Custom Challenge Coin Display Gift
Last week Ciriana told me that her Sergeant was going to give Ciriana a "good-bye" luncheon. Although Ciri's official last day isn't until May, her last day in the clinic is nigh. Her Sergeant asked me to send her pictures of Ciriana in a bite suit from a re-enlistment ceremony in Germany. The photo was mounted onto a plaque that Ciriana received during the luncheon - it is pretty awesome looking.
When her Sergeant told me what she was going to do with the pictures, I didn't think about getting Ciriana anything just from me, except maybe some flowers. That is, until Sunday afternoon. Remember that episode of Scrubs with the "epiphany toilet?" Well, I get epiphany's in the bathroom too, only mine are in the shower. So, there I am lathering, rinsing, and repeating, when it hits me. Ciriana wanted a coin display for her challenge coins. All of the ones I've seen are either ugly or just blah. So... "Why not design and make one myself," I thought as I scrubbed my nether regions.
My creativity is weird. It comes in waves... BIG spread out waves. Once I get an idea, my creativity goes into overdrive. I could do it this way, or I could do it that way... oh! It would be so cool... etc. etc. It wasn't until Monday that I finally had a pretty good sketch of what I was going to do.
Everything about the display means something. Ciriana and I have an equal amount of good and bad experiences with the Army, which is why I decided to make it two different colors. Like all things in life, you have to take in the good along with the bad - that's just life, right? The coins placed over these two colors are part of the "military life" and bring the two colors together as a whole. I don't think the cat and the dog need explaining. 🙂
The whole process took about three days - with work being done during nap time and a little after dark as well. The fun thing about this project was learning how to work with wood. I started watching wood working podcasts with the hope that I would take up woodworking as a hobby. Without some of the podcasts and blogs, like The Wood Whisperer, I would not have even known where to start. I was able to walk into the garage and things just started coming together. I figured out how to use the tools like the chisels, the Dremel, and more.
While I was getting Izzy ready, I looked at the display sitting on the counter and thought, "Holy crap. I made that!" It is a wonderful feeling to create something all on your own, especially for a notorious computer nerd like myself.
I'm inspired to work more with wood and create more crazy stuff. For now, this wave of inspiration and creativity has passed, and I did say these waves are far apart, so who knows when my next project will be. 😉
Don't forget to check out the Flickr set for the entire collection of photos I took while making the display.