It’s always the way isn’t it? You’re sitting at your desk, ready for a bolt of inspiration to hit and jolt you right out of your socks. Only it doesn’t come and soon enough you’re waylaid by those stupid Facebook reels, the ones that show you how to fix a problem you’re never going to have (why oh why have I watched so many of these stupid things??).
If that’s the case, get out. No not off this site, I mean take a long break. Because I’ve done just that and come back full of big ideas.*
*Of course I haven’t come back with the money or energy to put those ideas into action but hey, baby steps. Also that picture above is my son Jackson out the back of mum’s place where we stayed. If I had a backyard half as nice as hers, I’d be a very happy gardener.
It was definitely more business than pleasure.
And when I say business, I mean family business involving not one but two trips down to Melbourne for my son’s surgery, Christmas at mum’s, learning not to swear at every lunatic car on Flemington Road (this took a while), a Melbourne Heatwave (I reckon I’m a good kilo lighter after it) and meerkats. Many a meerkat.
But with all the time away from home, all the takeaway food (I do love my dumplings) and all the time on the road (probably over 1000kms all up), in the brief moments of down time I had, the ideas came think and fast.
But of course they would, being a good three and a half hours down the road away from my work desk and shed full of junk, namely where I had the tools and supplies I’d need to get things underway..
No lacking inspiration here, just an ever growing list of things I wanted to do (and was going to do) when I got back. Whenever that was. Plus the time away from my screen also pointed out something I’d completely glossed over..
I can hear clearly now
I’ve had my Bluetooth compatible motherboard since I rebuilt my computer at the start of 2022 (B450M Mortar Wifi if you want to get super nerdy here). I’ve had my JLab Wireless headphones since October when I thought I’d lost my Sennheiser wireless headphones for good (I hadn’t, wifey found them soon after..)
But it’s only after two weeks away that my mind has suddenly wondered: Hey Al, why haven’t we got these two to meet up and shake hands already?
And so on the afternoon I got back (after unceremoniously dumping everything we hauled in from the car all over the lounge) I finally got to see if one worked happily with the other. And wouldn’t you know it? Less than ten seconds later I had awesome PC audio streaming from the buds without drowning the house with the true glory of Kid Creole doing his thing live.
Now why didn’t I think of this earlier??
Maybe if I’d headed away back in October the idea would have come to me then..
The other ideas that came to me when I least expected it:
A TIDIER FUNCTIONAL DESK
Looks like mum’s tidy influence is finally catching up on me (after only 42 years) because after spending time near a work station where everything has it’s place, I’ve come home to my chaos in action snapshot of a desk and decided ‘Yeah nah, this needs a bit of an update.’
Because currently on this $30 bargain from Gumtree a couple of years ago I have:
-Many 3d printed things in various states of assembly and or paint
-Library books that I read while waiting in hospital (now overdue)
-Every tool under the sun (just in case)
-A Snowball USB microphone (rarely used)
-Parts of Jackson’s old computer (I rebuilt his with a new case when we came home)
-A Stig piggy bank (monetary contents currently unknown)
-A Pip Boy Fallout Christmas Tree Topper
-A Dalek piggy bank
-Wifey’s woolen creation (Not sure what it is how how it came to be here)
-Drawers full of paint, old bills, financial statement and hundreds of cords that we haven’t used for years.
And what I’d like to have on my new desk is….
-An area that looks nice
And so my big idea is similar to my diary one (getting that printed soon) in that I’m going to build my own. Starting with a nice big flat affordable oiled panel from Bunnings – something like this:
Adding some legs such as:
And doing away with the junk filled drawers for good. Now the first issue that does spring to mind here is having everything cluttered up again and to that I’m thinking of some shelving, but with a steam punk pipe aesthetic. Something that’s easy to drill holes for an modify as we continue building up and up and up as needed. This this but on top of the desk, supporting wood shelving:
Freeing up the space underneath it would allow more room for a storage crate or two and my computer lighting to be a little more effective. The challenge will be to keep the wife and kids from cluttering it up with their stuff..
A PALLET BED FRAME
We don’t have a guest room in this house per se, more a tucked into a corner. And while it’s a perfectly functional mattress, things would largely look better with a frame. And while I could go out an buy one eventually, in the spirit of roll your own I’m thinking of making one out of pallets. Basic or lavish I’m still not sure (got to get the pallets and an orbital sander first of course) but luckily there’s no shortage of pallet inspiration out there (there’s no such thing as lacking inspiration where there’s pallets to build with!)
Since we’re only working with a king single here I’ll only need two pallets (three tops if I want to make a frame) but sanded and stained, this should come up alright!
(Just got to measure how many will fit in the back of a Subaru Impreza first..)
FINALLY – TRYING MY HAND AT MEAD
A couple of days ago I mentioned one of my big plans for 2023 was to try making some small batch mead. Having made home brew before (and absolutely loving the experience) I figured it was high time to get my viking on and get down to business with this drink of the gods.
Interestingly while going through my phone downloads yesterday, I discovered that in November last year I actually download a recipe for a small batch mead setup. Which of course I don’t actually remember doing (nothing new there really). But someone from Illawarra Beekeepers has written a smashing guide on how to make just what I’m after with easily available ingredients (I thought I’d have to order in some exotic yeast for this but no, bread yeast from the supermarket is what is called for here).
I just need to find another 5 litre carboy/demijohn (why I didn’t bring down my original one from the Gold Coast is beyond me) and maybe a new bung because I still have everything else from my previous home brewing setup. (The beauty of making mead is that you don’t need to boil anything for an hour or worry about cool downs of dry hopping – just assemble, shake and wait for a few months.)
Maybe I knew something back late last year? Oh well, here’s to brewing like a grizzled viking!
Lacking inspiration? Maybe it’s time to take a break..
But whatever you do, make sure you write down your plans/big ideas as they come to you away from home. There’s nothing worse than making it back after a big trip and struggling to recall all the things you wanted to do when you came back..
Wish me luck on my tasks though, 2023 looks to be a busy year already and it hasn’t even officially started!