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 Craftsman CrewTHE ROCK FATHER has partnered with Sears as a paid member of the Craftsman Crew.

When it comes to making, building, and creating with high-quality craftsmanship, few know the drill more than the big man in red - Santa Claus. If you've never had a chance to visit Santa's workshop in the North Pole, let me tell you that you're missing out. Sure, you might know Santa and his Elves for all the toys and games that they spend the first 11 months of each year creating, but the work that goes into keeping Santa's Sleigh running at top-speed is done in Speed Shop that rivals some of the best hot rod builders in the world - and Santa's ride is a 9 RP (that's Reindeerpower) force of gift delivering fury! The Elves know that Craftsman Tools power their workshop, and with that in mind you could give a gift that rocks for the budding maker on your list - whether they're young, old. naughty, nice, nice & naughty, or just getting started. Craftsman has a Holiday Gift Finder that can help you find just what's right, and as part of The Craftsman Crew, I'm sharing THE ROCK FATHER's Top Craftsman Gift Picks to highlight some of the best and brightest, alongside some sweet products - not just tools - that I bet you didn't even know that Craftsman had. Ho! Ho! Ho!

Craftsman CrewTHE ROCK FATHER has partnered with Sears as a paid member of the Craftsman Crew.

No matter how well the preparation has gone, the Holiday Season has not just "crept-up" on us, but has emerged swiftly and with unusual force this year. It's somewhat hard to get a grip on all the moving parts that go with a successful and stress-free season these days (14 variations on Thanksgiving, 79 versions of Xmas - you know how it is), but when it comes to gifting, I'm pretty good at picking what works, hence my annual Holiday Wish Guide. For me, this is a time for fixing up the place - but even more so, being ready for toys... specifically, always being ready to open the battery compartments on toys. Since just about everything takes batteries at this point (even things you wouldn't expect), I've encountered some tricky spots - spots where some good grip comes in handy. With the new Craftsman Extreme GRIP Lineup of tools, I'm well taken care of - and that's why I'm including them in my 2015 Holiday Wish Guide. There's an Extreme GRIP tool for just about any application, and they're on-sale right now! A great gift idea, and a great asset to any toolbox - the perfect ally in the battle against rounded, stripped or just hard-to-grip fasteners.  Check out some Rock Father picks below, then enter to win a Craftsman Extreme GRIP 6-Piece Diamond Tip Screwdriver Set!

Published in Gardening
Craftsman CrewTHE ROCK FATHER has partnered with Sears as a paid member of the Craftsman Crew.

As I write these words to you right now, the cold November rain (GN'R reference) is coming down outside our home, the gutters overflowing and solid sheets of water running down the windows of my office. The harsh reality is that my favorite season will soon come to a close, with Fall making way to Winter. If the preliminary predictions are to be believed, winter 2015/16 in the U.S. is gonna be harsh - and that's saying something since we've lived through a bevy of Hoth-like conditions here in Northern Illinois during the past few winters. If previous years have brought forth those news-worthy catch phrases like "Snowmageddon," what's looming in the not-so-distant future might well be the Snowpocalypse, and we must be prepared. Thing is, we need to finish our Fall Clean-up to be ready for winter - and being prepared for both will help everyone get back to normal come Spring, and getting our lawn and garden ready for a new year of fresh growth is something I'm always looking forward to.  My friends at Craftsman have all the tools to get you through every season, and to help bridge Fall and Winter, I'm throwing down five helpful tips!

Published in Gardening

Craftsman CrewTHE ROCK FATHER has partnered with Sears as a paid member of the Craftsman Crew. Are you #MADEtoRACE?

As a grownup, one thing I really wish I had the skill to do is fix up some old cars and take them out for a little old-school racing action. The only engine that I ever personally rebuilt was one for a go-kart, and I did that back in high school. I wish I'd learned more years back, but one thing I know for sure is that it's not only vehicles that can be "Made to Race," but people as well. Looking back, I'm fairly confident that I was #MADEtoRACE from the get-go - circa 1976. Just look at that little Renault Racing suit...

Published in Rock Father Rides

Craftsman CrewTHE ROCK FATHER has partnered with Sears as a paid member of the Craftsman Crew. Are you #MadeToMake?

As a kid, the first tools that I ever came to know were Craftsman. Most of those were purchased from the classic Sears store in the long-gone Park Forest Plaza - a store that I have many memories of - a place that seemed larger-than-life. Of those tools, one thing that I eventually inherited was a set of screwdrivers from the late 70s/early 80s - the same ones I use here at Rock Father HQ today... the ones still sold by Craftsman all these years later, and still Made in the USA. They've been regularly-used tools for nearly four decades, and now I use them on my girls' toys. But age has instilled in me a growing urge to make things.

Published in Gardening

Sears: #DestinationDadThe old saying is that "the more things change, the more they stay the same." I don't know if that's 100% accurate, but I do know that there's an interesting parallel between my former and current selves when it comes to SEARS. Growing up in the late 1970s and early 1980s, SEARS was the destination for cool... toys. The annual Sears Wish Book was a staple in our home, and I can vividly remember visiting the catalog department of the gargantuan Park Forest Sears to await the arrival of some new treasure that would be delivered in a plain brown box, emerging from a mythical stockroom via  squeaky-wheeled track. Two favorites of mine have actually become sought-after, and highly valuable "collectibles" in the nearly four decades past - the 1978 STAR WARS Cantina Adventure Playset and the G.I. JOE Cobra Missile Command Headquarters. While the Sears of my youth could've been hashtagged as #DestinationToys, the Sears of my adulthood can be tagged #DestinationDad - those cool playsets replaced by other... cool playsets - like Craftsman Sheds, deck-mounted Gazebos and all the accessories. But instead of plastic blasters, starships and tanks, it's lawn mowers, coffee makers and tablets. Dad stuff.

Published in Rock Father's Day