Monday, June 29, 2015

Weekend projects outside

I've decided to create a new routine, or rather, attempt to. As I have a dozen things to do on my list, at any one time, I'm going to do a weekend project, once a week, to try and get through them all. My weekend projects may not actually fall on the weekend, but the idea is to pick a small job which can be accomplished within two days.

~ Click to enlarge ~

Painting the letterbox, was one of those jobs I kept shafting off my list. It's been looking like its got a bad case of eczema for a while now! After eight years, the heavy duty varnish I originally coated it with, was due to expire. I rummaged around the shed for a can of paint, and made sure I kept Saturday free. At least on the weekend, I could be sure the postman wouldn't be calling.


I used a can of Heritage Red, Weathershield paint, which we picked up from a mark-down table, at a hardware store, several years ago. We buy them occasionally for projects such as these. I did my best to scrape off the old peeling varnish and slapped on two coats of new paint.

Back door

The hinges were looking like they were effected by the elements too, so they got a lick of paint to protect them. You can see the grain of the ply is deep, because the varnish seal had been baked off several years ago. I've probably given this letterbox a few more years life, just by taking the time to paint it. 

I should have done it a few years ago, but better late than never.


Even the inside wasn't spared from my brush. There was quite a lot of dust and muck to clean out first, but the letters should be nice and cosy now.

It's not perfect, but it will protect the wood for at least a few more years to come. I built this particular mailbox for when we first moved in, so its been going since 2007. Apart from the hardware, and number plate, everything used in its making (including the stand) was from recycled materials.


  1. Well, that really made a difference!

    I like your way of organising jobs, too. Mine is slightly different. I have a list of about 50 jobs that need to be done regularly (yes, 50!). Most of them are things I need/want to do on a weekly basis (like cleaning poo out of the chook coop and cutting and mulching bracken) and others are less regular (like changing the bin in the composting toilet or washing windows).

    I aim to do about 20 per week (roughly 3 a day). If I just do the jobs I like, then the others I don't like, never get done, so I have to have a list that includes them all. The big satisfaction comes from crossing them off the list each week. Note: these are all outside jobs. Nasties like housework get done on rainy days when I can't get out!

    1. Ha-ha, yes, those outside chores are a lot more enjoyable. Especially with the view!

      You sound like a busy bee, but its all worth it if jobs don't pile up. If you can manage 50, then you're doing very well indeed. :)

  2. Wow, what a huge improvement just a little paint can provide. I love that color (because it reminds me of our barn red). Those little projects can really pile up. Every now and then we declare a catch up day to get odds and ends crossed of the to-do list.

    I've divided my day into garden time and other project time. In summer, the garden is in the morning and other projects in the afternoon. In winter it's reversed. It all depends on whether I want the warmth of the sun on my back or not.

    1. The sun definitely factors in where we work the most too. For us it was rain this week, having to fit in when we had time to tackle a few big projects together. Catch up days, sound like a great idea.

      I'm reminded of the Traditional American Barns, in that colour also. In Australia, we tend to use "Heritage Red" as a trim colour on ornate features of colonial style houses. Very rare to see it in big blocks of colour, though I do like it on my mailbox. Red would be too bright, and brown too dark - this is just right. ;)

  3. I love your letterbox! I wonder if we are allowed to use one similar because I am under the impression that the post office here has to approve of our letter boxes. I am going to find out:)
    I think that having a list of "weekend projects" like you did is important in order to be able to tick things off. Once the small jobs are out of the way, it feels so much better and your energy can be fully dedicated to the bigger things. I think I will have to try it myself:)

    1. Thanks. :) And I hope you are allowed to select your own letterboxes. Maybe they just have guidelines you need to follow?

      I designed ours like this for two reasons. First, I wanted any A4 envelopes to drop down, away from the rain and not be squashed up or folded. Secondly, I receive medical supplies occasionally, and I wanted the box to fit in without having to be left outside in the rain. Our postman is very obliging and always uses our letterbox, as opposed to leaving bulky items by the side of the road.

      But if people have the spare time and materials, I think its fun to try and build your own mailbox, at least once in your life. I've actually seen people with old microwaves out this way, used as a letterbox too! May not look very flash but a clever way to recycle old white goods. Think of all that space too?


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