A few days ago a fellow LumberJock sent a note that my first anniversary with LumberJocks was fast approaching. I’m not that observant, so I probably would have missed it.
We have learned more from this fine group of woodworkers in this one year’s time than we have in several years of reading woodworking magazines and stumbling around in the shop. We are truly amazed at the willingness of such fine craftsmen to take the time to teach us novices.
I joined a year ago because I wanted to enter my bookcase design in the Popular Woodworking magazine contest and their rules said it must be posted as a blog on LumberJocks. Little did I know at that time how beneficial this site would be! I had hoped to post a few projects and write some blogs but could not foresee the events that were soon to occur.
Along with the blessings of this past year have come many trials as well. My sister’s husband finally determined that he would have heart pump surgery to sustain him until he could get a heart transplant. Even though he was finally upgraded to top priority for 30 days near the end of January, he did not get a heart and is again on a lower priority. But PTL he is doing quite well with the heart pump.
Shortly after joining LumberJocks, my husband’s brother was diagnosed with non-Hodgkins lymphoma and in mid-November returned from his retirement in Arizona to Wisconsin for cancer treatments. We spent weeks preparing our shop space for his “apartment” so he could have some privacy. As his condition worsened, we had to move him to an apartment nearer the hospital.
Then just days after happily celebrating my mother’s 90th birthday on New Year’s Eve (without my brothers present), my younger brother was diagnosed with glioblastoma – the most aggressive form of brain cancer. My older brother returned from Florida to be with the family when the tumors were removed surgically. My brother has completed his first full round of radiation and chemotherapy simultaneously and will have an MRI in mid-April to see if the tumors have returned.
Because of these complications, very little time has been spent woodworking. It has been hard to get back into the swing of things even though the shop is again available. We recently purchased several used tools (which I hope to eventually review) which were rather abused by the previous owner and need some work before putting to use.
During all of this chaos, I did begin reupholstering a wing chair (which should have been taken to the dump). I have managed to rebuild the broken back and reinforce the legs. I also had to add parts to two legs and carve a new foot on one. Maybe I’ll show it when it is done—“mixed media”. ;-)
We have enjoyed “keeping in touch” with all you LumberJocks by just viewing all the fabulous craftsmanship that is displayed on this site. It should be an inspiration for us to get back into the shop and create sawdust. Right now my husband is creating plenty of sawdust – but with the chainsaw – getting firewood ready for winter 2010-11 . . . and maybe in the process he will find a few trees that aren’t riddled with worm holes that we can saw for lumber again.
Thank you to all you LumberJocks who have been such an encouragement to us when we have posted projects and blogs. We do appreciate your helpful answers to our questions along our woodworking journey.
“Be glad about this, even though it may now be necessary for you to be sad for a while because of the many kinds of trials you suffer. Their purpose is to prove that your faith is genuine. Even gold, which can be destroyed, is tested by fire; and so your faith, which is much more precious than gold, must be tested, so that it may endure. Then you will receive praise and glory and honor on the Day when Jesus Christ is revealed.” 1 Peter 1:5-7 (TEV)
“Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance.” James 1:2-3 (NASB)
-- Jesus is the ONLY reason for ANY season.