well, i finally committed to a design, species of lumber, and getting down to cutting. i changed my mind on the lower stretchers, and went with the second set, they just seem right to me. the lumber i picked is ash, for two reasons, one, i've never built anything big from ash, and two, it was dirt cheap at $2.49/bdft at rocklers this month. now that i have my nephew's table out of the way, and the last of my dad's new windows trimmed, it was a good day to cut today. especially since they have predicted rain and possible thunderstorms for our area on saturday. for those curious souls, i've included a pic of my dad's back yard for you to drool over. he hasn't done anything other than rake it out, and cut it once. now, for the fun part, the cutting. it was just one of those days, i set up everything for cutting, but when i went to look for my 3 ft steel ruler (which is usually on the saw table), it wasn't there. i looked everywhere for the silly thing, all my benches, my work table in the basement, even in the car, it just wasn't there. i decided to take my dad's neighbor's advice, and looked all over the garage, and sure enough, there it was! it was hiding in my dad's bucket for mixing cement, between two of his bigger items. how it got there, i don't know. oh well, now that i had my wayward ruler firmly in hand, i got to cutting, and got everything cut. after everything was cut, i moved it all to the basement, and glued up the legs, and marked out how i want to join the top together. tomorow it's make the patterns for the aprons and the lower stretchers.