My summer with Kenny

     One of the fondest memories of my childhood were the long  weekends and evenings spent watching my grandfather tinkering around in the little shop out behind my grandparent’s house. It seemed he was always building something or another, and I liked nothing better than helping him out wherever I could. He’s long gone of course, and now I have my own two grand kids that, unfortunately, I don’t get to see nearly as often as I’d like since my two children live on the other side of the country.
So you can imagine how excited I was when my oldest son Brian called me up last spring and told me that his son Kenny had been begging him to come spend the summer with me and my wife at our lake cabin. Thinking back to the time spent with my own grandpa, I immediately began planning out my summer with Kenny. Like myself as a kid, Kenny has always been fascinated with woodworking and building things, but unfortunately, I have nowhere near the skills my grandfather did despite my enthusiasm.
Ok, it took 2 1/2 hours and a ham and cheese sandwich to figure out how to upload a picture onto this site…. lol
   While I’ve continued to dabble in woodworking, I am by no means a true carpenter or a craftsman. However, none of that mattered one bit once I stumbled upon some very good woodworking plans, and found information that opened up an entire world of step by step plans that seemed absolutely perfect for Kenny and I.
     The months leading up to Kenny’s visit seemed to just fly by, and the next thing I knew, my wife and I were off to pick him up at the airport. Still, I’d not simply been waiting around, as I already had a whole wealth of project plans and woodworking materials ready to go. The most obvious option for our first project was a birdhouse. The forest surrounding our lake cabin is absolutely teeming with birds, but the real reason I decided on a birdhouse is that it seems like that’s the first thing most kids build.
What I didn’t realize was just how quick and easy the step by step plans were, so much so that we almost immediately moved on to more difficult project plans that I had originally thought were beyond us. After building a coffee table and a bookcase, Kenny asked me if I could build him a tree house, and you know what, I actually could!
     By this time, after endless hours of fishing, boating, building and playing games, the summer was almost half over. Already feeling nostalgic and not wanting it to end, my mind again drifted back to the time spent in my grandfather’s little workshop when suddenly it hit me. That would be our final project together, a shed where I could make a workshop of my own instead of using the little space available in my garage. This way, when Kenny visits next year, I can work even more on giving him special memories just like I have of my granddad. Again, I am definitely not a carpenter, but thanks to the step by step plans we were using, building our little shed was not only fun, but surprisingly easy—even for an old man and growing boy like Kenny and myself.
     Maybe one day he can look upon this blog and remember the times we had, once I’m long gone.