My boys were in love with the new SUV. Especially the bluetooth headphones that let them listen to another radio station as Mama belted out the lyrics to “Blurred Lines.” I can’t blame them, singing is the one skill I don’t have.)

I was sponsored by GMC at Haven and they let me borrow the vehicle for the week. It’s a good thing we had the Acadia with loads of cargo space, because neither of us travel light. We even brought our own furniture:

bellhopOur bellhop barely skipped a beat as he loaded furniture onto the cart with our luggage.
(photo courtesy of Holly)

Holly and I didn’t waste a moment. We checked into the Grande Hyatt in Atlanta, spread out our ScotchBlue Heavy Duty Non-Slip drop cloths and started transforming furniture: Read more

What’s going on with that Handy Girl? She didn’t post anything on Friday or Monday? Has she succumbed to jet lag after her trip abroad? (nope) Did she cut her thumb off on a saw and can’t type? (nope) Was she abducted by aliens?

face_shielf

(maybe)

Want to know why I’ve been slacking on posting?

This is why:

last_tile

I’ve been feverishly working on tiling the backsplash in our kitchen. It’s been a lot of sweat equity (and some child labor) but the results are stunning.

children_helping_tiles

I chose these beautiful carrara mable subway tiles from TheBuilderDepot.com.

venato_carrara_tiles

They arrived on a huge pallet and have been sitting in the garage for months. Once we got back from our trip I was having major DIY withdrawal. What better way to get back into the DIY game than tiling 80 sq. feet of backsplash! Heeheehee.

tiling_backsplash

I’ve rarely had a free moment, in fact when I actually did take a minute to sit down, Handy Dog took advantage of an open lap. (Ummm, someone needs to tell him he’s too big to be a lap dog.)

lapdog

What’s the rush Handy Girl?

The rush is self imposed, but I did want to finish before I left for Haven. I’m happy to say that I have a few more lines of caulk to run and the backsplash will be…stick a fork in it…DONE!

And then tomorrow morning I can hop in this swanky new 2014 GMC Acadia Denali and head to Haven!

2014_GMC_Acadia_Denali

(Totally love the hologram on the dashboard that displays speed, temperature, current song playing and more!)

Whoa, what’s with the new wheels?

Well, GMC is loaning the vehicle to me for the week. I’ll be working with GMC at Haven and theeennnnnn….

…on Sunday I’ll be working with some other bloggers to furnish and makeover another Habitat House in the Atlanta area. (Do you remember the big reveal last year?) It’s sure to be a lot of fun and a totally rewarding experience when the homeowner opens the door to her new home and is surprised to find it furnished for her!

I’ll be bringing a whole box of tissues this time.

Want to keep up with the action? Here’s how!

Follow these bloggers as they shop the World’s Longest Yard Sale this week:

You can follow the hashtag #GMCHTA (GMC Hidden Treasure Adventure) on Twitter and Instagram for live photos from the sale. And I’ll try to keep you in the loop through social media (mostly Instagram and Facebook) from the#HavenConf conference hashtag and beyond.

Want to read more about my adventures along the World’s Longest Yardsale last year?

Start reading here.

One more thing before I rush out. If you are going to Haven, you MUST…I repeat…you MUST hop in on one of the two classes Sandra, Traci and I are teaching. It’s called, “Let’s Case This Joint” and it’s going to be a total interactive hands on experience in molding, casing and trim installation. And there will be power tools! You might just have to put up with me and my “Dirty Handy” impersonation though.  “Go Ahead… Make My Day.”

dirty_harry_impersonation

 Put a Ryobi cordless finish nailer in my hand and I start acting like a tough guy.

I’ll be back later with some more DIY tutorials. I promise. I haven’t been abducted by aliens, I’ve just been a little up to my elbows in grout.

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Disclosure: GMC is sponsoring my trip to Haven this year. I was provided with a loaner GMC Acadia Denali to drive to the conference and back. I was not told what to write or say. All words, ideas and photos are my own.