My Journey As A Creative Designer - Woodworking and Beyond #840: Rumors of My Retirement Have Been Greatly Exaggerated

  • Advertise with us
Blog entry by Sheila Landry (scrollgirl) posted 10-08-2012 10:47 AM 1617 reads 0 times favorited 11 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 839: Testing the Water Part 840 of My Journey As A Creative Designer - Woodworking and Beyond series Part 841: We're "Growing!" »

I received a couple of emails yesterday regarding my post of Saturday. They expressed concern that I may be giving up designing scroll saw patterns and looking into something else. I just want to come out and say for certain that it is not my intention at all to do so, and if I led some of you to think that I was heading in that direction, rest assured I am not.

This past month or so has been somewhat tedious for both Keith and myself. As when anyone loses trust in someone that they had once considered worthy, it was quite a blow to us to find out what was really going on with our work. I must admit that there were fleeting moments when I considered just calling it a day and just wanted to pack it in, but those thoughts were just a flash in my mind. The reality of things is that I truly love what I do and I don’t want to have to give it up just because of one bad apple.

To me, this was a valuable learning experience. Even though I have been doing this for over fifteen years, I maintain that there is still so much more that I need to figure out. Especially if I hope to advance and grow the business.

I feel a lot wiser than I did a month ago. While part of me felt betrayed, there was another part of me that felt quite foolish for being so trusting in the first place.

I think that most people try to look for the good in others. I know I have made mistakes in the past, and I try not to judge others by the mistakes that they have made. I like to think that others look beyond the errors that I may have made in judgment and try to look at the the person that I am now. Not perfect, but as someone who tries to do the right thing.

I admit that I do get discouraged when I see greed, disregard for others feelings and those who deliberately inflict pain on those around them. This world and its circumstances are cruel enough without those who willingly try to hurt others, many times for their own selfish gain. But what I found is among the bad, there are many, many good people who are just like me – trying to make their way.

While sometimes it is evident which side people are on, there are others that are in a grey area somewhere between the two, and that is where I get muddled up. I tend to judge people on face value, and while that works when someone is being honest to me, it leaves me quite vulnerable to those who are not. I think they use the term “gullible”.

But as I grow and as I learn, I seem to have developed a little harder skin. Sometimes when I am lounging on my ‘pink cloud’ a tad of cynicism creeps in, and I have to catch myself and not make blanket judgments about things. But sometimes it is difficult to not rush into things when we are upset. Our first reaction when wronged is usually to ‘react.’ And as I get older, I find that while holding your breath and taking some time to think first may be the best answer, it usually requires far more effort.

However, I have rarely regretted doing so. While taking the time to think before I acted wasn’t quite as satisfying as acting out immediately, the lasting effects of making decisions with a cool head were far preferred than burning bridges and hot accusations that cause irreparable damage. So I try.

I have decided to miss a few days writing during these past few weeks. While that seems to many that I am winding things down here, it actually indicates quite the contrary. I am not avoiding writing because I have nothing to say, but rather because I don’t think it is the right time to say everything just yet. While I don’t mind putting myself out here each day when I write, so that others who are wanting to be in a similar business can possibly learn from what I encounter, there are still some things that I prefer to keep close to my chest and are better yet unsaid.

While silence may be construed as a sign of defeat, I want you all to know that for myself, it is quite the opposite. I am a tough cookie. I grew up in the inner city-south side of Chicago. My family was far from perfect and much of what I learned about life I learned from my friends and on the streets. I came from a broken home in the mid-60’s at a time when divorce wasn’t fashionable or socially accepted (I had one friend who’s mom wouldn’t let her play with me because my parents were divorced – we used to sneak and hang out anyway) and I had to live with that stigma as a young girl.

What does that have to do with anything here?


I have said before that I never liked or felt comfortable in the role of the victim, and I maintain that attitude now. We all make our own choices and I like to take responsibility for mine. Whether they turned out well or not, it is up to me to decide whether to continue with them or move on.

I am very excited about the new avenues that I am on right now. It is difficult for me not to talk about them. But until I feel a bit more secure in my decisions and directions, I just don’t feel the need to put everything out here just yet. It will come in time, when I am ready.

Yes, there was one bad apple in my business plan. Maybe there are more. I still have to wait and see. But in the end, I do like apples so I am not planning to throw the entire basket of them away just because one has rotted. That would be foolish on my part. I have no plans for ‘retirement’ as long as there is breath in my body.

Besides, weeding out the bad apples is probably the best thing that I could have done. Once I am finished, things will be better than ever.

Photo courtesy of Free HD Wallpapers

Have a wonderful Monday! Happy Thanksgiving Canada! Happy Columbus Day USA!

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

11 comments so far

View MsDebbieP's profile


18615 posts in 4129 days

#1 posted 10-08-2012 11:37 AM

“felt quite foolish for being so trusting” .... it is not foolish or wrong to trust. It is wrong to take advantage of someone.

I think that if more people shared their stories of honour and integrity, our society would be a better place. I am positive that your stories, Sheila, have an impact on people’s outlook on life and on how they (we) live. Thank you.

As for wisdom, the wisdom of good business practices, that is another story. Dotting the “i’s” and crossing the “t’s” along with the honour, integrity, and trust is a wonderful combination!!

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (

View patron's profile


13600 posts in 3310 days

#2 posted 10-08-2012 12:07 PM

funny how some perceptions work

yesterday in front of wal-mart
i bumped into a woman i had worked for years ago
fixing up her house
(she was registering folks to vote)

after the usual pleasantries
she asked me if i was still doing woodwork
(this is a question i’ve heard allot over the years)

i guess some think what we do is for them
whenever they may need

‘still here after almost 50 years’
(although running apple computer has crossed my mind)

i do this because i love it
not because some may need it

maybe i should sit watching soaps
and reality TV
and just die
if the phone doesn’t ring

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

View Rick13403's profile


256 posts in 3473 days

#3 posted 10-08-2012 12:20 PM

Happy Thanksgiving Day to you and Keith and the other Canadians on this site. Hope it is a good day for you.

-- Rick - DeWalt 788 & Ex21 -

View jerrells's profile


918 posts in 2853 days

#4 posted 10-08-2012 01:08 PM

The World and all of it’s changes are disturbing. I worked in retial for 35 years, before retiring. In my opinion that is a mad house today, most any company.

The thought comes to mind, “trust but verify”. That says I trust you and I expect to find that when I check you our, and I will.

We (I) always know that you will be there for us. This is what you do. Stay strong and have a great day.

-- Just learning the craft my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ practiced.

View BritBoxmaker's profile


4611 posts in 3005 days

#5 posted 10-08-2012 03:52 PM

When the scars don’t show on the surface people think you are just like them. I’m happy to say I’m not. Well not like most of them. Someone has to have the intelligent thoughts!

I would have thought it would take more than one disappointment to floor you, Sheila.

-- Martyn -- Boxologist, Pattern Juggler and Candyman of the visually challenging.

View Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)'s profile

Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)

9222 posts in 2889 days

#6 posted 10-08-2012 04:03 PM

Thank you all. Indeed it does take more than one hit. Just because I am not kicking and screaming doesn’t mean that I am not doing something about it. I will never go down to their level to ‘get even’. The best thing I can do is to refocus and work harder in other directions. So many of us expend too much energy trying to change other people. We’ve all done it in one way or another. I find that all it does is keep us focused on negative things and brings us down further.

I would rather spend my time working toward other positive things that will bring good things to me and the business. No anger or ‘revenge.’ My future success will be its own reward, and I will be a happier and well-centered person.

I look upon that as one of my strengths, not my weaknesses.

Thank you for the kind support everyone! :)


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

View Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)'s profile

Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)

9222 posts in 2889 days

#7 posted 10-08-2012 04:06 PM

And David – you are doing it for the RIGHT reasons. For yourself. I find my best work is when I am working on things that I believe in. I think that is the case for most of us. Good for you! :)


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

View MrsN's profile


985 posts in 3495 days

#8 posted 10-08-2012 04:33 PM

I amreally glad that you are sticking through all of this, I was a little worried when I thought you might be quiting.

View Celticscroller's profile


1269 posts in 2042 days

#9 posted 10-09-2012 02:27 AM

Hope you had a great Thanksgiving weekend Sheila.
I’ve only be following your blog for a few months but one of the things that has struck me is your integrity and your courage to share the good times and the not so good. Exciting times ahead for you as you explore new ideas!

-- Anna, Richmond BC

View Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)'s profile

Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)

9222 posts in 2889 days

#10 posted 10-09-2012 10:47 AM

Thank you Anna! :)


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

View Lee A. Jesberger's profile

Lee A. Jesberger

6851 posts in 3948 days

#11 posted 10-09-2012 01:27 PM

Very nicely written, Sheila.


-- by Lee A. Jesberger

Have your say...

You must be signed in to post the comments.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics