If you are an Arizona Resident, you have become familiar with the term "haboob" as of late. The reason I must tell you about our weather, is because Mia and her man headed right into the eye of the haboob for me this summer. This particular haboob came with 60 mph winds and was 60 miles wide. It turned our usually sunny, blue skies completely black. This is a picture of the haboob as it rolled into our neck of the woods on July 6th.
I had located yet another treasure on Craigslist that was at a woman's house close to Mia's. It was priced at a mere $50, so I knew that it would go quick. It was just what I had been looking to find for months, and the dimensions were perfect for my space. Mia has a truck and trailer, and of course said she would be happy to drive over and pick it up on a moments notice. She and Todd headed out, innocently enough to do a friend a favor. She called to tell me she had secured the workbench from "Barbie", who may or may not have been employed in the male entertainment industry, but that the weather had taken a turn for the worse, and they couldn't see 5 feet in front of them. I thought she was being dramatic as I looked out my window at a perfectly balmy evening.
Five minutes later, about 10 teenagers piled into my house, terrified. They had come to pick my Jaci up for an evening of fun. They tumbled through the back door like they had been blown in by a hurricane, asking if I had looked outside recently. I was in my apron, making dinner, but made my way to the back porch, where I saw one of the craziest things EVER!!
Everyone was scared and astounded. We have had some pretty crazy storms during the monsoon season around here, but never, ever, anything like this. I did the only thing I knew to calm our full household down that night. I made Pazookies for all! Pazookies are a little piece of heaven. A chocolate chip cookie, slightly underbaked in a ramekin, topped with vanilla bean ice cream while still warm. I think it improved the mood for everyone under my roof that night.
Back to my glorious workbench, secured in the storm, and delivered to me the next day. This is how I found it. Solid and sturdy, but beat up just a touch, which is precisely what I was going for. I am filling the basement family room with relaxed, industrial pieces and accessories. I need things that will withstand boys, teenagers, brothers, cub scouts, and a husband!
The finish was raw pine, so I just wiped it down, then gave it a coat of Chestnut Gel Stain. Of course I chose to do this on a record breaking heat day in Phoenix for this time of year, 117 degrees. Lovely.
I let it dry overnight, then finished it with a Minwax Clear Wax, which I love. The wax just gave it a nice, rich luster, not a shiny finish. It dries hard with no residue. I would have loved to use some Annie Sloan wax, but sadly enough, there is not one stockist of her products in the whole big state of Arizona.
Here she (he?) is, wheeled into place under the t.v. I needed a big piece of furniture here, it's a long wall in a big room. I had originally sketched out some ideas of things to build, but when I saw my neighbor's workbench in his garage, the wheels in my head started turning, and I started scouring Craigslist and garage sales. I have plenty of storage in the vintage suitcases for all the necessities. A $50 solution to a dilemma that was keeping me up at night. It's perfect!