Concrete Patio = Concrete Furniture?

As much as I love shopping for awesome furniture and decor, I love making it all that much more. I was browsing through the current issue of Do It Yourself magazine and saw this adorable idea of using concrete blocks to make outdoor furniture. It just so happens that making a little outdoor oasis for myself and my kitties is on my spring to-do list. After breaking down the image of a concrete bench into a workable blueprint for my bench, I went online to lowes.com (my favorite and also the closest hardware store in my area) and researched concrete blocks and adhesives. If everything works out well, I could easily make this bench for somewhere between $70-85, which is comparable to an inexpensive store-bought bench. I personally think this would have a lot more personality, be a lot more fun (because I get to make it!), and it would double as a place to house some of the plants I’m attempting to grow. Plus, it’d be easy enough to make more “matching” furniture any time I want! 

So of course I found this idea in DIY Magazine, but when I was looking for a picture online, I found this: http://www.eastvalleytribune.com/article_f190052b-18c5-5b70-94db-cdf5ddb556b2.html, which is basically the EXACT same concrete block sofa that’s in the magazine, but broken down a bit more. I’m looking forward to seeing what my husband thinks (which will be disgust), convincing him to let me do it (easy, peasy), and then actually making it!

The best part of this awesome concrete sofa? Making the cushions and pillows to go with it! Can’t wait!

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Conco Story Part 1 1st Draft

My knuckles were turning white as they gripped the spine of my library book ever tighter. As always, I was sitting in the very back of the van, right hand corner so that I could stretch my way-too-long legs out over the cooler. The sometimes blue, sometimes green minivan came to a halt in front of the small brick cube of a building I would be living in for the next eight months. “Come on, let’s get this over with,” my step-dad barked. It was his way of showing he wasn’t looking forward to this either. Mom opened the sliding door and unbuckled my little brother from his car seat while one of my sisters slammed the left-hand sliding door, leaving the other sister crawling over me in an attempt to get out before me. I made no move to stop her as I usually would in an attempt to teach her patience. After a long pause, Mom made a “get your butt out here right now” gesture, and I reluctantly lay the library book on the seat. I still hadn’t finished it yet, and I had a feeling I wouldn’t have the chance to try again any time soon.

The dorm building was arranged as two floors, each having four suites. Each suite had two bedrooms separated by a bathroom and small hallway. In the center of the building was a large CA with a kitchenette and some furniture. My room was upstairs. Rebekah dorm, suite 15/16, room 15. I sighed as I opened the door and looked around at the arrangement my roommate had already set up for us. We had talked on the phone for some time and agreed via e-mail that this setup would be good for us. I was suddenly terrified to meet her in person. Would she like me? Was she as nice in person as she was on the phone? She had seemed so very excited to have me as a roommate, but my father had taught me how to act, how to lie and fake your feelings, and I feared perhaps that might be what she had done. I really hoped not, though, because I had been truly excited to be roommates with her.

My family made a trip with my luggage and was heading back down the stairs for the second load when she came. Carolyn had long, dark brown hair that I was instantly envious of, a fair complexion, and a sweet, welcoming smile. She walked with a certain grace in her step, the grace of someone who was confident in herself, I thought. She was pretty, I noticed, but I could instantly see that her true beauty was in her personality. She greeted me with enthusiasm and introduced herself to my family. She even hugged me. It threw me off, I was so unused to having people hug me. I knew instantly that any doubts I had about our phone conversations weren’t going to be any problem. I was going to get along with this girl perfectly.

My family had decided to stay for a bit to help me get settled in. I had most of my things unpacked in just about an hour, and Carolyn was keeping my younger siblings entertained. My baby brother, only three years old, looked out the window and exclaimed, “brown church!”. “Brown church” was what he called our church at home because he was practicing colors. I looked out the window where he was pointing and saw nothing but trees all around. “I can’t see it, Jonah. Where is it?” He pointed very emphatically to the line of trees to the right of Rebekah dorm. “Brown church!” he exclaimed. “Oh, yep, I see it. It’s right there!” I lied, but still looking for whatever it was he was seeing. “What color is the roof? You remember ‘roof’? The top? What color?” He thought about it for a moment before saying, “Brown. No. Black. Black roof, brown church.” I scooped him up in my arms and tickled him, all the while praising him for knowing his colors so well. I was going to have to explore the woods and see if I could find that “brown church” he was so insistent upon.

I cried when they left. My oldest little sister shrugged my hug off, while my younger little sister cried and wouldn’t let go. Jonah, being too little to understand, gave me a hug and a kiss and went on without a care in the world. I hugged Mom and Dad good bye, gave them kisses, and turned to my roommate once they had gone. I chocked back tears and smiled my biggest fake smile I could muster. “This is so exciting! I’ve been looking forward to this for months!” Inside me, I was hurting so badly, but the prospect of getting to know my roommate and starting classes the next day was enough to keep me sane for a while. This would pass, I reminded myself. It wasn’t like they’d died or anything. I would see them again, and I could always call. Besides, I could cry tonight once the lights were out. I was an amazing silent crier.