HOME AND GARDEN: She is setting up a play area for women Whatcom | New


The men have men’s caves, often in a basement or garage. Women have developed a love for the shed over the past 20 years. Both are a bit of a play space for the child into the adult.

In a news article dated September 25, 2020, out of St. Louis for KMOV.com, it has gained in impact on families during the pandemic.

Tuff Shed, a nationwide company, told news staff that the most popular shed is 120 square feet, which is comparable to a small bedroom.

Some people use their hangars as offices. Some stock garden supplies and potted plants.

Three women from Whatcom County use their special spaces a little differently. They are the envy of their friends.

Everson resident Betsy VanWeerdhuizen’s garden was featured in The Lynden Tribune and open for viewing during Garden Club tours – not to mention being recognized by Floret Farm.

The retired school librarian put it back in a park-like space with Sumas Mountain as a backdrop. Visitors wander through the garden furniture and the shed faces other sheds and greenhouses.

The current rustic shed measures approximately 14 feet by 20 feet. This is a Model-A garage that they moved from a neighboring property several years ago and totally remodeled.

“We kept the huge doors on one end so you can still open them, but we also added a side door,” VanWeerdhuizen said. “It has cement foundations and electricity, but it is neither insulated nor heated. We also put a new shake roof there. I furnished and decorated it with all the finds from thrift stores and garage sales.

The property also has a 15ft by 30ft greenhouse built in 2008 by VanWeerdhuizen’s husband and son. It is heated by propane and is used for overwintering plants as well as starting new plants from seeds in early spring. It has a cement floor with a drain and sliding glass doors at both ends of the building for easy access.

“I like to be there when the weather prevents me from being outside.”

Side by side fancy

In the past, Jennifer Titus of Ferndale was a co-owner of a nursery. While her ex-husband continued with her business, she continued to love garden plants and, later, underwater plants and fish when she went diving. A multitude of plants embrace his house. Two sheds adjoin the backyard. One is the most typical, which she has furnished with a day bed, books and a porch. The other is a small veranda for its plants.

Additional funds were used to build both – something she had always wanted. She went to Jeff Nelson of GreenCoast Carpentry for hers. The Bellingham company also offers fences and gates, decks and porches, pergolas, trellises and arbors, as well as retreats and studios using sustainable methods, materials and design. Inspiration comes from the east or can follow styles of craftsmen, or even found objects and salvaged materials.

Ongoing – with a little help

Becky Duran McCarthy’s three children are grown up and her job allows her to travel. She has a tiny house in Birch Bay and has worked on it that she has recovered – from scratch.

“I started volunteering with Habitat for Humanity in February, the coldest day with a strong wind and a severe headache,” she said. “But I wanted to volunteer since last year and I was fed up with the excuses and decided if it wasn’t now, when?” ”

The project was a new quadruplex of townhouses. “I was warmly welcomed by the other volunteers who were ready to start building the walls,” she said. “I enjoyed being a part of a big project like this and came back the next day.”

She continued to build and learn about the process that helped her in her own shed. “I learned terms like ‘square’ which means the angle between two connecting boards is 90 degrees.”

“As time went on and my experience grew, I started planning in my head for my own shed. I went to the RE store and when I found some decent two by four. I bought them and put them away under my patio. I did this for several months.

The shed is 8 feet by 10 feet and about 12 feet high at the top. In addition to the RE store, McCarthy heard of a good deal at Home Depot: “There’s a section in the store with imperfect wood at 70% off. I was skeptical but found it to be true. I started stocking 2-by-4s and 2-by-3s and whatever looked good I could use.

The design was what she had seen: “I wanted to build something like the little houses that Habitat for Humanity was building for Homes Now. Everything I do is based on these.

“I made a list of what I needed and kept track of measurements, materials I still needed, nail types and sizes, and things like that. I started to stock up on tools and it happened to me that they were either given to me or sold at a very attractive price. But my favorite tool is my Hitachi cordless pneumatic nail gun. The older Habitat volunteers took the time to teach new volunteers how to use some of these tools.

McCarthy injured her arm in July and had to wait to continue. Due to the carpal tunnel in both wrists, it was difficult to squeeze to use some of the tools.

By September, they healed enough, the cost of wood went down, and she prepared the foundation by measuring where to put it.

“I bought concrete pillars with adjustable saddles. Since the ground was uneven, each pillar was going to have a different height just to be level. Friends and neighbors helped me with one thing or another just when I needed it, and I enjoyed the feeling of community.

Note: Elisa Claassen always wanted a shed. She imagines something with colorful concrete floors encrusted with river rocks from the banks of the Nooksack River where she was playing, patio doors, a window seat, bookcases, plants and a space to write and create. art as well as having a large dollhouse that she found in a thrift store. Children from the neighborhood would be welcome as well as dogs and cats. Ideally, it would have a nearby water feature, patio, nighttime lighting, and use items from the ReStore.


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