I’m not very handy myself and I’ve come to realize that knowing how to fix and make things is a learned skill passed down from parent to child. My kids did take Tech Ed in middle school, a version of wood shop, which taught them how to use tools, a great first step.
This is a replica of a Mesopotamia Throne that my daughter and her friend built for a class project.
Two of my kids like to build things using tools. PickyKidPix prefers power tools to build her woodworking projects. My son has been crafting wooden swords using planes, knives, and carving tools.
Now that it’s starting to warm up here in Boston, our backyard deck is bare of furniture, so I asked my husband if he would tackle a project and have our kids help out. Father to son and daughter power! Let’s pass on the handiness.
I received this book from a publisher and thought this could be the blueprint to solve our outdoor furniture issues. My husband thinks, however, that a lack of a workbench and a table saw are going to make it challenging.
Still, there are smaller projects in this book that might make for perfect father/kids bonding time: birdhouse, birdfeeder, compost bin, and garden table. The garden chair featured on the cover might be too ambitious.
Build It Yourself: Weekend Projects for the Garden by Frank Perrone
With blueprints that detail each component of the project and color photographs laying out each step of the project, this attractive DIY woodworking guidebook has both small and ambitious projects to spruce up your yard. [DIY manual for woodworking garden projects, ages 14 and up]
If woodworking is not your thing — you need tools and knowhow — try something that is easier like reupholstering a chair. I was surprised by how easy it was. It instantly transformed my office! My husband taught our son how to reupholster a chair. All you need are:
- 1 yard of upholstery fabric per chair
- Upholstery foam
- Fabric scissors
- Staple gun
- Screwdriver or power tool with screwdriver attachment
It took them about fifteen minutes to reupholster one chair.
Our basement couch also came apart at the seams so my husband taught our daughter to fix it. It required a special needle that he ordered, and then he paid her to repair it after showing her how. She then offered to sew a rip in his t-shirt for an additional fee. Our daughter likes to make money!
How about you? Are you handy? What projects are you or your family working on this year?
BEST #OWNVOICES CHILDREN’S BOOKS: My Favorite Diversity Books for Kids Ages 1-12 is a book that I created to highlight books written by authors who share the same marginalized identity as the characters in their books.