There's nothing quite like kickin' it in the old backyard on a lazy Sunday afternoon -- or Saturday or Tuesday, if you're so inclined. That's right, sitting back and enjoying the fruits of your labor without having to worry about pesky issues like office memos and mortgage payments for at least an hour or two. The experience is even more rewarding when you do your relaxing on something you built with your own to hands. A basic backyard bench is easy and inexpensive to build. Here's what you need (with special thanks to Jay's Custom Creations):

  • Eight 8-foot (2.4-meter) 2x4s
  • 24 2.5- inch (6-centimeter) outdoor screws
  • 21 2.5-inch (6-centimeter) outdoor pocket hole screws
  • Outdoor wood glue
  • Saw (hand, circular, jig or miter saw will work)
  • Drill

As in many basic woodworking projects, the hardest part is cutting the lumber in the appropriate shapes and sizes. Grab a saw and lay out the eight 2x4s, with the smooth side down. Now, see how much grammar school geometry you remember.