Tool Post: It's Her Time

It is college graduation time at our house. A big deal and lots of excitement as our youngest leaves the nest. One of the practical gifts I gave my oldest daughter is (to this day), one of her most-loved gifts. She uses it regularly and the box itself reminds her of her college accomplishments. Temple Tuff!

I put together a basic tool box. A gift that reflects the common sense in me, gives a daughter self-sufficiency and also allows quick fixes of small household tasks. Even the DIY-challenged require basic tools for survival!  Yep, it’s not glamorous but it is utterly practical and totally necessary for moving out into the world.

Because these were graduation gifts, I wanted them to tie in with their college years.


Maggie, my youngest, finished her studies at Temple University in December of 2017. She will receive her diploma on Feb 2, and to help celebrate the day I will present her with her own tool box the same day. To make it fun, as well as practical, I searched for a toolbox that matches Temple’s “cherry and white” color theme. I found a smaller scale vintage metal Kennedy toolbox. I then personalized it with her initials, year of graduation and a vintage Temple owl logo I found online. I even added some favorite ‘words to the wise’ in laser cut vinyl.

So here is my list of the basics to build a toolbox:

  • Claw hammer

  • Flathead screwdriver

  • Phillips head screwdriver

  • Crescent wrench

  • Socket wrench (ratchet)

  • Vice grip/locking pliers

  • Needle nose pliers

  • Cordless drill and bits

  • Level

  • Utility knife- oh, those Amazon boxes!

  • Hacksaw

  • Safety goggles - just because I’m mom

  • Work gloves

  • Measuring tape

  • Roll of gorilla tape

  • Roll of masking tape

  • Picture hanging supplies: nails, wire, picture hangers

  • Leatherman all purpose tool-for camping trips & bike outings- always live like a Girl Scout.

  • Allen wrench- an essential for those Ikea builds

  • Flashlight

Equipped with these basics, I know my graduate will have everything she needs to accomplish those first apartment tasks. As a parent, it is bittersweet to let go, but it’s better knowing she’s got the mechanics to survive.

We love and are so proud of this young woman!

Happy Graduation, Maggie!