Building a fire pit with Lowe’s & allen + roth

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With cool fall weather blowing in, it’s not too late to tackle some of your landscaping projects. Autumn is the perfect time to roll up your sleeves and create a landscape to enjoy all year long.

A fire pit will be a welcome addition for entertaining in almost any space. It’s a cozy gathering spot and offers an enjoyable way to spend time with family and friends on a lazy summer evening, a cool fall night or a snowy winter afternoon.

You’ll also find that it’s a project most people can do themselves with a few simple tools, so don’t think you have to pay an arm and a leg to a contractor to get this done. You can find everything you need from Lowe’s, particularly materials from allen + roth.

I recently completed this project with the help of friends and family, with most of the work being done over a three-day period. You can see the final result in the first photo, and then the rest of the slideshow shows the progress of the project from beginning to end.

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Bullz-Eye on location at Daytona 500 with Jimmie Johnson

Paul Eide Jimmie Johnson

I have never been a NASCAR fan. For a guy who loves sports, I knew more about curling than I did NASCAR. I could never understand why watching cars making hundreds of laps was so popular.

Then I attended the 2014 Daytona 500 in Jacksonville, Florida courtesy of Lowe’s and my life changed. I’m not ashamed to admit I’ve watched each of the ensuing races in Phoenix and Las Vegas, intently. We interviewed 21-year old rookie Kyle Larson since then and my respect for him, and the sport, is through the roof.

The highlight of the trip? Meeting six-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion and Lowe’s driver Jimmie Johnson.

Prior to meeting Jimmie Johnson, I had no frame of reference for his level of success or how historically dominant he has been working alongside Crew Chief Chad Knaus.

It was only after someone aptly explained that Knaus is the Bill Belichick to Johnson’s Tom Brady (though they’ve been twice as successful in terms of championships) did I realize how much they’d accomplished as a team. Here’s Jimmie and I, laughing about our favorite recipes:

Paul Eide Jimmie Johnson Interview

After I met and briefly interviewed Johnson, I was fortunate to be invited into the Lowe’s pit for the start of the race.

Jimmie-Johnson-Pit-Daytona-500

The thing that impressed me the most was the sound. When you’re standing in the pit, you hear this groaning sound in the distance, like a gathering thunderstorm, and then all of the sudden… BOOM! The entire field explodes right in front of you, a mix of colors and shapes that you can barely discern. Then, they’re gone again and the sound dissipates to a low hum.

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Kobalt 40V Max Outdoor Power Equipment introduces Bullz-Eye to manhood!

Cobalt Plus 513

When I was a kid, I used to think the old guys who took care of their yards were losers. While I was zooming around the neighborhood smoking bowls in my car listening to Bone Thugs-n-Harmony, I thought it was pathetic how homeowners genuinely took pride in their lawns. Surely there was more to life than a new mower, hedge trimmer or edger, I surmised.

But now that I’m in my 30s and have become one of those losers, I’m here to tell you that there isn’t more to life than that.

In fact, it feels awesome to manicure your lawn, tend your garden, and then blow the clippings off of your driveway with a leaf blower upon completion. It makes the iced tea I enjoy in my folding lawn chair post-yardwork taste that much more crisp, the AM talk radio that bellows out of my open garage that much more insightful, and the episodes of “Wheel of Fortune” that I have on DVR for post-lawn enjoyment that much more stirring.

But do you know what does suck about lawn maintenance? Inadequate, cumbersome tools.

I’m not a scientist and the ever-tender 40:1 gas to oil ratio on certain power tools intimidates me. Refilling the fly wheel on a trimmer or edger? Uh, how about I just not use it instead? Mower won’t start after 50-some pulls? I’ll do it tomorrow. As a result, my lawn looked like my bathroom in college; a loose “conflaguration” of unfulfilled good intentions, drowning in questionable, unnamed chunks and fluids.

What if outdoor power equipment (OPE) tools were easy to use? What if they were actually enjoyable? What if when you were done, you felt good about yourself and your yard?

The engineers at Kobalt have not only delivered a ground-breaking collection of OPEs, but they’ve done it with empathy in mind.

At their super-secret space bunker facility in North Carolina, Kobalt engineers have tirelessly simulated the plight of the average homeowner in an isolated, controlled environment straight out of the Hunger Games. Unless the design and function of these tools was done to the Kobalt standard, they weren’t allowed to see their families, or use the bathroom. Some were simply killed with the same tools they had a hand in creating.

The entire 40-volt OPE collection was made with the user in mind.

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