My Journey As A Creative Designer - Woodworking and Beyond #792: Ebb and Flow

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Blog entry by Sheila Landry (scrollgirl) posted 08-17-2012 09:52 AM 1363 reads 0 times favorited 4 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 791: Planning Part 792 of My Journey As A Creative Designer - Woodworking and Beyond series Part 793: Headed to the Saw Today »

Not every day can be the most productive. Even if we do get a lot of things done, everything we do isn’t always notable or worthy of mentioning. But there are some days when I find that those mundane chores that need to be done on a daily basis fill up the majority of my day.

Usually when I write here, I like to talk about things that are above and beyond the day to day routine. After all, we all do things like washing clothes, cleaning floors and cooking meals and I don’t think that anyone would really be interested in that part of my day. Yet they are a part of day to day life that isn’t only present each day, but sometimes monopolizes the day completely.

Yesterday was one of those days for me. After picking up a few things for the house Wednesday we spent a good part of the day getting them settled in. And as always, one thing led to another and we wound up doing more cleaning and organizing. I am sure some of you must wonder how much of a slob I am because it seems that lately I am constantly organizing and reorganizing things. Perhaps it is a ‘nesting’ thing and I am preparing myself for the long winter when I know I won’t be able to get out and get things. This year was a banner year for us and we were able to really make our place nice by adding a couple of new pieces of furniture and home furnishing items. But since we don’t have any extra storage here, we try hard to move something out with each piece or item that is brought in. That keeps our trash men quite busy sometimes.

Yesterday, one of the final purchases that I made arrived. It was a combination cat box/bench for the bathroom and for me anyway it was a big deal (I think for the cats too!)

I had seen this item well over a year ago and thought it would be ideal for us here. Our bathroom is roomy enough, and with three cats kicking up the litter from their box, it is an endless mess of sweeping up the trail of crumbs in the bathroom. We currently had an ugly covered box that was looking the worse for wear and an old chair next to it where Richard (our cat) liked to sleep at night. While they were functional, they were quite an eyesore and after seeing this item, I kept thinking how clever it was to hide the box and provide a place to sit (or sleep in Richards’ case) and I really kind of wanted one.

I toyed with the idea of both making one for myself, or having Bernie make one for us, and I even asked him about it last fall. But he was quite busy then and his dance card was full and it wasn’t urgent anyway, as we had gotten along fine until now anyway. So I pushed it to the back of my mind for the time being.

But every once in a while, the idea would pop up and I wanted one again. Usually it was when I was sweeping stray litter off of the floor or cleaning the ugly box we had and I began thinking how nice it would be to have a fresh new place for them to do their business. But we were quite busy and Bernie was also busy so the idea of it again would be pushed to the back of my mind.

But a couple of weeks ago, we were in Wal-Mart buying litter, and they had covered boxes there. Keith suggested that we look into getting a new box, as the old one was quite an eyesore and the top was damaged from years ago when I moved here and held together with duct tape and I was rather surprised to see that a covered box cost about $35. It got me to thinking again that I would love to get rid of that old chair too and when I returned home, I once again looked to see about the box above.

Unfortunately no one sold them here in Canada that I could find, so I finally bit the bullet and ordered it up from the States, which cost me a bit more in shipping charges and taxes and duties. My friend Kelly (Rivergirl) had said she would have been happy to make one for me and send it to me, but I felt that it would cost here even more to ship and while I appreciated it very much, the deed was already done and it was on its way.

It arrived yesterday in a flat box and it was the typical MDF with a covering over it like most put-it-together-yourself furniture was, but it seems sturdy enough and it was packed very nicely and they even gave extra hardware. Everything fit together well and while it is no work of art, it is clean and sturdy enough and will serve a good purpose for many years, I expect. The only issue I have with it was hoping the cats would adapt to it, as we all know how cats can be on these matters.

We had it up and running by about 2pm and by dinner, we were certain that all three hadn’t tried it out yet. Richard was the first to try it out. Being the leader of the pack, I was not surprised at this. Pancakes was (as expected) frightened of it but I did see him emerge from it several hours later. I went to bed at about 11:30 and Coco still (to my knowledge) had not given it a go. This concerned me to the point that I was dreaming about it and I didn’t want to wake up to a mess in the morning. Up until now, they have always been extremely clean cats and have never had any ‘accidents’ and I was worried that this may set off a new bad habit if they disapproved of it.

But I was quite relieved this morning when it appeared that everyone had ‘checked in’ during the night. My world was once again happy.

I apologize for going on about such silliness. It was just one of those days where ‘work’ took a back seat and life took over. I had some sewing that I needed to do and some other things around the house that needed attending, and while I still filled orders and responded to many emails, I didn’t get much drawing done at all.

I sat down to draw around 8:30 last night, and put in a couple of hours, but I don’t know if I am happy with my results and may scratch what I did and start over again. My head just wasn’t into it I suppose.

I try to run with ideas as they come for this reason. When I have the time or the inspiration, I don’t like to stop because I realize that these times won’t always be here for me. I felt bad because I was really tired last night, yet I didn’t feel that I accomplished any ‘work’ to speak of. But that is just how it goes, I guess.

I am not concerned though, as I know that the tide will again come in and I will be productive again in the woodworking sense. Part of what makes my life so good is that I have the ability to take the time I need for these things and be able to set my own schedule accordingly so that I am able to work in a clean and pleasant environment.

I look forward to a new day and I know that today I will actually getting some quality drawing finished and perhaps even getting to the point where I can give it a go at the saw. As I look around, I am happy that I took the time I did yesterday for other things. I think that it was time well-spent and even if it didn’t produce a new pattern or woodworking project, it was a good day. Today will be a good day too.

Have a wonderful Friday!

-- Designer/Artist/Teacher. Owner of Sheila Landry Designs ( Scroll saw, wood working and painting patterns and surfaces. "Knowledge is Power"

4 comments so far

View Roger's profile


20929 posts in 2861 days

#1 posted 08-17-2012 12:31 PM

Have a good weekend Sheila. Gr8 story. That is a nice setup with the box built-in. Our 3 boys, Rockie, Bullwinkle, and Boris, have their own… it’s the laundry room. I cut out a “doorway” for them to come and go. Having 2 boxes in there makes it nice.
This is Rockie & Bullwinkle here:

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe. Keep your dust collector fed.

View Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)'s profile

Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)

9231 posts in 2977 days

#2 posted 08-17-2012 02:08 PM

Aren’t they awesome!!!! What beautiful kitties! Thank you for indulging me on my blog today. Sometimes life just takes over and that is all I have to write about! :)

Take care Roger and have a great weekend!


-- Designer/Artist/Teacher. Owner of Sheila Landry Designs ( Scroll saw, wood working and painting patterns and surfaces. "Knowledge is Power"

View Jamie Speirs's profile

Jamie Speirs

4168 posts in 2913 days

#3 posted 08-17-2012 06:21 PM

Hi Sheila,

nesting is important, it makes the house a home.

I think we could get Kelly into doing a nice Rustic

Outhouse for the inside of your Outhouse that is

in the house. Did that make any sense?

I was going to pm you this link to blades then I thought

it may be of general interest?

As you can see there does not appear to be a big selection.

This is my main supplier of all my equipment


-- Who is the happiest of men? He who values the merits of others, and in their pleasure takes joy, even as though 'twere his own. --Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

View Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)'s profile

Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)

9231 posts in 2977 days

#4 posted 08-17-2012 06:27 PM

These would be the closest to the ones I use Jamie:

Probably in the size 3 for the snowman project.

For the really fine projects, use these in size 2/0

I know the 2/0 blades aren’t ‘reverse tooth’ blades, but you can always cut with a layer of scrap wood or chip board (cardboard) underneath so that there is less tear out.

Those would probably work the best. Let me know how you make out. :)


-- Designer/Artist/Teacher. Owner of Sheila Landry Designs ( Scroll saw, wood working and painting patterns and surfaces. "Knowledge is Power"

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