Just 15 More Minutes

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Blog entry by Kjuly posted 08-02-2009 02:12 AM 1050 reads 0 times favorited 8 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I posted this blog on my web site and thought I would share it with my fellow Lumber Jocks.

A good friend called last night and suggested I write a blog about an article that I wrote in 1993 for the Mid-Michigan Woodworkers Guild.

When I was young I was taught how to tell time. I thought that this task was quite simple, but I find even today I have trouble telling time. Actually it’s not telling time that’s the problem, but it’s telling the time that it takes to do something in the shop.

For some time now I have been engaged in the pastime known as woodworking. I have a small shop where I build custom cabinets and furniture in my spare time. My shop time is precious; you see, I have a full time job and a family to care for. Two boys who play sports and some special time with my wife makes for very little time in my shop. I am not complaining; I would not have it any other way.

When I am working away, the time seems to fly by. A simple task that appears to take fifteen minutes is completed three hours later and it seems almost like a blink of an eye. Now here is where I get into trouble, one of my sons sticks his head into the shop and over the hum of the table saw,” Mom says dinner is in fifteen minutes.” Dinner? I could swear that we just finished lunch! Well, fifteen minutes is quite a long time, I’ll just finish ripping these last few boards and set up for the next step. I remember to look at the clock after a few minutes have passed. I am not sure what time it was so I guess. Now, keeping a close eye on the clock, I finish the last few boards and set up for the next task. I brush off the sawdust , take off my shoes and rush to the dinner table where everyone is seated. When I sit down it occurs to me that I may be a little late. The dog rolling his eyes is a dead give away.

I start my explanation knowing that it is without hope. My wife smiles and asks if everything is going well in my shop. Trying not to look guilty I respond “It’s going real well” I look up at the clock and see that I am only fifteen minutes late, but dinner is hot…hmmm….my first thought is how can dinner still be hot? As I look over the table I see that no one has started to eat, could it be that dinner is fifteen minutes late or could I actually be on time? (Little chance of that happening)

As we talk over dinner, getting the latest on school assignments or hearing of the snake caught after school, I forget the stack of lumber in the shop for the time being, and try to sort out the rest of the week’s schedule of basketball games and meetings or whatever is written on the calendar for that week.

Soon my thoughts turn to my shop and I have a little trouble concentrating on the topic at hand. It’s time to get back to my second love…I married my first.

The sander buzzing along; the clock picks up speed. As I finish the sanding, I notice it’s getting late. There’s plenty of work left for another day. I stop and survey the shop: the tools resting, the pile of sawdust on the floor and the partly finished projects…what the heck I think I’ll work for just fifteen minutes more.

This was written, as noted above, in 1993. Lots has changed since then but thought I would honor my friend’s request and share this once again.


-- Keith, Charlotte, MI

8 comments so far

View Rustic's profile


3253 posts in 3620 days

#1 posted 08-02-2009 03:14 AM

That sounds like my life. (without the kids). LOL

--, Rick Kruse, Grand Rapids, MI

View a1Jim's profile


117115 posts in 3601 days

#2 posted 08-02-2009 03:24 AM

I’ll finish reading this in fifteen minutes.:-))

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

View MsDebbieP's profile


18615 posts in 4184 days

#3 posted 08-29-2009 05:58 PM

and your first love adapts her time to fit yours :)

I remember with my family that if we had to be somewhere for 8 o’clock and it took half an hour to get there, I would tell my daughter to get ready at 6:00, because it would take her an hour and a half to get ready, I would tell my husband that the event was at 7:00, because he wouldn’t start getting ready until it was time to leave, and I would tell my son to get ready at 7:25 because he would only take a couple minutes to get ready..

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (

View miles125's profile


2180 posts in 4029 days

#4 posted 08-29-2009 06:08 PM

I recall a unique way i had of telling my son when he was 3 or 4 years old how long a drive we were on would take. If it was a 2 hour drive, i told him it was 4 woody woodpecker shows before we got there. He instantly grasped time.

-- "The way to make a small fortune in woodworking- start with a large one"

View MsDebbieP's profile


18615 posts in 4184 days

#5 posted 08-29-2009 06:23 PM

oh yah.. and if i ask Rick how long he will be I ask if that is “real time or guy time”
Guy time is like football time…. “See? There is only 5 minutes left to the game.” (an hour later… still waiting.)

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (

View Kjuly's profile


308 posts in 3309 days

#6 posted 09-08-2009 01:42 PM

Hi All,
Just got back from a fishing trip in Ontario Ca, with my son.
Ms. Debbie,
You had quite a juggling act. I don’t know that I could have pulled off such a task. The clock at the football game has a mind of it’s own. I remember a lot of late Thanksgiving dinners because of football.

Woody Woodpecker…. we used Transformer shows. Too funny

-- Keith, Charlotte, MI

View patron's profile (online now)


13606 posts in 3365 days

#7 posted 09-08-2009 01:52 PM

the door into the shop ,
is a portal ,
into the
twilight zone !

i’ll be back in 15 …...........

-- david - only thru kindness can this world be whole . If we don't succeed we run the risk of failure. Dan Quayle

View DaleM's profile


958 posts in 3407 days

#8 posted 09-08-2009 02:04 PM

I’m so bad with time once I get started on something that if I have something to do or somewhere I need to be in a couple hours, I won’t even bother getting started on a project that should only take 15 minutes because I know it will somehow turn into an hours long project and I’ll end up running late.

-- Dale Manning, Carthage, NY

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