I wish to take this moment to wish you all a very happy holidays. This includes Thanksgiving and Christmas. What I am about to post is not meant to offend anyone. It is coming from my heart and stem purely from my personal beliefs. If you are offended by religion, please, stop reading now. I'd rather you not read my words than to be offended by my religious beliefs. I am in no way offended by anybody else's beliefs, or lack thereof. All I ask in return is that exact same tolerance and freedom to express mine.
As you sit down to you Thanksgiving feast this year, please say a prayer and give thanks for all that you have in your life. We enjoy the food, the family, and the good memories. That's what we take from this holiday. Leave something too though. Leave thanks for what you have.
I'm not talking about material things either. Some of us sometimes forget what is important in life. We focus on material possessions, cars, houses, and the latest and greatest technologies so much that we forget that these things mean nothing in this short thing we call life. I forget too sometimes that I am the richest man in the world. I don't have a lot of money. I don't drive a new car. I rent my house. I am by no measuring stick financially rich. I have a loving wife though and eight kids. That, my friends, by my own measuring stick, makes me the richest man in the world. For that, I give thanks this year.
There was a time when I never wanted to settle down and get married. I definitely didn't want kids. I was worried about my next dollar, my next drink, my next smoke, my next whatever material thing that I needed at the time to fill my empty soul. None of it ever made me happy though. Then God blessed me with a very large family through the course of life and its unexpected twists and turns. It's taken a long hard road to get to where I am today. At least half my life is gone and I can now look around me and see what is truly important, family.
So, if you have little else but family this year, stop what you are doing. Watch that family. If there are kids, just stop everything else. Put the cell phone or computer down. Watch the kids play. If they come up to you, look deep into their eyes and see the love and admiration there. See that, for this very short time, you are their everything, their world. Enjoy this before it's too late, because it doesn't last forever. Be thankful for here, now, and the things that truly make life worth living. It will all be gone in a whisper, but thank God I have them right now.
Did you notice that I highlighted Christ in that word above? I done so because I believe that is the true meaning of Christmas. I am not a fanatic who judge people badly because do the whole Santa Claus bit. It's fun for the kids. I have decorations right now in my yard I have been putting up. Out there, you'll see Santa Claus, snowmen, reindeer, the whole bit. My favorite decoration though is the nativity scene. It is a reminder of what is quickly being lost with today's commercialized Christmas.
If you are of the same beliefs as I, take time this Christmas to pray. Remember what Christmas was supposed to represent. It is a celebration. Overlook all the signs you'll surely see with Christ crossed out of the holiday name. Forget about the people who celebrate a religious holiday for reasons that ave nothing at all to do with religion. Remember the words. It is not our duty to judge or dictate. However, it is our duty to educate.
For the last three years I have had at least one of my kids come to me and ask the true meaning of Christmas. I am thrilled that I can sit down and explain this to them. I pray that one day they will tell their own kids. By that time, there may be little or no mention of Christ or Jesus when talking about holidays. In the present, you can still go into stores and see the word Christmas, but notice how quickly it is disappearing in favor of signs that say only Xmas, or Holidays. For those of you who believe in CHRISTMAS though, don't forget that if we don't do our job and educate our little one's, this too, will be lost in time.
Between health issues and just not being able to stay caught up lately, I have not worked on a woodworking project in over a week. What little I may or may not do between now and the first of the year will be based on my health and time, and will not be much I'm afraid. So I do want to take this time to wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving, Merry Christmas, and a Happy New Year.
If I do have any small project, or projects send by readers, such as Willy B., I will post them. Other than that, I hope all of you who send me the kind emails will continue reading in 2012. Thank you for reading. You are welcome to click on the comment button below and leave a comment. This is something I really want to work on more, is getting reader's to participate in my blog more. While I deeply appreciate all your kind emails, if you really want to help me, I encourage all readers to comment more on my posts publicly. It is easy to do. All you have to do is click below any post that interests you. It is the spot where it lists the number of comments, which currently is usually zero. You can even leave a comment as anonymous if you do not have a google account.
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Tuesday, November 15, 2011
The Lord's Prayer plaque is another from The Berry Basket website. You can find the plans for it here if you'd like to make your own.
It measures twenty three inches wide and twenty eight inches tall. It is made out of cottonwood except for the accent pieces, which are made of mahogany. The backer board is stained with Minwax Dark Walnut stain. The scroll work, lettering, and accent pieces are glued one. Then the entire project is finished with Minwax Clear Gloss Lacquer.
I did make a change to this plaque from the design. The angels that are supposed to adorn the side trim look real pretty on paper, but not so much after I cut them. That happens sometimes in scrolling. So I cut some different angels out of a pattern book I have. I didn't like the way they fit with the rest of the plaque though. So I wound up in the end making some simple crosses for the project. Sometimes, in my opinion, simple works best.
He made it for his mother-in-law. It is made out of quarter inch oak plywood. It is lined in pink. He got the pattern from Wildwood Designs.
Thank you for showing us more of your work Willy. I sure appreciate your participation in contributing to my blog. Send more projects any time you like.
Saturday, November 5, 2011
This is another plaque from the Berry Basket Collection. You can order the plans for it here. It is twenty two inches tall at the middle, and twenty three inches wide. When you order the plans for this, they come in PDF format for easy printing and are instantly available at the time of payment. So there is no waiting anxiously for hard copies to come in the mail. All the patterns are drawn full size. All you have to do is print off the file and go to work.
The plaque is made entirely of cottonwood. The backer board is stained with Minwax Dark Walnut stain. The border pieces and wording is then cut and glued to the backer board. The entire thing is then finished with Minwax Gloss Lacquer.
This is my second plaque in this style. I recently completed the Psalms plaque. I still have two more that I ordered to cut. These are time consuming project. They are worth it though. As designed, they are well thought out. Most of that time is spent at the scroll saw actually cutting. So I like them. Some long projects effect me in a negative way. I love projects that are time consuming at the scroll saw. That is something I can do.