Man, the temps have dropped really low overnight. It was cold yesterday and we got 7-8 inches of snow, easily. Church got canceled and we went sledding for a bit. Until it got too cold and windy to handle and we piled back in the car for the blizzard-like drive back to the house.
Calling it too miserable to mess with and shaking the ice from my beard, we stayed in for the rest of the day. I decided to start and finish up a couple of projects I'd been kicking around for a while. The first, being a wool blanket camping poncho. I'd seen several similar ones on some of the bushcraft forums and blogs I've stumbled across the past few months and decided to make one of my own after finding a cheap wool WWII army blanket in an antique store in Ozark, Missouri last week. I hope to use it in a few weeks when I head off to Arkansas for an upcoming camp/hike trip, weather permitting. It might also help bump up the warmth of my sleeping bag a bit.
The second project was a quick and dirty checkerboard and playing pieces. I used leftover ply from the kayak projects for the board and off cuts from the hiking stick project to cut the pieces from. A bandsaw is a thing of awesomeness for a project like this. I used some one inch masking tape to make the grid, cutting lines across it with a razor blade to make the checkered pattern and then blotted some stain onto the exposed area and half of the stick slices. Coating the rest with clear polyurethane. It took maybe an hour and fifteen minutes. I was teaching my daughter to play an hour later, when it all had dried enough to handle.
I also want to report on the demise of my hiking boots. They were an ancient pair of Vasques (Newbriers or Sundowners in suede, I can't remember) picked up before production moved from Italy to China. I likely won't ever buy another set of Vasque boots, I hear the quality went way down after the move. I do have a different brand of boot picked out and on order. Hopefully they'll make it here before I need them in a few weeks or I'll be hiking in the GoLite trail runners I have on today.