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My personal blog about home improvement & DIY projects

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    One of the most valuable tools I have isn’t a woodworking tool at all.  It’s software & it’s indispensable when I’m building a woodworking project!  I’m of course talking about SketchUp, the 3D modeling program that’s available for free. I use SketchUp on every project.  It helps me conceptualize and design a project so I […]

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    The first and most important part of your marketing automation cycle is your website.  While this isn’t technically a “tool of automation” it serves as the foundation for your marketing platform and all of the strategies I’ll discuss are built around it. While many advisors have websites, they are often not tapping into the potential […]

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    Want to know the actual mechanics of building your email list with downloadable content? Well, you’ve come to the right place. This lesson will walk you through exactly how the process can work for you on your website!  A warning is in order though… we’re going to dive deep into the weeds and go over […]

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    I recently updated a couple of my woodworking plans with more detailed and thorough assembly instructions and updated the cut lists.  Since I wrote the original plans a couple years ago, I thought it might be helpful to post new links to them. Moveable Workbench The moveable workbench is probably the best project I ever […]

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    Make a lenten cross with it!  We started this as a family tradition a number of years ago and it’s become woven into the fabric of our holiday seasons.  I love the continuity of celebrating Advent and Christmas with our Christmas tree, decorated with years of family ornaments, then using that same tree through the season […]

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    One of the recent issues that I ran into with InDesign is that the program doesn’t have the same brushes and advanced masking capabilities that Photoshop does so when it comes to creating a document element like an object frame that looks like it was made from torn paper, InDesign presents us with some challenges. There are […]

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    So I’m the poster child for writing niche content these days!  Here’s another one for those of you who want to put interactive calculators in your PDF documents, but need some more advanced functionality than basic arithmetic functions.  Like, who would read this stuff anyway?? Well, here goes… I ran into this when putting together […]

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    Working on a full size version of the rustic farmhouse bed that’s lately been getting a lot of traction.  Here’s a SketchUp model of the overall dimensions and I will soon have a detailed assembly schematic and cut list.  Since these take a little while to create, I wanted to go ahead and get an […]

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  • 06/19/16--18:52: Making a Garden Pathway
  • I have a fixation with pathways.  While others entertain themselves with the latest series’ on Netflix, I sit in front of my computer looking a aspirational landscaping pictures on Pinterest (or surfing documentaries, but that’s another story).  It’s hopeless.  I definitely need some help! Ever since I moved into my current house, I’ve wanted to build […]

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    Today is actually not the 2nd consecutive day of my garden pathway!  I didn’t have quite as much time to invest this weekend and ran into a bit of trouble, so most of my work this time was repairing a section of the path and figuring out how to make a nice terminating end by the fence, […]

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    I’m making some great progress on the patio!  Getting up and at it before the heat really cranks up is the key, I’m finding out.  Even at 7:00 in the morning it’s 80 degrees and at least 80% humidity.  I’m soaked with sweat just walking around planning what I’m going to try to get done this […]

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    I kicked off another weekend by putting a few hours in on my pathway.  I’m continuing to make slow but deliberate progress!  I’ve made a few decisions that have changed my original plan.  First, I decided that I really don’t like the flagstone in the pathway and I plan to repurpose it to build some stairs and a […]

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    My summer (and my pathway) got away from me a bit with a few unexpected events that took up a handful of my weekends.  But such is life and projects will always be there!  So after my brief hiatus, I was able to finish up the project.  I’m labelling this “Day 5” and so it […]

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    After way too much time, I’ve finally compiled and released a downloadable project plan for the Kendal Extra Wide Dresser project.  You can access the plan page from any one of the blog posts or you can go straight there from here.  Star Wars Legos are not included… sorry!

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    When building my Kendal Extra Wide Dresser, I was also simultaneously building another smaller Emerson 3 drawer dresser.  This classic dresser style is so versatile and can be used in just about any setting for either children or adults and is a great project for someone just getting into woodworking with maybe one or two […]

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    I just finished a video on using Adobe After Effects to re-create an animated text effect that I see every time I look at videos on my Weather Channel app on my iPhone.  I really like the effect and wanted to use for a project and it may help you too. It’s a simple “reveal […]

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    Ever need to look up data in one Google sheet and use that to populate a different Google sheet?  It’s pretty easy to do, but you need to use the VLOOKUP function and the IMPORTRANGE function and it takes 2 steps: For those who don’t want to watch a video on it, here’s the step […]

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    I’m in the middle of creating plans for another piece of furniture that has a number of pocket hole joints.  I thought it might be helpful for some of my woodworking readers who also like to use SketchUp to put together a really quick tutorial on putting 3D renderings of pocket holes into your models.  […]

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  • 07/15/18--19:49: Christ and Culture: Lesson 6
  • If we are called by God to be culture makers through the creation mandate and within the context of the second commandment, how then shall we live?  In lesson 5 of Christ and Culture, Ike Reeder explores the approaches of 2 great thinkers, J. Gresham Machen and C.S. Lewis.  Join Ike as he unpacks their […]

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