JK2 is working on making a cradle for the baby. He's pretty excited about it (and so am I). We have an old blanket box/hope chest that my great-grandfather Charlie Rech made (presumably for my grandmother). It's just a very simple oak box, but I've always thought it was cool to have furniture in our house that was actually made by a family member.
JK2 found these really cool plans for an antique-style cradle from Norm Abrams, local Boston carpentry hero (from This Old House and Yankee Workshop). Click here to see what it will look like. Apparently Norm got the idea for the cradle after seeing an antique one in Old Sturbridge Village (sort of the Massachusetts equivalent of Williamsburg).
Since JK2 decided not to take graduate classes this semester, due to the fact that the baby is due when he would be in finals, he wanted to do something else with his time. He's always been interesting in woodworking, so he took a beginning woodworking class this month at the Eliot School in Jamaica Plain, where he learned how to use the various tools. He initially planned on making a grandfather clock, but he thought the cradle project would be a little more manageable for a first-time construction. Last week, he bought a table saw from Sears (he has been talking about buying one for years).
Today we picked out the wood. Like the cradle in the link above, JK2 decided to use cherry wood. Norm says that cherry ages well, and I really like the warm, reddish look of cherry wood. We drove up to Boulter Plywood in Somerville, a place that sells just about any kind of wood you can imagine, and we got our wood. They cut it for you right there, so it was even easier to fit in our car than we expected. Now it has to sit in our house for a couple of days to get acclimated.
I hope he'll be able to get it done in time! He has 3 months, so that seems like it should be enough time. If it all works out, JK2 wants to make other things, like the clock, or a block set for the baby.