100 Hours, 6 Months, Unknown Number of Swear Words… and a Kayak to Enjoy for Generations

selky kayak pygmy boats wooden kayak kit

My husband knows I like to build things.  I’ve built lots of items from our own designs and many from Ana-white’s plans.  He gave me a Kayak kit from Pygmy Boats for Christmas and gave me a challenge to focus on the craftsmanship and detail of woodworking and building… It took me until February to unwrap the package (one could say it was too cold to work??).

After nearly 100+ hours, 6 months, frustration, swear words, joy and satisfaction of completing each step, I have a wooden kayak that fits perfectly and it makes me smile to take her out on the water.   I’m hopeful that someday my kids will be able to enjoy this kayak and know that mom made it 😉 so long as I don’t wreck it while transporting it on top of the car!


No need for a tutorial on this one as Pygmy Boats provides detailed instructions with each boat kit, so this post is pretty much a picture post and images of the build process

Build of the Pygmy Boats Selkie Kayak

DIY Wall to Wall Built in Bunk Beds and a Full Room Remodel

diy wall to wall bunk beds built in bunk beds tutorial
Rehabbing a lakefront cabin… and loving it! This first project to share is our “Camp Room” themed bedroom with Built in Bunks.

Before  & After:

diy built in bunk beds into wall bedroom

I was inspired to create wall to wall bunks at our little getaway cabin that I’m currently rehabbing…Hence hardly any posts since September! I’m pretty much done with the majority of the “big” stuff, so I’ll start posting the projects :)

The idea behind cramming as many beds as possible in a small room is having 2 rooms with  1 queen bed in each and a set of built in bunks in each.  Meaning a family of 4 could stay in one room and our 4 younger kids in the other, then my husband and in our solo room.

The problem is, the existing 2 bedrooms to be used for the bunks rooms were WAY to Small to use as is, we could only fit a queen in the room.. Somehow we had to get another 4 feet off the back of the rooms to make enough space for bunks AND a queen bed. Our garage was right behind the bedrooms so Vuwalla… our extra 4 feet we got by pushing into the garage space (it’s a 2 car garage so we had the room.)

Here is the room as we blew out the back wall to allow for 4 more feet of space to fit in the bunks.  You can see 2 bedrooms, the camp room is the one on the left. I’ll do another post on the 2nd bunk room soon (the “Forest Room”)!

bulding new wall for diy built in bunk beds

Here it is after the drywall was done (btw. I hired out the demo, framing, Electrical and drywall.. I’m not THAT handy 😉 everything else I did myself.

bulding new wall for diy built in bunk beds drywall

At this point instead of texturing or finishing the drywall since I was going to build right over it. , I installed flooring (I went with laminate.. vs. hardwood, carpet or vinyl.. ) it takes a few frustrating hours to get the rhythm down on installing this “easy to install’ flooring..

Side note: I have to say, after living with laminate for a while at a lake, it was a bad choice, it swells up if you leave any standing water (i.e. swimsuits on the floor etc.) I frankly wish I went with vinyl… over any other flooring type.

diy installing laminate flooring pictures

Next I covered the popcorn ceilings, I was NOT interested in Scraping, and texturing and painting so I found the cheapest wood at Home Depot. Cedar fence boards at $3.48 for a 1x8x8 board then used my Brad nailer to put them up on the ceiling, this room cost about $160 when all said and done to cover the ceiling.

Supplies for the cedar ceiling to cover up the “oh so lovely” popcorn:

cover popcorn ceilings cheaply cedar fence boards

Now it was time to build out the bunks.. Here are the supplies for the bunks –

  •  (4) 2x10x10’s to do the sides and head/foot area
  • (4) 2x4x8’s for the inside mounts for the bunk bed mattress support strips
  • (32) firring strips, cut in 1/2 so that each bunk got 16 strips for the mattress support
  • (2) 2×4 pieces of 3/4″ plywood for the shelving base
  • (1) 1x12x8 piece for the shelves
  • a crap load of the thin cedar planking  not the fancy closet type.. but the rougher cheaper stuff – with tongue and groove.. that I used a brad nailer to install.
  • White paintable caulk like 6 containers or so
  • caulking gun
  • 4 joist hangers that are 2×4 in size to hang the end of the bed 2×4 that supports the plywood piece for the foot bed storage/shelf area.
  • paint, putty to cover nail holes, 3 inch screws to go into studs and 2×4-2×10’s and 2″ screws for the firring strips to 2×4 supports.

Pictures of the cedar planking, and all the putty for the nail holes.. then you go through line by line with caulk to seal every tongue and groove seam so the paint covers nicely with no holes.  If you look close enough you can see the 2×10’s that surround the wall, this is 3/4’s of the bunk bed frame. They are mounted to every stud I could find and 3 screws per stud.

framing built in bunks beds

Adding the outside 2×10 by using 3″ screws and putting 4-5 in each board through to the smaller 2×10 already attached to the wall.  you can see I did a coat of paint on the planking, and all the awesome white caulking lines.. this was WAY time consuming.


Add the remainder of the cedar planking to the outside, putty, caulk and paint. 20141116_023709737_iOS

Add your footboard 2×4 cut to size using the Joist hangers to support (approx. 80″ for a twin XL enough room to tuck sheets,, ) then add your 2’x4′ piece of plywood cut to size to cover your foot board, and then add shelving and all the firring strips


Here is the picture of the “foot board” I keep mentioning. btw all the outlets we had installed with USB ports 😉

footboard diy built in wall to wall bunk beds


Here is the room all finished up!

diy wall to wall bunk beds built in bunk beds tutorial



Let me know if you have questions.

Happy Diy’ing


DIY Hanging Bed from 2×4’s

Hanging bed with 2x4 lumber ana white daybed

My Daughter wanted to have a hanging daybed in her room so she could have a chill out area underneath and also a sleepover space for when friends came over.

We got the hanging bed plans/idea from Pinterest and ended up on using Ana White’s Hanging daybed Plan (Ummm …seriously, she’s a rockstar, I’ve done nearly 10 of her plans now)…

I requested that she help build it, so off to the local Home Depot to get the Supplies! Perfect opportunity to learn how to find straight lumber! checking for straight lumber hanging daybed

The two of us managed to get the bed hung and level with the help of some ladders and leveraging the ropes. It was SOOOO heavy!!! I used twice the recommended lag bolts into the walls, (paranoid mom here) and the bed ended up SUPER solid!

2013-07-05 11.09.54 2013-07-05 10.53.26

Super easy plan, would be GREAT for a first time project!

Happy Diy’ing!