Earlier this year, Rayen asked for a stage for Christmas. My eyes widened; I broke out in a cold sweat, chills spread throughout my body like an unprecedented electric current and hives formed on my flesh. A stage? A stage?! My life flashed before my eyes! Of course, I kid. What really came to mind was, challenge accepted!
I looked up various stages on the “interwebs” and they were a little out of my price range. For the most part, many of what I found on the internet were more of the “professional grade” variety. Then, I found a few blogs from people who built a stage of their own and thought to myself, “Hey, I can do that!” It didn’t look all that hard to do so I decided to dive right in and tackle this project – full steam ahead!
Ok, so maybe I didn’t dive right in. In fact, it took nearly a whole year before I even got started because, now, here we are in December. Yep, Christmas was three weeks away when I decided to finally start this project! Procrastinate much? The first thing I needed to figure out was, how the hell am I going to do this. Again, I watched a few Youtube videos, read a few blogs and before I knew it I had a plan. I mean, I already had all the tools in my garage. Now, I just needed to ACT! First stop was to the Home Depot and lumber was the name of the game.
I didn’t want the stage to be so high so I bought a couple of 2’x4’x8′ pieces of wood and chopped them up to make two 4’x4′ frames. My original idea was two make two separate platforms to be able to attach/detach them whenever I wanted. For what reason, who knows?
But, as I started “construction” I came to realize that the majority of the stage will be occupied with instruments. Oh, did I forget to mention that she also wanted a piano, a drum set and a guitar to go along with that stage?! I figured that the stage was going to be a little tight for space and so I decided to add an extended 3’x3′ platform to place a microphone holder and room for Rayen to sing to her heart’s content!
Now that I have the frame all setup, I bought two pieces of 4’x8′ plywood and made all the necessary cuts. At this point I had made a basic stage, but it was not “pretty” enough. I needed to add a little more “pizzaz” to make it special for my little girl. I wanted to add some flooring but also didn’t want to break the bank. The solution? Vinyl tiles. Sure, they may not be the prettiest but it beat a plain-old plywood topping. Plus, I got the seal of approval from the wife!
This part was fairly quick and easy as it took just under an hour to complete but I thought it looked rather fantastic! Not too bad for my first (and probably only) time.
I ordered a few things to add some flare from my best friend (Amazon) and, after about a week, I was done! The tricky and fun thing about this whole project was that I had to get it done right under my daughter’s nose and keep it a secret for nearly a month! “Construction” was happening in our basement so I worked on it sporadically when Ray was either sleeping or out with her mother. The basement consists of my “theater” and her playroom so keeping her out was a bit of a challenge. It was a big enough space to be able to accommodate an area for the two of us – my wife had no say in this.
To keep my daughter out, I needed to make up a story about why it’s “dangerous” to go down to the basement because there was something wrong with the air and breathing it could have dire consequences should we breath too much of it and only her mother and I could go down there until we can get it fixed. Too much? Nah, good enough, right?! A little white lie to preserve the sanctity of what I hoped would be a massive surprise for her wouldn’t hurt.
After a few days, give or take a few hours, alas, this was the end result.
Not too shabby for my first time, I have to say! Christmas is a week away so I’m hoping that Ray will love it. I’m still considering on whether or not to give Santa Claus any credit for this. Why? Well, because I want to be my daughter’s hero! Selfish? Maybe just a teeny-tiny bit but, whatevs!