Saturday, July 27, 2013

Basement Playroom

The sofa is gone. The coffee table is, too. The basement is coming along well, and we were able to keep most of our books on our bookshelf. The solution: an Ikea bookshelf that matches the one we have on the other wall in the basement. Everything now has a place, and each bin is marked accordingly -- blocks, art supplies, dress-up, trucks...

Even in our tight basement, we were able to make the most of limited space and create a play area that is perfect for our two sons.

Friday, July 26, 2013

S&W Hardware closes up shop after 60 years

At the end of August, Fred and Warren Smith will dim the lights and turn the key one last time. S&W Pro Hardware in Plymouth, Mich., will close after 60 years of service. It’s time for a well-deserved retirement for the keepers of this shop.

I was lucky enough to have worked at two family-owned hardware stores when I was in my early 20s. S&W was one of the stores.

A typical day involved stocking shelves, cutting glass, threading pipe and, most importantly, helping the customer.

At times you would stop the customer from buying a $50 faucet and sell them a 50-cent washer. You might spend a half-hour with a customer removing a broken bolt in order to sell them a replacement for 35 cents.

You would shoot the breeze with former employees who would regularly visit the store. It was not uncommon for them to help out a customer or two while visiting.

You would learn from co-workers and from the customers and you would pass it along.

The commitment to service at this store was remarkable.

Thanks to the crew at S&W Hardware for all the years of service. Be sure to stop by the store before they close. The store is located at 875 Ann Arbor Road in Plymouth, in western Wayne County.

Shop at your local hardware store!

Take a look at the workshop, stock room and some of the equipment used for many years at the store.

Thanks to Gary Slater for sharing his photos taken a couple weeks ago at S&W Hardware. Gary was the true master of the fastener aisle.

Friday, July 5, 2013

Kitchen Project: Take Nine -- And We're DONE!

After more than a month of living among dust and destruction, ripped-out cabinets and uncertainty over what to do with the floor, we've finally finished the kitchen project.

The cabinets are in. The floor is finished. The moldings are completed. The backsplash is filled in. We even got a new spice rack. 

Here's how it turned out.