I've always been somewhat of a handy man. I guess I learned the basics from my dad. He could fix about anything. I'm much like my dad in the fact that our fixes sometimes are not the most beautiful repair you have ever seen. But, nonetheless the repairs solved the problem.
My wife and I recently flew to Seattle and then went on an 8 day Alaskan cruise. When we retrieved our luggage in the baggage area during our return home, my wife advised that this was the last trip for one of our suitcases (Big Bertha). I told her that "Ol Bertha" had at least another 5 years of travel in her. She rolled her eyes as she looked at the suitcase with a handle I had bolted back into place and a roller wheel that I had duct taped back on. I told her a new strip of duct tape and she would be good as new! We recently bought a new set of luggage, but after one flight they got scratched up and a handle broke. There is no need to try to keep nice luggage. In our experience, the handles on the suitcases do not hold up well. I repair them with a small bolt, washer and nut and they seem to do much better.
Another recent repair resulted in the development of a Franken Turtle. My 3 year old granddaughter loved a small rock turtle that my wife and I had bought on vacation in Cozumel. She loved that turtle and dropped it several times on our tile floor resulting in turtle legs and head flying in different directions. After gluing the guy back together at least 3 times, the last drop just totally destroyed him. This was a few months ago. On our Alaska cruise we bought a similar rock turtle and brought it home to her. She was super excited and carried it around our house for a few days without incident. She insisted taking it inside a restaurant last week and dropped it on a tile floor. It shattered and then she fell apart. I recovered pieces and when we got back home we pulled out the glue. When I arranged the parts, I realized I was missing two legs. The genius in me told her we would find two small rocks and make legs. We were able to do so and got him back together. He looks somewhat like a turtle and should last another drop or two. Looking back, we should have bought several of the $5 turtles to keep in reserve! You can see our homemade rock legs in the photo below.
I enjoy piddling around the yard and the garage and working on small projects. I get great satisfaction in little things. Last week I installed a rain gauge in my yard. I had pulled open a drawer in one of my toolboxes and saw the rain gauge sitting there. I had been meaning to install it somewhere for the last two years we have lived in this house. So, I grabbed it and two screws and a few minutes later had a fully functioning rain gauge. Good thing I did it, I was able to measure some rain a few days later! Recently, I have changed out a few sprinkler heads, replaced a couple of outdoor landscape lights and planted a hardy hibiscus shrub. Before that I had small projects of taking apart, cleaning and reassembly of an old bench grinder and vise that used to be my dad's. Both came out looking great and working great.
A few things on my current "to do" list include installing two pull bars next to our bathtub, replace and paint a wood gable vent on the front of our house and plant 2 shrubs that my wife purchased. I also need to charge a couple of batteries in our Ring cameras and trim some shrubs. Home ownership always supplies me with a list of things that need to be done. There are always a/c vents that need to be cleaned or a/c filters that need to be changed out as well as other monthly maintenance things that come up. Most of these I enjoy doing and then have the satisfaction of crossing them off my "to do" list.
Are you or your spouse a "fix it" kind of person? Do you have some ugly, yet functional, repairs that you can share? What are some of your most recent repair or maintenance projects?