This list was put together by a fellow hockey lady, Sonia Bynum. Please feel free to add to it in the comments below.
1. You know your way to/from all hockey rinks in the area without having to consult a map.
2. Any conversation with strangers invariably turns to hockey after a maximum of 10 minutes.
3. When it comes to budget, hockey vs. groceries is an acceptable consideration.
4. That hockey locker smell? You can't remember the last time you actually noticed it.
5. When looking for new property, space for a backyard skating rink is a heavy factor. So is a basement fit for shooting practice.
6. After a ten minute dissertation on the finer points of playing hockey, your favorite position, the kind of stick you use and where you get your skates sharpened...you realize the person you're speaking with only asked if you had plans that evening.
7. You have at least one puck-shaped bruise at any given time, and you are proud of it.
8. You can't understand why more restaurants don't serve food at 12:30 a.m. on weekdays.
9. You sneak out of the house at 11 p.m....to go play pickup.
10. You use hockey pucks as coasters. And your living room/basement looks like a locker.
11. No skating or hockey for any number of days causes a detectable and significant increase in the level of crankiness.
12. Before hockey, you thought of yourself as a warm-weather person, but now summer is your least favourite season.
Wannabe DIY-er and frequent HGTV watcher, Sara P.
I'm sure many a hockey lady has the same problem I run into every day: "Where do I put my hockey equipment in a way that both displays my addiction to the sport, but still maintains a clean and orderly home?"
Being the fiscally responsible person that I am (aka "cheap bastard"), I have been reluctant to actually spend money on a hockey tree or other organizers. So when I read some plans for hockey trees that you can make yourself, I thought, why not? At first I thought about going the wood route with a plan like this one. But the amount of cutting was a little too involved for me.
Then I found the plans for an all-PVC hockey tree and that looked much easier to build. So here is my step-by-step process in building my own PVC hockey tree. Total time to build was about 2.5 hours, but that's partly because I had to stop in the middle of it and make dinner for my husband. Note: All of the work was done by myself, alone, with no advice from the husband. "I can, too, do it without injuring myself or breaking anything, so there!"
Step 1. Buy the materials. After owning my house for three years and I have become way too familiar with my Lowe's store. Although a bit uncertain of what some of these materials were, I decided to go ahead and wing it. Most everything was found in one place and, after extensively looking at the same boxes again and again, I was able to find everything on the list. Total cost: $25.
Step 2. Measure the cuts. The most involved part of this whole process is measuring the cuts on the lengths of PVC. The shopping list called for 20 ft. of Schedule 40 PVC pipe, but I actually bought two 10 ft. pieces. Luckily my car was just able to fit the 10 ft. pieces, a single 20 ft. piece would be impossible. Keep this in mind when you go shopping.
I was worried the lengths might not work out since I had two pieces instead of one, but it was fine. Remember the old adage, "measure twice, cut once". Make sure you have all the lengths you'll need before you start cutting.
Step 3. Cutting. I was a bit concerned about this part, since I'm not so good with the hand saw and there may have been some "incidents" in the past. But I wanted to give it a try and it actually was quite easy. I do recommend using a mitre box and saw as the directions suggest, and I also used a clamp to hold the pipe to the box. The PVC was pretty easy to cut through. I can't say I was super exact in cutting along my measurements (maybe off by an 1/8'' sometimes), but apparently close only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades...and hockey trees:)
This picture shows all the materials with the two 10 ft. PVC pipes cut down to the necessary lengths. The ends of the lengths were pretty rough once I cut them, so I did "sand" them all quickly with a scotch brite pad to take off the edges.
Step 4. Assembly. I followed the directions and it was clear and easy to assemble. I decided to do a dry fit first, before using the PVC cement, but after I put it together it seemed to hold up ok so I chose not to use the cement at all. I didn't like the idea of the cement smelling up my house, and this way I can continue to make adjustments to the tree as necessary. I also chose not to put on the stick holders, so I actually didn't need any of the larger couplings or the zip ties. I'll probably just return them to the store.
I'm hoping to come up with an attachment to hang my pants from. I also like the "arm" in their picture for hanging up your jerseys. I am super happy with my new hockey tree; it was easy to make and I can now proudly display my equipment without taking up an entire room.
Pittsburgh Women's Hockey Resource Blog
Charlene Bidula, Sara Petyk, Cori James and Val Sweeney blog about local women's hockey news, tips, teams and anything else they find helpful to all the women hockey players in Pittsburgh!